Wednesday, August 28, 2013

5 Hidden features of Samsung Galaxy S4

Samsung Galaxy S4 is a powerhouse when it comes to hardware virility. Everything about this phone is over the top, the display, the processor and of course the TouchWiz software interface. But many of S IV features are hidden deep inside various settings and for this reason only the average user won't even be aware that this features exist. Let's bring some of them out of the dark and on to your phone!

1. Two fingers Swipe down for quick access tray



You probably familiar with the fact that you can swipe down one finger on the screen and get to one of the best feature of an Android smartphone, notification tray. But did you try to swipe down two fingers on the screen? Did you? Well, if you didn't then do it. You will be presented with the Quick Access Tray from where you can quickly get to your favourite settings. Don't like the default layout? Tap&hold the tiles and rearrange or add new ones to Quick Access Tray!

2. Custom Sound Quality

Buried deep inside audio settings you will find Adapt Sound option. This little feature will personalized your audio experience on Samsung Galaxy S4. For this to work you will need your Galaxy's headphones, exceptionally good i may add, and when using this headphones you will hear the most noticeable difference. During the audio setup, the Galaxy S IV will calibrate the sound for each ear and will compensate any shortcomings. It will adapt and personalize low, medium and high sounds for you auditory system. You will immediately notice a difference in audio calls, music and other sounds from your phone.

3. Check Notifications without touching the Galaxy S4 


For this feature to work you will have to turn it on here: Settings-My Device-Motion and Gestures-Air Gesture. Now you will be able to check for missed calls, emails and notification by simply waving your hand in front of the phone when Samsung's Galaxy S IV display is turned off. This particular Air Gesture is called Quick Glance.
There are other useful air gestures like Air-Browse, Air-Move or Air-Jump which are designed to offer access to various settings and perform different action without you having to even touch the phone.

4. Blocking Mode for call and notification filtering

This blocking features of the Samsung Galaxy S4 can easily replace any paid application from Google Play Store and will save you a couple of bucks.  But more important, this options will give you peace of mind because they can filter out any insistent phone marketeers, ex-girlfriends/boyfriends or annoying notifications. And i choose the word filter because  once this mode is activated it will block all the above and will let in only calls and notifications that you consider important. You will find this option under Settings-My device-Blocking Mode.

5. Built-In Data Traffic Monitor


Samsung Galaxy S4 Built-In Data Traffic Monitor

Even in this day and age, the day of WI-FI everywhere, the big telecom company’s insist in holding a firm grip on their inflated revenues generated by data transfers. I will not even go in the roaming tariffs. So, back to the topic. You can find this very useful option, especially if you travel a lot, and in the mean time save again a few bucks by not having to purchase an app for this task. You can be sure that you are staying in the limits of your plan by simply setting alerts accordingly to your data plan. You can even spot which app on your smartphone is a data-hog.

Of course there are many other settings, tools and option but some of the fun of having a new phone is to discover them by yourself. ( or maybe just my excuse for not making a top 10 list ;o ). Many other windows will open for you if you root your Samsung Galaxy S4.

If you know about more semi-hidden, not-so-obvious settings in Samsung Galaxy S4 please feel free to drop them in the comments below.

By Aleman Adrian

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Can hackers spy on you using your Android smartphone?

Of course they can. All they have to do is to make you install an .apk file on your Android smartphone or to download an application from Google Play store. Is that easy!

At a Black Hat conference held recently, a software security firm director, demonstrated in front of  a live audience how easily one inexperienced hacker can breach your Android security firewalls and then proceed to install malicious software on your phone that can spy on your every move, breath and blink from dawn till dusk.

Android gone bad
Using only genuine tools offered by Google, the so called Android API's, this particular mobile security firm made an experiment. In two weeks they were able to code malicious and mean lines of code that could be easily copied and paste in any single .apk file out there (.apk acronym comes from  application package file and its used to distribute and install android application on your smartphone).

So, for example, let's take Instagram, an application downloaded by millions from Google Play store. A pimpled teenager, with moderate hacking skills, can in theory and in practice, take Instagram's harmless .apk, decompile it and place inside it a malevolent software and then repackage all off this back in to a normal Instagram .apk.

