App filters aren’t anything new. But you just might like the free ‘Yahoo! AppSpot’ app. It takes into account (with your permission) the apps on your device, and your location, to give you daily personalized apps. When you find an app you like, there is an on-screen link to direct you to the proper page in the App Store or Android Market.
‘Yahoo! AppSpot’ filters your suggestions into the following categories: weather, utilities, reference, medical, finance, books, news, social networking, education, entertainment, games, music, healthcare & fitness, productivity, sports, business, lifestyle, navigation, photography, and travel.
Beyond the personalization, you might really enjoy the layout. When you view an app, it puts a row of small thumbnails right at the top, so you don’t have to scroll down to get a look at the app.
In addition to the mobile view, there is a desktop version, which will either send a text link to your device, or you can photograph the QR code with your device. Of course, it’s not an unbiased service. It’s heavily guided by Yahoo!’s ad revenue stream, and Yahoo!’s own products. But nothing’s perfect.
source: Wall Street Journal
Just Tuesday we reported that Starbucks had finally released its app for Android flavored handsets. We mentioned how the app can turn your handset screen into the barcode on your Starbucks card and get scanned at the register to pay for your cup of Joe. We also told you some other features of the app, including the ability to help you find a specific Starbucks location via Google Maps. You can also track the number of stars you have in Starbucks’ reward game.
Just in case your left brain is a little tired and needs a break, Starbucks shot a little video showing your right brain a video clip of what the Starbucks app can do for you. Now that both sides of your brain understand the rewards of using the Starbucks app on your smartphone, why not give your brain a little jolt of caffeine; simply pick up your Android or Apple iPhone, head over to the nearest Starbucks location and let the coffee retailer’s app do its thing.
Android users can now use Mobile Flashcards from Dictionary.com to help study for any one of 70,000 subjects or standardized tests. The free app is available from the Android Market and besides the 70,000 different subjects available, the app allows you to create your own series of flash cards and share them with others when you sign up for a Dictionary.com account.
The flash cards are like small study guides that help you learn and retain the information that you need to remember to get good test scores. You can sync your mobile learning progress with your desktop learning, select your study method from audio pronunciation or definition matching. Dictionary.com President Shravan Goli says that this is just the beginning of turning his site into the “definitive location for word learning.”
It’s a good day for streaming music fans and even better if you are also a PS3 user. Sony released an Android app for their Qriocity Music Unlimted service, and best of all, if you’re a new user and have a PS3, you can get a 6 month free trial of the service.
Sony’s Qriocity service may not have the market visibility of Amazon’s Cloud Drive or even Google Music, but it’s a solid service. It is a fee-based streaming music service which pulls from Sony’s library of over 7 million songs, which is less than half of what iTunes offers, but you’ll still find just about all the music you may want (in an informal test only Prefuse 73 wasn’t in the catalog, but Pocket Dwellers were), and anyway there’s no iTunes streaming. All new users can get a 30 day free trial, then the service is $3.99/month for the basic package or $9.99/month for the premium. And, if you’re a PS3 owner who had to sit through the recent PSN outage, you can even get 6 months of Qriocity for free, if you’re a new member. But, be careful, if you are a PS3 user, you have to sign up for the service through your PS3 in order to get the 6 month free trial.
The Android app is fantastic. The UI is beautiful, bright and colorful. It’s intuitive and easy to use. And, there are a lot of options to get instant playlists generated by Genre, Era or even SensMe, which creates playlists for different moods (relax, upbeat, etc) or time of day. There are options for saving artists or albums to your personal library, and getting recommendations based on that library, and even an option to sync your library to the cloud. Your library will then be available on your Android device, PS3, PSP and any other Qriocity capable Sony device. Of course once the free trial is up, most of these features will only be available if you are a premium subscriber.
Unfortunately, it’s not all good news. The app is only available on Android 2.1-2.3.3, meaning no Honeycomb support, and more annoying, no support for 2.3.4, although at this point that really only means Nexus devices. Still, that OS compatibility does cover the vast majority of the Android ecosystem at this point. The installer is also huge, clocking in at over 30MB and it is copy protected, so there’s no option to move the app to an SD card, even if you’re using a rooted device.
Qriocity is a pretty nice service, so if you have a generous data plan and some extra space in your internal storage, it’s certainly worth a try.
source: Sony Playstation Blog
Knowing that Verizon is going to bring its 4G LTE network to 19 more cities come this Thursday, customers in those specific areas will be happy to know that Verizon has extended the free mobile hotspot functionality with its line of 4G LTE equipped smartphones.
