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Google Play Music received an update today to v5.6.1616, which is pretty minor considering the previous public build was v5.6.1609. The update does include two new goodies, though, a re-skinned 4×1 widget, plus another 1×1 widget that gives you instant access to “I’m feeling lucky” radio.

The new 1×1 widget allows you to single-tap, roll a die, and start listening to music that Google Music thinks you will enjoy. It’s super handy if you ever need a quick mix and don’t feel like even opening the app itself. 

If there are other changes, we aren’t seeing them yet. Feel free to drop additional changes in the comments as you see them.

Update:  We are seeing a “Manage downloads” section that allows you to see what has been downloaded and how much space you have available. You can finally undo songs that have been swiped away. Finally, you can long-press on songs to move them around in playlists or the queue.

Play Link | Download Link [mirror]

google music1 google music2

Cheers @huntken!

Google Music Updated to v5.6.1616 – Adds “I’m Feeling Lucky” 1×1 Widget, Re-Skins Other Widget is a post from: Droid Life

Chrome Beta Update Introduces Material Design Styling

Posted by Kellex July - 24 - 2014 - Thursday Comments Off

Chrome Beta on Android just received an update that introduces a new icon and Material Design styling. If you aren’t seeing the update through Google Play, feel free to grab the .apk file from below and sideload it.

The update jumps Chrome Beta up to build 37.0.2062.39.

Outside of the Material Design makeover, the update also introduces a simplified sign-in that keeps you signed into Google services on the web. This also works for multiple accounts, which is awesome, and can be seen in the screenshots below.

Play Link | Download Link

chrome beta1 chrome beta2 chrome beta3

chrome beta4 chrome beta5 chrome beta6 chrome beta7 chrome beta8

And that hot new scrolling, search animation:

chrome anim

Cheers Suicide_Note!

Chrome Beta Update Introduces Material Design Styling is a post from: Droid Life

Leaked list of Samsung Galaxy Note 4 APK files suggest new features on the way

Posted by wicked July - 18 - 2014 - Friday Comments Off


We’ve got our hands on a list of APK files included in Samsung’s upcoming Galaxy Note 4 — some of which reveal some interesting information regarding the OEM’s next flagship.

While “VoiceNote4t” and “SamsungMusic_20″ are pretty self explanatory, but others peak our interest a bit more.

“SStudio_WQHD” suggests that the device will have a QHD display (which was already previously rumored), ”SHealth3_5″ means that Samsung will continue to offer its health and fitness tracking software in its high end devices, while ”OutOfFocusViewer.” “PhotoStudio,” and “SmartSelfShot” show that the company will continue improving its camera software.

“VRSVC” will most likely support Samsung’s upcoming virtual reality headset.

Release date for the device isn’t known yet, but we would bet that with all of these recent leaks, it’s coming soon.

Source: @evleaks

Come comment on this article: Leaked list of Samsung Galaxy Note 4 APK files suggest new features on the way

Google Maps 8.2 features voice action, biking elevation

Posted by wicked July - 18 - 2014 - Friday Comments Off

It was at the end of May this year when we saw that last significant update of Google Maps, bringing back Terrain View to the app – but today we’re seeing a bunch of new stuff being rolled out by the mothership to its primary maps software. Version 8.2 of Google Maps carries some nifty updates that should make outdoor ad biking enthusiasts happy, as well as some voice actions added into the app while in navigation.

The APK is available at the source link (bottom of the post) if you want to go ahead and install the new version. Don’t worry, the MD5 hash is digitally signed by Google and the APK will just update the Google Maps software in your device. The official rollout will most likely take days to get to you, so if you don’t want to endure the wait, go ahead and grab the APK.

The new elevation feature is pretty nice for bikers, especially if you’re the type (like me) who will want to avoid the higher elevations. If you’re a biking monster and eat up elevation like chocolate chip cookies, the feature will also be nice for you. You will basically see the elevation in a timeline view of your route, and even get comparisons of multiple routes. Nice, right?


The voice actions is initiated by that familiar icon, and you can ask familiar questions like “how far to my destination?” and stuff like that. It also understands “what’s my next turn?”, very useful when driving in traffic and unfamiliar areas. So give it a whirl, you might enjoy Google Maps 8.2.

