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One of the key features that sets Android apart from iOS is that developers can write apps that alter the look and feel of Android, and Google’s cool with that. Want to change your home screen, or even alter the notification system a bit? No problem.

There are also plenty of great alternatives to the standard Android keyboard available from the Play Store.

Folks with an iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad, on the other hand, are stuck with the keyboard Apple gave them… unless they jailbreak their device. But there’s a rumor going around that Apple could open up its platform a bit and allow third party keyboards. That has the makers of the popular SwiftKey app for Android pretty happy.

swiftkey tablet
SwiftKey for Android tablets

Here’s a roundup of tech news from around the web.

  • Rumor: Apple may allow third party keyboard apps on iOS
    Apple’s WWDC  event starts next week, and there’s a good chance the company will introduce a new version of iOS, maybe an updated version of OS X, and who knows? Maybe we’ll get some new hardware. The rumor du jour involves support for third party keyboards. , [AllThingsD]
  • Not interested in an HTC One Mini? How about a 7 inch HTC One Max?
    HTC’s long been rumored to have a smaller version of the HTC One in the works, featuring a 4.3 inch display. Now there’s a new rumor suggesting a new 5.9 inch version could also be in the works. [Mobileaks]
  • Rumor: Next “Google Edition” phone will be the Sony Xperia Z
    Samsung’s doing it, and so’s HTC. So why not Sony? It looks like the company could soon offer a version of its latest flagship smartphone running Google’s stock version of Android. It wouldn’t be a huge leap for Sony, which already offers AOSP code for the Sony Xperia Z (but which doesn’t provide proprietary binaries as part of that code). [Android Geeks]
  • Amazon Kindle tablets, eReaders launch in China
    You may have heard of China. It’s kind of a big place… with a huge population and a rapidly growing economy. An awful lot of the gadgets we use come from there — and now Amazon is giving back. [Engadget]
  • Chrome OS could get screen capture/screencast API
    Sure, you can already take screenshots in Chrome OS — but what if you want to record video of your screen or capture the contents of an invidual window. It looks like the developers are working on support for that. [François Beaufort]
  • UDOO Linux/Android/Arduino computer nears the finish line, raises more than $600k in crowd-funding
    The Udoo is a tiny computer that combines some of the best features of an Arduino device and a single-board computer like the Raspberry Pi. It has a Freescale i.MX6 quad-core processor, support for Arduino shiels, and runs Android and Linux. The  team behind the project wanted to raise $27,000. With less than a day to go in their crowd-funding campaign, they’ve surpassed $600,000. [Kickstarter]

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