You can always count on @evleaks to answer the questions.
We haven’t heard about the legendary wooden backing on the Moto X in quite a while now, but we knew that at some point it would be coming. While the hype surrounding the Moto X is starting to die down a bit, expect it to get a little noisier…
A recent tweet from @evleaks shows Moto Maker offering “Wood” as a backing option for the device.
The Wood backing will cost you an extra $50 and comes in Teak, Ebony, Rosewood, and Bamboo wood tones. Expect the new option to hit Moto Maker sometime in the fourth quarter, which began in the beginning of October… You’ve got two months to go, Motorola.
While the Moto X initially had a way to be rooted with PwnMyMoto, that method was quickly thwarted with an update that was pushed out to the X that also offered camera fixes. There’s finally another rooting solution, thanks to RockMyMoto. The new method uses Saurik’s Cydia Impactor, and a decent amount of ADB commands, which makes the process quite complicated, but it’s still a solution, and developer jcase has provided a video and detailed instructions on the steps required.
If you haven’t yet updated your Moto X, it’s suggested you use the PwnMyMoto method, considering it’s simplicity. If you aren’t sure if you’ve updated yet, try PwnMyMoto first before moving on to RockMyMoto. Details can be found via the source link.
Source: XDA Forum
We now take a break from all this Nexus nonsense to talk about the Moto X’s camera app.
When certain pieces of hardware on devices need to be upgraded, we usually see OTA software updates. However, Motorola is now updating the Moto X camera app through the Play Store.
The device’s camera was one of the weaker features of the phone at launch, and the last OTA update to all Moto X variants greatly improved the performance. But now, Moto has decided that if they want to update the camera (and maybe some other things) more frequently, the faster way to do so is through the Play Store. (Basically, the carriers are constantly getting in the way.)
This is a very welcome change, as maybe other manufacturers will catch on and do the same with many features of the phone that don’t really require an OTA update.
Here’s what the update brings:
- Brightened camera viewfinder so it’s easier to see
- Enabled Quick Capture for more Enterprise users IT policies
- Bug fixes
Hit the break for the link to the app in the Play Store.
If you’re a developer, you’re certainly interested in some of the changes being made in the latest version of Android OS, 4.4 KitKat— this includes new guidelines, orientations, and workflows for user interaction and experience. For development, this includes access to new tools or APIs. Check out some of the videos below!
Google constantly updates Google Now, tweaking small things under the hood, normally without us even knowing it. But with Android 4.4 and the Nexus 5, we’ll see some major changes brought to how the app works, which Android and Chrome OS chief Sundar Pichai explained at a press conference this afternoon.
The plan is the seamlessly blend search results with the apps already installed on your device. For example, when searching for a restaurant, instead of Google Now bringing you to the clunky OpenTable mobile site, you’ll have the app opened with exactly what you’re looking for, right then and there. Same goes for the AllRecipes app when looking for recipes, and a select number of apps. The new features should roll out by mid-November, and an API will also be released which will allow all developers to enable their apps for this functionality.
Wireless charging isn’t anything new when it comes to Nexus devices, and Google-branded charging pads aren’t anything new either— the Nexus 4 launched with a dock/charger for the device last year.
But this year, Google has redesigned its wireless charging pad, changing up its design and adding magnets for improved device stability.
The charger is also glossy on top, and no longer features a sticky, dust-collecting rubber finish. The new model is compatible with both the Nexus 5 and the new Nexus 7.
It’s also expected that Qi-compatible devices will also work with the pad (last year’s Nexus 4), but only phones with magnets inside of them will actually stick to the charger.
The device should be available on the Play Store online today, but pricing and shipping availability information is not yet available.
Hit the break for info on new cases from Google and LG.
Google has officially taken the wrapper off the newest version of their operating system, Android 4.4 KitKat. The first device to get KitKat will be the Nexus 5 announced today by Google with owners of all Nexus 4, Nexus 7 and Nexus 10 devices getting the update over the next several weeks. Google also indicates owners of the Google Play Edition versions of the Samsung Galaxy S4 and the HTC One will receive KitKat as well.
One of the key benefits of KitKat we have been hearing about is the attempt to make the latest version of Android run on lower and middle tier devices. Google confirmed this effort is part of the release of KitKat and is called Project Svelte. The memory footprint and management of several components of the operating system, all the way down to the kernel, have been optimized to be able to run “comfortably” on as little as 512MB of RAM. These optimizations even extend to specific apps like Chrome and YouTube. Read more
Although Sprint isn’t considered the top wireless carrier in the country, it’s still very much in the race, and its new ‘Spark’ technology could very well make it a very appealing option.
Sprint claims that its new technology reaches peak rates of 50 to 60Mbps.
How long will we have to wait to see Spark? Well it’s actually rolling out today in five select regions: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami, and Tampa. It’s also expected to reach over 100 million Americans by the end of 2014, and will be implemented in over 100 cities over the next three years.
However, current smartphones won’t be able to take advantage of this new technology. Devices have to have tri-band hardware— the first of such devices should be arriving from LG, HTC, and Samsung in November.
Hopefully this new technology will make data speeds a whole lot faster not only for Sprint customers, but for all wireless users everywhere.
Hit the break for the full press release:
One of the main criticisms of the Galaxy Gear at launch was that it was only compatible with the Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy Note 10.1.
Now, Samsung has begun adding support for the device to many other phones in the United States. The support will come via software update, which will soon come to the Galaxy S4, Galaxy Note II, and the Galaxy S III.
For some, the software update will come today, but it should go out to everyone over the coming weeks depending on exact model and carrier.
Ever wanted to mirror your Android device in your browser? Such a thing is quickly coming into fruition as the famous Android developer, Koush, teased all of us a short video of his latest project which does just that. Before watching the video, I expected it to be a bit choppy, but to my surprise it looks great and very fluid for an early preview.
Sadly Koush reveals no other information about the project, much less a release date, but I’m sure he will when the time is right. Check out the video after the break and let us know if it’s something you would use yourself!