Huawei’s Google license expiry means it’s time to support HMS

Huawei’s license with Google has expired, which means it’s time to support HMS (Huawei Mobile Services) or risk losing users.

The US Chamber of Commerce added Huawei to its now-infamous Entity List in May, meaning no American firm can partner with the company without explicit government permission. A temporary exemption was made for existing relations to ensure US consumers and businesses have a smoother transition away from the firm.

Huawei’s existing devices,...

Congress wants Apple and Google to clamp down on foreign apps

Congress is calling on Apple and Google to clamp down on apps that weren’t born in the USA (cue Springsteen).

Trump’s administration is currently mulling a complete ban of any Chinese software but, while that debate is ongoing, Congress wants the two largest mobile platform holders to begin clamping down on foreign apps in less radical ways.

The Congressional Committee on Oversight and Reform has sent two letters to the CEOs of Apple and Google to request they probe...

Android 10 sets adoption record, updates to get even faster

Google’s attempts to fix Android OS version fragmentation appears to be working, with the latest flavour becoming the fastest adopted yet.

The wide variety of Android hardware and customised software available on the market is both its biggest perk and its most difficult problem.

Android users often boast of features being available on the platform years before iOS, but it can often take years to reach most people’s devices – if at all.

Apple’s limited...

Microsoft acquires Movial developers to work on Android for Surface Duo

Microsoft has acquired developers from Movial to develop the custom flavour of Android for the Surface Duo.

Surface Duo is an exciting new smartphone/tablet hybrid from Microsoft which requires a custom flavour of Android. The “foldables” category is still emerging and Microsoft is betting on it early to make up for its Windows Phone failures.

Microsoft previously contracted the development of the Android-based OS for the Surface Duo out to third-party development...

New developer tools boost Google Assistant’s capabilities

Google has launched new tools for developers which are designed to boost Assistant's capabilities when responding to user requests.

The virtual assistant is regularly found to handle general queries better than its closest competitors, but too often you can think it would just be quicker to do a task yourself. We're still far off from the sci-fi visions of AI assistants like HAL and JARVIS.

Google Assistant, and its rivals, have made large strides in improving areas such...

Google further opens Maps to developers, enables Pokemon Go-like games

Google has improved the access developers have to Maps, providing the ability to build things such as games which offer alternate versions of the real world.

The most obvious example of such a game is Niantic's Pokémon Go which, while not quite as viral as it once was, remains popular today.

Niantic was once a startup within Google – back when it was known for its less commercially-successful but still groundbreaking AR game, Ingress. The company offers a toolkit for...

Microsoft guides Flutter developers on building Surface Duo apps

Microsoft has released a guide on how to build apps for the dual-screen Surface Duo using the Flutter SDK.

The company's flagship developer event, BUILD, begins tomorrow. Like many events this year, it will be entirely virtual due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This year's event is likely to be a big one, and it seems Redmond is preparing developers early.

Flutter will require little introduction for many of you; but, for the rest, it's Google's UI toolkit for building native...

Attention app developers: Android is no longer second fiddle

For a long time the app world was the iOS user’s oyster - all of the best apps were designed for them. In fact, within the US, smartphones and the apps market were essentially synonymous with the iPhone and the App Store. Throughout the rest of the world users preferred Androids, and by 2015 they accounted for 80% of smartphone shipments.

It was only a matter of time before this sleeping giant awakened here on our shores. There are lots of reasons to assume that Android will no...

Google and Apple will block location access while using contact-tracing API

A contact-tracing API being developed by Google and Apple will block location access to prevent misuse.

The API, called ExposureNotification, is being provided to national health agencies to build contact-tracing functionality into their apps. It's hoped that contact-tracing apps will help societies to safely return to some degree of normality.

An initial version of the API was released last week. This week, new resources – including demo code and example UI assets –...

Study: Half of Americans don’t trust contact-tracing apps

A new study has found that half of Americans wouldn't trust a COVID-19 contact-tracing app.

Contact-tracing apps are being hailed as key to returning to some degree of normality. The apps use Bluetooth to keep track of everyone an individual passes in order to notify that circle if a COVID-19 diagnosis is made so they can isolate and get tested before spreading the virus further.

Naturally, there are concerns about the amount of data such apps could take about their...