Android is six years old now. One week ago, we presented the first part of the Android story. Now, it’s time to continue the journey.
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away—located in Mountain View, the first version of the operating system dedicated for tablets was born. Google called it 3. 0 Honeycomb and presented it alongside the Motorola Xoom.
November 18, 2013 By: Will Verduzco
The Motorola Xoom was a very important device. It was the first real Android tablet. Sure, the original Samsung Galaxy Tab predated the Xoom by some time, but shipping with Froyo meant that it often seemed like an overgrown smartphone rather than something fundamentally different.
As well specced and future proof as the Xoom was when it was first released, it has since started to show its age somewhat. The 1 GHz Tegra 2 isn’t as spritely as it once was, and the 1280×800 resolution no longer leaves viewers drooling. However, the majority of its Crow’s Feet stem not from its still competent dual-core CPU or 1 GB of RAM, but rather its stock partition layout. In fact, Motorola stated that there simply isn’t enough space on the device’s /system partition to house the more recent versions of Android.
While developers have managed to prolong the life of the device with Android updates far beyond the latest official updates from Motorola, this task has grown increasingly difficult as Android keeps evolving and growing larger. But since the device features a large total amount of memory, a repartition was in order. And now, XDA Recognized Developer bigrushdog and Senior Member realjumy (along with some help from Schischu and rchtk) were able to breathe new life into this device by creating BigPart.
Updating your device to the new partition layout is a fairly straightforward process. You must first load a new custom recovery. That recovery is then used to essentially perform a series of wipes and formats. And after all is said and done, your device will be repartitioned. It is important to note that once you change your partition layout, you must only flash ROMs that are compatible with the BigPart partition layout.
Make your way over to the original thread to learn more. Please do keep in mind that since you’re messing with the partition layout, this is more dangerous than your average flash. But if you are careful and follow the instructions, there’s nothing inherently difficult about this process.
December 7, 2012 By: Conan Troutman
There were a couple of reasons that many Motorola Xoom owners, myself included, were concerned we may not see Android 4.2 on our devices any time soon. First, Google decided to drop both the Xoom and Nexus S from the Android Open Source Project—effectively leaving them to live out their final days on Android 4.1, in official capacity at least. There were also concerns about the size of the /system partition. Obviously as the Android operating system evolves, ROMs become larger and begin to approach the limits of system space available on some older devices. All that is now irrelevant though thanks to those stalwarts of Xoom development, Team EOS.
EOS4 Nightlies are based on Android 4.2, and will hopefully, in time, bring the full 4.2 experience to the now somewhat aged Xoom. At the moment, there are still bugs to be ironed out, and some of the newer features are yet to be implemented. These are, after all, nightly builds. However given the track record of Team EOS, you can rest assured that things will only keep getting better. On the whole, things are looking good, but make sure to check the thread so you know what to expect. At the moment, these builds are only for the WiFi only Xoom, the Wingray.
Check out the forum thread for more information.
The Motorola Xoom is a marvelous device. Being the first Honeycomb tablet and the lead device for an iteration of Android are great accomplishments. Poking fun at Apple in the Xoom’s Super Bowl ad is an even better accomplishment. Just because the Xoom is “only” dual-core and reaching its second birthday (way past retirement age in the mobile device world) doesn’t mean it’s a legacy or forgotten device.
XDA Recognized Contributor and Wingray supporter extraordinaire stachre has released a stock build of Android 4.1.2 with root. This is a follow-up to his stock Android 4.1.1 with root thread, which was itself a follow up to his stock Android 4.0.4 with root thread, and so on. In fact stachre has released a stock ROM with root for every version since Android 3.1.
What are you waiting for? Go to his latest thread and get stock Android 4.1.2 with root installed on your Wingray Xoom. Reports in the thread says it works for the Stingray variant as well, so read the thread and find out if it will work for you.
Team EOS is an incredibly talented developer group that has brought AOSP goodness to a variety of devices. In the process, they have been featured on the Portal in the past. Now, the dev team has released their latest stable build, version 3, for 5 devices. These include the Motorola Xoom, the Nexus 7, and all three versions of the Galaxy Nexus.
While all builds were released by teameos, the Motorola Xoom version was posted by XDA Recognized Developer solarnz on behalf of the entire team. All 5 builds are, as they claim to be, stable and offer a very large number of features. These include:
Android 4.1.1 AOSP based.
