November 13, 2012 By: Haroon Q. Raja
Earlier today, we brought you news of the Andriod 4.2 OTA update for GSM/HSPA+ Galaxy Nexus in the US, and Android 4.2 factory images for Galaxy Nexus, Nexus 4, Nexus 7, and Nexus 10. While that’s enough to get end users excited, Google isn’t leaving ROM and app developers behind either. Android 4.2 Jelly Bean has been pushed to the Android Open Source Project, and the Android SDK has bee updated with 4.2 based API17.
News of the AOSP update was shared with us by XDA Forum Member dilwaala, and soon afterwards the SDK update followed. With the AOSP update, ROM developers can now incorporate the latest Android source code, meaning we should start seeing plenty of 4.2-based AOSP ROMs for a range of devices pretty soon. When it comes to the SDK update, it will allow app developers to utilize the latest APIs provided in Android 4.2 when developing their apps.
Last but not the least, Google has made the latest Android 4.2-based proprietary binaries available for Galaxy Nexus, Nexus 7, and Nexus 10. This means full hardware support for these devices in custom ROMs. For some reason, Nexus 4 has been entirely left out of AOSP for now, with no source or binaries published. According to AOSP Tech Lead JBQ, there’s no ETA on those yet either.
November 13, 2012 By: Haroon Q. Raja
The past few hours have been quite exciting for Nexus device owners. Earlier today, Google started rolling out the Android 4.2 Jelly Bean OTA to the Google Play variant of the GSM/HSPA+ Galaxy Nexus (takju). The OTA update file was shared with us by XDA Senior Member HAKA, along with installation instructions for all GSM/HSPA+ variants of Galaxy Nexus (yakju and yakjuxx). The method involves first installing the latest 4.1.2 takju factory image on non-takju devices, to be able to install the 4.2 update. However, there is no longer any need for that.
Hours ago, Google uploaded Android 4.2 factory images for not just the Galaxy Nexus, but also for Nexus 7 (both WiFi and GSM/HSPA+), Nexus 10, and Nexus 4. While an official yakju image for Galaxy Nexus is still not available, the takju factory images can directly be installed to any yakju or yakjuxx device.
In case the code names have your mind in a jumble, takju is the Galaxy Nexus variant sold by Google in the US Play Store, which comes with Google Wallet pre-installed. Yakju is the exact same device sold internationally by Google, but doesn’t ship with Google Wallet. Yakjuxx is the exact same device sold internationally by Samsung. Google directly updates takju and yakju, while yakjuxx devices are updated by Samsung.
You can download factory images for all these devices at the Android Developers Website.
It’s always fun to see AOSP-derived, source-built ROMs released for a variety of devices at once. Whether it’s for five devices or for 14 devices, large scale releases mean that if you upgrade, you may be able to run the same ROM you’re already familiar with.
Team Liquid has recently released RC7 of their AOSP ROM to seven devices. The last time we talked about them, it was their RC3 release. The devices that got the release include both versions of the Galaxy Nexus, the Nexus 7, and all versions of the Galaxy S III except for Verizon’s.
