What do you get when you take stock Android 4.0.4 and double its performance? You get Linaro. Linaro is a build of Android that has many performance enhancements and optimizations, making the OS visibly snappier. In some cases, Linaro manages to double performance over stock Android 4.0, which is impressive since stock Android 4.0 is already fairly snappy over older versions of Android.
The good news is that Linaro’s code has been submitted to CM9, now awaiting approval. Once rolled into CM9’s code, all supported devices will get a great speed boost.
Bernhard Rosenkränzer, an engineer working on Linaro, showcased Linaro speed tests at Linaro Connect Q2.2012 in Hong Kong using two pandaboards, one running stock Android 4.0.4 (AOSP), and the other running the Linaro build of Android 4.0.4. Check out the video of Rosenkränzer describing Linaro and showing the tests after the break.
Just when you thought you couldn’t beef up that Galaxy S III camera any more, think again. Thanks to the camera modders out there, specifically hyperX, you can now obtain even greater video quality than before. hyperX has released a brand new mod for the GSIII that will boost the 1080p Full HD video recording to 30 Mbit in superfine mode, fully with 192 kbit audio. Stick with me here as this is going to be nerdy as hell but nevertheless cool. There will also be a 24 Mbit fine mode and 19 Mbit normal 1080p mode in addition to 19 Mbit superfine 720p mode. Furthermore, 15 Mbit fine and 10 Mbit normal modes will also be present while all utilizing 192 kbit audio recording. The dev is also attempting to add in 60fps capture to all resolutions, though it’s presenting to be quite a challenge at this time. Further tweaks include the ability to launch the camera during a live phone call in addition to the ability to snap photos during video recording with the volume up and down buttons. As of now, the GSIII will not allow the camera app to load if the battery is under 15%, however, the dev is closely working on that. Just make sure your device is rooted if you’re interested in applying this hack and remember that you do so at your own risk. Big thanks goes out to hyperX for the awesome mod and we hope you guys all have fun with it. Feel free to leave a comment or two below with what you think of the mod. Instructions and download links have been provided after the break courtesy of HX Customs Roms
Do you love your touchscreen, but find it’s not fancy enough for you? Well Tactus might have a solution for you. While at SID 2012, the company showcased its new display product which is a haptic technology offering disappearing physical keys. Yes that’s right— physical keys that actually rise up when in use and disappear when they’re not in use on your display screen. It’s a little hard to fathom, I know but it is currently in development and will likely be a reality when all is said and done, especially as many of us Android users with big hands such as myself may have a difficult time typing on our touchscreen keys, yet loathe actual physical keyboards on our devices. More importantly, it would greatly assist in those with disabilities such as those who are legally blind. This technology would essentially let the masses have their touchscreen cake and eat it too.
While the technology is under development, it has a ways to go before it reaches the mainstream. For starters: the display is only configured for touchscreen layouts. It can only be configured for a QWERTY keyboard in landscape mode and that’s it. This means there are no specific controls such as those meant for gaming and will be incompatible with other keyboard alternatives such as Swype or SwiftKey. Yes it sucks, but you have to start from somewhere I suppose.
Still, you can’t help but be excited for the potential of this technology. I’m sure you’re all itching to get an idea of how this works in action, so why don’t you jump past the break to see a demo video?
The popular chip maker, Qualcomm, has announced that they’ll be making a CPU compatible with multiple 700 MHz frequencies.
Furthermore, as shown above, carriers holding Lower A Block or other 700 MHz spectrum have many different band combinations to choose from to meet their customers’ interoperability needs, both within the 700 MHz band and between any of the long list of other 4G bands. A Band 12/17 combination is merely one such combination, and it would be inappropriate for the FCC to mandate that carriers must make this one combination available on every consumer device.
Because of the difficult interference challenges described herein, the fact that existing technology does not offer a solution to these challenges, and Qualcomm’s ongoing innovation and collaboration with all carriers and manufacturers, the commission should not require mobile equipment to be capable of operating over all paired commercial spectrum blocks in the Lower 700 MHz band.
