News by Andrew Kameka on Monday February 18, 2013.
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DashClock Widget is simple and fantastic but sadly available only to the smallest fraction of Android users. A time will come where everyone will need to be able to use the clever dashboard as part of the standard lock screen on an Android device.
Android 4.2 introduced lock screen widgets last October, which paved the way for an app like DashClock Widget. Developed by Android engineer Roman Nurik, DashClock is an add-on that displays Calendar appointments, alarms, weather, missed calls, the number of unread text messages, and unread Gmail count. It provides a brief summary of important notifications and can provide additional details by touching the widget and then dragging down.
DashClock also has hooks to other applications, so it's kind of like a plugin with its own set of plugins. Developers can use a simple API to develop add-ons for DashClock that can link with their application and appear on the lock screen. Twitter apps Plume and Falcon Pro show how many tweets and direct messages someone can see, Notes displays a summary of the day's tasks, AppLauncher adds specific app shortcuts, and Battery shows the current charge level.
DashClock Widget Home, Settings, and Appearance tabs
Roman Nurik is a Google employee, but DashClock is a side project that he developed personally and released to Google Play for free. After only a week of availability, the app obtained more than 50,000 downloads and has a 4.8 out of 5 rating. There's clearly an enthusiastic audience for the app and practically everyone who downloads it loves it. Unfortunately, only a select few can use the app because it requires Android 4.2. Based on the most recent Google Play reported statistics, only 1.4 percent of Android users can consider downloading DashClock Widget.
DashClock Widget is currently just a well-received player embraced by a relatively small audience. Considering the success of the app, someone at Google should call Nurik into his office and ask that the app become a default feature of the standard lock screen. Rather than have users need to seek out DashClock, it should already be there waiting for them with the purchase of each new phone or the update to Android 4.2. Like other Google apps, it could be preloaded and still available in Google Play. All we need now is for someone to officially integrate DashClock into the lock screen and put it on the main stage. Considering the slow adoption rate for Android 4.2, there's plenty of time to figure out the best way to do it.
Andrew is MobileBurn.com's managing editor. He is based in Miami, Florida.