With the titans of the industry intruding on turf once hailed sacred to small timers like Foursquare and Vlingo, the two companies are forging a partnership that will help aim to continue their operations despite seeing some fierce competition. Facebook started to offer a new feature called Places that’s similar to what Foursquare offers while Google Voice Actions has taken a crack at Vlingo’s tried & true service. However, Vlingo is providing for some new features and enhancements to Foursquare for Android which essentially will allow users to do certain things with voice actions. Instead of manually having to check-in, you can simply say “Check in to Taco Bell” and the app will automatically do it for you. Other recognized functions are “Where are my friends” and “Who’s nearby?” This move could be possibly due to the increasing amount of share that Google is taking away from Vlingo with their Voice Actions service. On the other hand, it definitely strengthens the cause for both Vlingo and Foursquare to team with one another.
via Android Guys
Android users, we know you were feeling a bit left out. After all, as we reported, the highly addictive Angry Birds game has just landed on the Palm Pre and Pre Plus models running webOS 1.4.5, and had been on the iOS platform for some time. But this Friday, the birds, the pigs and the slingshots will be available for Android owners who want to beta test the game. If that includes you, sign up at this link. Rovio, the company behind the game, plans on sending out the beta to everyone who has signed up.
If you have wondered why Steve Jobs shuns Adobe Flash in Apple’s gadgets, it might not be just because of his capricious nature. We have been waiting for a while for Froyo to bring the full Flash experience to Android devices, but the end results are far from impressive. Over at GigaOM they have made a video trying to run various things on a Nexus One with Froyo, and found mobile Flash still not ready for prime time.
Given the resource hog that desktop Flash is, the mobile version has proved to be a daunting task for Adobe to scale down, and port over to mobile devices. Video playback on a lot of popular news and video websites was hit-and-miss, and basically the moral of the story is that the videos still have to be specifically optimized for mobile viewing, which kind of misses the whole purpose.
In our own experience with Adobe Flash 10.1 on Froyo we noticed actual improvement displaying interactive charts, like those of Google Finance, for example, which before were not exactly “interactive”, but Google recently optimized the site for mobile, so that might be it.
What about your experiences, has the Flash superhero come to the rescue on your Froyo device, or you also have some “Flashback” stories to tell?
Mozilla, the company behind the Firefox desktop browser, is now offering an Alpha version of its mobile Fennec browser for Android powered handsets, and for the Nokia N900. According to Mozilla, Fennec is the first mobile browser to offer add-ons and is built using the same technology that powers Firefox. The browser is a free download available from this link.
Ever find yourself late for a meeting because of traffic, and when you arrived at your destination, your party had gone? Sure, you might have tried to send out a text, but tapping out a message while driving is a big no-no! TeleNav has come up with an app that will handle a situation like this. The company, known for its navigation software for AT&T and Sprint, has developed “OnMyWay”. With this app, if you are running late, the software will spring into action and send out a text or e-mail with a new ETA, to a pre-selected group of recipients.
Setting the app is a matter of taking care of a few simple steps. Enter your destination and expected arrival time, input a list of recipient’s text or e-mail info, and you are then ready to hit the road. You can also add a personal message for some of the recipients and no one will know your location except yourself.
So no longer will you need to fumble for the phone to send out a text while you are driving, or curse at the traffic light for turning green while you are in the middle of writing out your excuse. Already available for the BlackBerry platform, starting today “OnMyWay” can be downloaded on your iPhone or Android phone for free from the App Store or the Android Market respectively.
|OnMyWay for the iPhone|
The constant ups and downs associated with the stock market can get anyone into a dizzying frenzy – even more if they’re unable to access share prices on the go. Well now, it looks as though Google is helping those financial astute individuals a lending hand by unifying the experience of Google Finance across a variety of platforms. Whether you’re using an Android handset, an iPhone, or simply resorting to usuing your personal computer, the experience is now going to be the same across those specific platforms. Google announced today that they are launching the new edition of Google Finance for the Android and iOS platforms which enables anyone to keep up with the constantly changing moods of the stock market. The mobile experience offers all the same features and functionality that you would typically find on their regular site – plus it’s now available as an app in the Android market.
source: Google Mobile Blog
Now that Android owners are getting comfy using the official Twitter app on their smartphones, it would’ve been only a matter of time before some kind of update were released for it. Sneaking underneath the radar, the app was recently updated to version 1.0.3 which unfortunately did not come along with a change-log. However, it appears that it’s basically comprised of mostly the usual bug fixes you’d expect to find and that it now utilizes OAuth for signing into the service. Aside from that, there really isn’t anything too different with it – so make sure to grab yourself the download through the Android Market.
via Android Central
If this weren’t any more of an indication to the speedy prowess of the Swype keyboard, it was actually used in breaking the Guinness World Record for the fastest text message. Using a Samsung Galaxy S smartphone with good old Swype on board, a 27 year old UK woman was able to dish up a mean phrase in under 26 seconds using the swipe friendly gestures of the on-screen keyboard. She managed to swipe the phrase “the razor-toothed piranhas of the genera Serrasalmus and Pygocentrus are the most ferocious freshwater fish in the world. In reality they seldom attack a human” – thus breaking the previous record by over 9 seconds. That’s a pretty astonishing feat when you think about it for a second, especially when the Swype keyboard was used in obtaining the record as opposed to a regular on-screen keyboard – or even a physical one to say the least. Considering everything else, this definitely would add some much needed publicity to the Swype keyboard as it attempts to sway over people with its alternative form of inputting text.
The folks from PocketNow have pitted the IE-based browser of Windows Phone 7 against the current crown jewels – Safari on the iPhone 4, and the Android 2.2 browser on the Nexus One. The WP7 browser seems to have come a long way from the slow buggy experience observed in the early prototypes.
Still running on the LG GW910 (aka Panther) developer’s phone, the browser exhibits page loading, kinetic scrolling and touch gesture speeds comparable to the competition. The mobile Internet Explorer even has some unique features like simultaneous tabs loading. Rotating the view in landscape mode seemed a bit slower than on the other two handsets, maybe due to the transitional animations present in Windows Phone 7. This is still not a final build of the WP7 mobile OS, so the competition should be officially worried – Microsoft seems to have gotten one of the major selling points in any smartphone about right.
Look at the ten minute video below to check out the WP7 browser behavior on the 3.5” screen of the LG GW910.
The Samsung Media Hub was one of the mysteries when the US versions of the Galaxy S were announced. It was supposed to bring on-demand music, TV shows and movies to Samsung’s handsets in that line, and availability was promised for later in the year.
There is now a video showing the Samsung Media Hub beta in action on an EPIC 4G handset. Our take from the conversation in the video, and the mock movies and TV shows content, is that it may be active shortly after one of the most anticipated Android phones hits the market August 31st.
Another thing worth mentioning is that the multimedia purchased from the Media Hub will be licensed for viewing on up to five devices, such as phones, tablets and Samsung TV sets, perhaps. Galaxy Tab anyone? The movies can also be rented temporarily for a much lower price. On a separate note, since the Media Hub was demoed on the Sprint’s WiMAX version of the Galaxy S, downloading or streaming content can be done quickly on the road instead of searching for a Wi-Fi connection.
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