Google updates Drive and Newsstand with new widgets, better performance

February 5, 2014
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Google has updated two apps, with both Drive and Newsstand seeing improvement tweaks. The cloud storage solution is getting a quicker way to scan and upload, while Newsstand gains support for more languages. Both also come with the ubiquitous ‘bug fixes’, but also important and timely updates to increase usage.


Drive gets a few important tweaks for Android. Users will now get support for animated GIFs, which is a rather “what took so long?” moment. As Google aims to make everything a GIF of some sort, we’ll be taking advantage of that more than we likely realize. There is also a new widget for scanning documents into Drive straight away. The 1x1 widget for your Android device brings a quick launch scanner, with those scans going straight to Drive.

Newsstand is seeing its first update since Google combined their Currents and Play Maagzine franchises. This one offers translation into 47 new languages, as well as a widget. The widget is rather flat, but brings something lost in the Currents transition. A real bonus is that the widget is fully resizable, unlike the former Currents widget which was a stacked card format. For phones, there is also a “mini card” view optional, which offers headlines and thumbnails instead of full pictures — almost like an RSS feed.

The Newsstand update isn’t rolling out just yet, but you can side load it if you like. Drive is being introduced incrementally, so look for it on your device soon. Both are good updates for the service, but we’re more interested in the headlines view for Newsstand. It seems to be relegated to smartphones, but could capture some of the magic lost when Reader went away.

VIA: Phone Arena, Play Store


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