Battery Indicator Mods
Status Bar Color
Navigation Bar Color
Softkeys Long-Press Actions
Navigation Bar Ring Quick Launch Targets
Android Rotation Lock
Hide System Bars
Volume keys switch depending on rotation. So the volume up key is always either on the top or to the right of volume down. (Toggle-able)
Default Volume Control Stream
Advanced power menu with reboot options.
Hiding the status bars via the power menu
Additionally, there are a number of under-the-hood tweaks that help make the ROMs lag less and function better. To learn more, check out one of the thread links below:
There is no doubt that the Nexus 7 is one of the current flagship Android tablets. It’s not the biggest, but it’s a solid, stable device for a great price—and it has great specs as well. However, not everyone can afford to upgrade their tablets, and must stay with what they have. That doesn’t mean that Motorola Xoom owners can’t enjoy some of the feel of the Nexus 7.
XDA Senior Member emofishcake has released a mod that will give the Motorola Xoom many of the elements of the Nexus 7 UI. Currently, the mod includes:
framework.apk for specific device/rom combos (to be pushed to system)
StatBar (same dpi as Navbar symmetrical)
CWM flashable ZIP
use the ZIP to change DPI also
So while it isn’t a major overhaul, it gives you the basic accents to make your Xoom more Nexus 7-like. For now, this is only compatible with the Wingray (WiFi-only) variant of the Xoom, and it has to be running either TeamEOS nightlies, CodenameAndroid, or CM10 nightlies. Support for the other versions and more ROMs is promised in future updates. Additionally, emofishcake is taking feature requests from users to help make the Nexus 7 mod include even more lookalike goodness.
If this is something you’d like to try out, check out the original thread.
September 16, 2012 By: Conan Troutman
It’s time for another CM10 for [insert device here] post. This however is not just any old device. It’s the Motorola Xoom, the Honeycomb lead device—a tablet that’s stood the test of time. It also happens to be this author’s tablet of choice, which is why I’m pretty excited. A highly optimized and tweaked build of Android 4.1 has been available for the Xoom (WiFi Wingray, 3G Everest, 4G Stingray) for a while now thanks to the fantastic work of TeamEOS. However, more options is never a bad thing, and many users have grown to love CyanogenMod.
XDA Recognized Developer Steady Hawkin broke the news of official CM10 nightlies for both the Winray & Stingray versions. All the usual nightly build rules apply, so don’t submit bug reports without a logcat to back it up. Up until the most recent nightly there were some issues with sensors, and some people are reporting that their system partition is quickly maxed out. However there are workarounds for these issues, and for the most part the builds seem to be pretty stable.
Check out the original nightly release thread for more info, change logs, and the all-important download links.
Motorola and their locked bootloaders have been a topic of discussion here on the XDA Portal on multiple occasions. They have locked down all of their newest devices, and have even released updates to lock down the older ones. This has caused a lot of backlash from members here on XDA, especially since Motorola was acquired by Google not too long ago. This caused speculation as to whether Motorola would take the open source values of their parent company, and if so, when this would happen. It seems as if this may be starting to happen now.
Motorola has released the first version of their bootloader unlocker tool. It has a lot in common with HTCDev. Users will need the Android SDK and the Motorola drivers. Then, it’s a matter of signing in to the MotoDev website, submitting your Device ID, obtaining an unlock token, and unlocking that bootloader. This is great news, as there are many Motorola users who have been waiting to have their devices unlocked.
Of course, with the good there comes the bad. It is not yet compatible with many devices. The first release supports the Developer version of the Droid RAZR, the Verizon and WiFi Xoom, and the Motorola Photon Q on Sprint. That’s it. However, those with other Motorola devices should not be disappointed, as this is the first step toward Motorola revising their bootloader policy.
July 31, 2012 By: Former Writer
Recently, the Motorola Xoom joined the exclusive list of devices that have gotten an official taste of Google’s latest and greatest. With that, the Motorola Xoom joins the Nexus 7 as the only two tablets with official Jelly Bean updates. Now, users can upgrade to official Jelly Bean without losing root, recovery, or their unlocked bootloaders.
XDA Recognized Contributor stachre, who is no stranger to this process, has posted a repackaged update that will keep the Xoom rooted with the bootloader unlocked and custom recovery. Currently, there are other options for Jelly Bean custom ROMs, but they all involve a bunch of modifications. This is just the update repackaged to include the bare essentials.
