software

New guide outlines packaging Tablet & Phone UI in a single APK

With Honeycomb making headlines, it's about time that Android developers start considering large-screen devices with their software offerings. Funky Android dev Al Sutton has put together a useful guide showing how you can create tablet and phone UIs in a single .APK. That obviously makes distribution more straightforward, since there's only one version of your app to worry about, and Sutton covers everything from telling the Android OS that your app is all-singing, all-dancing, to usability issues about screen orientations and sizes. It's certainly worth a read if you're a developer.

Google Maps for Mobile 5.0 incoming: 3D dynamic mapping, caching, more

Andy Rubin didn't spend much time talking about Motorola's Honeycomb tablet; instead he used the slate to preview the incoming update for Google Maps for Mobile 5.0. The new version adds dynamic map building with building outlines for 100 cities at launch, new multitouch gestures including two-finger tilt & rotate, and offline caching for common routes and searches. Only certain Android devices will support all the features of Google Maps for Mobile 5.0, which is due out in the next few days. The Nexus One, apparently, lacks the multitouch support for rotating the views; the full list of supported handsets is below.
  • Galaxy S
  • Droid
  • Droid X
  • Droid 2
  • Droid Incredible
  • Evo
  • Nexus S
  • G2
[gallery]

SPB TV v2.0 released: Free mobile TV with VoD

SPB TV has been updated to v2.0, and the mobile TV app has lost its price tag in the process. Now free, the streaming TV software offers over 150 channels in more than 20 languages, and is advert supported; SPB promises the ads themselves only last as long as it takes for the video to buffer. There's also support for larger-screen devices like Android tablets, a picture-in-picture mode, video on demand and faster channel switching. SPB has also switched to H.264 for better quality video that's more forgiving of lower-bandwidth connections. You'll need an Android 1.6 device or higher; more information here, and you can find SPB TV in the Android Market. SPB TV 2.0 for Android Main Features:
  • Integrated TV Guide with a list of current and upcoming TV shows
  • Unique browser with fast channel launching and switching
  • Quick channel preview (picture-in-picture mode)
  • On-screen control panel
  • Video on Demand
  • Setting a reminder
  • Video quality switcher
  • Advanced Video Codec support
  • Tablets support
[gallery]

Gameloft’s Dungeon Hunter for Android goes free for one day only

Gameloft have made Android game Dungeon Hunter free for one day only, offering a handy way to bypass the pre-weekend boredom. Available as part of the game studio's Advent Twitter promotion, the game was released back in May 2010 and pits you as a dungeon raiding Rogue, Knight or Mage in an action RPG. Apparently some users have been experiencing problems with the download, and Gameloft has extended the free period to accommodate them. Still, it won't last forever, so best to download now if you fancy some free Android gaming. [youtube LzZLFHTb0-0]

Spotify for Android update suits tablets, speeds performance

Spotify has pushed out a new version of their Android media player app, complete with high-resolution graphics to suit large-screen devices such as the Samsung Galaxy Tab, and performance boosts that reduce time between tracks and other lag. The company now reckons the app will work on "almost any screen resolution, rotation and density, even tablet resolutions." Spotify for Android is a free download from the Android Market, though you'll need a premium account with the service in order to use it. Changelist below.
  • All the graphics have been re-done and are now available in high-definition.
  • The overall design has been re-done.
  • Support for almost any screen resolution, rotation and density, even tablet resolutions.
  • On-the-fly screen rotation support, used on devices with fold-out keyboard.
  • Multiple performance improvements to increase applications speed.
  • Improved error messages with better descriptions.
  • Improved detection of network connection and faster reconnections.
  • Fixed the texts and controllers that were cropped in some places.
  • Fixed the album art view which was often inconsistent with what was playing.
  • Fixed when the widget was not showing the correct content.
  • Fixed an issue with the application not playing the next song in certain cases.
  • New devices supported: HTC Desire HD, HTC Desire Z, Huawei U8300, Motorola Cliq, Motorola Cliq XT, Motorola XT720, Samsung Galaxy 3 (Apollo), Samsung Galaxy Tab, Sony Ericsson X10 Mini Pro, Sony Ericsson X8 and ZTE Blade

Google Maps 4.7 released with Hotpot shared recommendations

Google has pushed out Google Maps 4.7, complete with integration with the company's new Hotpot rating and recommendation engine. Available through the Android Market, Google Maps 4.7 adds a new homescreen widget that allows for instant rating of places; those ratings are then used to further customize your search results. However, as you build up friends in Hotpot, the scores also help them find places; meanwhile their ratings and feedback shape your search results. Google Maps 4.7 is a free download now.

