software

Skype v2.5 adds video calls to Galaxy Tab 10.1, more

Skype has updated its Android app to add video calling to more  smartphones and tablets, with v2.5 adding support for 14 more models. Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1, the Google Nexus One and Motorola DROID 3 are notable models, though the ATRIX and LG Optimus 3D also make an appearance. In addition to the new devices, Skype has also added the ability to switch between portrait and landscape orientations while within a call, as well as zooming by tapping the display. Bluetooth headset support has been improved, and the app as a whole should be more bug-free and faster.
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1
  • HTC Nexus One
  • HTC Shooter
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia Live with Walkman
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia neo V
  • LG Optimus Black
  • LG Optimus 3D
  • LG Optimus 2x
  • Motorola Photon
  • Motorola Droid 3
  • Motorola Bionic
  • Motorola Xoom
  • Motorola Atrix
  • Acer Iconia
On the downside, Skype has introduced advertising with this release, just as on the desktop versions for PC and Mac. You can bypass the adds if you have some Skype credit, however. Skype for Android v2.5 is a free download from the Android Market.

Google Voice Actions for Android hits Europe [Video]

Google has extended Voice Actions for Android to users in the UK, France, Italy, Germany and Spain, with the voice-command service now supporting local languages in each country. Launched in the US last year, the newly extended system allows to you start a new SMS message, call contacts, navigate to websites and do other things, all by simply speaking to your Android device. Voice Actions now recognizes British English, French, Italian, German and Spanish, and is compatible with Android 2.2 devices and above. After triggering the voice search by holding down the dedicated search button, tapping the homescreen microphone button or loading the app itself, you can choose from seven different commands:
  • send text to [contact] [message]
  • call [business]
  • call [contact]
  • go to [website]
  • navigate to [location/business name]
  • directions to [location/business name]
  • map of [location]
Meanwhile, voice-led searching is still supported. You can download the new version from the Android Market. [youtube HsI76lrvJt4]

Epson expands iPrint app to cover Android smartphones and tablets

Epson has been in the printer market for a very long time. Over the last few years, the company has been rolling out print services to allow the smartphone user to get documents off their mobile phones and onto the printer rather than having things stuck on the phone. To start with, Epson offered print services for iOS devices leaving Android out in the cold.

My Vodafone app for Android released: Track use, WiFi hotspots & roaming

Vodafone UK has released a new Android app, allowing subscribers to not only keep track of their accounts without ringing through to customer care, but also locate the nearest free WiFi hotspot. The My Vodafone app shows your current usage of minutes, messaging and data, and how close to your tariff limits you are. There's also information on the tariff itself, including contract end date, when you can expect the bill to arrive, and for roughly how much it will be. Those using their phone abroad can also keep an eye on any roaming charges they might be racking up. Finally, there's a map to show any nearby BT Openzone WiFi hotspots, access to which is bundled with many of Vodafone's plans. You'll need an Android 1.6 device or higher to run the app, and it's worth noting that the data isn't updated in real-time so what it says on-screen may not be the exact state of your bill. You can download My Vodafone from the Android Market. [gallery]

Sonos Controller for Android updated: SD install supported

Sonos has updated its Sonos Controller for Android app, adding in much-requested support for installing the software to your phone or tablet's SD card. There are also various new native languages supported, including Dutch, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Simplified Chinese, Spanish and Swedish. Otherwise functionality is much as it was before, which means the ability to remotely control one or multiple Sonos units around the home or office from your phone. Sonos supports either synchronized playback of a single track across all units, or different music playing in each zone. As well as accessing locally-stored content from a PC, Mac or NAS on the home network, it can stream music from thousands of internet radio stations as well as from digital jukebox services like Spotify. Sonos has also unveiled its new, entry-level streaming music speaker, the PLAY:3, priced at $299 (shown above). The Sonos BRIDGE network adapter has seen a price cut to $49.

Path for Android released: Social photo sharing made simple

Path for Android has entered beta, allowing Google phone users to access the photo-based social network service. Released on iOS some months ago, Path positions its app as a way to share photos you've taken with a small group of trusted friends or colleagues: each account supports up to just 50 contacts. Images can be tagged, both with the identity of people in the shots, as well as places and things in-frame as well. Comments and conversations are supported, along with records of who has viewed your image and - using Path's "Emotion" system - how they felt when they saw it. For a broader audience, it's possible to share shots directly from Path to Facebook. It's a free download, though the Path team does warn that there could be a few rough edges and that it's not quite as polished as the iOS version. You can download Path for Android v1.0 from the Android Market now.

NTT DoCoMo gives Android users FlyScreen

FlyScreen debuted back in 2009 and is a cool interactive widget that replaces the lock screen on your Android device. The developer of the app is Cellogic and it has made a deal with NTT DoCoMo that will see FlyScreen be offered to all of the Android users on the Japanese carrier. A location-based services company called Brilliant will push FlyScreen out in Japan.
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