Google brings six additional Android apps to Chrome devices

Chromebook users have gotten a few more native Android apps to play with: Google has officially brought six additional Android apps to Chrome OS, including Slideshare, Tapatalk and Yo.

These apps aren’t just Chrome apps that look and feel like their mobile counterparts, but actual Android apps running in Chrome, thanks to the Android Runtime for Chrome (ARC), which Google first announced at its I/O developer conference last summer.

However, Google has been slow to release ARC apps for Chrome OS, porting only a handful of new apps every two months or so. This has prompted some some to take matters into their own hands, with developers figuring out ways to use ARC to port other Android apps to Chrome as well. In fact, there is now an automated tool to do just that, and my colleague Kevin Tofel was able to bring Skype’s native Android app to his Chromebook with it.

Google hasn’t cracked down on this, but is instead asking users to nominate their favorite Android apps to bring to Chrome OS next.

Preview Android’s new look with these Google-approved apps

Google updated its Beautiful Design collection, a list of selected apps on Google Play with a focus on design details. This batch features several apps that are already sporting UI elements from Google’s new Material Design language.

Player FM and Rocket Player get Chromecast support

Chromecast owners just got a few more ways to beam audio to the big screen: Player FM, a podcast app and cloud service that we previously covered on Gigaom, added Chromecast support to its Android app Friday. Also now Chromecast-capable is Rocket Music, an Android music player that includes features like an equalizer and lyrics viewing. Don’t want to listen to your podcasts or music on your TV? Then you can always turn Chromecast into a networked audio player.

App downloads hit record 1.76 billion over holiday week

Mobile app downloads over the week from Christmas to New Year’s Eve increased to 1.76 billion, up from 1.2 billion a year ago. It’s also a significant spike over the 1.07 billion weekly average recorded earlier in December.

Yahoo open sources Mojito, a developer framework for any device

Yahoo has open sourced Mojito, a JavaScript-based developer framework that will allow developers to leverage both client- and server-side technologies to get the best performance out of any device. The framework is now available on GitHub for anyone to play around with.

Facebook Timeline now on Android app and mobile website

Facebook’s new Timeline user interface is now available pretty much everywhere — including on mobile devices.Just a few hours after announcing worldwide availability of the new Timeline profile interface, Facebook on Thursday launched Timeline on its mobile Android app and on its mobile website, m.facebook.com.

How Xamarin gave Mono a life after Novell

Xamarin, the company born earlier this year when Novell laid off the entire workforce dedicated to maintaining Mono, the open-source implementation of Microsoft’s .NET development framework, was up against big odds. But at just seven months old, Xamarin is now profitable without VC backing.

Path revamps with ‘Path 2’: A diary for the social, mobile world

Path has enacted a dramatic redesign with the newest version of its app, “Path 2.” Path has expanded beyond photo sharing and now aims to be a “smart journal” that helps users catalog their lives — putting it more squarely in competition with Evernote and Facebook.