March 28, 2014 By: Tomek Kondrat
For the few reading this who are unaware, a system-on-a-chip (or simply SoC) is an unit that combines various hardware components into single chip. Some SoCs have better support and documentation than the others (Qualcomm for example), while Exynos or NovaThor are a world of hurt for developers. ST-Ericsson’s NovaThor has been giving developers quite a few headaches when creating usable custom ROMs, but a group of developers managed to find the solution for all these problems.
For a long time, these sources were closed. Now, the NovaFusion team (which includes XDA Senior Members New Macław and marcin1147) decided to go open source and push their fixes to GitHub. This type of action is always encouraged on XDA, as we are all here to learn and share.
With these fixes, CyanogenMod and other custom ROMs for Xperia P, U, Sola, Go and many more devices featuring the NovaThor SoC will be attainable. The move taken by NovaFusion team will open up new possibilities in ROM development to these devices and strengthen the community spirit in the forums.
March 27, 2014 By: Tomek Kondrat
It’s a sunny, warm day. You are walking in the park, looking at your lovely surroundings. Suddenly, you get distracted and your phone falls down onto the concrete—seemingly in slow motion. All you hear is a loud crack, and the worst-case scenario comes true: Your phone has a cracked screen. I imagine that many of you have undergone such trauma.
In such a situation, many would be tempted to purchase a new device. But selling your existing phone in such a condition would be difficult, so why not repair it yourself? If you don’t know how, you are in the right place. XDA Senior Member hamsteyr described the process of replacing a broken screen broken phone with a simple tools.
Admittedly, the process is not the easiest you can run across browsing our forum. But with a bit of practice, you can replace the screen on your own. The step-by-step guide is full of pictures, so you can see with your own eyes how this should look. After some time and a lot of patience, your phone will be like new and you will be able to back to enjoying your device.
If your phone recently kissed the concrete and your screen is now cracked, you should visit the guide thread to fix it on your own. We can only wish you the best of luck.
March 27, 2014 By: Jimmy McGee
If you want to get updates about your friends or want your friends to know what you are up to, or if you simply want to share lame current affairs jokes, the best place to do this is on a social network. But sometimes, you want to share across all of them at the same times–and you want an Android app to do that. Well there is a solution out there.
XDA Senior Member anandbibek offers up an application that shares a post across all of your social networks. In this video, XDA Developer TV Producer TK reviews Shareboard. TK shows off the application and gives his thoughts, so check out this app review.
March 27, 2014 By: Tomek Kondrat
“What’s the time?” You probably ask yourself this question countless times during the day. One second later, you’re probably checking the time on your smartphone. However, the system clock in the status bar can’t be modified to much without digging into source code of SystemUI.apk.
Most things in Android can be modified without touching code. This is all thanks to XDA Recognized Developer rovo89 and Recognized Contributor Tungstwenty, who created amazing Xposed Framework. With this tool, even stock ROMs can be made usable and freed from inconveniences. The same applies to the status bar clock, which color can be changed automatically when a device is connected to Internet, thanks to XDA Forum Member stanbel and his Xposed module.
With this module, you will no longer require some pesky arrows showing whether the connection is established or not. If your phone has an access to the Web, the clock becomes green. If not, it is black. The module should work like a charm with all devices running Jelly Bean and KitKat. Since it’s a module, it requires your device to be rooted and you need to have Xposed Framework installed.
You can learn more about the module and get the APK by visiting the original thread. If you want to make your status bar clock a bit unique, make your way there to give it a shot.
March 27, 2014 By: Tomek Kondrat
The importance of an aftermarket recovery is undeniable. These amazing tools make various tasks easy, and allow users to flash various modifications, as well as create Nandroid backups that save us when we get the bootloop blues. Recoveries are also needed to easily flash a ROM. Because of this, you can pretty much find one or more custom recovery for every device with a forum here.