The ROM has undergone a variety of changes. Here are a few of the highlights along with the Team Liquid members responsible for each:
◘ Added Navbar widgets/Resizable Navar Widgets – Zaphod-Beeblebrox
◘ Custom navbar targets for tablets/Tabui – Stevespear426
◘ Addded group mms threading – viekvanasani
◘ UI overhaul including Lockscreen Shortcut Bugfixed and power widget fixes – Danesh
◘ Added special Paranoid Android Sauce – Credit Paranoid Android
◘ Added USB Mass torage support for tablet mode – DAGr8
◘ SystemUI-Fix menu button in landscape – Zaphod-Beeblebrox
◘ Fix H+ and add new navbar widget icon – kwes1020
◘ “Death by subtlety” aka updated holo pngs – ToxicThunder
◘ SystemUI: Recents Ram Bar – Stevespear426
◘ Security hole fix (prevent logging of lock pattern) – CM
◘ Added home button unlock option – invisibleK
◘ Bugfix for samsung usb dock events – StevenHarperUK
◘ Make toggles hidable – Stevespear426
◘ Add setting to allow haptic feedback on toggle press -gdanko
◘ COMPLETE SETTINGS LAYOUT/ICON OVERHAUL – ToxicThunder
◘ Added support for wired headset detection – Sudhir Sharma
◘ Fix for UI LockUP with headset insert/removal – Ravi Kumar Alamanda
◘ Show more info during boot dialog (i.e. “package _ of _ is being optimized”) – JbirdVegas
◘ Fix NFC Toggle not working if it was not on @ boot – sethyx
◘ Huge Liquid Splasher overhaul including strings/summaries, layouts – Liquid0624
◘ KT747 10/28 kernel and Ktweaker for D2xxx U.S. builds – Ktoonsez
◘ Leankernel 4.5.0 for toro, maguro – Imoseyon
◘ Leankernel 0.3 for grouper – Imoseyon
Check out the release threads by XDA Recognized Developer toxicthunder below:
October 31, 2012 By: Former Writer
Even though some devices may have similar resolution screens, they don’t always display the same information from the same applications. One notable example is the Google Calendar on the Nexus 7, which displays information in text view. The Samsung Galaxy Nexus, which has a similar screen resolution, displays information in small lines. To many, this is not the best way to view your Calendar info. Now, there is a way to make the Galaxy Nexus show up as it does on the Nexus 7.
The mod comes in the form of a custom recovery-flashable zip. There are some peculiarities though. For instance, if you’ve updated your Calendar recently via the Google Play Store, you have to uninstall the updates, or the mod won’t work. As XDA Senior Member shaftenberg explains:
If you have updated the calendar via market before, you have to uninstall this update before flashing, otherwise you will see nothing. Android prefers the .apk in RAM (/data/app) over any .apk in ROM (/system/app) – that is a pretty normal behaviour.
In addition, there is a second Market version that syncs your calendar up to a year. You’ll have to clear app data in both the Calendar and Calendar Provider to make it work right, but that’s no big deal.
For additional details, go to the original thread. While the mod was originally meant for the Galaxy Nexus, it’s highly likely that this will work on all devices with 720p screens running AOSP-derived Jelly Bean ROMs.
October 30, 2012 By: Former Writer
There are a boatload of lock screens out there. Seemingly every version of Android comes out with a new one or at least a modified version of an older one. Then there are the OEM lock screens found on TouchWiz and the HTC Sense. On top of that, there are a plethora of third party lock screens—most of which can emulate all of the aforementioned lock screens. Now, those running ICS and JB can mimic the Blackberry 10 lock screen.
It doesn’t have a lot of functionality, but it certainly looks nice. XDA Senior Member evilisto released the mod for the Galaxy Nexus, but says the patch should work on any ICS and JB AOSP ROM. ICS is currently untested, though.
If you have the Galaxy Nexus, there is a nice, easy flashable zip you can download that’ll get you the Blackberry 10 lock screen. Everyone else must apply the patch manually until flashable zips can be made. Thankfully, no one will be going at it blind, as evilisto has also released a simple guide to follow to get the patches installed. Once done, you’ll have what looks like the Blackberry 10 lock screen.
There are very few times when we can literally jump off our seats when we read something coming out of the US courts, especially as of late with all the unfairness that has been witnessed in the case(s) of a certain Cupertino company’s crusade against a comparatively lesser known Korean company. Well, while tides are not exactly changing their course, at least we can see that some sense of justice still prevails among certain individuals who handle a third of the country’s government. These particular kudos actually go to the Appeals Court, and the reason is for reversing the decision made back in July to place an injunction on top of Samsung/Google’s Galaxy Nexus device, thus blocking US imports altogether.
Here’s a little bit of background for those of you who were not aware of this issue. Among the constant barrage of lawsuits and complains that Apple bombarded the Court Circuits with, there was one that specifically targeted the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, which was being sold by Google in the Play Store (as well as a few carriers like Verizon). The patent being put in question was the patent known as ’604, and it essentially dealt with global search. Apple was claiming that the search feature on the Nexus was actually creating issues for them (sales wise) and hurting their numbers because it was too similar to Siri, which is included on the iPhone.