Once the user has installed this tempered Instagram .apk and the celestial alignment is right, one bad tempered teen from Iowa (or NSA, FBI and CIA all together) will be able to track all your smartphone's whereabouts. He can now easily read your sms and emails, remotely turn on your phone's camera and start taking incognito pictures and even record video clips, access all your call logs and, in general, he will be able to monitor everything you do on your phone. Or shall we say, his phone now. And all this without you noticing a thing!

The dangers of having your Android Phone hacked
A hacked Android. Your worst nightmare!

Before we get all paranoid and start smashing our beloved Samsung Galaxy's and HTC One's, there are a few fact that we must take in consideration.
First of all, the ruthless hacker has to trick you in to installing his stained application. This can be done in two ways: he manages to get this malware infested Instagram on Google Play store, bypassing Google's security Cerberus ( a not that unimaginable endeavour in the not so distant past, but hardly possible nowadays) and the other method is to have you install applications .apk files from untrusted sources, outside the circle of trust and garden of Eden that has become Google Play store. The vast majority of users that have their phones malware infested did it by installing pirated applications from shady online harbours like Piratebay.
A plausible scenario is that right now we have legions of auto-spy android phone owners walking the streets, crowding the malls or coffee shops and unknowingly and innocently spying on everything that moves, not only them. 

So, what can the average user do to reduce the risk of getting infested with this kind of malware? In order to avoid to transform your smartphone in to a 007 spyphone from hell, users must resist the temptation to download "free" (read pirated applications) from untrusted sources. The second best thing to do is to read the permissions that application asks. For example, if a game like Temple Run 2 will ask for permission to access your camera and phone logs, something isn't quite right, isn't it?

As for all our hackers wanna be, amateur code manipulators and software brewers out there... get out of the grey zone and put your talent to great use. Make a living. Find a job, put on a white hat and get paid for your insane skills!

By Aleman Adrian

Monday, July 22, 2013

Sony (Xperia) i1 "Honami" Specs Leaked Online

Specs, leaks and rumors about Sony's new flagship continue to flood the internet. This week ePrice, a Taiwanese tech site, published a couple of pictures that they claim to be of Sony's i1 Honami smartphone.

Sony Honami Leaked Images
Sony, the electric samurai from the land of the setting sun, seems to have been lost it's fighting modjo in the last couple of years. At least on the smartphone market, Sony has constantly felled behind the big players, Samsung, HTC, LG or Apple. And this is not necessary the fault of uncompetitive hardware but rather a fail, in my opinion, of Sony's marketing department and bean counters. But now it's time for a glorious comeback.

Sony has in works a uber-smartphone, the Honami ( Honami is the name of an asteroid from the Asteroid Belt). The 20.7 megapixel camera will be a major selling point for this phone making Sony i1 a direct contender to Nokia 1020 41 megapixel camera phone.
The Asian beast codenamed "Honami" that will go by the name of Sony i1 is well equipped to face off the other Asian tigers Samsung, Lg and HTC. According to the latest leaks, Sony Honami is packing some serious piece of hardware:

Water&Dust Proof Sony Xperia
  • 1080p display measuring 5 inches full HD display
  • 20.7 megapixel rear camera
  • 2 megapixel front facing camera
  • Sony i1 is sporting a 2.2GHz new generation Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 quad core processor
  • 2GB of RAM
  • 16GB of internal storage
  • micro SD card support ( a real rarity these days )
  • Honami i1 will be water proof and dust proof, like the current Sony Xperia models
  • non-removable 3000mAh battery
  • “Sony G Lens” which could be a image stabilization or  optical zoom system
  • Android 4.3 Jelly Bean

Sony will most likely officially announce the Sony Honami i1 at IFA Berlin, on 4th of September and the phone will be available for the masses in late autumn this year.

This being leaked, we expect the fight for smartphone market supremacy to get more animated towards the end of the year, in the middle of winter holidays shopping season, and this, of course,  can only benefit us.