So what does this mean? It means the company is single-handedly assisting in solving the interoperability problem which LTE operators present in the US. The new design, also dubbed the MSM8960, will support 7 LTE frequencies in total utilizing the 28nm process. Qualcomm is seriously fixated on providing lower power consumption and we thing they truly have the means to do it. According to the company, radios will be shipping to to vendors in July and devices housing them should show up by year’s end. Furthermore, Qualcomm states it’s against an FCC mandate for LTE interoperability and wants the government to allow the free market to make the choice of which bands get paired. This will certainly be an interesting story to follow so stay tuned. And feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments below.
The CyanogenMod crew has been making a lot of noise in the Android world lately. Within the last couple of months alone CM has hit 2 million installs which is an awesome achievement for the developer community and has also created a new mascot to signature their work going forward. Now CM has decided that the next step would be to refresh their start-up animation while at the same time officially bringing Cid into the fold. Check out the video below to see Cid in action. The 8-bit tune in the background sounds sweet if you ask me, though I’m not sure that will play along with the actual boot animation. Welcome Cid and may your incorporation be a sign of great things to come!
Why in the heck are we reporting news on Microsoft? Good question. As we briefly touched upon a couple of days ago, in an attempt to integrate seamlessly several media outlets through the medium of one device, your Xbox 360, Microsoft has brought to the table “SmartGlass”. What is SmartGlass? It’s quite a few services, features and benefits rolled up into one package. For starters, it can be considered an application. An app that allows your phone and tablet to be transformed into another screen, an extension if you will, for your television as well as a game controller and Internet access tool. The feature will work with iOS, Android and of course, Windows, giving great flexibility and squashing for the most the necessity to go out and purchase a new device for compatibility. Using your 360 console, your tablet, phone and even PC becomes a multi-screen companion for your convenience and at your fingertips. For example, the company demo’d Game of Thrones on the TV via the Xbox, a SmartGlass enabled tab was showing a map of Westeros and other pertinent info related to the show. In addition, the content itself can either be pushed from the PC, phone or tab to the Xbox or from the Xbox to the TV set. SmartGlass seamlessly integrates all devices to work together to enhance the media experience. Furthermore, in addition to these avenues , gaming was taken to another level as the company demo’d how the user could use the tab as a playbook while playing Madden on the 360 console. The company is also reportedly adding Internet Explorer to the Xbox and will allow you to use your Android smartphone as a mouse. Yes, a mouse I said. This will allow you to surf the mighty web on the big screen using the smartphone as a mouse to navigate. As most who follow Microsoft know, it’s no hidden agenda that the company aims to make their Xbox 360 the center hub to control all of your media, thus transforming your living room experience with their product at the helm. It will be the hub that powers all, so to speak. Only time will tell how the product ultimately pans out and whether or not Android devices will integrate into the mix with little effort. Stay tuned and as we find out. Feel free to offer your thoughts in the comments section below.
If the title didn’t already say it, Huawei’s Ascend P1 S device at 6.68mm and Oppo’s 6.65mm Finder are about to take the back seat when it comes to the “thinnes wars”. ZTE is now touting a device code named “Athena” which is sporting a mere 6.2mm thin chassis while also throwing in some big specs under the hood. While we don’t know all of the specs just yet, we do know the device will sport an IPS res display at 720p as well as a Cortex-A15 CPU (multi-core). We’ve also found that the device will sport 64 GB of internal storage and use a skin overlay dubbed “Miflavor UI“, assuming over Android’s ICS 4.0. In addition, the director of the company has stated that the device will come in a variety of different colors to choose from for customization. Check out the pics above and below and feel free to toss your thoughts in the comments section below.
I always like to see when hard work gets recognized in the Android development community and so it’s with great pleasure to announce that CyanogenMod, one of Android’s most popular replacement firmware ROMs, has just hit 2 million devices that have been rooted and flashed with a CM ROM. This is certainly stellar news for the CM crew but what is even more astounding is that these numbers have doubled since our last report back in January.
So clearly we are seeing a lot more Android users liberating their smartphones and joining the rooting community. I, myself, just took the plunge about a month ago and can say that I absolutely love what I am now able to accomplish with my phone! My latest ROM is CM9 Alpha 4 ICS and it’s by far the best stock ICS ROM out there for the Epic 4G Touch at this time. So congratulations CM team and please keep up the good work!
