It doesn’t matter what carrier someone uses, there is always the possibility of ending up somewhere where there is no signal and no roaming. In times like those, it is not comforting knowing that your only source for navigation requires a data connection of some sort.
Well, XDA Senior Member .xxx. has written a method that allows people to download maps off the web and store them on your Android device so you can access an atlas in case of emergencies or lack of data signal.
The process is pretty straightforward and completely free and just requires a little patience as it requires creating an atlas, rooting around on your sd card and placing files in specific places. .xxx. also has a method for Google Maps users where they can Precache a map in the labs menu. However, the drawback is that the precache map is only good for up to ten miles around the selected area. So if you need a wider range than that, it’s recommended that the first method be followed.
If an offline atlas is something you’d like to have, and it’s recommended if you intend on traveling to the boonies anytime soon, then you can find the method and information in the thread along with a list of apps that support user defined maps.
Of all the apps that Google has launched over the years the only one I use on a consistent basis is Sky Map. It was sad to learn that Google has opted to end major development of Sky Map, but the good news is that the app will go open source.
That means rather than simply dying off, at least Android geeks and other developers will have the chance to pitch in and keep the updates coming. If you have never used Sky Map, it’s an application that makes possible to see what´s in the stars, if you look up at the night sky and wonder what that bright object is this app will tell you.
Google is working with Carnegie Melon University, and students there will be directly continuing the development of the app. The giant has also open-sourced the app so that other astronomy enthusiasts can take the code and augment it as they wish.
Is this application useful to you or your kids? Please let us know your opinion below.
January 16, 2012 By: Former Writer
CyanogenMod is, at least statistically speaking, one of the most-used aftermarket ROMs of all time and has recently breached an impressive milestone of 1 million active users.
There are inherent things that come with having that many unique users. As XDA-Developers Recognized Developer, and CyanogenMod Team Recovery Guru, Koush has posted on his Google+:
As the project grows, so do our server requirements, hardware requirements, etc.
So, while kicking some ideas around camp, a really cool idea came up: a proprietary CyanogenMod App Store. It’s an easy concept; developers upload their apps to the proprietary store and the CM Team takes a small cut to help pay for server and hardware maintenance. Of course, this is not to be any regular app store and would be targeted for specific niches. As Koush explains:
Apps removed from the Market includes, one click root apps, emulators, tether apps, Visual Voicemail apps, and more. These are all completely legal (Nintendo emulators are fine, ROMs are NOT, there is a distinction).
So, developers would have another app store to upload their apps to and those with pulled apps could possibly give them a second chance at life. Based on threads like this one, a place like that for pulled apps is something some people would definitely love to see.
How do you feel about this? Is this a way to unify apps that are stricken from the Android Market by Google, or just a bad plan in general? Sound off in the comments!
January 16, 2012 By: Former Writer
Google+ Huddle is one of the best messaging apps out there. It links directly to your Google+ and adding people to a group Messenger is as easy as inviting someone in your circles. There is one hole in an otherwise perfect program, though, as XDA Senior Member AbsolutZeroGI says:
One massive, gaping problem, though, is no desktop client. Instead of trying to talk everyone I know into using Skype, IRC or other ways of talking to mass people on a desktop, it was decided that Menssenger must be ported to be used on a desktop. It was the only logical conclusion.
So AbsolutZeroGI and XDA Recognized Developer shabbypenguin, both of the Android Creative Syndicate, created an easy method for the average user to free Google+ Messenger from its mobile confines and bring to the computer screen.
The process is pretty simple. It involves downloading and installing Virtual Box, then importing a Virtual Hard Disk (known as a VHD) into it that has Android Froyo pre-loaded. A couple of settings tweaks and then it’s off to the races. There are a few known issues, but they mostly consist of the sound not working and getting notifications in the emulator that a certain app isn’t working properly. This, however, does not affect the functionality of Google+ Messenger.
For additional information, download links, screen shots and even some pro tips, you can check out the original thread.