By Aleman Adrian

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Rumors Roundup

The Galaxy Note 3 (SM-N900) is expected to be Samsung’s Next Big Thing. The possible launch date is late this fall, September or even October, but according to new reports flooding in from all over the inter-webs, the Note 3 Phablet ( a term used to describe a combination between a smartphone and a tablet) may or may not arrive a bit sooner.

Rumours and whispers are heard everywhere on the internet about Samsung's next extra large  device, and all this rumours point to the fact that the Samsung future Phablet will get even bigger in spite of the fact that the "old" Galaxy Note 2 still manages to raise some eyebrows with its huge 5.5' display.

So far, Samsung hasn’t given any hints about a possible release date, so for now we can only speculate and take wild guesses. But, we can assume that at the IFA 2013, held towards the end of August in Berlin, will get to see and play with the final version of Samsung Galaxy Note 3.

The first rumours surrounding this particular device had given it an gargantuan display sizes, 6.6 inch in some cases. But now we know for sure that this is not the case. The final specifications for Galaxy Note 3 will revolve around these specs:

  • 5.7inch Full HD Super AMOLED display
  • 13MP camera with a Xenon flash
  • 3 GB of RAM
  • 3.000+ mAh battery
  • 4G LTE-A connectivity support
  • Android Jelly Bean 4.3 OS
  • Snapdragon 800 SoC processor clocked at 2.3GHz and the new and updated Samsung Exynos 5 Octa SoC.

Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Concept
For me personally, the  fact that Samsung Galaxy Note III will come equipped with Xenon Flash is the good news here. Why? Because Xenon Flash equipped smartphone will always do a better job than conventional LED Flash phones in the sense that a Xenon Flash will allow for much better quality low-light conditions image capturing. Just look at the images capture with the Nokia Lumia 928 vs. images taken in the same conditions with a Led Flash camera from Galaxy S4.

But Note III is not alone anymore. In works is a new kid on the block. The HTC One Max. Nothing is confirmed yet, but there is a consensus in rumours about  a HTC One Max that will come at the big screen table equipped with a huge 6.0 inch full HD 1080p, a Snapdragon 800 generation CPU, 2GB of RAM, 64GB of internal storage and HTC's exceptional Ultrapixel camera.

Another Samsung Galaxy Note III design study

So the fight for Godzilla size screen  Phablet supremacy is intensifying. This is getting interesting and we, the end users, should benefit and see a price drop for these megaphones with King Kong size displays. As I'm running out of comparison terms for Galaxy Note 3 i will end this post with an obvious question: would YOU like one?

By Aleman Adrian

Monday, July 8, 2013

All about Motorola Moto X Phone


The force is strong with this one. The rumor mill and the hype machine, both running at maximum revolutions, coupled with some inside information and leaked specs place this particular smartphone, the Motorola X, on a higher than usual "IWant" scale. In this article you can read all about the rumored specs, price and release date of the Moto X smartphone.

The excitement and the drama surrounding Google's Motorola upcoming Moto X is at it's highest these days. Why? For this to work you will have put on your tin foils now. Look at the picture above. Do you see that guy jumping in the lake? Doesn't he look like a human X? Yes, it does. What about the women, doesn't she look like a big I letter or the one number to you? So what, you may ask, we have like a human "XI" or something like that, that doesn't mean anything...not so fast, cowboy. The Romans ( yes, the Romans from Roman Empire) used these symbols to count and these 2 symbols put together form a number and that  number is...11! Motorola announced a big event for 11 of July 2013 at which were invited just a few carefully selected journalists. Well, it remains to be seen how things will unfold. Will we get the new Moto X or it will be just another publicity gimmick, only time will tell (3 days from now to be more precises).