Well, next device to make its rounds through the FCC, the Asus Eee Pad MeMO ME370T which debuted at CES 2012, has just cleared its hurdles and could make it to the masses soon. It’s still not clear as to whether the device will run on a cellular network or be a WiFi only device. In any event, it’s shaping up to be a slick device. At 7-inches, the tab is slated to house Nvidia’s Tegra 3, however, other rumors consist of the device having its quad-core CPU swapped out for a Qualcomm dual-core chip, slapped with a $149 price tag and sold on the Google Play Store possibly as a Google Nexus 7-inch tab. Wouldn’t that be something? Further rumors suggest it’s possibly shipping with the anticipated Jelly Bean update. And while that’s just pure speculation at this point, you can check out the FCC filing for yourself and dig a little too.
Okay, so no Samsung Galaxy S III in hand yet, right? Soon though. Even though this is the case right now we continue to see offerings from the talented Android developers out there with things like S-voice being ported to other ICS devices. What we now see from developer madphone with additional contribution from others in the Android community is a full add-on of a number of features pulled from the SGS3.
XDA member madphone says: “This Addon Pack is meant to bring Galaxy S3 feeling to Googles Galaxy Nexus”.
There it is, a nicely packed add-on for the Galaxy Nexus. Inside this flashable zip you’ll find a number of stock apps from the SGS3, including sounds and icons to get that ‘inspired by nature’ feel. Noted in the original post is that it will flash over any CyanogenMod 9 nightly, but since this add-in has been posted, it has been tested and confirmed by the XDA community that it’ll work on CM9, AOKP, SlimICS and possibly more. So if you’re looking for a little Touchwiz-ness or just a nice hands-on preview of what’s to come with the release of the Samsung Galaxy S III, head on over to the source, check out the rest of the screenshots, grab this add-on and give it a shot yourself. If you like what you get, let us know in the comments. Remember, don’t forget to give the devs the thanks they deserve for all the hard work.
LG is all geared up to make their mark in the display department with the recent announcement of a new 1080p HD mobile display. And though Toshiba holds the top spot for a highest pixel density on a mobile device, LG’s new display boasts a decent 440ppi. With a 16:9 aspect ratio, the design was clearly made with HD on the brain. The display itself will house a new variant of IPS, called Advanced High Performance In-Plane Switching (AH-IPS). The new version of IPS is supposed to provide wider viewing angles and faster response times. In addition, one can expect an increase in brightness efficiency. Availability for the new tech is reported to be around the second half of this year on a 5-inch display and looks to completely crush the competition, which are Retina displays. Check out the full presser after the break for more details.
Many AT&T customers picked up a new HTC One X in hopes that someday HTC and AT&T would unlock the device’s bootloader. Time went by and the situation hadn’t changed and HTC even went as far as citing “restrictions” (see AT&T) that prevent them from unlocking the One X. As you can imagine people weren’t pleased with this situation and ultimately the Android dev community geared up for work. After a few weeks of hacking one crafty XDA member reached the triumphant goal before anyone else. Thanks to grankin01 we now have a round-about way of unlocking the “restriction” ridden bootloader of the AT&T’s One X.
The way in which this process works is by tricking HTC’s unlock tool into thinking the AT&T version of the One X is actually a Canadian One XL. A simple swap of the hex value now disguises the One X as a Rogers One XL and will now be granted full access to the unlock tool. The process is rather lengthy but is actually quite simple in theory so if you are familiar with adb and a hex editor you may want to give it a go. You must be rooted and if you have already manually upgraded your device to the recent OTA leak this will not work for you. If all this sounds like gibberish then I highly recommend waiting for an easier solution. A more user friendly option is bound to pop up sooner or later now that this method has been established.
Jump past the break for full instructions and be sure to head over to XDA to thank grankin01 for this method.
You can’t beat a bit of try before you buy and for all you Galaxy S II owners out there tempted by the Galaxy S III, we’ve got just the ticket for you. Smando from XDA developers has managed to successfully port the TouchWiz launcher from the S III over to the S II and it’s working pretty well with minimal issues. If you’re rocking AOSP then you’re out of luck as it’s only working on standard Samsung ROM’s at this point.
So what are you waiting for? Head on over to the XDA forums to grab the download, just be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments below.