Your in-laws are criticizing your carving skills, Grandma Edith's guzzling the port, and the tree's catching fire. Yes, Christmas can feel so predictable. Take a break from the melodrama with Download's favorite festive music apps.Bjork: Solstice ( iOS) Bjork is far out, and that's why we love her. Based on the track "Solstice" from the Icelandic singer's "Biophilia" album, this free app allows you to pull rays out of a sun to create harp strings that are then plucked by orbiting planets. With a tilting motion, your creation morphs into a … Read more
It'll be more of a blue Christmas than a holly jolly holiday if you're stuck suffering through the same old songs that your parents have been playing on the gramophone for as long as you can remember. So spice up your next holiday get-together with Download.com's list of our 10 all-time favorite holiday hits from the last 40 years.
Some of our picks, such as "Frosty the Snowman" and "We Three Kings," are perennial classics that have been reinvented in interesting ways by some of our favorite artists. Others, like "Christmas … Read more
Earlier this year, Pandora added the Sleep Timer function to its mobile app so that Pandora listeners can fall asleep to their favorite stations. Now users can wake up to their beloved tunes with the new Pandora Alarm Clock. Music lovers no longer have to settle for the stock alarm clock's limited sound selections (thanks to iOS, quacking ducks now enrage me to no end). This long-awaited and much-welcome feature comes with the standard alarm clock features, such as timer and snooze, and Alarm Clock even ties in with the Sleep Timer. … Read more
Google today released a mobile app for its Android Device Manager service. Available for free in the Google Play store, the app lets users manage and secure an Android tablet or phone associated with their Google account from another Android device (running Gingerbread and up).
The app gives access to all Android Device Manager features, including locating a tablet or phone on a map, resetting its lock code, and erasing it completely. Just note that your missing device must be connected to the cellular network or to Wi-Fi for it to perform the commands.
Though Google released Android Device Manager … Read more
Heads up, bookworms: the Google Play Books app for Android has received a noteworthy update.
An enhanced version of Google's official e-reader app has started rolling out this week, bringing some nifty new features.
Key among the changes is the capability to upload files directly from a phone or tablet. As some know, this was previously only available for the desktop Play Books experience. It's worth noting, however, that uploading only applies to EPUB and PDF files.
Additionally, the app now lets readers open up any e-book in landscape mode. This is surely welcome news to tablet owners … Read more
On Tuesday, Mozilla launched an update to its flagship browser, Firefox, bringing some new graduates from the Beta channel. The latest addition to Firefox for Android adds the Home screen, which improves access to frequently visited sites through a swipeable menu. You can now swipe between Bookmark, History, and Reading List screens when you open a new tab -- as you already can with Opera and Chrome.
Tapping the upper-left corner now cues a slide-out menu that holds your opened tabs, similar to Windows 8's functionality. The final noteworthy bit that users will notice is the curve-in to the … Read more
Which is better: Apple's Siri or Google Now? Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster recently put them both to the test.
First, let's take a look at Siri's performance.
Based on the results of 800 different queries, Siri showed an improvement in iOS 7 when compared to its behavior under iOS 6. Apple's voice assistant answered 79 percent of all the questions and fared better in a noisy environment than it did in last year's test results. Specifically, the latest version of Siri got a higher mark than the previous version for its ability to interpret … Read more
CyanogenMod began adding secure text messaging to its unstable, nightly version on Monday. When the feature eventually reaches the stable build of the popular third-party Android ROM, it will have around 10 million people on its rolls.
More than 9.7 million people use CyanogenMod, which averages around 20,000 new installs every 24 hours. By far, it is the most popular custom Android ROM.
Designed by well-known independent security … Read more
Fleksy just came out of private beta, and now it's available on the Google Play store for everyone to try it out. It has its own classic-style keyboard layout, a compact mode, and better yet -- invisible mode. You're probably wondering why you might want to use a keyboard you can't actually see. Well, three reasons come to mind:
Extra screen real estate -- Whether you're using a device with a small screen, or something the size of a Galaxy Note, you'll see more of your apps when using this keyboard.
Impressive auto-correction -- This … Read more
Google is expected to roll out an updated version of the Google Play app for Android, according to Android Police, which hosts an unverified version of the app (download at your own risk).
The blog, which often gets its hands on early releases of apps, says that the 4.5.10 release brings a number of new features and enhancements, that it's more transparent and obvious for users, and that it makes it easier for Android owners to discover new apps.
Chief among the new features, Google Play will tell you if an app or game features in-app purchases. … Read more