Entries with tag android applications.

Amazon Expands Micropayment System to Android

Amazon announced it will now support its virtual currency on Google Android mobile devices in the US, UK, and Germany. Amazon Coins are a virtual currency introduced by the company in 2013, originally intended for Kindle Fire tablet users to make micropurchases, including applications. Each coin is now worth a penny. The company is reportedly working toward establishing “an end-to-end ecosystem” for developers. Some observers are skeptical about Amazon billing it as a virtual currency since it is linked to a user, unlike Bitcoin, which is anonymous. (SlashDot – 1)(SlashDot – 2)(Tech Crunch)(Amazon.com)

Google Adds Languages, Features to Translation Application

Google Translate for Android now has additional features that Google says will make the application’s smartphone version considerably more functional for travelers. Users can now save sentences of their choosing to the Google Translate’s Phrasebook that can be automatically synched with their device so the information can be readily accessed. The smartphone application can now also be used in offline mode. Google Translate for Android will now also support 16 new languages with the application’s camera input feature, including Catalan, Danish, Indonesian, Icelandic, Latvian, Slovenian, and Swedish. The feature allows users to point their camera at text that may be difficult to input using traditional keyboard methods, and provides an immediate translation. Google Translate for Android does not yet support all the languages that the Web application offers. (Lifehacker)(SlashGear)(The New Age)(The Official Google Translate Blog)

Android Application Counts Stars to Measure Light Pollution

German researchers created an application that lets Android smartphone users count visible stars. Scientists with the Loss of the Night/Verlust der Nacht project will use the data sent to them to better understand global light pollution and how it influences health, biodiversity, and other important matters. The interactive application asks users to indicate what individual stars are visible in the night sky. This lets researchers use the faintest visible star seen to extrapolate how bright the sky is at a given location. In most large cities, light pollution is an issue and, biologists say, the artificial light changes habitats. An added benefit discovered during testing the application, is that users learned the names of several stars and constellations. The German Ministry of Education and Research funds the Loss of the Night project, which involves researchers from various organizations throughout the country. (PhysOrg)(Verlust der Nacht)

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