Tag Archives: beta

Chrome Beta update brings undo close and fullscreen video controls

Google has just rolled out an update to the beta branch of its Chrome browser for Android and it brings a few interesting features. Debuting in this update is the ability to re-open recently closed tabs, more multi-window support, and better HTML5 video controls.

Desktop browsers like Chrome and Firefox have long had the ability to “undo” closing of tabs, but mobile browsers have lagged behind in that aspect. Now, Google Chrome Beta is finally catching up. Closing a tab via the tab manager will show an overlay with an option to undo the action. Like on the desktop, users will be able to go through the stack of closed tabs as long as the overlay is visible. Be careful though as it only stays visible for five seconds after a tab is closed.

815e2e0b2b36x420.png Chrome Beta update brings undo close and fullscreen video controls

Also in this update is better support for HTML5 videos. In particular, videos can now be played fullscreen complete with Subtitles as well as playback controls. This feature takes such videos one step closer to feature parity with Flash videos, which are no longer supported on Android.

8a890a06b900x337.png Chrome Beta update brings undo close and fullscreen video controls

The release notes also mention support for some multi-window devices, though it doesn’t mention which ones exactly. Chrome, both Beta and final versions, already support Samsung TouchWiz multi-window. We can only presume that this update adds support for third-party implementations and maybe LG’s own multi-window feature.

9fd3876aca36x420.png Chrome Beta update brings undo close and fullscreen video controls

Chrome Beta now also supports casting some videos to Chromecast, though YouTube support is noted to be still incomplete. Even fullscreen video controls are still not complete. The updated Chrome Beta can be download now from Google Play Store and can be installed side by side with the regular Chrome version with no problems.

Download: Chrome Beta on Google Play Store
SOURCE: Google

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Yelp opens beta tester program for next Android app, uses Google+ to control access

Yelp Beta

Yelp wants your help testing out their next Android app update. Before releasing their next update to their Android app in the Google Play Store, Yelp has opened a beta test program. Beta testers will need to request access to the Yelp Android Beta Testers community on Google+ to get started, then be ready to be awesome! It’s a requirement.

Interested in receiving the latest version of the Yelp Android app before everyone else? You’re in the right place!

So far, there is no actual beta app build to test, but signing up ensures that you get in when it does become available.

YelpStatYelp is a business directory built on community reviews, 53 million reviews and counting. They cover many business categories, but are best known for their shopping and restaurant reviews; in-fact, they just announced their top 100 list of best rated places to eat in the US. Spoiler alert: top honors went to a shack in Hawaii.

If you are interested in helping test out the new Yelp beta app when it becomes available, head over to their Google+ Community page to get started. If beta is not for you, you can still find the best businesses near you on their stable app in the Google Play Store.

What are your thoughts on beta programs – are the newest features worth a few bugs? Did your favorite place to eat make it onto the top 100 list?


    








Android Authority

Waze is on the lookout for beta testers to pilot new features

Google purchasing Waze

Google’s purchase of Waze was relatively big news last year, and so far we’ve seen a little bit of integration between the two services, although not as much as some may have been expecting. However, development on Waze hasn’t halted, if anything the service looks like it could be in line for some big new features in the coming months, as the company has just announce a new beta participation program.

The beta program appeared on Waze’s forum and website a few days ago, and appears to be open to anyone who’s interested. The only requirements are that you have a device with Android 2.2 or higher, a display resolution of 320×480, can speak decent enough English to provide useful feedback, and of course you’ll need time to actively participate and respond to the beta team. Waze would also like applicants to have a “technical sense”, although it’s not particularly clear what they mean by that.

If you’re interested, you can head on over to the Waze Beta signup page and fill out the profile information. Although anyone is free to apply, the beta testing group will actually be quite small. But for the lucky few who are chosen, there’s also the promise of a chance to win some cool “swag” for participating.


    








Android Authority

Ingress exits beta after worldwide event

Ingress Players Cheering_BA Google+

Today, Niantic Labs brought its alternate reality game Ingress out of beta, finally releasing the game for all Android users who want a chance to play.

To celebrate the end of the beta period, Niantic held a special event called #13Magnus which had players from across the world working together towards one of two common goals. The event saw players creating portals all across the globe to transport shards of the man known as Roland Jarvis, the self-proclaimed ruler of the Enlightened Faction, to one of two locations.

