Updated Android Ice Cream Sandwich photos leaked; Google+ Games launched

by Kristen Nicole

Images from Android PoliceSome photos have surfaced on a few blogs this morning, purporting evidence of upcoming Android Ice Cream Sandwich updates. The mobile OS, first announced in May, has been pictured in its updated form in a series of leaked screenshots, the most notable change being the color evolution of the Android logo himself: he’s shifted from green to blue. There’s only a handful of images floating around, but they demonstrate ICS running on a Nexus S handset.

Other updates appear to enhance some ICS features we already knew about, including NFC integration for Google Shopper. There’s also reports that the camera will have a built-in panorama mode, picking up on a trend that’s quite appealing across mobile photo apps on both Android devices and the iPhone. Gmail could also be set for a revamp, while a new launcher and notification bar could grace the ICS update as well. A major point of interest is that the new Ice Cream Sandwich will debut on the Nexus Prime, an unreleased Android phone expected to have an HD display.

Google+ Games makes social fun

While Google hasn’t released too many details on ICS yet, it’s proudly rolling out Google+ Games this week. Like other aspects of Google+, the angle here is customization as it pertains to what updates get sent out and to whom. Google+ Games will send out updates for scores and current games played according to your preferences, making a fluid experience for how social you want your gameplay to be. This goes for the receiving end as well. It’s an attempt to go after a major Facebook feature that’s reveled in social gaming updates for a few years now, making it one of the early features launched on the Google+ network.

If you’ve gotten the update to Google+ Games already, you’ll see several popular titles ready to play. Angry Birds tops the list, with Crime City, Diamond Dash, Bejeweled Blitz and Bubble Island rounding out some of the top games. There’s several others already available at launch, and I’m sure we’ll be seeing more as Google+ extends yet another portal for gamers to be social and discover new titles.