Custom news aggregators are gaining traction on mobile devices, and SportCaster is betting on the continuing trend. Pulling from Twitter, SportCaster aims to deliver fast and reliable news directly to your Android device. The mobile cloud is growing as well, with Pogoplug and LiveSorter keeping your mobile apps and content as organized as possible. More automobiles are integrating with Android apps too, as Toyota and GM reveal new features for in-car connectivity.
In many ways, SportCaster combines the best of two worlds: sports and real-time social news feeds. The SportCaster Android app delivers personalized sports updates, starting with pro and college football (expect basketball, baseball and hockey in the coming months). Pooling tweets from popular and well-known analysts, bloggers and players, you’ll get breaking news, updates and first-hand content. SportCaster also provides scores, standings and schedules in real-time. On game day, pick games to follow, view the social scoreboard, track your fantasy roster and interact with fellow fans directly on Twitter.
Smartphones are being used for more than just phone calls and apps, turning into remote controls for home entertainment, robots and even R/C helicopters. Pilot’s AR.Drone is a quadricopter you can fly with the accompanying Android app, AR.FreeFlight. It has an automatic stabilization system using video and ultra-sound sensors, offering a smoother controller through the app. You can also do a live video stream, as the AR.Drone comes with two video cameras. The remote controller works through its own Wi-Fi signal, giving you connectivity without a network for up to 50 meters.
Pogoplug has been leading the charge for personal cloud services, with a device that syncs with your desktop computer. Moving to the mobile realm, Pogoplug Mobile is designed for smartphones and tablets, including Android devices. It’s basically a web server with a mobile interface, pulling up whatever you have stored in the attached USB drive. It can serve content over the network, and its interface has been optimized for the varying sizes of today’s handset market. For Android, Pogoplug Mobile has an automated backup process to sync photos and movies over Wi-Fi as well. Now you can manage your Pogoplug cloud more easily through the mobile app.
One cool perk on recent iOS devices is folder organization for your home screen “desktop.” While Android comes with multiple ways to access your apps, there’s no default option for home screen folders. LiveSorter offers that functionality, enabling you to better organize your mobile “desktop” into app categories and easier access. You can create as many folders as you like, across as many categories as you can manage.
Toyota Entune (Free)
Harping on a growing trend, Toyota Entune connects your automobile with your Android smartphone. It expands your in-car multimedia experience, aggregating a collection of mobile apps and services that work with select Toyota vehicles. Apps like Pandora, OpenTable and Bing are all included in this brand-driven collection, designed to minimize direct contact with your smartphone while driving. Entune is operated by your car controls or by voice command, giving you music and news streams, stocks, sports, traffic and weather updates on-the-go.
OnStar RemoteLink (Free)
OnStar has been an integrated car system for a few years now, but by leveraging the wealth of data now available on the web, this GM service is hoping to improve over time. The OnStar RemoteLink Android app has been updated to upload addresses to your car’s navigation system directly from your phone, accessing up to five destinations that have been auto-synced. You can also send addresses to your car’s navigation from other Android apps, or dictate destinations into your smartphone, commanding your vehicle to navigate onward. This is just another way data is being leveraged across devices and platforms to make the use of technology a more seamless experience.