January 24, 2014 By: Jimmy McGee
Android 4.5, or the whatever next version of Android is, could break root app functionality! That and much more news is covered by Jordan, as he reviews all the important stories from this week. Included in this week’s news is the announcement that the Sony Xperia Z1 Compact has been rooted and the release of Paranoid Android 4.0 Beta 3! That’s not all that’s covered in today’s video!
Jordan talks about the other videos released this week on XDA Developer TV. XDA Developer TV Producer TK released an Xposed Tuesday video for SwypeBack, he compared the Omate TrueSmart smartwatch 2.0, the Samsung Galaxy Gear and the Pebble, and he gave us an Review of CyanogenMod on the Oppo N1. Pull up a chair and check out this video.
The KitKat-based Paranoid Android 4 has just entered beta 3, and with it come some pretty nifty additions to an already impressive portfolio of features. As announced and explained in a Google+ post, among the new additions are quick settings 3.0, the “on-the-spot” dialogue, immersive mode, and a new boot animation.
Users of PA 4 beta 3 will not take long to notice quick settings 3.0, which introduces dual tiles for select quick settings. Indicated by an icon in the top right hand corner with examples including WiFi, mobile data, and Bluetooth, users can flip the tile for more options. For instance, By flipping over the mobile data tile, you can also toggle between 2G and 3G data, a setting that normally would be another separate tile.
As for the “on-the-spot” dialogue, users will now be able to essentially ‘skip’ multiple layers of navigation, meaning you reach where you want to go quicker. As demonstrated in the video below, you can allow PA to automatically open up quick settings by swiping down from the right side of the status bar, rather than navigating to quick settings through the notification area. As of now, quick settings is the only function to have this “on-the-spot” feature, but more are soon to follow.
There is also a new boot animation in the third beta, as well as an improved immersive mode, which now allows you to hide either the navigation bar, the status bar, or both from the screen.
January 3, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
Not too long ago, we announced the creation of a dedicated forum for large-scale, multi-device custom ROMs. Originally, this forum was home to development and discussion surrounding OmniROM, PAC ROM, and Paranoid Android.
Now, we’ve gone ahead and expanded the forum to include two other important multi-device ROMs: SlimRoms and AOKP. As is the case with the previously created entries in the Custom ROM Central forum, this is where general discussion pertaining to these ROMs belongs, as well as Q&A about the projects themselves, and feature development to be incorporated into the ROMs themselves.
To get started, head over to Custom ROM Central, or visit the new sections directly by visiting the links below:
December 16, 2013 By: Will Verduzco
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve heard of Paranoid Android. We’ve covered some of the project’s new and innovative features here on the XDA Portal several times in the past, and we are very much a fan of how the team routinely thinks outside of the box with features such as Halo, Pie Controls, and more.
Earlier today, the Paranoid Android hosted an AMA over on Reddit. In the session, they covered many interesting topics ranging from their team name, their backgrounds, their goals, the modularity of Android, legacy support for devices such as the forgotten Galaxy Nexus, Cyanogen Inc, OTA delta updates, the future of Halo and PIE, and more.
Here are a few of the more notable interactions:
Naturally, we’ve left many interesting questions out, so we suggest that if you’re a fan of PA, you should grab a cup of coffee and sit down for the entire AMA. The entire AMA can be found over in the comment thread on Reddit.
[Many thanks to XDA Senior Member aeppacher for the tip!]
November 1, 2013 By: Will Verduzco
Ever since Google released the source code for Android 4.4 KitKat, we knew it wouldn’t be long before proper, source-built ROMs were made available for certain devices. And naturally, we all expected these initial builds to appear first on some of the current Nexus fleet. That is indeed the case, as there are now builds for the Google Nexus 4, Google Nexus 7 (2012), and the Google Nexus 7 (2013).
These builds all come courtesy of the Paranoid Android team, and are labeled “4.4r1 by AOSPA.” The Nexus 4 build comes courtesy of XDA Recognized Developer franciscofranco, the Nexus 7 (2012) build comes courtesy of XDA Senior Member EvanA, and the Nexus 7 (2013) comes courtesy of XDA Recognized Developer aaronpoweruser.
At this point, it is unclear what exactly works and what doesn’t work. However, we do know that Paranoid Android’s signature features have not yet been merged. Rather, this is just based on the source code that was released yesterday. And since this is such an early build and source was only released a day ago, we wouldn’t use these as daily drivers just yet. That said, it’s great to see such early source-built progress being made. Kudos to the Paranoid Android team. We can’t wait to see the ROM’s key features merged!
To get started, head over to the appropriate link below!
[Many thanks to EvanA and aaronpoweruser for the Flo link!]
