Posts Tagged ‘Android Market’

Android Market Now Rents Movies

Tuesday, May 10th, 2011

Google’s annual IO conference began today, and Android was a highlight of the keynote. Among the more notable new features, Google is now offering movie rentals through the Android Market. Movies range from $1.99 to $3.99, and have similar terms and expiration policies as other services. I am still looking for the $1.99 selection. There is a good mix of newer and older titles available, from “The King’s Speech” to Monty Python’s “Meaning of Life”.

Browsing through the movie selection, there are a number of features available. You can watch a preview with YouTube, get critic reviews or user reviews, tweet about the movie, read a synopsis, and find out general information about the movie. Movie ratings, length, and contract terms are available as well. Once purchased, the rental is valid for 30 days if the movie is not watched. Once playback begins, the timeline drops to 24 hours. This is comparable to the PlayStation Network and Dish Network’s pay per view options.

I think this service is poised to give both Netflix and Amazon a run for their money. The layout is clean, easy to follow, and conveniently connected to your Google account. This means you can watch on your Android phone or your computer, no matter where you are. There’s even a feature to watch the movie offline if you don’t have a consistent connection. This is done with a “pin” feature, and can take a good chunk of time on a tablet such as the Xoom. Google posts download times as 45-90 minutes for HD and 30-60 minutes for SD. Streaming is instant, so you might want to do that if your data plan isn’t unlimited.

The service is currently available only in the United States. Google suggests you download the movie before leaving the country if you want to use the service elsewhere. An Android app is available on the Xoom, and requires Flash. The app should be available for Froyo and above soon, but you can browse for movies at market.android.com/movies.

I think this feature will be getting a lot of action in my household. I’m looking forward to spending some more time with it. This weekend’s road trip should provide ample opportunity to play, so I’ll post my experiences next week.

Google Reader App Now Available in the Android Market

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

One of Google’s most anticipated Android apps has finally made it to the Market. Google Reader is now available. There have been a number of RSS readers available for Android, but the lack of Google’s own Reader app was baffling to many. Whatever the reason for the delay, it is here.

The Google Reader app looks familiar enough. You get the unread counts, sharing, liking, and such. Google points out a few extra features that are included as well. These include multiple accounts, synced preferences, and the ability to search for feeds and subscribe from your phone.

The app also features some customization options. You can set your volume buttons to navigate between feed items. You can also long-press folders or subscriptions for additional menu features.

The Google Reader app thankfully runs on phones running Donut, so US Xperia owners are not left in the cold as with Google Voice Actions. It is nice to finally have an easy way to read my RSS feeds on my phone. Being able to sync it to my Google account is an added plus.

You can download the app from the QR code below, or by searching the Market. You can read the official Google Reader blog post here.

Android Market Gets Update All Button

Friday, November 19th, 2010

One of the things people have complained about in the Android Market is the need to update apps individually. The Android Market just got an Update All button. Not a lot of fanfare accompanied the update, but I noticed the button while looking through my downloads folder this morning. The button worked as expected, queuing all my available updates and installing them in turn.

For those of us with a ton of apps on our phones this is good news. It was a little annoying having to go one at a time, and to time the downloads/installs just right so you could streamline the downloads. The Update All button is a very welcome feature. Be sure to check out the Market if you haven’t used it yet.