Bringing Google Cardboard and VR to the world

Originally posted on the Google Developers Blog

Posted by Brandon Wuest, Software Engineer & Stereoscopic Sightseer

Google Cardboard is bringing virtual reality worldwide. Starting today, the Google Cardboard app is available in 39 languages and over 100 countries on both Android and iOS devices. Additionally, the Cardboard developer docs are now published in 10 languages to help developers build great VR experiences. With more than 15 million installs of Cardboard apps from Google Play, we’re excited to bring VR to even more people around the world.

More Works with Google Cardboard viewers

Anyone can make their own Cardboard viewer with the open designs ready for download. If you’d rather not DIY, choose from the growing family of certified viewers, including the Mattel View-Master and Zeiss VR One GX, on sale now.

Better tools for building

The Cardboard SDKs for Android and Unity have been updated to address your top two requests: drift correction and Unity performance. This update includes a major overhaul of the sensor fusion algorithms that integrate the signals from the gyroscope and accelerometer. These improvements substantially decrease drift, especially on phones with lower-quality sensors. The Cardboard SDK for Unity now supports a fully Unity-native distortion pass. This improves performance by avoiding all major plugin overhead, and enables Cardboard apps to work with Metal rendering on iOS and multi-threaded rendering on Android. All of this adds up to better VR experiences for your users.

More places

Finally, to help bring you to more places, you can now explore Google Street View in Cardboard. So, download the updated Google Street View app for Android or iOS, and grab your Cardboard to immerse yourself in destinations around the world.

With Cardboard available in more places, we’re hoping to bring the world just a little bit closer to everyone. Happy exploring!

Watch Google Play’s Playtime event: How to find success for your app or game business

Posted by Lily Sheringham, The Google Play team

Google Play has kicked off its annual event series Playtime, which is running in 12 countries globally. Playtime offers developers the opportunity to learn tips and best practices about how to grow your app or games business and succeed on Android and Google Play.

You can now watch the Playtime talks, listed below, on the Android Developers YouTube channel. The playlist opens with a video about inspirational developers who are changing the world around them with their apps.

Build better apps

You say you want a mobile revolution (13 minutes)

There are now more than one billion Android users worldwide—a long way from when we launched the first Android phone back in 2008. Hear the latest about the Android and Google Play momentum.

Build better (25 minutes)

Learn top tips that you should consider when developing and distributing a successful app or game and how you can leverage M, the Google Play Developer Console and Android Studio.

Grow a valuable audience

Grow & engage users from the Google Play Developer Console (7 minutes)

Learn from other developers who have taken advantage of Store Listing Experiments and other tools in the Developer Console to dramatically increase their conversions.

Maximise installs from every channel (11 minutes)

Get insights into how app promotion can help you reach your audience at the right time. Learn how you can maximize installs from every channel, collect data and insights, automate management and drive user engagement and lifetime value.

How to succeed in the kids and family space (22 minutes)

Learn how to design high-quality apps for families and how to successfully engage your audience. You’ll also get practical tips to help you boost your reach, retention and revenue.

Engage and retain your app’s users

The rules of games, for apps (24 minutes)

Learn how games drive monetization and how to turn these insights into best practices for apps.

Boost engagement with smarter interactions (28 minutes)

How do you connect with your users? How does your app interact with the world around us? This session highlights the most exciting new developer features of the Android platform to help you improve the way you engage with your app users.

Grow your game business & engage your players

Grow your business with Player Analytics (24 minutes)

Learn how Player Analytics gives game developers unique insight into the first few moments of gameplay, what happens before critical events like churning or spending, and which players are likely to spend and churn.

Smarter player engagement (23 minutes)

Learn how successful game developers make full use of the Google Play platform to engage their players for months, if not years.

The future of gaming at Google (26 minutes)

Learn about the current ecosystem and the features across platforms that will help you achieve success on Android. Hear about virtual reality games and products which will inspire the development of games in the future.

Monetization & international growth

Monetization and pricing strategies for different users (17 minutes)

Get key insights into how having a considered price and revenue optimisation strategy can help you maximize revenue from very different users.