VIA: Android Police

Curious about Sailfish? Check out the Jolla Phone launcher port for Android 4.2 and up

Posted by wicked July - 5 - 2014 - Saturday Comments Off

Jolla Phone launcher

Customization is one of the stronger points of Android as a platform. However, for some, running a new launcher, installing SMS and calling app replacements, and rooting one’s device is not enough. Android’s open source underpinnings has actually been forked by manufacturers and developers so that they can deliver their own user experience and run their own platform. Take Amazon’s Fire OS, for example, or Nokia’s “X” platform.

In the recent years, another notable mobile OS is Jolla’s Sailfish OS. Jolla is a company formed by former Nokia employees, which was taken by observers as an indication that these folks are likely to be good at creating great hardware, coupled with an interesting user experience. After all, this was how Nokia had been known during the golden days of Symbian. [Update: Sailfish is not based on AOSP, but is rather based on Linux and Mer. Thank you for pointing this out.]

Not everyone is willing to spend for a new device or install a custom ROM just to test out a new user experience, however. Which is why Jolla has earlier announced an alpha program for running its Jolla Phone launcher, which essentially lets Android users try out the Sailfish UI without having to purchase a new phone.

Jolla phone launcher 2Just recently, an XDA Developer member ported the Jolla Phone launcher for use on any device running Android 4.2 and up. Navigation involves swiping from the screen edges to access the app drawer, lock screen and access to previous screens — consistent with the Sailfish OS user experience. Users might notice that Sailfish normally does not come with on-screen navigation buttons, but these are still persistent in this alpha port.

Some users have reported errors and incompatibilities, however. For example, if you’re running on ART, the launcher may not run at all. Some devices will also have issues displaying notifications. Other users have reported the app forced-closing. Again, being in alpha one would expect these issues, especially as the original developers are also working on making their app (and ROM) compatible with as many devices possible.

Links to the APK download are available via XDA Developers, at the sources below. Have you tried out the Jolla Phone launcher? Tell us what you think about the interface in the comments section below.

Android L heads-up notifications feature out in APK format

Posted by wicked June - 30 - 2014 - Monday Comments Off

We told you that the Android L Developer Preview would be picked clean of its standout features, and what do you know, here’s another one. Very conspicuous in that Google I/O keynote for Android L was a new slide-down notification area, this feature apparently called “Heads-up notifications.” You will be happy to know that this is now available for non-rooted devices in APK format.

XDA senior member “Dr.Alexander_Breen” (also as “Woodblock Without Co.” at the Google Play Store) has announced on the developer forums that he has backported this new feature ostensibly for non-rooted devices running Android 4.4 Kitkat. If you’re curious about what new features this installer brings, watch the developer’s video below.

The Android L notification tray is very much a new animal for those used to Android 4.x’s styles. The looks and the functions have changed – the slide down pane now looks as if it is floating on top of whatever you have on your screen. It doesn’t reach the full width of your screen or even all the way to the bottom, creating that subtle “floating” effect. The notifications are now shown in white blocks with visibly rounded corners.


You may be looking for the “Clear notifications” button. You’re right, there isn’t one. We looked for it too. But apart from that, notifications can be dismissed by swiping it to either side of your screen. The apk’s developer seems to have added a “whitelist” feature for the notifications, dictating which ones you would like to have. It is also good to mention that the notifications pane will now be available to you at any time, even within a game. That last feature is really nice. If you would like to support the developer, download the paid app from Google Play. The APK is free to download over at XDA.


DOWNLOAD: Heads-up Notifications via Google Play Store

Android L keyboard APK available for non-rooted devices

Posted by wicked June - 28 - 2014 - Saturday Comments Off

We’re going to have to get used to this, aren’t we? By “this” we mean native Android L apps being extracted from Google’s developer preview shared to the Android-using world for “testing”. One of those apps is Android L’s keyboard, recently extracted from a system dump and made available by flashing it onto your rooted device. And what do you know, now it has also arrived via an apk installer for non-rooted devices. (yay!)