Tin foils off gentleman's, time for some true facts now. Let's start with Motorola X Phone specs:
Motorola Moto X Smartphone (picture courtesy of GSMArena)

  • 4.7 inch display with a resolution of 720p
  • 1.7 GHz dual core ARM processor
  • 2.0 GB of RAM
  • Adreno 320 GPU graphics processor (a special one as you will see)
  • 10MP rear camera and a 2MP front facing camera
  • 16GB, 32GB or 64GB of storage space
  • Android Jelly Bean 4.3 (not 100%, maybe will see Android Jelly Bean 4.2.2) 

At first glimpse this looks not at all so impressive, more like middelish smartphone specs for 2013. But don't forget for a second that Motorola is a Google owned company now. Back in 2012 all mighty Google acquired Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billions. You don't invest so much if you don't have a carefully layout plan to dominate the market (and the world!). Maybe the new mobile Android ecosystem that Google has envision for the future doesn't require top of the line hardware, maybe Google is focusing more on providing a context aware, adaptative and anticipatory smartphone. So, how smart can you make a smartphone? Very smart, according to Google and Motorola:
  • Motorola X will make good use of Google's advanced voice recognition technology and will know that you are in your car, driving to work for example, and will automatically turn on voice search and voice commands 
  • take your Moto X out of your pocket and hold it like you gonna take a picture and the camera app will automatically open  for you. You can evean film slow motion videos with MotoX phone
  • are you speeding on the highway with over 80 miles? Motorola X is smart enough to not let you open the messaging app, for your safety, of course

To be able to achieve this kind of software-hardware integration Motorola X phone will make good use of the so called "ultra-low power sensors" that won't consume much of smartphone’s battery. The Moto X will  use a couple of processors on the GPU that enable “always-on” sensors, like always on gyroscope or microphone for voice commands, so that your phone will remain contextually aware of what’s going on around it.


Another first in smartphone industry is that  Moto X phone will allow customers to completely customize the look and feel of the device. You will be able to choose from a palette of different colors -at least 12 of them- for your back cover, trim of the phone or front cover, you will have the possibility to engrave text or signs on your Motorola X and all of this personalized devices will be delivered  to buyers all over the world within a couple of days after placing the order.

Motorola X Phone Press Release Photo

Instead of the usual closing words for my articles i will leave you with what seems to be a very patriotic and uplifting promotional campaign:

“The first smartphone designed, engineered and assembled in the USA is coming.” 

A bit too cheesy? Or maybe is just me? Ok, it's just me.
What are your thoughts on the new Motorola X Phone? Are you excited, will you sell your Samsung Galaxy S3 or S4 and buy a Moto X instead?

L.E. According to Huffington Post, Moto X could be launched "in the coming weeks". Until then i leave you with a picture that captures Motorola X Phone in the wild ( at the ear of a prominent CEO )
Google CEO Eric Schmidt holding the Motorala X Phone
What better way is there to promote Motorola X then Eric Schmidt, the CEO at Google, holding it at his ear?
By Aleman Adrian

Sunday, July 7, 2013

A few changes

For the next week or so i will be making some changes for Android Bureau "user interface". This means that i will test different themes and designs, font and layouts. All for the better good. I apologize in advance for any inconvenience that this changes may cause but i really want for you, my dear reader,  to have the best experience both visually and regarding the quality of articles that you will find on this blog.

Thank for your patience.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Leaked Android 4.3 Jelly Bean

Android 4.3 Jelly Bean ROM leaked last week and the most interesting fact is that it wasn't for a Google Nexus device. This leaked ROM was for the Samsung Galaxy S4 Google Play Edition. It must be sad that this leaked Android 4.3 is an early build and changes may be present in the final build.

For now we have very few user-facing changes in this version, but we could see some modifications in the official Android 4.3 final build when it comes out. Listed below is what is new in leaked Android 4.3 found on Samsung Galaxy S4:

The Camera: this camera is the same with the one that we find on Google Play Edition Samsung Galaxy S4 and HTC One. For most part, there are UI changes and improvements on what is already a very good camera.  The big change here is the camera settings circle, which has gone from a full circle design to a semi circle. The interesting part is that you can already Download Android 4.3 Camera apk and install it on your non-Nexus device. It works flawlessly, i can tell you from my on experience. You can go ahead and download it from the link above.
Google Android 4.3 new camera user interface
New SunBeam live wallpaper: this was first seen this on Google Play Edition of HTC One and Samsung Galaxy S4. Now it has a new name and it's called Phase Beam live wallpaper and like the camera, you can Download Sun Beam Live Wallpaper apk and install it on your smartphone. It's new and shiny!
New SunBeam Live Wallpaper
Always on Wi-Fi : hidden deep in advanced WiFi settings there is a strange option which states “Scanning always available”. This means that your Wi-Fi will always be turned on, enabling applications, and Google of course, to always get a position on you. But don't panic, this option has more to do with saving your precious battery juice than with invading your privacy. This method of determining your exact position is much more battery friendly than the other one, GPS always on. A big improvement if you ask me. But if you have privacy concerns than simply turn it off.