20+ custom Adam apps claim Notion Ink

Notion Ink has been sharing a little more detail on their fast-approaching Adam slate, including new photos of the company's latest manufacturing samples, and word that their software engineers have come up with more than 20 customized apps. As we've seen on the Samsung Galaxy Tab, apps that are suited - not just scaled - to a tablet's display make a world of difference in usability, so we're excited to see Adam's custom Email, Calendar, Office, Paint, Gallery, Settings and File Browser software. Meanwhile there's confirmation of a second round of the company's early-access program for developers, simply to accommodate demand for those wanting to create apps for the Adam slate. Pre-orders for Adam will be taken in December. [gallery]

LG Optimus GT540 gets Android 2.1 update

It's obviously a week for Android 2.1 updates, as LG has pushed out its Eclair ROM for the LG Optimus GT540. The new firmware takes the GT540 from the Android 1.6 OS it shipped with to Android 2.1, complete with live wallpapers, multiple Google account support and Microsoft Exchange support. There's also Bluetooth 2.1 support, HTML5 in the browser, and the Quick Contacts UI. Full instructions on how to upgrade can be found here.

Opera Mobile 10.1 beta for Android released [Video]

Opera has released its latest browser, Opera Mobile 10.1 beta for Android, offering faster rendering, tabbed browsing and - optionally - the company's data-reducing Opera Turbo compression. A free download, Opera Mobile 10.1 beta also gets pinch-zoom, wireless bookmark sync and a password manager. You can download the new browser by visiting http://www.opera.com/mobile/ on your Android phone. [youtube VbJPAPoOZho] [youtube oYZgR9N8kDs] [youtube i9zZD2BtobY] [youtube ii5weSxTOJk] [youtube RlKlpP6M3RQ] [youtube bVRa2pg3tq4] Press Release:
Turbo charge your Android Opera Mobile 10.1 beta for Android available Oslo, Norway — 9 November 2010 Android users now have a new choice when it comes to browsers. Today, Opera Software announced that Opera Mobile 10.1 beta is available in the Android Market for free, providing the many millions of Android users better browser performance and an improved user experience. Android users are known to appreciate speed and functionality. They are also known for their demands for new and improved software for their handsets, as well as an almost emotional relationship to their phones. Now, they have the opportunity to run Opera Mobile, made by a company that shares their passion for a better browser. “Android users now have a better choice when it comes to using a browser on their mobile devices,” said Lars Boilesen, CEO, Opera Software. “With Opera’s new browser for Android, we give users the opportunity to access the Web, using the best tools available.” Opera Mobile boasts faster page loading than other browsers and a highly fluid panning, scrolling and smooth zooming experience. Speed Dial, another Opera innovation, gives quick and easy access to the user’s favorite websites while the password manager saves the user from cumbersome mobile-phone typing. Additionally, users will experience better browsing on slow or congested networks with Opera Turbo, which provides up to 80 percent data compression. Opera Mobile 10.1 Beta for Android also features: Easy tab management with visual tabs Opera Presto rendering engine Sync your bookmarks across devices with Opera Link Ability to be set as the default browser Geolocation support SVG support Download Download Opera Mobile directly to the Android phone for free from the Android Market or at m.opera.com/next. For more information, visit http://www.opera.com/mobile/. Opera Mobile is available for Android users in the following 18 versions: Chinese Simplified, Chinese Traditional, Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian Bokmål, Norwegian Nynorsk, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish and Swedish.