Accessibility features in Android 5.0 Lollipop

Much of Lollipop's accessibility features are unchanged from KitKat, but there are a few new bits inside

With Android 5.0 Lollipop comes a whole bunch of accessibility features for those who need to use them. While many have been carried across from previous versions of Android, there are some new things inside that will open things up to a new audience who perhaps struggled to use the platform before.

This is just the base of what's going to be on Android devices from Lollipop and up. Device makers can build upon this as they desire. But, read on to see an overview of what's what in Android 5.0.








Google Now alarms and timers lose hands-free ability for some in latest update

"Ok Google... why didn't my alarm go off this morning?"

The latest Google Search update seems to have brought a new bug along with all the bug fixes and police cards, causing what once were hands-free commands for timers and alarms to now need an extra button press to set. Some users can still set them without needing to push the actual 'set timer' or 'set alarm' button while others have to press this extra button. The effect seems to be somewhat spotty, with an old Note 2 still puttering away hands-free while a few Moto X's have lost the touch-free aspect of this handy little command.








Twitpic Android app shut down but Twitter will keep domain and pictures online

The journey of the Twitpic online photo service has apparently reached an end. After a trademark dispute with Twitter, the service said it was shutting down in September, but later it claimed it had found a company willing to buy them and keep Twitpic going. Then that deal apparently evaporated. Today, Twitpic announced that Twitter has now agreed to take over its domain and, more importantly, will keep all of Twitpic's old photos online.








How Moto X uses Bluetooth to help tell when you're driving

Moto Assist can tell when you're driving based on GPS, but there's also another clever way it can tell when you're in the car: the Bluetooth. You should be using a Bluetooth device for hands-free calling in the car, and realizing this, Motorola has included algorithms that will detect which bluetooth devices are connected while in Driving mode and will eventually turn on Driving based on the Bluetooth rather than GPS.








Best Android apps and games of the week: Republique and more!

We're rounding up the best new Android games and apps for you again this week. Over the last seven days we've seen some great stuff out of the Play Store, including a slew of interesting apps from Microsoft. There are a couple of games here with distinctly cube-y art styles, not to mention one very polished AAA title.

If you're good to go, let's dive into our top ten Android apps to hit the Google Play Store this week.








The Verizon Xperia Z3v video review

We're not quite done with the Verizon Sony Xperia Z3v just yet. You've already seen our complete written Z3v review. But do yourself a favor and spare us 3 minutes for our video review. The short take? Verizon's got a decent phone here in terms of specs and features, but we just can't get over the ho-hum design that it stayed with when it shunned the proper Z3.

It's a mystery, or something. Enjoy.








Weekly poll results: Who is trading the Chromecast for a Nexus Player?

Android Central readers love their Chromecast

Earlier in the week we asked everyone about their plans to upgrade to a Nexus Player from the Chromecast. Now it's time to look at the results.

This was actually closer than I thought it would be, with only 39.2-percent of responders saying they have no plans to replace their Chromecast with the new Nexus Player. I assumed that number would be a lot higher, because I know a whole lot of folks who love Google's little $35 streaming stick. A look at the final tally follows.








Android Central 208: Zed Thrice Ved

This week: We've gone hands-on with the HTC Nexus 9, we've spent some quality time with the updated Android 5.0 Lollipop preview, we recap the Verizon Sony Xperia Z3v and the latest Android Wear update — and of course we'll answer your questions live!

Thing 1: Nexus 9 and more Lollipop Thing 2: A couple reviews Thing 3: Other things Podcastpodcast208: Zed Thrice Ved






Last chance to win an NVIDIA Shield prize pack and help sick kids with Extra Life!

In case you missed the announcement earlier this week, tomorrow we're playing Gameloft titles for 24 hours straight on the NVIDIA Shield Tablet to raise money for Extra Life. You can get the full run-down here on what Extra Life is all about, but the short version is that they raise money for kids hospitals, and this year's run has so far managed to break the $3 million mark. As a part of our efforts, Gameloft has made a big donation and NVIDIA is putting up two prize packs that will be going out to some lucky motherhubbards who pitch in.








Inbox invites hit user inboxes

Folks who are using Inbox — Google's new take on email management — just received a new item in their inbox — three invites to pass out to friends and family. Finding them is easy enough — just tap the icon to compose a message and you should see a golden ticket in the recents list. Tappa-tappa and you can enter an email address of the person you would like to invite.

We have no idea if those three people will immediately receive invites to share, or when the next round comes out. But for now, Inbox just grew by about 300-percent.








Nest purchases home automation company Revolv

Nest has announced that they have acquired home automation company Revolv. The deal was apparently finalized this morning for unknown terms. This seems to have been an acquisition of developer platform, and it's talent, rather than hardware.








Rogers flips the switch on LTE-Advanced in 12 markets

It looks like things are about to speed up for our friends in the North—on Rogers at least. The Canadian carrier announced today that it has flipped the switch on LTE-Advanced in several markets throughout the country. Perhaps even better, Rogers is doing all of this on the 700 MHz spectrum, which should allow for greater penetration inside of buildings.