As Google edges closer to separating their Photos app from the Google+ platform, an early version of the new app has surfaced for sources to take a look at the direction being taken by Google. Many core features appear to carryover from the way they operate in Google+, but other features are being added along with some new adjustments for users to polish up their photos.
Once past the initial launch screen, which Google has animated, on first launch users will be walked through some setup items. Notably, users will still be able to select auto backup to the Photos app. Once into the main app itself, users will find an updated interface with several view options to choose from. A familiar “comfortable view” will be available that tiles photos by day like on the web interface. Users will also get sort options for day or month views.
When going through their photo library, users will be able to pinch into photos or swipe out of them. A new capability for dragging to select multiple photos will also be included.
For filters and sharing prep, Google appears to being replacing “autoawesome” with a new “Assistant” feature. The Assistant will be capable of generating stories and animations on its own. However, users will now get access to more manual controls for creating albums, movies, animations or collages.
Amidst all the filters and adjustments, Google did not forget the stalwart cropping interface. That now gets some presets to different aspect ratios and a nice rotation wheel will be available.
Finally, an analysis of the app shows access to photos when not using the app will be possible at photos.google.com. That address is currently redirecting to plus.google.com/photos. Most users are waiting to see how the new storage option may make it easier to share photos to the places users visit on the web.
source: Android Police
Come comment on this article: New look at Google Photos starts to reveal direction for the app
Wondering what will happen when Android’s Photos app finally makes a clean break from Google+? You should now have a pretty good idea. Android Police has peeked at a leaked copy of a reworked Photos app, and it’s clear that Google is using the service split as an incentive to shake things up. The highlight may be Assistant (below), an effective substitute for Auto Awesome that gives you more creative power — you can produce more content yourself (such as Stories) instead of waiting for it to show up. The interface should also be more intuitive across the board, with more options for viewing your photos, a better editing interface, privacy-minded sharing and pinch-to-zoom gestures for opening pictures. There’s a chance these features could change or disappear before they’re official, but it won’t be surprising if you see this Photos redesign on the Google I/O stage this week.
With Apple’s yearly Developer Conference around the corner, and everyone expecting to see some type of Beats Music integration announced, Spotify has been pulling out all the stops to keep its’ customers around, as well as trying to entice some new ones. Spotify has recently launched a sweet deal for new Premium subscribers, and this week have announced a series of changes that will be taking place for their subscribers. Spotify is aiming to be your end-all-be-all source for just about everything media related.
“We are on a mission. With over 25 billion listening hours under the hood since our launch seven years ago, we’re obsessed with figuring out how to bring music into every part of your life, wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, whatever your mood. More than ever, you’re telling us what you want: the best music to fit your mood and moment mixed with great entertainment throughout your day. We understand that how music fits into your life is as powerful as the music itself. So today we’re rolling out a richer mobile music experience built around your day, bringing you the music you love when you need it most. “
Once the Spotify app is updated, users will immediately see some of the new features that Spotify is bringing to its 40 million subscribers. The Now Start page is where all of the curated playlists will be housed. Spotify has also tweaked the application to learn what you like, so that it will be easier for you to find the right music for whatever type of mood you are in.
Spotify has also introduced Spotify Running with Nike+ integration. Due to the amount of users that Spotify has, they figured that more than just a few were taking advantage of the music selection and playlist creation while their users went for a run. Spotify Running is geared to match your tempo, step for step, and help you “go the extra mile.” Once you’ve started running, Spotify will recognize that your tempo has gone up and will help match songs up to help pump you up.
Next up on the docket for the latest changes to Spotify, is the addition of video clips and audio shows (or podcasts) to your subscription. You will be able to switch up from just listening to music all day, and either catch up on today’s news, or listen to your favorite podcast. All of this is available from directly within the Spotify app, so you will be able to get rid of any other apps that you have on your device that serve a specific purpose.
