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Google announced the Nexus 5 and Android 4.4 KitKat today. Being a tech nerd, it triggered some thoughts. They started on twitter, but here they are a little more thought out.

  • It’s sad that Verizon still won’t embrace open handsets on their network. My contract is up in 3 months and it can’t come soon enough. 
  • Now that the Nexus 5 is in the hands of reviewers, the new Hangouts APK with SMS integration should follow I hope. I’m waiting (not so) patiently for Android Police to get on that.
  • Why did Google have a huge presentation for some new photo filters, and not for a big Android release and new flagship phone? 
  • And lastly, why is the Galaxy Nexus being left out of the 4.4 upgrade? Google is making a big point of claiming that KitKat supports 512MB devices. Way to lead by example guys.

Exclusive: Inside Hangouts, Google's big fix for its messaging mess

The Verge has an awesome, comprehensive look at Google’s new chat app. This was my favorite of all the Google I/O 2013 announcements, and I will be making all of my friends install it promptly. One of the main killer features that I think sets it above all the other chat apps is below.

Google says it’s put a lot of thought into reconsidering presence, and it actually works better in Hangouts than on other apps. Instead of using “read receipts” (first popularized on BBM and coming this summer to iOS and Android) or a blanket online / offline indicator, Hangouts inserts tiny little square avatars into the chat history, called “watermarks.” These watermarks show when somebody else is typing, but they also indicate how far others have read in the conversation.

Says Christopher Johnson, a linguist and naming expert, “The problem with Google is that it makes us painfully aware of how unoriginal we are. Before web search, two bands could use the same name in happy ignorance as long as they were serving different geographical and stylistic markets.

Michael Erard - Like a Lead Balloon - The Morning News (via thisistheverge)

So what you’re saying is that I can blame Google for all these terrible band names?

Common Sense Android App: Wi-Fi Matic

 

This is super useful, especially for those concerned about battery life. This app automatically turns your Wi-Fi on or off depending on your current location. It uses cell tower data instead of GPS in order to not drain battery.

The setup is very easy. Once activated, the app keeps your Wi-Fi off by default. When you want to connect to a network, turn on Wi-Fi and connect as usual. It will then automatically turn it off when you leave the area, but remember the location and turn it back on when you return.

The app is completely free and available in the Google Play Store

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