With choice comes power, and with power comes responsibility. And in the world of custom ROM flashing, that responsibility means choosing the right ROM and kernel combination to fit your needs—well that, and making sure you read all of the instructions so that you don’t brick your expensive device.
We recently featured a simple, yet powerful Xposed module that brings many previously ROM-specific features to any ROM, as long as you have XDA Recognized Developer rovo89‘s Xposed Framework (thread) installed. However in certain circumstances, there’s no replacement for
displacement running the feature’s original ROM. And in these cases, it’s important to know about your available options.
To help new users determine which ROM they might want to try first, XDA Senior Member nimrodity created an intricate ROM database, which lists various features broken down into different categories and other specifics. Before users take this as canon, please note that there is a rather large issue preventing this from being an even more useful resource: The currently available list only examines recent builds of CyanogenMod, PACman, SlimBean, Carbon, and Revolt. Unfortunately, this means that other fantastic options such as AOKP, Paranoid Android, and Omni are nowhere to be found.
Head on over to the database thread to learn more. Despite the omissions listed above, this can be a great into primer for new users not yet sure about which option to try first.
[Thanks to benkxda for the tip!]
PIE Controls and HALO are two open source innovations created by the Paranoid Android team that are just unquestionably awesome. However, as awesome as they are, you may not want them enabled at all times. Enabling and disabling them only takes a few taps and not much effort, but it can be made even easier.
If you frequently enable and disable PIE and/or HALO, XDA Forum Member filipkowicz‘s latest app PA Shortcuts may be exactly what you need. The app allows you to toggle PIE mode (full screen), HALO, HALO hide, and HALO reverse control.
So how do you access these shortcuts? Simple. You can either drag the shortcuts to your desktop like standard apps. However, if your launcher supports gestures, the preferred way of accessing the shortcuts is to launch the shortcuts that way. As described by the developer:
Best way to use them is attach them to gestures in your launcher but you can place them on homescreen like any other shortcuts. Moreover app can create one fake “APP” which make the same thing as shortcuts but system treat it as regular APP so you can attach this APP to HALO with HALO))) app.
To get started, head over to the original thread.
June 25, 2013 By: Jimmy McGee
The much maligned Android development known as Facebook Home has gone the way of the dodo bird. However, the “chat heads” feature of Facebook Messenger is still favored in the Paranoid Android feature called Halo. Halo was intended to bring a new level of multitasking to Paranoid Android ROMs by allowing the user to receive notifications from apps and act on them from a floating or “windowed” version of the app in question.
In this video, XDA Developer TV Producer Kevin shows you how use floating notifications and multitasking your device. Kevin talks about Halo and some other options. What are you waiting for? Check out this video.
June 14, 2013 By: Jimmy McGee
Sony now allows you to install custom firmware on your Smartwatch device. That story and more are covered by Jordan, as he reviews all the important stories from this week. Included in this week’s news is an article about Daniel Nazer speaking at XDA:DevCon 2013 and news about the contest. Additionally, the Paranoid Android team has open sourced HALO.
Jordan talks about the other videos released this week on XDA Developer TV. XDA Developer TV Producer Kevin gave us video on USB On-The-Go, AdamOutler and friend shows us how to develop for the Google ADK, and TK does an App Review of Hi App Lock. Pull up a chair and check out this video.
We applaud new and interesting open source developments that look to find novel ways to solve a problem—things like the Xposed framework and OpenPDroid. It is these sort of projects that exemplify what open source is, and why we at XDA embrace it. It is also for that very same reason why we’re excited about a new open source project, HALO from the creators of the Paranoid Android ROM.
HALO, as previously discussed, brings notifications (conceptually derived from Facebook’s Chat Heads feature) from applications into a floating window and allows you to interact with that application. While this is similar to the Samsung Multi-window functionality, it differs in one key point: It is now open source! Any source-based ROM is able to make use of what the Paranoid Android team has done and bring this functionality to their users with minimal changes. From PA’s Google+ post, the developer of the ROM needs to look at these two commits:
HALO extends Android as it is based on the AOSP source, while also granting app developers the ability to bring the visual aspect to their application. Below is a nice overview of the project and if you like what you see, definitely head on over to the github commits and get involved.
May 6, 2013 By: Jimmy McGee
The official Google Play store is now available on the Nook HD. That story and more are covered by Kevin, as he reviews all the important stories from this week. Included in this week’s news is a discussion of the new Paranoid Android Halo and a custom kernel for the HTC One, which modifies its button’s function.
Kevin talks about the other videos released this week on XDA Developer TV. XDA Developer TV Producer Jayce talked about Code Katas and The Curse of Knowledge regarding App Development. Pull up a chair and check out this video.