How many carriers does it take to screw up a lightbulb? One, if the lightbulb represents a good idea, but the other carriers are certain to join in, anyway. Google’s Nexus family is that good idea.
According to 9to5Google, Verizon will block Google Wallet on the Samsung Galaxy Nexus in favor of its own product, Isis–a competing payment app, collaboratively created with AT&T and T-Mobile. Google Wallet won’t come installed on the Android Market on Verizon. (But note, Verizon said they are not blocking Google Wallet. It’s simply “not supported.” On Google’s own phone.) To repeat myself, the latest Nexus phone, Google’s yearly zenith of innovation, will sport bloatware.
Amidst the tidal stench of phones crusted over with all the crap carriers and manufacturers stick on them, the Nexus line is a fresh, relieving breeze. Or was. I don’t know what Google was thinking, agreeing to smudge their own idealism and the Nexus’ purity. In fact, I don’t know what Verizon was thinking. There will be other phones. Plenty of them. It won’t be long until those phones out-perform the Galaxy Nexus. Why this phone? Why right now?
It takes a special sort of consumer to buy a Nexus. These people are looking specifically for the Google experience. They want pure, unadulterated Android. I don’t care whether Google Wallet sucks. It’s part of the Google experience. I don’t care if your alternative is way better. It’s not part of the Google experience. So, for this special sort of consumer, where’s the incentive to buy the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, now?
While I doubt this will be a huge factor in sales, I think Verizon is shooting itself in the lower extremities. Let’s hope that AT&T and T-Mobile, the other founders of Isis, aren’t so self-absorbed and impatient that they completely ignore the whole point of the Nexus family. Stay tuned for the fourth Nexus phone in 2012, where Google makes sure the Nexus brand is absolutely meaningless, featuring Android Jellybean, a trial version of Asphalt 7 and locked bootloader.
Please let us know how you feel in the comments.
December 1, 2011 By: Russell Holly
There isn’t a sadder story in the mobile world than that of WebOS. It had such potential as a platform. Multitasking was pretty good, the modders and hackers really took a liking to how much you could play with it, and it really seemed like it had a pretty bright future ahead of it. Unfortunately, it suffered from a sever case of really awful hardware. With the exception of the Touchpad (which has a forum on XDA), which was sadly too late to save the platform, all of the hardware that ran WebOS was inadequate. Having already suffered the blow of being sold to HP, the platform seemed like it was on its was out after the TouchPad failed. With the livelihood of over 600 employees, not to mention my desire to have a fourth contender in the smartphone fight hanging in the balance, there’s been quite a bit of pressure to know what the next step is for WebOS. According to a recent interview with the new CEO of HP, Meg Whitman, we’re only two short weeks away from knowing for sure.
According to an interview in Le Figaro, Whitman plans to announce their decision regarding the wayward platform in two weeks. She was recently quoted saying that HP currently “didn’t know what kind of company it was” and that they were still figuring that out. Since her arrival as CEO, Whitman has already recanted the decision to spin off the computer side of HP’s business, so who is to say that the same won’t happen to WebOS? Plus, there’s the possibility that WebOS could be licensed out? The rumors have been gathering that Samsung and HTC might be looking for ways to escape the Android bootprint should Motorola and Google join forces, could HP be planning to just be the software delivery mechanism to WebOS? Right now it’s all speculation, but what is certain is that this decision in two weeks will do a great deal to shape the public opinion of Meg Whitman as CEO.
Oh, Meg Whitman, I wish I could say that I had any more faith in your ability to direct WebOS than I did from your predecessor. Seeing as how your job was to evict Mr. Apotheker from his former position as CEO and your complete and total lack of experience in either the PC industry or the Smartphone industry, my guess is you would like to make WebOS disappear. You know that dissolving a 600 employee strong department will seriously tarnish public opinion of you early on in your new career, and you know that as of right now WebOS has been nothing more than a tremendous expense to the company you are now tasked to run. So please, for your sake, have an actual plan in two weeks.