Now, we all know that there is nothing that ships stock on the GN that could remotely resemble Siri. Pre-Jelly Bean AOSP search does not come with that kind of functionality, period. Can it search for things on your phone or on the web? Absolutely. Can you talk to the pre-Jelly Bean GN and get a reply back (without 3rd party software)? No way. And even with Jelly Bean and Google Now, there are numerous qualitative difference between Google’s and Apple’s offerings. So, because of suddenly having realized that, the Appeals Court decided that while Siri was indeed a unique feature and that anything similar to it (infringing the aforementioned patent) could indeed be detrimental to the sales figures of the company, that this argument would ONLY be valid if the Android device in question actually did come loaded with such capability. Well, the truth of the matter is that it does not.
The case that was originally ruled over by the District Court that granted the original injunction essentially (if that decision was taken as a precedent) could open the doors for Apple to try and sue virtually any handheld device that could search within itself and in the web with the same “unified” engine. The decision has just been reversed, and the Galaxy Nexus is back in the shelves. Will it sell a whole lot with the SGS3 and other, more powerful devices coming out like cars out of an assembly line? Maybe, maybe not. However, the true reason for celebrating is not the fact that the device is once again available for purchase, but the fact that this sole fact just shone a ray of hope into this seemingly over-and-done battlefield.
Based on this, it may just be worth keeping your hopes up that other already-made decisions could potentially be overturned. Maybe based on this, future patent cases will be handled with more care and due diligence, and most of all, fairness. Or even better yet, this may be a light through the proverbial crack in the patent system that will alert some of the people in charge, and make them realize “hey, I think this may be broken!”
Only time will tell, but there is always hope.
[Thank you jerdog for the tip!]
Want something in the Portal? Contact any News Writer.
October 5, 2012 By: Former Writer
The last time many sought to root a Nexus without unlocking the bootloader, HTC was the sole maker of the Pure Google Experience devices, dual-core Android devices were only a dream, and XDA Developers was a little more than half its current size. Of course, we’re referring to the Nexus One. Many users chose to root the phone without unlocking the bootloader. This was because back then, bootloaders could not be relocked after unlocking via the officially endorsed fastboot oem unlock method. The Nexus S had a similar method, although it was only truly necessary if you didn’t want to wipe your phone. Now, the most recent Nexus phone, the Samsung Galaxy Nexus can be rooted without unlocking the bootloader as well.
The Galaxy Nexus can be locked and unlocked at will, but there are a few advantages to rooting without unlocking the bootloader. The biggest one is this method can be used in conjunction with this bootloader unlock app can get the phone rooted and unlocked without requiring a data wipe. Of course, there are other reasons as well.
Released by XDA Forum Moderator efrant, the method is a lot longer than usual Samsung root methods. In short, you’re going to push some files on to your device. From there, you’re going to restore a fake backup, run an exploit that’ll reboot you into emulator mode where you’ll perform the rest of the steps.
For more details, check out the original thread.
October 4, 2012 By: jerdog
Just a few days ago we told you about Open webOS being ported to the Galaxy Nexus. Now, the WebOS Ports team has released the source code. They have been extremely kind to the open source community, and have provided everything you need in order to build the port for the Galaxy Nexus.
With this also comes the ability to port this to other devices as well. While there isn’t anything currently in the works on XDA, let’s hope that this news sparks new interest in an OS that has potential to grow outside of Palm and HP’s (mis)management.
You can view the source build instructions on the WebOS-Ports wiki page.
Who doesn’t like it when development teams launch mass releases? As such it’s not uncommon for us to report a dozen or so devices getting a ROM at once. Another ROM dev team has released their newest release candidate for a staggering 11 devices.
The ROM series is called LiquidSmooth, and the team has quite a few developers. It is a source-built release derived from AOSP, and it borrows from a number of other development teams such as CyanogenMod and Team EOS. The device list includes:
Galaxy Nexus (maguro)
Galaxy Nexus (toroplus)
Galaxy Nexus (toro)
Samsung Galaxy S III I9300
Sprint Samsung Galaxy S III
Verizon Samsung Galaxy S III
T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy S III
AT&T Samsung Galaxy S III
US Cellular Samsung Galaxy S III
Google Nexus 7
Samsung Galaxy Note GT-N7000
It’s quite a hefty list. A few of the features included are:
Lockscreen text color, layouts etc, 5-8 Options
Color & Alignment (Clock)
Custom Navbar Targets (Up to 7)
Custom Navbar Ring Targets (Up to 5)
Customizable Colors throughout the Rom
Liquid Launcher (Custom with extra options)
Liquid Splasher (New Liquid Settings)
Framework optimizations to enhance performance
Ultra Slim Size: Deodexed, Debloated, Zip-Aligned and Opti-png
Startup script control (sysctl, cron, zipalign etc)
Forced Tablet Mode with DPI Changer
Status Bar Mods – Battery, Clock, Provider Name Changer and more…
Toggles (Both AOKP/CM style)
So, in short, there are a lot of devices and a lot of features. There isn’t a running list of issues with these ROMs, so you’ll have to check out your device’s ROM thread to see if anyone is reporting any issues. Given that they are stable releases, there shouldn’t be many. For more details, check out any one of the number of device links above.