Low Energy Bluetooth: this feature has been talked about for a while now, and it appears that this option has finally made it's debut on this leaked Android Jelly Bean 4.3 build. The name "Bluetooth Low Energy" is telling us exactly what this feature will do for your smartphone. Yes, you guessed it,  it will go easy on your battery and it will enable a bluetooth frequency that consumes considerably less power.

Other Minor Changes: you will find some new developer settings as well as some renaming of different settings like “cell broadcast” setting which will be known from now by the name of “mobile broadcasts”.

Bellow you have a short video presentation of this build:

Conclusion: this particular build of Android 4.3 doesn’t have many user side changes, changes that are very visible for the end user but it seems that  Android 4.3 Jelly Bean will be more of an refinement rather than an big evolution. The revolution would be televised and will be brought to you by the next big thing from Google: Android Key Lime Pie.

When will we see it? Well, let me take here a wild guess...pretty, pretty soon! Internet rumors place the official launch of Android Jelly Bean 4.3 toward the end of summer.

So, what are your thoughts on this early leak, are you a bit disappointed, did you expected more from Android 4.3? What other changes/additions did you hope for? 
By Aleman Adrian

Thursday, June 27, 2013

The evolution of Android sensors


What will the near future hold for smartphones? How much more data will they be able to collect from the world around us? Will they be a part of us? Is there a future for smartphones or will they be replaced by highly specialized gadgets? Read on and find out.

The facts: the present day hardware that we find on our smartphone will undoubtedly continue to evolve. Phones will have much more powerful processors, bigger, brighter and bendable touchscreens, more and more memory and graphical processing power and more of everything, in general.

Sensors! Sensors everywhere. This is where smartphones manufacturers and Android developers are heading to. You don't really see or feel this sensors (not yet anyway) but they are still there, in your phone, calculating and processing the information that is gathered from your smartphone's sensors for movement and velocity, gyration (a fancy word for rotation) or ambient light.
These overlooked and mostly ignored sensors - the proximity sensor, the global positioning system (GPS in popular terms),  accelerometer, the compass, the gyroscope, magnetometer, black illuminated sensor (a sensor that helps you make better pictures in poor light conditions)  - will soon be joined by other, more complex sensors. Samsung,  the South Korean electronics manufacturer giant, offers humidity, pressure and  temperature sensors for their latest and greatest flagship smartphone, the mighty Galaxy S4.
Futuristic Android Smartphone

At the same time with the introduction of this new sensors, the older and more mature ones got an completely overhaul and now, sensors like accelerometers or compass are able to collect and report much more data and information. Also sensors like GPS are more accurate now and consume less battery. So you see, we have improvements all over the line, the future is bright already.


The new sensors introduce this year by Samsung on Galaxy S4 are just the beginning. In the not so quite distant future you will have an air quality and health monitoring sensor on your smartphone. This sensors on your phone in conjuncture with other sensors from other smartphones will then be able to monitor the climate on a planetary level and record and share data about pollutants or allergens, through a mobile network of smartphones all over the world.

In addition to monitoring the air quality, humidity, velocity or temperature we will have health sensors built into the smartphone that can measure your pulse, blood pressure or even function as an EKG, transforming your smartphone into a extremely important medical device for everyday use.

Of course, this sensors must work together with specialized software, Android applications in our case. This applications are in their infancy and because of this there is a great demand of professional android application developers who really understand the in and outs of Android.

The telecommunication industry, included here being hardware manufacturers and software developers, is the new rising star of global markets. In the next decade or so, in this field, there will be huge opportunities for you and everybody else to be part of because there will be money, there will be evolution and revolutions, there will be academical research and scientific breakthroughs.