If you were worried about just catching some random news clips from somewhere that you’ve barely heard of, don’t worry. Spotify will have content from the following sources available right within the application:
- Comedy Central
- Vice News
In order to accommodate for these changes, Spotify has announced that they will be rolling out the updated application to other platforms in the near future. iOS users have already begun to see their applications updated with the latest features provided through Spotify, so Android users really shouldn’t be far behind. I will say, being able to have a hub for my music, podcasts, sports news, and regular news, will be extremely useful, so I can’t wait for this to roll out for Android users. It’s only a matter of time before the rollout begins to those who are not tied to iOS whatsoever, but as a premium subscriber, I’m excited to have all of these things readily available in just one application.
The post Spotify evolves into 24-hour entertainment resource appeared first on AndroidGuys.
This turned out to be quite the week for unannounced Microsoft apps. News of a “light-weight” email solution broke cover a few days ago, and today another pair of productivity apps were tipped. Thanks to @h0x0d on Twitter — the source of the Flow email news — we now know Microsoft is testing a cloud-based (thanks to OneDrive) clipboard tool that syncs across devices and platforms. The app is called OneClip, and though it’s reportedly in internal beta. While it’s available for download in the Windows Store, it’ll only work for employees with the proper accounts. This means that you can copy a phone number on the desktop and have it immediately available on your Windows, iOS or Android phone.
Another productivity app for contacts, Revolve, was tipped by @hoxod as well. This offering keeps tabs on your contacts and calendar to serve up info on the people you’re going to meet. You know, things like if they prefer bourbon or scotch. As we’ve already mentioned, OneClip and Revolve surface on the heels of Flow and apps for document collaboration (Flip) and task management (Highlander) — all within the span of a week. There’s no word on when the suite will arrive, but one thing’s for sure: Microsoft wants to help you be more productive on several fronts.
Microsoft OneClip, the cross-device cloud clipboard for Windows/WindowsPhone/Android/iOS pic.twitter.com/HdlY8iZ6y6
– WalkingCat (@h0x0d) May 22, 2015
Source: WalkingCat (@h0x0d)
Last month, SwiftKey set up a brand new scheme entitled Greenhouse which it’s using as a platform to release experimental apps to the public for them to test and provide feedback on. Today’s the day the second application was introduced as part of the initiative, and it’s a shiny new Android launcher called Hexy.
Hexy, as the name suggests, has a hexagon feel. The launcher automatically organizes the apps on your homescreen into a canvas of hexagonal tiles with the most frequently used positioned in the middle to make up the central hexagon. According to SwiftKey, “Hexy saves you time when you’re searching for and launching apps. It learns from how you use apps to surface the app you’re most likely to want to use next”.
All of Hexy’s features can be seen below:
- All your apps arranged in a clean and color-coordinated hexagonal design.
- A central hexagon that contains your apps Hexy thinks are most relevant to you, based on your previous use of apps.
- The ability to quickly filter the apps in your grid using the search bar.
- Options to add widgets for your apps and size them dynamically.
If you’d like to find out more about Hexy and want to give it a go — hit the source link below.
Come comment on this article: SwiftKey releases its latest Greenhouse innovation
If you’re an early Windows 10 adopter, you’ll soon find a smattering of new features inside the Xbox app. As part of its June update, Microsoft is adding “game hubs” which, similar to the Xbox One, show which friends have played the title and their recent activity. Meanwhile the new ‘Game Bar,’ which lets you record video clips and screenshots, can now be triggered with custom shortcuts, and the Avatar app will load automatically when you select “customize” from the top header. A few other tweaks include better friend management, the ability to sort cloud-based game clips and turn on/off your Xbox One from inside the app. They’re small changes, which is understandable given that E3 is just around the corner. Game streaming is still one of the most anticipated parts of the Xbox app, and it might not be too far away — Microsoft says testers can now submit anonymous diagnostic information about their PC and network settings to help them refine the feature.
Source: Major Nelson
HTC’s stock mail application has now made its way to the Google Play Store, making it easier for the company to update it whenever necessary. This follows a long list of HTC apps such as BlinkFeed, Gallery etc that are already available in the Play Store.