One of Android L’s hot points from the Google I/O keynote was its “Material Design” – which is basically a very nice effort to tighten up the interface, and a new lighter color palette to promote the youthful and fast-paced nature of the Android ecosystem. The redesigned keyboard for Android L is part of this whole scheme and was recently extracted from a system dump for those who were “curious” about what makes Android L’s apps tick. It was also put up for download as a flashable app that one could integrate into his Android device via custom recovery at XDA.


This installable apk though was given to the world by senior XDA member “asdfzz” and probably the best thing about it is that it can now be installed to non-rooted devices. Installation is a breeze – just uninstall the Google keyboard, if you have previously installed the one from the Play Store, and then install the downloaded APK. There is one more setting to change after the APK installation. You have to go to Google Keyboard settings > Advanced Settings, change the “Color scheme” to “Material”. Now you can take a peek at the redesigned keyboard and see if it’s up to scratch.

The thread starter said that he “modded” the keyboard himself and tested it on a non-rooted Moto G running Android 4.4.2 Kitkat. There is a caveat though – there almost always is when dealing with ported apps – and it is that the keyboard cannot be used on a stock Nexus device with no root, as the keyboard app in those devices are system apps and there is no way of uninstalling it.


DOWNLOAD: Android L keyboard APK

Google Hangouts is receiving a new update today to version 2.1.223. The update, which is a jump from 2.1.100, appears to be pretty minor. So far, all I am seeing are a couple of new options in conversations that allow you set custom sounds for messages, as well as custom sounds for Hangouts calls. Otherwise, that is about it.

To see these new options, open a conversation, tap on the Menu button (“action overflow”), hit “People & options,” and then set your custom sounds. 

Seeing anything else?

Play Link | Download Link

hangouts update

Google Hangouts Updates to V2.1.223 – Introduces Custom Sounds and Ringtones for Conversations is a post from: Droid Life

Get the new PayPal enabled Google Play APK now

Posted by wicked May - 16 - 2014 - Friday Comments Off


Earlier today we reported on the addition of PayPal as a payment option in the Google Play app. Since Google rolls out updates to their core apps over the course of several days, there is a good chance you could still be waiting for this update. You don’t have to though as the APK is now available for download and install using the link below.

Before hitting the download link though, there are a few more improvements that have been spotted in the app. The permissions menu has been simplified and should be a little more user-friendly thanks to categories that can be collapsed or expanded as a user sees fit. There is also a new “Additional Information” section available that reveals information about required permissions, content rating, installed size, and the version number. These changes join some minor UI tweaks.

If you are ready to start paying with PayPal or want to see what some of these new enhancements are like before the official update gets to your account, just hit the download link below.

APK Download Link from XDA

Come comment on this article: Get the new PayPal enabled Google Play APK now

Google Play Services 4.4 teardown reveals much more waiting in the wings

Posted by wicked May - 9 - 2014 - Friday Comments Off


Google started rolling out an update to Google Play Services earlier this week to take it up to version 4.4. Publicly, the update included the ability to embed Street View imagery in apps, some motion detectors, and tweaks to Mobile Ads, game services, and Google Wallet. Now that the update has started to reach actual users, a teardown of the APK has commenced revealing Google included a lot more in the file even if it has not been turned on yet.

Anyone who has received the update is aware that there is a whole slew of new permissions that are requested. It appears that at least some of these new permissions may be laying the groundwork to control non-Google apps access to different APIs. Combined with some of the new code referencing a variety of Google communication platforms like Hangouts, SMS, Voice and Talk, it could be Google is preparing to let third-party apps initiate messages.

Another wide swath of code looks like Google will be enabling support for Android Wear devices without manufacturers having to build their own apps. Google also included some code that looks like it will enable screen mirroring to other devices via the cast feature. Finally, the new APK includes the code for a firmware updater. It is not clear how Google envisions this being used, but a leading theory is that it will be part of Google’s effort to implement the Android Silver program.

Google I/O is only a few weeks away. The inclusion of so much code in Google Play Services might be an indication of the kinds of new features and functionality Google plans to announce this summer.

source: Android Police

Come comment on this article: Google Play Services 4.4 teardown reveals much more waiting in the wings