Many grew up with The Little Engine That Could, a tale about the power of optimism and hard work. The goal is to spread hope through the metaphor of a little blue engine that defied all odds despite what others say. To keep motivated, the little engine chants, “I think I can; I think I can; I think I can.”
Open Source: a philosophy, or pragmatic methodology that promotes free redistribution and access to an end product’s design and implementation details.
From it’s beginnings with the Palm Pre in 2009, webOS has always been a unique animal in the mobile device market. Using the metaphor of cards that could be flung off the screen to terminate tasks, its approach to multitasking was unique at a time when iOS couldn’t / wouldn’t do it. The Palm Pre itself was actually a pretty nice device at the time, but like everything else Palm did, they bungled webOS and it never really took off. In April 2010, HP acquired the OS. After numerous, half-hearted attempts to take the OS forward, including the release of the HP TouchPad to compete in the expanding tablet market, they finally announced that they would halt device production and webOS development in August 2011. This lead to speculation that webOS would be killed off or sold to the highest bidder.
XDA exists so that like-minded developers can come and share their work and knowledge, as well as learn from others. We encourage open source development because that’s how true innovation happens. And without open source development, our favorite OS Android would not be where it is today. So when HP announced late last year that webOS would be open sourced rather than killed, the development community leaped at the news.
Except for a tidbit earlier this year about an HTC Evo 3D running a very dirty port of webOS, all has been mostly quiet on the Open webOS front. But now word is leaking out from the webOS-Ports team that webOS is being ported to the Galaxy Nexus. They have provided a video showing the device booted up with webOS and WiFi working, but it is quite obvious that hardware acceleration is drastically needed before this is actually usable—not to mention all of the phone functions, etc.
What makes this extremely interesting is that we are seeing the epitome of open source development. We have software—in this case a mobile OS—that the manufacturer no longer wishes to or is capable of supporting and improving. Then, you have a group of developers who see the potential of said software. And after a lot of hard (often thankless) work, we have the makings of another alternative for the mobile community. This is the crux of what makes XDA what it is. We look forward to seeing where this project goes.
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:
September 22, 2012 By: Former Writer
Not many people are a fan of Motoblur. There are various reasons for this, but mostly it boils down to the excessive bloatware. However, there is a lot to like about the newest versions of Motoblur. Now, Sprint and Verizon Galaxy Nexus owners can check out Motoblur without having to buy a Motorola phone.
XDA Senior Member aooga has prepared a nice package to get Motorola’s UI running on your Toro or Toroplus Galaxy Nexus, including the cool circle widget. Currently, it is compatible with CM10 Nightlies from 9/15 onward, AOKP build 2, and ParanoidAndroid 2.12. The clock widget is a downloadable application from the Google Play Store. This mod was based off the original GSM version by XDA Senior Member evilisto, which is also compatible with the same ROMs and includes the same things. Unlike the CDMA version, the GSM version has been updated to include Tablet UI as well.
To install, just download the flashable zip, flash in custom recovery, and enjoy the Motorola look and feel. For the full effect, grab the circle widget from the Play Store. For additional details, check out the GSM thread or the CDMA thread.
September 21, 2012 By: jerdog
Not too long ago we talked about a test build of the Verizon Galaxy Nexus appearing on Google’s servers, and now it would seem Verizon has finally decided to roll this out to the masses. The update is available via OTA push, which can be initiated manually via Menu > Settings > About Phone > System Updates. If you prefer to wait for the automatic push, you should begin to receive a notification on your device shortly.