In the past, HTC had to update the entire system to bring changes to these applications. But by making them separate from the system, the company can ensure that updates are sent in periodically even though the system isn’t updated.
The Mail app is compatible with a wide range of Sense UI running smartphones (Android 5.0 or higher) and is exclusive to HTC devices.
Come comment on this article: HTC Mail app reaches the Play Store for better future updates
Adobe’s been keen on new mobile apps as of late, but today it announced the end of the road for one of its more popular pieces of software. As of next week, Photoshop Touch will no longer be available in iTunes, Google Play and other app libraries and the creative software company will not push new updates. Photoshop Touch was a bit of a tough sell at $10, especially when the new round of apps began rolling out for free. The last major update to Touch came in late 2012, and and in the time since, Adobe announced Photoshop Mix alongside its Ink and Slide drawing accessories. And there’s a mobile version of Lightroom now, too. With its big mobile push, the company has focused on a stable of apps dedicated to specific tasks, rather than an all-in-one solution like Photoshop Touch.
The eulogy for the aforementioned app was accompanied by a look at what’s next for editing photos on the go. Codenamed Project Rigel, Adobe’s plans for image retouching on a mobile device extends to massive 50-megapixel images. I’d surmise those stills would be accessed from a Creative Cloud library, but details are scarce at the moment. In the demo above, edits look quite smooth, but we’ll have to wait until we can put the final version through its paces before offering more detailed observations. While many of the new apps still aren’t available for Android, Adobe says its developing for that mobile OS, so here’s to hoping tools available to iOS users will see a wider rollout soon.
Filed under: Software
The addition of video and podcasts is great, but Spotify is looking to enhance workouts, too. Selecting the perfect tracks to match your run will be quite easy, now that the app now measures your pace and picks tunes in a matter of seconds. What’s more, the Spotify Running feature will play nice with fitness apps like Nike+ and RunKeeper later this year, so you can keep tabs on progress while easily soundtracking that 5K. If you prefer to peruse options the old fashioned way, there’s a collection of curated playlists built for a range of speeds. The streaming service already teamed up with Adidas to bring a similar feature to the shoe maker’s Go app, so it makes sense that the tool would eventually end up in the primary streaming software, too. Spotify Running is part of a massive update that’s available in the US, UK, Germany and Sweden starting today.
Talking into a smartwatch still isn’t the most socially acceptable thing to do, but a pair of startups is hell-bent on at least making it worthwhile. Fetch and Expect Labs — a personal shopping service and a purveyor of a voice-driven AI, respectively — have teamed up to make shopping on your Apple Watch a little less tedious with an improved concierge that works from your wrist.
Back in the day (i.e. last year), Fetch was best known for using a crew of humans to respond to messages sent from the app. If you wanted to buy, say, a sweet messenger bag someone was rocking in SoHo, you could snap a photo, send it along, and someone would eventually respond with the cheapest, most appropriate listing they could find. With Expect Labs’ voice recognition and analytical chops now being baked into the existing iOS/Apple Watch app, though, those requests can be chopped up and acted on more quickly. The end result? A faster first wave of hits, and a less headache-inducing shopping experience (they hope).
Let’s say you’re itching to laze under the sun in some far-off locale. You’ll be able to ask your Apple Watch to book you on the first flight to Bangkok next Thursday, and Expect Lab’s thoughtful back-end will dig up a handful of suitable flight options. From there, those results will get passed along to Fetch’s crew of shopping concierges so they can ferret out the best option and send it back home to you for approval. Well, eventually, anyway. Fetch and Mindmeld are talking up a partnership today, but a spokesperson confirmed that the actual functionality won’t go live for another few months (hopefully in time for a last minute summer holiday). And if you’re one of the countless multitudes who don’t — or won’t — wear an Apple Watch? No worries: The feature will find its way to Fetch’s Android app, too, though you’ll have to pay Fetch $10 a month on any platform for the privilege.
Filed under: Mobile