The process to install is pretty easy, as it’s basically just like installing any other ROM. Users will download the repackaged update, reboot into custom recovery, create a backup, wipe everything, and flash the ROM. This will also install the new bootloader, which will come unlocked, so users will get a message congratulating them on updating the bootloader. Thus far the only real troubleshooting issue is that some users get stuck on the Motorola splash screen after the update. Performing a factory reset in recovery fixes this most of the time and restoring a Nandroid backup should take care of it if that doesn’t work.
For more details, check out the original thread.
Google is currently in the process of rolling out Android 4.1.1 Jelly Bean to various Google Experience Devices. It has already been made available for the Galaxy Nexus, and later the Nexus S. The update is now heading towards the US WiFi version of Motorola Xoom (Wingray). If you own the first Google-supported Android tablet and want to get Jelly Bean up and running on it, wait no more!
While you can wait for your table to receive the update, many prefer to install the update manually. To manually install the update, you must currently be running the official Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich IMM76 firmware, as the OTA is an incremental update. That said, pre-rooted full ROM packages should start appearing soon in the Motorola Xoom forum.
You must have a USB host cable in order to flash the update manually. This is because the file has to be renamed to update.zip, placed on a USB stick or (or memory card inserted into a USB card reader), connected to the device via the USB host cable, and flashed from the stock recovery.
Update: There is another, much larger thread that was posted earlier and has more active discussion going on about the update so you might want to check it out if you run into any problems.
July 11, 2012 By: Former Writer
Since the Jelly Bean source code was released, developers have been head-over-heels trying to get Jelly Bean on their devices. The first releases will most likely be for devices running the pure Google experience. As the Motorola Xoom happens to be one of those devices, it’s no surprise the tablet was among the first to receive the goods.
Development team teameos has begun pumping out AOSP-built Jelly Bean nightly builds for the Motorola Xoom WiFi and 4G editions—also known as the Wingray and Stingray, respectively. Because they’re nightlies, teameos doesn’t provide a clear list of the features currently working. However, they do provide a change log of what they changed from day to day, so users can at least see what’s been fixed or what still needs fixed.
Depending on the changes the developers made that day, the performance and stability can change drastically from release to release. As some changes can be unstable and some can be stable, teameos gives the customary warning that a particular release may be less stable than an older release. Despite that, user reports have been overwhelmingly positive.
[Thanks to XDA Portal Admin willverduzco for the image!]
March 18, 2012 By: Ian Stacy
A common method for delivering mods from devs to users the use of scripts, which are a set of instructions for an OS to run. Writing a script for Windows or Linux can simplify the root procedure for a device, quickly apply patches and modifications, and in general, make life easier for the end user. Often packaged as ‘one-click’ solutions, a well developed script can make even the most difficult operations manageable.
XDA Forum Member epic118 has created a program that allows the use of these one-click modifications to any device. This is accomplished through ‘toolkits’ that power users and developers alike can create and use. The toolkits currently available include the Samsung Galaxy Ace S5830, Motorola Xoom, and a universal toolkit with proprietary functions for all devices.
The number of modifications and tweaks available in these initial toolkits is impressive. Some of the features already available include enabling root access and bootloader lock and unlock for the Motorola Xoom, flashing ClockworkMod Recovery for the Samsung Galaxy Ace, and standard ADB functions like pushing/pulling of files, remounting the file system as r/w, and rebooting into fastboot or recovery for all devices.
February 15, 2012 By: Former Writer
Tools are useful, that is why we have them. It is in the nature of humanity that our tools evolve with our needs for them, and while some tools deliver everything we want and more, some tools bring features to the table that are just plain cool.
Such is the case with an AIO (All-In-One) tool that users of the Motorola Xoom can now use called Lord AIO Tool. XDA Senior Member XxLordxX has devised a script that offers a plethora of features for Xoom owners, including:
1.Complete Backup Tool
2.Bootloader Unlocker Tool
3.Bootloader Locker Tool
9.Unbrick Xoom Tool
10.Dual Recovery Tool (Testing stage now!)
The newest feature, the Dual Recovery, as you can see is still in beta testing at this time, but promises to be among the cooler features of Motorola Xoom tools. The process for using the tool is pretty easy, but they are .bat files so unless you know how to convert them to .sh files, the only OS this is compatible with right now is Windows. Otherwise, just grab the file, place it in the proper directory and run the .bat file to start using. Of course, it is recommended that everyone make a backup before attempting anything, just in case something goes wrong.
For more information, download links, change logs, shout outs and features, you can find everything you need in the original thread.