The most popular recoveries around are ClockworkMod Recovery, PhilZ Recovery, and Team Win Recovery Project. TWRP was recently ported to NovaThor SoC Sony Xperias: P, U, Go and Sola. The user responsible for the porting is XDA Senior Member NoobCoder.
The recovery is distributed in a rather interesting way, as a script splits the boot.img, extracts the ramdisk, adds the recovery, re-packs the ramdisk, and creates a new boot.img. Because of this, it can be used with every kernel available. Of course, the recovery might be also used on locked bootloader devices, but that requires some skills and various modifications to system files.
[Big thanks to XDA Senior Member cpkunki for the tip!]
March 26, 2014 By: Tomek Kondrat
Sony loves to add various social applications to their device firmwares. In 2010, they added Timescape, which integrates messages with Facebook, Twitter, and other social networks. Four years later, they still believe that social networks are the best way to keep their customers connected—and they’re likely right. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and many other similar services are dominating the Web.
A new version of Sony’s social application Sociallife is available on the Xperia Z2′s firmware. Having this new flagship is not a requirement though, as XDA Senior Member xperiaz2 modded the original Socialife application to work without issues on other Sony devices even with Ice Cream Sandwich installed. Your firmware version won’t stop you from keeping in close contact with your family and friends, and Socialife will inform them about your current status. The ported app should work with all Xperia phones running stock or stock-based software.
You can grab the application and discuss it in the original thread in Cross-Device Development Projects for Sony Devices forum. If you like social networks, go there and don’t forget to share this article on your wall.
March 26, 2014 By: Tomek Kondrat
While reviewing Android’s code, you may find some small annoyances here and there. One of the most absurd is a delay that prevents you from starting activities after pressing the home button from any other activity than the launcher’s. This was perhaps useful when phones featured very little RAM, but now devices are powerful and Android is considerably better optimized.
Five seconds makes for a very long delay, which doesn’t really fit to a modern operating system. Lucky, there’s Xposed Framework and developers who make modules. Thanks to an Xposed module by XDA Forum Moderator GermainZ, you can get rid of the delay really easy.
Module installation is very easy, and requires you to activate the module in Xposed Installer and reboot. It should work flawlessly on Android 2.3 and greater. Hopefully, Google’s Android developers will notice that some things are better when they’re simple, and rectify this in an upcoming release like the rumored 4.4.3 mentioned last week.
You can find the module by vising the module thread or grabbing it directly from the Xposed Modules database.
March 26, 2014 By: Jimmy McGee
In this episode, XDA Developer TV Producer TK shows you how to root your Samsung Galaxy Gear. The Galaxy Gear and smartwatches in general are hot news in the Android ecosystem. The Galaxy Gear is the device responsible for mainstreaming smartwatches. And as usual at XDA, we must root all the things, and our buddy the Galaxy Gear is no exception!
TK presents step-by-step instructions on how to gain root access on your Galaxy Gear using tools from the XDA Developers Forums. First, TK shows you how to gain root access using XDA Forum Member photonicgeek’s guide. Then, he installs the Xposed framework, GravityBox and other modules. If you wanted to root your Galaxy Gear, take a moment and check this video out.
March 25, 2014 By: Tomek Kondrat
The Sony Xperia Z2 is a flagship device that many end users and developers have been waiting for. A powerful CPU and many unique features make it one of the most interesting phones of the first half of 2014. The device will be soon available to buy in many countries and its development community surely will flourish like previous “Z” devices.
Developers working with Sony devices will be happy to know that a few days ago the GPL-mandated open source files were released for these devices. (Yes, that GPL. *cough* Micromax and MediaTek *cough*.) And thanks to the release, developers such as the FXP group will be able to release unofficial kernels and recoveries soon.
March 25, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
While the iterative Samsung Galaxy S 5 didn’t exactly set the world on fire with its hardware upgrades over last year’s already great Galaxy S 4, many were quick to express their regard for the new device’s software features. And while the vast majority of users will never use all of the goodies baked into Samsung’s TouchWiz and related apps without actively going out of their way to do so, the point is that these features are there.
