Nintendo officially announced today that it will host a closed beta Mario Kart Tour test for Android devices from May 22 to June 4 in the United States and Japan. “The closed beta test is a test of an application under development and is held for customers in order to improve the quality of the game. Furthermore, the number of customers who may participate in this test is limited. If the number of applications exceeds the number of possible participants, we will randomly select the participants,” said Nintendo. Read more for a video, a link to the beta signup and additional information.
Photo credit: Windows Central
Microsoft has officially rebranded “Miami Street” into “Forza Street”, and for those who haven’t yet tried the free-to-play game, it basically offers a “race-on-the-go” experience for Windows 10, iOS as well as Android users. Simply put, players choose an event, set their lineup, and race to collect legendary cars. To keep things accessible on mobile devices, Forza Street offers timing-based controls rather than direction. Read more for a gameplay video and additional information.
Photo credit: Emily Price / Lifehacker
Mobile phone users prefer “dark mode” to save energy, and the latest app to offer this feature is Facebook Messenger, as the company announced it for Android last year at the F8 conference. It’s now available all users, but activating it is not as simple as heading over to the settings menu, but rather an Easter Egg hunt of sorts. Simply put, users have to send a half crescent moon emoji to someone. Read more for a video showing exactly how it’s done.
Photo credit: Max Keller
Nintendo Switch fans who have always wished the portable game console could double as a full-fledged tablet will be happy to know that Android is officially coming, thanks to developers Billy Laws and Max Keller. They managed to get an early version of Android Q running on the device, complete with a working touchscreen, Joy-Cons, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. Read more for a video demonstration and additional information.
For those who don’t know, Rich Communication Services (RCS) is essentially a communication protocol between mobile-telephone carriers and between phone and carrier. It aims to replace traditional SMS messages with a text-message system that is richer, provides phonebook polling (for service discovery), and transmit in-call multimedia. Starting today, RCS is available on phones designed for Google Fi as well as compatible Android phones – if you’re using a phone designed for Fi, RCS will be automatically enabled. Read more for another video explaining what this technology actually does.
The iLight 7S is touted as the world’s smallest iPhone-inspired Android handset, if that even makes any sense. However, if you’re hoping for decent performance, this may not be the microscopic handset for you. Featuring a 2.4″ touchscreen display, an MTK quad-core CPU, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of internal storage, Bluetooth / WiFi connectivity, and a metal body. Unsurprisingly, there is no headphone jack, so you’ll need to snag a pair of wireless headphones or earphones to jam. Product page. Read more for another hands-on video review and additional information.
The Nebula Capsule Smart Mini Projector is basically a smart cinema that you can enjoy anytime, anywhere, and it’s being offered for just $248 shipped, today only, originally $349. Using Android 7.1 it plays content from your favorite video streaming app or mirrors your phone’s display to create a remarkably detailed picture up to 100″. Stunning image quality is complemented by a class-leading 360° speaker to deliver heart-pounding sound, anywhere you sit. It delivers up to 4-hours of continuous playtime on a single charge, while Quick Charge technology enables Capsule to recharge faster and charge while in use. Product page. Continue reading for another hands-on video, more pictures and information.
Google showcased Android P at their 2018 I/O Conference this week, and it’s packed with major new features, including some AI-powered ones. Just a few of the highlights are time limits on apps, being able to switch your phone’s display to grayscale at night, and quickly hiding all notifications when you don’t want to see them. User interface wise, there’s a revamped control scheme that updates Android’s back, home, and multitasking buttons. Continue reading for two more videos and information.
Fate / Grand Order is basically an online free-to-play role-playing game based on the Fate / stay night visual novel game and franchise by Type-Moon, developed by Delightworks. It’s centered around turn-based combat where the player, who takes on the role of a “Master”, summons and commands powerful familiars known as “Servants” in battle against their enemies. This game may be free-to-play, but Daigo, a 31-year-old gamer from Japan, has already spent over $70,000 and counting on the title. How? The title enables players to summon new ‘servants’ by spending in-game currency called Quartz. Daigo has spent $500 acquiring a new character for his collection, and then an additional $2,500 leveling it up. Continue reading for three more videos and more information.
NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, Freedom of the Press Foundation, and the Guardian Project, have unveiled a new app called “Haven”. When installed on an Android smartphone, it activates different sensors on the device, uses the front / back cameras to detect motion, and uses the microphone to spot changes in the volume level, thus turning it into a personal surveillance system of sorts. Continue reading for an in-depth video and more information.