May 5, 2013 By: Conan Troutman
Little more than a few days ago, there was word from the guys behind Paranoid Android that they were working on a new feature called Halo. Similar in form and function to the “chat heads” feature of Facebook Home, Halo was intended to bring a new level of multitasking to Paranoid Android ROMs by allowing the user to receive notifications from apps and act on them from a floating or “windowed” version of the app in question.
Despite still being at an early stage with a lot of development still to be done, the PA guys have clearly been hard at work over the past few days and decided to release some test builds featuring Halo for public consumption. This is by no means a final version and there will be bugs, some of which are mentioned in a recently posted FAQ for this new feature. There now seems to be a build available for most of the devices officially supported by PA, which now includes the Oppo Find 5. For those of you without an officially supported device, I doubt you will have to wait very long before this makes its way into many of the unofficial Paranoid Android ROMs that are out there.
All that remains now is to see how this functionality holds up in the long run, specifically in regard to playing havoc with Play Store apps, which may not take kindly to being manipulated in this way. There does not appear to be any sort of white list for completely compatible apps in place with Halo, and as to whether or not that results in the same challenges faced by the CyanogenMod after attempting to integrate Cornerstone remains to be seen. For the time being though, Halo seems to be very well received by PA fans.
These most recent builds can be downloaded from either the Google+ post linked above or from the relevant forum threads here on XDA which are linked below. Please note that there is currently no forum thread available for the Oppo Find 5.
Here at XDA, you’ve probably seen us talk about collaboration. The dictionary defines collaborating as “to work with another or others on a joint project.” We take collaboration seriously, so much so that we actually frown when we see members of the community not take it as seriously. What makes us even more upset is when manufacturers don’t take it seriously, though that rant is for another day.
There have been numerous instances of OEMs that have claimed to be “developer-friendly,” but whose actions spoke louder than their words. On the other hand, there are only a few instances of OEMs actually having their actions match their words, with one of those being Sony over the last 12-18 months and another being a relatively new entry to the Android world, Chinese manufacturer Oppo. If you recall we’ve spent some time discussing Oppo’s recent wins in the Android space, not the least of which is their GPLv2-required release of kernel source for the Find 5. On the surface this is not that noteworthy given it should already be done by default, however with Chinese manufacturers that is not a given. Given the negative track record of Chinese manufacturers adhering to licensing, Oppo is doing something extraordinarily rare by signaling a desire to position themselves in the Western market. Unlike other Chinese companies (Huawei comes to mind), Oppo is showing they have some understanding of, or are attempting to learn, what it takes to succeed.
As OEM Relations Manager for XDA, it is my job to contact OEMs and build a dialog with them. This usually starts with establishing a relationship where XDA, with its 5 million users and tremendous independent developers, and the respective OEM can begin to discuss ways to collaborate (there’s that word again) on win/win opportunities. Sometimes it is met with open arms, as has been the case with Oppo. When approached with the idea to work together with XDA in growing development, we immediately began to discuss ways to facilitate collaboration (!) to bring about a good relationship with the developer community. We also knew that in order to make any collaboration a win/win for both parties, there would have to be value for the OEM.
After those initial discussions, I spoke with some veteran CyanogenMod maintainers (and members of the now-defunct Team Hacksung) XDA Elite Recognized Developer Entropy512, and Recognized Developers XpLodWILD and nebkat, about their interest in taking on a new device and bringing CM to it. All three were definitely interested, and I began working together with them and Oppo to make it happen. After a few weeks, CM10.1 was brought to Nightly status by the team.
Oppo was ecstatic, and so recently I reached out to XDA Recognized Developers, and Paranoid Android developers, molesarecoming and aaronpoweruser, about their interest in such a project. As was expected, their answer was in the affirmative. And after just a few days, aaronpoweruser posted on G+ that he was close to having an alpha build of PA soon.
All of this hasn’t come easily though, given the state of Oppo’s kernel source. The kernel source that was released was not fully GPLv2 compliant as it was released late (though better than some other companies we could name), had different config files (debug worked, release didn’t), and the kernel source has not been updated even after they’ve made kernel updates on recent firmware updates. With all that being said, the teams have done a great job bringing their respective projects to where they are today. And with language and cultural barriers between our developers and theirs being what they are, Oppo does appear to be trying to overcome those issues.
We know you look forward to seeing the great things that are bound to come out of this collaboration. And to the other OEMs out there, take this as a suggestion: It doesn’t hurt to embrace the developer community, and only makes your stock rise in the eyes of that community. When that happens, the word will spread, and consumers (who incidentally are highly influenced by what members of that developer community have to say about your products) will follow with their currency. It’s a cycle which can, and should, be repeated. If you’re interested, contact me and XDA.