Light show - Jarvis Appears Niantic

Players could either work to bring the shards to San Francisco to resurrect Jarvis, or to Buenos Aires to destroy him forever. Those who stand with the Enlightened faction wanted to save Jarvis, while those who stand with the Resistance sought to destroy him. In the end, the Enlightened Faction won, resurrecting Jarvis in San Francisco.

New players can now jump into the game with a fresh story like what they’d find at the beginning of a new season in a TV show. With luck, Niantic Labs will inform the players of any story developments in the ARG (Alternate Reality Game) that they missed that may be pertinent to the current story.

Excited Players_BA Niantic

Those who participated in the beta and reached level five before December 14 will receive a special badge called “The Founder Medal” when they next launch the app. The end of beta also means the contest to find the Ingress Elite V contest is over, and the top five players in the beta will get a chance to see a behind-the-scenes tour of the world.

Ingress is available now in the Google Play Store for free.

Are you excited to try to science-fiction alternate reality game?

Android Authority

Snap2Chat – Native Snapchat client for BlackBerry 10 enters public beta

 Snap2Chat   Native Snapchat client for BlackBerry 10 enters public beta

Over the past little while now we’ve heard from a few developers working on native Snap Chat clients for BlackBerry 10 but none having been as vocal about it as NemOry, developer of Droid StoreWhere’s My Phone and more. After having laid out the basics of the app previously, NemOry has been working hard to get a beta release out and it’s now available. You’ll need to grab your USB cables and load up the .BAR file to test things out but once that’s over here’s what you can expect.

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Ingress exiting open beta tomorrow, will be available to everyone

[#protected_0#]

Players will readily ell you, Ingress is much more than a game. Love it or hate it, Google’s augmented reality game has taken off in a big way. Devotees go out in troops, set to take down portals, even going so far as to get tattoos of their faction. With over one million downloads, Ingress has become a runaway hit for [#protected_0#]. Also, it’s still in beta.

25bedce625512px.png Ingress exiting open beta tomorrow, will be available to everyone


That all ends tomorrow, as Ingress flies out of beta and into the mainstream. The game, which now warrants such things as weekly video updates and email blasts to players, is set to bring in a rush of new blood. Originally, the game was on a scaled rollout, as Google’s Niantic Labs wanted to make sure their servers could handle the load, and everyone enjoyed the experience.

For the uninitiated, think of Ingress as a mix of old and new. One one hand, it’s a lot like capture the flag, as you roam around cities in the name of your chosen faction — enlightened or resistance — “taking down” portals. Users are free to choose their side upon signup, and it really hinges on your quick decision based on the backstory. Do you want to help free minds, or do you think it’s a rouse? The choice is immediately yours.

3634927c8940x271.jpg Ingress exiting open beta tomorrow, will be available to everyone

Though a lot like capture the flag, or Othello, the game is also like an RPG come to life. By bringing the augmented reality to your town, and surroundings, there is something eerily exciting about playing the game. While some who enjoy the genre think of games while on the go, Ingress fans can actually play wherever they like. The camaraderie of having a team gives a sense of belonging, and the meet-ups amongst factions only deepen the bond, both to the game and each other.

Currently limited to Android, director of Niantic Labs John Hanke notes that there is an iOS app in the works. After a year, and “a good chunk” of the one million who downloaded the game still playing, Ingress is welcoming the world to its world. Then again, we’re not so sure they’re that different after all.

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Koush’s Mirror beta app on Android 4.4.2 (root) does screencast, Airplay mirroring

Cyanogen’s well-known developer Koushik “Koush” Dutta has another interesting app in beta which will let you screencast as well as mirror the display of a rooted Android 4.4.2 device to an Apple TV-connected TV.

The app is called Mirror for Android, and, as with the previous Screencast and AllCast apps we looked at, in order to get it from the Google Play Store you’ll have to perform certain steps including becoming part of the ClockworkMod community on Google+ and sign up for the beta (see Source link below).

Furthermore, in order to run Mirror beta on your device, you’ll have to have Android 4.4.2 installed and root it. However, you won’t have to install any custom ROMs to enjoy the app. In the future, Koush says the app will run on Android 4.1 devices and older, and will not require rooting.