Already, we’ve seen Big Red extend the free mobile hotspot trial to June 16th, but they’re once again pushing it to the later date of July 6. Naturally, this will undoubtedly ring a bell with existing customers with 4G LTE smartphones – like the recent LG Revolution. As much as some people out there are hoping to see it extended even further, those who wish to continue tethering will have to shell out some kind of monthly fee – though, the actual pricing is still unknown at this point. However, it’s known that a software update will be pushed out some time around July 6, where upon installation, will remove the mobile hotspot offer.
In the meantime, feel free to continue using that ever-useful feature without worries – especially when Verizon’s 4G LTE network is wickedly fast.
Do you remember Color? The social network/photo sharing start-up which made waves in the tech world by being able to attract the whopping $41 million in its infancy, now seems to be in trouble. Co-founder Peter Pham, ex-VP of business development in Photobucket, and one of the possible reasons behind Color’s capital injection, has reportedly stepped down. TechCrunch was the first to report the news which wasn’t yet officially confirmed. Pham’s Twitter profile still claims that he heads the start-up, but his most recent tweet hints at his possible resignation: “Father – much more important job than founder.”
At the same time, the Android version of the application, which first launched fro iOS, seems to be pulled from the Android Market and might have been ditched altogether. On Color’s website, we can read only that “new Android version [is] coming soon, stay tuned.”
The idea behind Color is of a social network based on proximity and mixed with the photographs you choose to share. Promising? Yes. But just as we pointed out in our initial report about Color – hardly worth $41 million. So while Color could still progress, it now seems much less likely.
source: TechCrunch and mocoNews
Google Maps has offered free navigation for quite a while, but in order for it to work you have to pull data from the Internet. Google made the first step earlier by allowing caching so you can look at your route before going and relying on the cached maps for navigation, but any change to that initial route would mean that you have to pull additional data from the web.
That’s why going fully offline is of paramount importance and the final border for Google to truly compete with standalone solutions like TomTom and Garmin. Coming straight from the rumor mill, the news is far from official, but Dutch website All About Phones claims that the update is coming this summer.
Currently, the only company to offer free offline navigation on its phones is Nokia with Ovi Maps on Symbian, but the adoption of Windows Phone over at Espoo will translate into Microsoft’s platform getting that service as well. There’s still no word on pricing, but judging from the current price of $0 for using Maps, we could hope Google keeps navigation free. How much do you rely on your phone for navigation? Feel free to share your experiences in the comments below.
Now you can make sure that your Android device is compatible with an app before you download it on your phone. The Android Market has added a device compatibility check that you can access before pressing the install button.
With the new feature, those wanting a specific app on their phone won’t have to read the text that is posted in the Market. Sometimes longwinded and too much of a hassle to go through, some developers slip in which handsets are compatible with a specific app, but like the fine print on a contract, it doesn’t get read. The addition by Google of the device compatibility check will save Market users time and eliminate the aggravation of having to uninstall a recently downloaded app because it doesn’t work on your phone.
Android, and the Android Market specifically, are growing at an incredible rate. Recent research from Distimo and research2guidance claimed that the Android Market was on its way to eclipsing the Apple App Store by the end of this year. But they failed to take the attrition rate into account.
The earlier research only factored in new app additions. But new analysis by AppsFire shows that the Android Market has an attrition rate twice that of the App Store. Of the 300,000 apps published in the Android Market, 32% of those have since been removed. But of the App Store’s 500,000 total apps, only 16% have been removed.
So why is this the case? AppsFire says that Android developers might have a harder time monetizing their apps, or it becomes unprofitable to try and maintain them. The Android Market also has an easier process, as well as no $100 development fee. App Store additions, on the whole, tend to be more carefully brought to market.
GigaOM suggests that the Android Market is a better venue for experimentation, while the App Store is better for making money. And we tend to agree. The only downside to Android’s openness is that it lends to many under-thought apps, and less quality/security vetting.
According to Adobe, those using Flash Player 10.3 on their phones need to make sure that they have downloaded the latest version of the application. Because the security of the program has been compromised, make sure that version 10.3.185.23 is on your handset and if not, head over to the Android Market and install it. The software developer is saying that if you visit a malicious web site, you could receive emails designed to trick you into clicking on a “malicious link“.
We can imagine Apple CEO Steve Jobs leaning back in his office chair with a self satisfied look on his face. Nonetheless, once the latest version of Adobe Flash Player 10.3 is installed on your Android phone, your device is safe-for the time being. Back in April, we reported that a similar security problem was found in Adobe Flash Player 10.2, and with the app’s widespread use on Android devices and its vulnerability to being hacked, this might not be the end of the problem.