By Aleman Adrian

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Leaked Android Jelly Bean 4.2.2 for Samsung Galaxy S3

SamMobile, a community dedicated to Samsung mobile devices, just got hold on the latest Android Jelly Bean 4.2.2 test firmware for Samsung Galaxy S3. This is the second leaked version of Jelly Bean 4.2.2 that has hit the internet in the last month.

A couple of weeks ago i managed to get my hands on the first 4.2.2 firmware and, with great enthusiasm and expectations, i proceeded forward with the operation code named  "Flash 4.2.2 Jelly Bean On Galaxy 3". For starters, i have to say that this firmware was a test firmware and is considered to be a pre-release version of the upcoming Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean which will be released, sooner are later, for all of 50 millions Samsung Galaxy S3 out there. This being sad, the test firmware didn't disappoint at all. Almost all the new futures that Samsung introduce with the launch of Galaxy S4 managed to find their way to Galaxy 3 devices. Obviously, one could discover a bug here and a bug there, if you looked deep enough, but keep in mind that this was a pre-release test firmware for Galaxy S3 and was not officially endorsed by Samsung. The same goes for the second coming of Jelly Bean 4.2.2. test firmware.

Android Update 4.2.2 for S3 tweet from SamMobile Twitter page
Developing stage for Android 4.2.2 isn't completely done yet and the South Korean smartphone manufacturer still has some problems with the TouchWiz user interface, meaning that the final Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean update for the Galaxy S3 will not be released anytime soon as some folks would have hoped, but rather at the end of July or even late August 2013.

Samsung Galaxy S3 with leaked Android Jelly Bean 4.2.2

So, what is all the fuss about? Is it better? Does it run faster? Should i hold my horses and not buy the new Galaxy S4? Below you will find a list with what is new, what has improved and what are the  enhancements in the Samsung Galaxy S3 Android 4.2.2 update:

  • new Samsung Galaxy S4 lockscreen which means you can now have multiple widgets at the same time on your lockscreen 
  • daydream feature
  • fully functional driving mode
  • two new unlock phone effects - Light and Ripple
  • new screen modes  imported directly from S4: professional photo and adapt display
  • interactive notifications, new additions in notification center 
  • additional voice controls and improvements to Samsung in house breed S-Voice 
  • completely revamped and redesigned settings menu,  exactly like you can find on S4
  • you will have more voice commands for controlling different parts of S3
  • new look with white 3D background for gallery browsing
  • you now have the option to move apps to SD card in Samsung Galaxy 3

Samsung Galaxy S3

You must be aware that Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean leaked firmware update will work only with Samsung Galaxy S3 GT-I9300. You can check what kind of flavor is your phone by navigating to Settings>About phone>Model number. After you made sure that you got the international version of Samsung Galaxy S3 you can proceed further and download Android 4.2.2 leak for Galaxy S3. It goes without saying that your phone must be rooted.

As this firmware is branded as a test, an alfa update firmware, i will not be providing instruction of how to flash your phone with this 4.2.2 Android update. However, i can point you to Samsung Galaxy S3 thred on XDA forums where you will have all the tools and information that you need for successfully flash your phone with this latest update.

I hope you will find it in you and you will have the strength to flash your beloved Galaxy S3 and rejoice at the thought that you are now part of a select few who can enjoy this latest update! Please, kind readers, do share with us your Android updating adventures in the comments below.

By Aleman Adrian

Thursday, June 20, 2013

The brains behind Android operating system


How many of you knew that Andy Rubin, the co-founder and head of Android development team until recently, had completely different plans in mind for what will later become the most popular mobile operating system in the world? He's actual intention was to develop a highly advance user interface for digital cameras!

In October 2003, a little town in the middle of nowhere, Palo Alto, California witness the coming of Android Inc. From humble beginnings to world domination. This phrase could pretty well summarize the Android story. It took merely a few years for Android to become the dominant player on a market that can easily be described to be a lion pit, a market where Microsoft and Apple do all that is in their power to slow down the accelerated accession of the rate of Android smartphone adoption.