Go global by being local (13 minutes)

Hear pro tips and best practices, including first hand experiences from apps and games developers, that will help you grow the reach of your apps and games globally.

Going global – developers share their tips (22 minutes)

Gain insight into best practices and learn how to develop a successful global app and games business from Google Play and developer panelists from Citymapper, Jelly Button Games, Musixmatch and Social Point.

Developers share their tips for success

Developer talk #1: Material Design for Forza Football (5 minutes)

Learn and get inspired from best practices on Material Design presented by Sebastian Fürle – Android Developer, Football Addicts

Developer talk #2: Directed creativity: From build weeks to billions (11 minutes)

Learn and get inspired from best practices on directed creativity, from building your app to distribution presented by Tom Grinsted – Group Product Manager: Mobile & Devices, Guardian News and Media

Developer talk #3: Building apps for fast growth markets (8 minutes)

Learn about building apps for fast growth and emerging markets from Sergio Cucinella – Software Engineer, Truecaller

For more videos about Android development and finding success on Google Play, subscribe to the Android Developers channel on YouTube and follow +Android Developers.

Keep users’ content safe with Google Drive

Posted by Dan McGrath, Product Manager, Drive SDK & Partnerships

Chances are, you’re developing an app that creates or manages data. And chances are, your users really care about that content — be it photos and documents, or calorie counts and exercise stats.

Whatever it is, you probably don’t want it stuck on a single device — especially since people are replacing their phones and tablets every couple of years (every now and then… shtuff happens). With Google Drive, you can help users access their data at any time, from just about anywhere:

  • Drive APIs give developers a free and easy way to save and retrieve user content using Google Drive
  • In Android 6.0 Marshmallow, there’s also a new way to save app data and settings to Drive automatically

As your app grows in popularity, Google Drive can scale along with it. In fact, WhatsApp now lets users back up their media and conversations to Google Drive, which translates to about one saved item for every person on the planet — every single day.

Visit our developer site to learn more, and definitely reach out if you want to discuss more in-depth integrations. We’re here to help make your app great, and to keep users’ content safe.

In-app translations in Android Marshmallow

Posted by, Barak Turovsky, Product Lead, Google Translate

Google Translate is used by more than 500 million people every month, translating more than 100 billion words every single day.

Beginning this week, Android mobile users who have the Translate app installed will be able to translate in 90 languages right within some of their favorite apps on any device running the newest version of Android’s operating system (Android 6.0, Marshmallow).

Translating a TripAdvisor review from Portuguese

Composing a Whatsapp message in Russian

Android apps that use Android text selection behavior will already have this feature enabled, so no extra steps need to be taken. Developers who created custom text selection behavior for their apps can easily implement this feature by following the below steps:

Scan via the PackageManager through all packages that have the PROCESS_TEXT intent filter (for example: – if it installed) and add them as MenuItems into TextView selections for your app

  1. To query the package manager, first build an intent with the action

    private Intent createProcessTextIntent() {
        return new Intent()

  2. Then retrieve the supported activities

    private List getSupportedActivities() {
        PackageManager packageManager =

  3. add an item for each retrieved activity and attach an intent to it to launch the action

    public void onInitializeMenu(Menu menu) {
        // Start with a menu Item order value that is high enough
        // so that your "PROCESS_TEXT" menu items appear after the
        // standard selection menu items like Cut, Copy, Paste.
        int menuItemOrder = 100;
        for (ResolveInfo resolveInfo : getSupportedActivities()) {
            menu.add(Menu.NONE, Menu.NONE,

    The label for each item can be retrieved with:


    The intent for each item can be created reusing the filter intent that you defined before and adding the missing data:

    private Intent createProcessTextIntentForResolveInfo(ResolveInfo info) {
        return createProcessTextIntent()
                .putExtra(Intent.EXTRA_PROCESS_TEXT_READONLY, !

    Adding the translation option to your apps text selection menu (if you don’t use default Android text selection behavior) is easy and takes just a few extra lines of code. And remember, when a user is composing a text to translate, your app you should keep the selection when the Translate app is triggered.

    With this new feature, Android Translate app users users will be able to easily translate right from within participating apps. We will be adding more documentation and sample code on this feature in the upcoming weeks.