As you can see in the video demo above, once the app is installed on the Nexus 5, it can be immediately used to record the screen of the device complete with voice, but also to mirror the screen of the handset and beam it to a big-screen TV connected to an Apple TV – essentially this is AirPlay on Android.

The app will not work with the Chromecast just yet, but we wouldn’t be surprised to see Koush get it up and running with Google’s dongle at some point in the future.

Obviously, we won’t encourage you to root your devices, but if you did go that way, let us know whether you have tried Koush’s Mirror app.

Android Authority

Google Chrome apps for Android may see beta release in January

Google-IO-2013 Chrome logo 6 1600 aa

Back in September Google unveiled “desktop apps for Chrome”, bringing us special offline apps that were built using JavaScript, HTML and CSS and could work outside of the Chrome browser. Not only did these packaged apps play nicely with Chrome OS, but there was also planned support for multiple other desktop OSes including Windows and OS X.

At the time of the announcement, Chrome VP Brian Rakowski commented on how the long-term goal was to bring Chrome apps everywhere — mobile included. While Google has been relatively quiet about when we might see Chrome apps come to the mobile world, the Next Web has learned that the toolkit designed for creating Chrome apps for Android and iOS is already pretty far along.

Right now the project is listed in a GitHub repository called “Mobile Chrome Apps”, led by Google software developer Michal Mocny. The project isn’t yet ready for primetime, but Joe Marini (Lead Dev Relations for Chrome apps) states that they hopes to have “something in beta form in January”.

Eventually the goal will be to polish up the toolkit enough that these Chrome mobile apps can then be published to Google Play and Apple’s App Store. Once they are ready, Android 4.x or better will be required in order to use the Chrome apps.

Although we’ve known for a while now that Google plans to bring Chrome-powered apps to all mobile and desktop platforms, it’s still nice to see further proof that the project is coming along nicely.

Google has yet to comment any further on their plans for Chrome apps for Android and iOS, but a source close to the company says that developers can try out the tools from the GitHub now, even if Google isn’t quite ready to officially announce anything.

What do you think of the idea of Chrome apps for Android? Excited by the prospect, or not?

Android Authority

Fitbit prepping beta release for Nexus users

[#protected_0#]

[#protected_0#] has had an Android app available for a while now, but as we often see, the device support is rather limited. Officially speaking, the Fitbit Android app uses Bluetooth 4.0 with the LE (Low Energy) feature. For now that support is limited to a handful of Samsung devices, but it looks like some Nexus devices are getting ready to enter a beta testing period.

02565136f3es 540.jpg Fitbit prepping beta release for Nexus users

The above screenshot reflects what the Fitbit app currently shows when used on a Nexus 5.

The folks at Fitbit have recently updated the Play Store listing for the app and mentioned a beta release. The details point towards this being a beta test done through the Play Store. But more important, the beta will be for the Nexus 5, Nexus 4 and Nexus 7 (2013). There wasn’t a specific timeline given as to when this will be available, however users are being encourage to fill out a survey form if they are interested.

Said form is actually a Google Doc that asks for your Google ID email as well as which Fitbit you have and which device you are using. Those looking to get access to the beta are also asked if they would be willing to provide some detailed information regarding the experience. Anyway, that Google Doc is fairly short and took just about a minute when we filled it out.

Otherwise, the Fitbit Android app officially supports the Galaxy S 4 and Galaxy S III ad well as the Galaxy Note 3, Galaxy Note II and Galaxy Note 10.1. The Galaxy Note 3 was the most recent addition to that bunch. And along with support for the Note 3, the folks at Fitbit have also took care of “various” bugs and fixed the Active Minutes tile so it now includes only very active minutes.

SOURCE: Google Play Store, Fibit Nexus Beta Request Form

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iGrann for BlackBerry 10 now available to download as a beta

For those of you patiently waiting for iGrann to release their third party native Instagram client, that moment is finally here. Earlier today, the developer took to the forums to announce that not only has his version been upload to BlackBerry World for approval but that those wishing to test it as a beta can download the bar file.

As of now this is a limited version of the application. For instance, you can upload images with the native BlackBerry

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