Learning Android Application Development it's easy

But all of this wouldn't  have been possible without the extraordinary dedication, know-how and sparkling intelligence of Android software engineers and developers. They are the brilliant geniuses that almost nobody have heard of, man and women that stay away from the spotlight, the ones that keep Prometheus fire burning and do the best to pass it on to the next generation.

white-android-logo-in-an-green-circleSome of the key people behind Google's Android success story are Andy Rubin, Rich Miner, Chris White and, of course, Sergey Brin and Larry Page. They did a great job of building from the ground up the Android enterprise and they are still with the company to this day. Beside Google's own  team of engineers, being an open source community, Android manage to attract the best software developers out there. Android open source community is an alive and vibrant gathering of highly educated brains from all over the world. And this is a very good thing for Google and also represents, for Apple and Microsoft, the stuff from what nightmares are made of!

There is another side, building block, an "add-on" that contributed heavily to Android huge success. Application! To be more precise, android application developers and their wonderful skills and imagination. Without them, Android ecosystem that we know today wouldn't have existed. Who exactly are these android application developers, from what it sounds they surely
must be some kind of rocket scientist? Well, my dear reader, they are just regular folks like you and me and this is possible because Android made it incredibly easy for everyone to get started with application development. Because of the steep learning curve you could become proficient in developing applications for Android even if you have very little resources of time and you are not inclined to become a master software developer.
Trust me, im an Android Doctor!

On the other hand, for people familiar with the ways of the code, for individuals who dream of code lines there are now huge opportunities for finding a very well paid job. As I am to prospecting for a new job in this field, just the other day, I was browsing random Job Sites and I was amazed by the number of openings they have for positions as android developer. In particular, on this site, there are literally hundreds of job openings, and this is only for UK! Even more than this, browsing through the well written articles that I found there, I discovered that there are dozens of newly formed companies that seek association with you, if you got what it takes to be a top Android developer and fuel the smartphone evolutionary needs.

So, who knows, maybe YOU will be the next big thing in Android's apps ecosystem. Maybe now you could put in practice the application that YOU had imagined. It could be that YOUR app idea is what the world have been eagerly waiting for. So, what are you waiting for, get on that Job Site and find yourself a well deserved and well paid job!

By Aleman Adrian

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The state of Android Key Lime Pie


Google could launch their next generation mobile operating system, code named Key Lime Pie or simply Android 5.0, in October this year, while Motorola, which is now owned by the online giant is expected to launch the X Phone, the next iteration in the Google Nexus line of products at the end of this summer. Google Nexus devices, phone and tablets, will offer the pure Android experience and will represent Google's official image.

Although many people expected Key Lime Pie to be premiered at the Google conference in May, Google only announced an update for the existing Android mobile operating system, Jelly Bean 4.3, that will land on our smartphones around the date of 20 of June 2013. This is believed to be the last Jelly Bean 4.3 update ahead of Key Lime Pie and will bring minor user interface improvements and some bug fixes, as Jelly Bean is already a well polished OS.

android-logo-with-slices-of-limes-insideSo, how can Google top an almost perfect Android? The first whispers and rumors about Android 5 Key Lime Pie tell us that Google focused on addressing one of the worries that concerned many users with older smartphones. Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie will be optimized for lower-end devices to, not only for the top of the line smartphones. Key Lime Pie will most likely run effortlessly on smartphones witch have 512 MB of ram memory​​ or less and even on phones with a single core processor!

Fragmentation is one of the biggest problems in Android ecosystem and Google hopes that through carefully engineering Key Lime Pay, this unfortunate complication will be long forgotten. That's why with Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie, Google has a completely re-engineered kernel, and this can only mean that the mobile operating system will need less RAM to operate and also will be smoother, faster and better when it comes to multitasking.

Android Key Lime Pie
One rumor that keeps coming up when there is talk about  Key Lime Pie is the debuting of profiles on Android devices. Sure, you can already find profiles on those Android custom ROM's, but this custom ROM's are not for everybody to play with. So, the introduction of profiles on stock Android is a very welcomed addition. I mean, who wouldn't be glad to be able to activate, let's say, night mode profile, where every single call, sms and email  will be filtered out and data transfers and synchronization over 3G/4G or WIFI will be cut out, leaving you with more precious battery juice in the morning and a good night's sleep?