Rather than wait for the S5′s release and upgrade to a whole new device, wouldn’t it be nice to bring some of its software features to older devices? The fine folks over at Sammobile recently got their hands on a firmware package for the S5. The package comes in at version G9009DKEU1ANCC, and it packs Android 4.4.2 layered with all of Samsung’s interface tweaks.
Not too long after the firmware release, XDA Senior Member Pako7 was quick to extract a system dump for the stock firmware, as well as give some additional hardware details to those looking to start porting. Finally, XDA Recognized Contributor friedrich420 has gone ahead and deodexed the ROM for derivative development purposes.
Obviously the system dump is of absolutely no use for end users. However, it’s a great resource for someone looking to port a few apps or the entire ROM from the Galaxy S 5 to other devices. To get started, head over to the original thread.
[Many thanks once again to XDA Portal Supporter Titokhan for the tip and to Wuby986 for the heads up on the Deodexed ROM!]
March 25, 2014 By: jerdog
When people typically think about XDA they think custom ROMs, kernels, and themes–and these three bring a lot to XDA. What people sometimes forget is that mobile applications also contribute to XDA, with Android Apps and Games being one of our largest sections. Last year, we created the App Development Forums so that those interested in learning about, discussing, and collaborating on app development would have a central place.
One of the ways we also look to encourage mobile development is through our support of developer resources. We even went so far as to create our own xda:devcon last year. It is to that end that we are announcing our support for the Mobile Midwest Conference coming to Kansas City, MO on April 23, 2014.
Mobile Midwest: Connecting the Future will discuss how mobile is creating new opportunities in the economy and altering every facet of life. It will also explore how developers and companies can leverage “Mobile First” to create new opportunities for themselves and their company. Attendees will hear about the latest trends and discover insights from innovators who are all solving different types of problems in the industry (mobile security, mobile health, mobile payments, mobile AI, etc).
The lineup of speakers includes Silicon Valley founders & executives recognized by Time, Forbes & Inc:
Join 400+ developers in Kansas City with a full day pass for only $299. Be one of the first 5 registrants to use promo code xdadev to save 30%!
Photo credit: Westside Studio
Mobile Midwest is a production of Kansas City IT Professionals (KCITP), a tech community of 12,000 developers, IT executives & professionals. They also do events like Compute Midwest, a conference as seen in Forbes, Fast Company, The Huffington Post & The Next Web. In addition to events, they focus on education with The Disruption Institute, a mobile developer boot camp.
March 25, 2014 By: Jimmy McGee
Gestures are everything. Controlling your device with simple swipes and swoops will save you time. You no longer have to search in your cluttered app drawer to find your favorite apps. Now, you can just two finger swipe left to open your Chrome browser. But how to you get these swipes programmed? Maybe an Xposed Module will help.
In this episode of XDA Xposed Tuesday, XDA Developer TV Producer TK reviews an Xposed Module that allows you to launch your favorite apps from with Gestures. XDA Senior Member FemBlack created the Gesture Navigation Xposed Module. TK shows off the module and gives his thoughts, so check out this Xposed Tuesday video.
When beginning the journey with Android, many surely dream about making a great applications like our (Recognized) Developers do. Writing an application is not easy, and requires vast knowledge of Java and understanding of various APIs. It’s a long road with hoops that you must jump through.
Imagine not having to enter hundreds lines of code to create your very own application. Sounds promising? It surely does, especially when a project allowing that exists. XDA Forum Member Rheti developed an application that allows you to add custom app elements and get an APK as the final output.
The project is at a very early stage, and requires signing up for the beta. However, XDA users are highly welcomed and appreciated by developers, which are sending beta invites willingly. The project is an extremely interesting option for those looking to become amateur developers, and it may be good motivation to start learning Java and become a next famous application developer with millions of installs in Play Store. XDA University is a good place to start your journey with programming.
Information on Rheti and the contact form can be found in the original thread. What do you think of these sorts of tools? What’s your next big app idea? Share your thoughts in the comments.