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Facebook have announced they've updated the Android SDK bringing it to beta 3.0. Facebook's new changes have been called the "biggest overhaul" yet, which are mostly aimed toward making it easier and quicker to develop Android apps which work with Facebook.
The social network are also trying to make third-party interfaces more consistant, offering new native UI control packs built-in caching in order to make the whole experience faster. Developers will also now receive the ability to integrate friend tagging and calling up nearby places. New login controls to manage authentication are said to help apps call up your Facebook identities and hold onto them, without you having to authenticate more than a few times.
Hopefully this means we see the native Facebook for Android application soon, like iOS receives a few weeks ago.
Rovio has released a new trailer for its upcoming Star Wars based Angry Birds game. The new video is the second to feature actual real footage from Star Wars, curious because George Lucas has traditionally been somewhat stingy with the usage rights for the film. This footage comes from Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope.
In the video scene, we see Han Solo boast about his Millennium Falcon. Rovio explains that this is "one of the few times Lucasfilm has allowed for such use of the original material." The hint from this film comes in the form of the slingshot being placed on top of the Millennium Falcon. Any ideas as to what this could mean?
What do you think about the new trailer? What hints do you see? Are you excited for the new Angry Birds game?
Microsoft may have released Zune which failed to really take off or compete with Apple's iTunes, but it looks like Microsoft is back yet again with a new competitor for Apple: Xbox Music.
Xbox Music is an all-in-one digital music service that will throw the 30 million tracks available to users through the Xbox 360 gaming console to Microsoft PCs, tablets and smartphones running the Redmond-based company's Windows 8 and Windows RT operating systems.
There are three parts of this new venture, the first is a free streaming service that will be ad-supported and limited to a certain number of hours after six months. A premium, unlimited, ad-free streaming option is also available at around $10 a month, and consumers will also have the option to simply purchase and download any track from the catalogue.
Developers of Android applications will be pleased to hear that Google has heard your complaints and updated the Android developer console to make it easier to use. As the system stands, there are some significant difficulties seeing whether or not an app is published and is generally confusing to use.
"At its core, the Developer Console is how you put your app in front of hundreds of millions of Android users around the world, and track how your app is doing," the company said in a blog post. "We hope that with a streamlined publishing flow, new language options, and new user ratings statistics, you'll have better tools for delivering great Android apps that delight users."
Like most updates offered by companies, the new version is faster, sleeker, and easier to use, or so Google says. By the looks of it, this is true, though I'm no Android developer. The new version features loads of new analytics with charts and graphs everywhere. Developers can see data by device, country, language, carrier, Android version, or app version.
However, a few features from the old console are not compatible with the new version, so Google has left in the option to switch between views so that those few features are still accessible by developers. Part of the reason that Apple products have so many great apps is that developing is easy. Hopefully this new update will aid Android developers do the same.
Apple haven't been having happy days lately, their shares prices are at a bad low right now, the iPhone 5 didn't sell anywhere near analysts expectations. On top of that, their decision to throw Maps on iOS 6, ditching Google Maps for iOS hasn't gone down well, either.
Google have since then been reportedly working on releasing Google Maps for iOS, with App Map developer Ben Guild posting some early details and partial screenshots of the Mountain View-based company's Map application for iOS.
According to the developer, the standalone version of Google Maps for iOS is in alpha testing, but has some great improvements over the previous Google Maps app. This includes the new app being vector-based, sporting two-finger rotation on any angle, and is "super fast". Best of all, it supports the new, taller 4-inch iPhone 5 screen.
Android Police have some great news for Gmail for Android fans, where in Android 4.2 you'll have pinch-to-zoom abilities in the Gmail app. Also included with Android 4.2 is a new swipe to delete/archive, as shown in the video below.
The video above was done on a Galaxy Nexus running Android 4.2, meaning that the new abilities aren't limited to just Android 4.2 which is great. Android Police have noticed that the 'About' screen notes it's Gmail version 4.2.
Swipe to archive/delete is as simple as swiping a notification away, where you can swipe an e-mail out of your inbox, or archive it somewhere. Google give you some nice options, where you can change your swipes to "No effect", "Archive or delete" or "Always Delete". The default option is set to "Archive or delete" which will send swiped messages into archiving when you're in the inbox, delete swiped messages when you'er in All Mail or Sent, and remove a label when you're in label-only view.
I was laying in bed last night and grabbed my Nexus 7 that I have on my bedside table, I turned it on and hit the Google Play store to have a look around. I noticed that the menu looked different, so I looked closer and noticed that "Magazines" now appeared - finally, the Australian Play Store has magazines!
Cool, I thought, I'll check it out and purchase a magazine to see how it is. I download the app, purchase a magazine from an Australian technology magazine "PC & Tech Authority", lay down and proceed to enjoy reading it. Well, I couldn't because Google Play Magazines doesn't quite work yet.
The app itself doesn't open, and requires an update, which you can't tap the option to do so. You can see in the picture above, just below where it says "GOOGLE INC.", there should be an "Update", and "Open" tab, but there is not. So I have now wasted $4.99 on a magazine that I can't read. I'm sure it'll work soon enough, but it's disappointing to see Google launch a new section of their Play store, and have it fail on day one.
Anyway, the new Magazine part of the Play store offers countless titles from major Australian publishers like Haymarket Media, ACP Magazines and Pacific Magazines. Also thrown into the mix are a bunch of publishers from overseas, and the option of a once off purchase or subscription-based service is offered. Prices aren't too bad, where they either match the price of Apple's Newsstand, or they're slightly cheaper.
Microsoft Office is looking to jump over to Android and iOS, with evidence coming from Microsoft product manager, Petr Bobek, reportedly telling Czech site IHNED that Office is headed for the mobile OS' of Google and Apple in 2013.
The Verge have also stepped up and said that they've had their eyes locked on a press release from the Redmond-based company's Czech Republic team, which confirmed that the productivity suite is coming to Android and iOS, joining other operating systems like Windows Phone, Windows RT, Mac OS and Symbian.
The press release states that Office 2013 would be available for businesses in December, with a consumer launch not until the end of February or early-March 2013.
GoPro cameras are pretty slick. They're pretty indestructible and perfect for recording a point-of-view video of your extreme adventures, whether that be snowboarding, base jumping, or sky diving. Unfortunately, as it currently stands, users have to remove the camera from their head mount to adjust what they are recording.
That's all about to change with GoPro's new app for iOS devices which allows users to link a HD Hero2 camera through the WiFi BacPac to your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad. Once linked, users can adjust camera settings from anywhere nearby. All of the cameras settings are available to be adjusted through the new app.
The Next Web brings up a great idea that should be added to the app. They suggest the ability to preview what is being recorded so as to allow adjusting the angle of the camera to be done easier. The app also connects users to the company's Photo and Video of the Day so that you can try and outdo fellow GoProers.
An Android version is reported to be in the works. A release date is not currently known.
Google have just pushed in a bunch of input tools to their Gmail client, which will allow users to access a new variety of languages and layout tools. With these new features, Gmail has the proud ability to brag it supports typing in 75 languages.
These new tools include over 100 virtual keyboards, transliteration and IMEs (input method editors). You can now swap between languages with a single click once you've enabled the tools under Language in your Gmail settings.
Once you've flicked the switch on input tools, you'll see a new Input Tools button that will appear in your toolbar, where you can toggle these tools on and off. Virtual keyboards and IMEs is a move from Google that will see many more flock to the web-based e-mail client, and will see better use of keyboards instead of having to get an expensive multilanguage keyboard setup or overlay. Nice move, Google.