Android, as an operating system, is fairly unique in that it makes users aware of the permissions available to apps in a fairly transparent way. Compared to Blackberry or iOS, which issue granular prompts such as “Can Angry Birds access your location?” or “Can Instagram access your camera to take photos?” There is a somewhat subtle difference here: The rivals give the user a choice about these requests.
Jump over to Android where, after installing an app, it has free reign to use every permission you agreed to. While this doesn’t sound an issue, let’s take a look at the . . . READ ON »
Everyone loves a good competition; there’s no denying it. Generally, we don’t just give away devices for the sake of giving them away. Sure it drives traffic, but that traffic usually ends up going away until the next giveaway. Wash. Rinse. Repeat. We would rather showcase the amazing work done by the developers on XDA and let that drive traffic than to try and drive traffic by giveaway. However, when given an opportunity to give away something that promotes development, we are all in. This is just such an example.
As promised, the first in our series of “Say Sayonara to Google” articles is about the Play Store. Love it or loathe it, the Play Store is popular. It is so popular, in fact, that it is often berated for the poor quality of apps contained within. While Google is making strides to improve this via their Bouncer malware screening platform, at the end of the day, the Play Store is built on fairly shaky security grounds.
The first security issue with the Play Store is that of remote control. Imagine someone told you the . . . READ ON »
What is freedom? This is a big question being asked by people around the world over the past few years. Many of us believe (and often rightly so) that we are fairly free. Arguably, this is correct in many countries throughout the world. You have political freedoms and many many more. But do you have electronic freedom?
For almost everyone reading this article, it is likely you have a Google Account. This means you have a Gmail account. It’s tied deeply into Android via the Google Apps package of proprietary applications (they are not open sourced, unlike the core Android . . . READ ON »
For most of us, Google I/O is probably beginning to feel like a distant memory—perhaps less so for those lucky enough to be browsing on your shiny new Chromebook Pixels. We’re all aware by now of the big stories from this years conference, but among all that was something that was of great interest to us here on the Portal, which you might not have noticed.
With all of the (often pointless) sound “tweaks” out there, it’s easy to forget that the true sonic upgrades will almost invariably come from output hardware rather than software. And while some software tweaks do actually make a marked improvement on sound quality without sabotaging clarity and neutrality (Elite Recognized Developer Supercurio‘s Voodoo Sound and the HRTF functionality in DSPManager come to mind), much of the software tweaks are are just glorified bass-heavy equalizers (*cough*Beats*cough*) that would make any true audiophile cringe.
So, what does this mean? Simple. It means that if you’re looking to improve the . . . READ ON »
If there’s one thing that Sony Mobile has done over the past year to change its image, that’s been to support the independent Android developer community. From open-sourcing DASH to releasing an ALPHA build of Jelly Bean with the kernel source to contributing to AOSP projects, Sony has signaled that they are a company that embraces open source and (by extension) the community as a whole. If you haven’t already, you should really check out their Developer World site where you’ll find tutorials, source code, and all sorts of interesting announcements.
Due to their contributions, it comes as . . . READ ON »
After our earlier article warning users to uninstall the Sky apps from their devices, it’s time to take a look at the technical significance of this attack. Firstly, the attackers have managed to do two key things here, each of which should each be impossibly difficult for the Play Store update system to be secure:
The former is obviously . . . READ ON »
This is entry number one in a series of articles about tools for app developers, today focusing on app analytics. The goal of these articles is to spur conversation in our new app development forums, so go there and contribute your experiences.
I was on a plane last week, sitting next to a 15-year-old Japanese girl. I was about to pull out my GS3 to play some CCS (Candy Crush Saga for the uninitiated) when I looked to my right and noticed that she was doing the same. A tad embarrassed that I was playing the same game as . . . READ ON »
In a crowded, standing-room Google I/O 2013 kicked off with the Keynote. Google’s SVP Vic Gundotra welcomed the 6,000 in attendance as well as the 40,000+ in attendance worldwide at the viewing parties, and the 1,000,000 watching on YouTube. He then turned it over to Google’s new SVP in charge of Android, Chrome & Apps, Sundar Pichai. Sundar talked about us being at one of the most innovative phases of computing, with us seeing people around the world increasingly using different computing devices, as well as two large fast growing, scalable platforms in Android and Chrome.
He touched base on . . . READ ON »
One of the many joys of Android is the freedom of choice. This freedom manifests itself in various ways, from being able to choose your email client, media player, and camera apps, all the way to being able to choose an alternative keyboard. Not that there’s anything wrong with the stock keyboard, especially after the sliding gesture support added in Jelly Bean, but some prefer to sample other available options. One such option is TouchPal Keyboard.
Launching as an exclusive beta on the XDA forums, TouchPal Wave is the next generation of TouchPal. What makes it unique? For starters, the . . . READ ON »
Every so often, an OEM will do things right. Well, nearly right anyway—right enough at least for their stock ROMS to only need some minor tweaks before they are almost perfect. More often than not though, these tweaks are things that can be tricky to implement for the average user—a user who will often find himself looking to install a custom ROM that is pretty close to stock with these desired tweaks added in. Usually that means downloading a pretty large file and then following the obligatory backup/flash/restore process that many of us now have down to a fine art. . . . READ ON »
I have been a News Writer (among many other things) on XDA-Developers for a little over 3 years and have written well over 1,000 articles. I have covered topics ranging from themes and icon packs, development news, and even some more intricate stories, which have had a much greater reach than I would have thought. I have ranted against carriers, manufacturers, governments, individual companies, and many more. However, even with all that said, I have not yet once wanted to drive my fist through my screen as much as I did when I read this. I have seen dumb, . . . READ ON »