Informed sources also tell us that Key Lime Pie will better and tighter integrate with social media networks like Twitter, Google+, Pinterest or Facebook and will offer enhance screen, power menu and lock screen customization. The rumor mill keeps on spinning and gives us another piece of information: in Android 5 you will be able to try applications or play a short demo of a game directly from Google Play Store before you actually download them!
Android Key Lime Pie User Interface Concept

Now, just a few words about the user interface of Key Lime Pie. That was it! A few words. And this is because we really don't have any clues yet about how Google's design department will address this important aspect of Android 5 development. But, don't dispear, i still managed to discover something spectacular for you, my dear curious in nature readers: i digged deep through the interwebs and i have pick up on a sensational Key Lime Pie design concept. Tip: all the picture that are scattered through this post come from this design concept. I advice Google to hurry up and hire this guy before Microsoft or Apple will.


By Aleman Adrian

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Best Android Custom ROM: CyanogenMod


CyanogenMod huge success resides in it's ability to offer you an almost pure Android experience.  Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean is Google’s latest and greatest Android version, but you will only find this Jelly Bean flavor on Nexus devices, and there’s no way of telling when other Android devices, like Samsung galaxy S3 for instance, will be updated.


CyanogenMod is by far one of my favorite Android custom ROM's. CM essentially gives you full  access to features hidden deep into Android system and the ability to temper with your phones hardware. You will be able over-clock or under-clock the CPU and, as a result, CyanogenMod can offer significant battery life improvements. You will experience a redefined Android experience. CM transforms your device in such a way that your Samsung, Sony or Lg smartphone will look and feel like Google intended from the start, the Nexus way.

There are so many fantastic features in CyanogenMod ROM's, that is pretty difficult to pinpoint any of them, as different users tend to have different preferences. We will discuss just the most important of them so that you get a general idea and feel of what CM ROM's can do for you. CyanogenMod has proven itself, over and over again, to be more appealing than any of Samsung, Sony, HTC or LG's variations of Google Android mobile OS. Gone is the bloatware and gone are the ugly and buggy TouchWiz, Sense or Moto Blur user interfaces. They are being replaced by the more simplistic and bug-free Trebuchet UI. This helps CyanogenMod to be as streamlined and lightweight as it can be.

CyanogenMod is most definitely more smoother, stable, consistent and faster than any other stock ROM. This is made possible because CM takes full advantages of your smartphone's hardware through some clever coding and software engineering. You will be able now to customize your phone's processor clock speed and the amount of zRAM  that you will have at your disposal. There are others hardware related  tweaks that you can apply to your smartphone and you can find more about them on CyanogenMod own website.


Once you installed ("flash" in Android terms) CM on your smartphone you will have access to new features like profiles, quick menu access or the ability to customize the power menu. You can tweak the power widget, the lock screen shortcuts and even change what the hardware keys do. One can also fine tune their operator network, telling the phone to switch seamlessly between 2G/3G/4G networks and, very important for some users,  Wifi tethering just works!

Themes are also a big deal for CM fans. There are literally thousands of themes out there just waiting to be downloaded and applied. You can change the color and icons of the status bar, the color of keyboard keys and fonts and the general appearance of phone's dialer. 

It doesn't matter if your smartphone is high-end or not,  CyanogenMod should install on almost every smartphone out there without any problems. And this is the one big advantage that CM brings to the table. The ability to install the latest and greatest Android from Google on your old smartphone. You can now take full advantage of the latest developments in Google's original Android and  benefit from the tweaks that CyanogenMod team provides for the end user. 
A fairly popular nice addition in all CyanogenMod ROM's is the ability to change music tracks with volume keys when your phone screen is turned off. A long press on volume up or volume down will be enough to change tracks in any music player.

So, what are you waiting for? Here is a quick link to +xda-developers Google Plus page where you can find more details about your specific phone and appropriated CyanogenMod version.

By Aleman Adrian