Cyanogen 12.1 for OnePlus Now Has Boxer Calendar

Earlier today the Cyanogen 12.1 build was released for OnePlus One owners. The update brings Lollipop 5.1.1 to the device along with several other changes unique to Cyanogen. One of those changes is the inclusion of the new Boxer Calendar app as the default calendar app.

For those who aren’t familiar with Boxer, they have for a long time produced arguably one of the better email apps for Android and recently released the Boxer Calendar app to complement it. The two apps interact well with each other and should provide a solid email and calendar solution for many users.  For those who don’t have Boxer Calendar and are looking for a good calendar solution for your Android phone or tablet, you can get it in the Google Play Store.

Boxer Calendar for Android – Free – Download Now

YouTube Launches YouTube Gaming

As the growth of online gaming has grown, so has the way people learn and consume gameplay.  Twitch has taken off over the past 18 months and now Google is getting into the gameplay watching fray.  Today they launched YouTube Gaming, an app and web portal dedicated to streaming video, videos and live chats to help gamers with over 25,000 different game titles.  YouTube Gaming has a dedicated page for every game, making finding content much easier as you look to watch or chat about a particular game.  The app and the service are both free and it leverages the power of YouTube.

YouTube Gaming for Android – Free – Download Now

Lollipop 5.1.1 Rolls Out to OnePlus One via Cyanogen 12.1

OnePlus One owners, Lollipop 5.1.1 is finally rolling out.  The Cyanogen 12.1 update, which is based on Lollipop 5.1.1 is starting to roll out via an over-the-air update.  The update is a rolling update so it may not be there for your phone just yet (I know my OnePlus One hasn’t seen it yet) so be patient.  It will be coming to you over the course of the next few days.

There are a lot of improvements, fixes and changes in Lollipop 5.1.1 that OnePlus One owners will benefit from and of course this will put you on the latest update of Lollipop which isn’t such a bad thing.

MyAT&T for Android Update Brings More Self Service to Your Phone

For those of you who are customers, AT&T has released another update to their MyAT&T for Android app, bringing a host of new self service options around your account.  The carrier has continued to evolve their app over the course of this year as they have continued to add services that you can access within the app without having to visit a retail store or even their website.  These latest updates in version 4.6 of the app for those keeping score at home, include the ability for you to shop and add international plans, improved device management and a new, more personalized support tool.

MyAT&T for Android – Free (AT&T customer account required for full access) – Download Now

Angry Birds 2 Sees First Update With 20 New Levels

It has been nearly a month since the release of Angry Birds 2 and the popular game which saw 20 million downloads in its first week, has just received its first update.  The update, version 2.1.0 for those who keep score at home, brings 20 new levels of play in an all new chapter, Pigsyland.  What is Pigsyland you ask? Why, that would be Pig City’s first amusement park.

If you haven’t tried Angry Birds 2 then do yourself a favor and download it.  It’s huge amounts of fun and very different from the original game.  Strategy on how you are going to pop the pestilent pigs is far more important in this game. Personally, level 119 is killing me right now!

Angry Birds 2 for Android – Free – Download Now

Google Set to Improve Google Apps and Google Calendar Integration

Over the course of the next three weeks, Google is going to be rolling out updates to Google apps that will allow for events to be automatically entered into your Google Calendar.  Now users won’t have to create the events on their own – they simply will appear in your calendar from sources like Gmail.  The update is part of the continuing effort from Google to make their apps and services more user friendly and integrated.

In the blog post announced the change, Google uses the example of an upcoming flight you have booked and you have received the email confirmation in your Gmail account.

When an individual receives an email in Gmail with flight, hotel, restaurant, or ticketed event information, that event will be automatically added to their Google Calendar, complete with things like flight numbers and check-in times. Calendar will even update those events if plans change and a new email is received (for instance, when a flight is delayed or a reservation pushed back).

No more having to create these events on your own.  Google apps will do it for you.

Gmail Update Improved Microsoft and Yahoo Email Support

Google has released an important update to Gmail for Android that users of Microsoft and Yahoo email accounts will benefit from greatly.  The latest update brings much improved support for email accounts from the companies including support for 2-factor authentication.  The update is version, wait for it…. 5.5.101116392 for those keeping score at home and who like Google version Bingo and it is for both Android phone and tablet devices (the build number for tablets is slightly different).

Gmail for Android – Free – Download Now

Fitbit for Android Update Brings Exercise Sharing

Fitbit for Android has a new update out in the Google Play Store that brings several enhancements and improvements to the health & fitness tracking app.  The update is version 2.10 for those keeping score at home and among the new features is the ability to share a photo from your exercise routine with friends.  Why would you want to share a photo of yourself in the gym?  Well, you could inspire your friends on Fitbit to push themselves a bit further or you can show proof of how important “leg day” is in your routine.

Fitbit for Android – Free – Download Now

Microsoft Releases Public Beta of Cortana for Android

The personal assistant wars may be getting, well, personal.  Microsoft has released a public beta of Cortana, the personal assistant found in Windows 10 and Windows 10 Mobile, to the Google Play Store for Android users.  Cortana is aimed to compete against Google Now for your quick search, information and reminders on your phone just like Now does.  For the longest time, Cortana was exclusive to Windows Phone 8.1 and recently made its desktop debut in Windows 10 and both allow you to simply ask your device a question starting with “Hey Cortana” and you can search anything on your PC or the Internet.  Sound familiar?  It should.  If you have used Google Now, you will see the direct competitive nature of this to “OK, Google” that you ask your phone today.

Review of Acer C670 Chromebook – Solid Performance at a Great Price

When I received the Acer C670 to review, I commented to my wife that the world has come full circle. When I started my career first in networking then in telecommunications, I had a green screen CRT that tied me back into mainframe.  Now, I have a Chromebook that ties me back into the Cloud. The only difference is that power and performance in a Chromebook is far superior to a dumb terminal.

The Acer C670 Chromebook is by all accounts a middle-of-the-road spec’d device. But don’t let that fool you or pass it over.  At only $149, it is an exceptional value for what it does and it has plenty of horsepower to meet your needs as a lightweight, almost always connected device. Truthfully the keyboard on the C670 is one of the better chicklet-style keyboards I’ve tested and it is large enough to feel like you are typing on a full sized keyboard.  While the display on the C670 could stand to be a bit better, overall this Chromebook is one to consider if you need something lightweight, small and always ready-to-go for your Google Doc and other online editing needs.

Acer C670 Chromebook – $149.99 – Amazon