New KitKat build KRT16S being pushed out to squash bugs

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Google has started to push out updated code for Android 4.4 KitKat on Nexus 4, Nexus 7 and Nexus 10 devices. The build, KRT16S, replaces the version that was released last week, KRT16O. Google indicates that factory images and proprietary binaries will also be available shortly. No details have been released about what is different in this latest version or what specific bugs are addressed that required such a quick release. There is no indication that the Nexus 5 is being impacted by this new build.

source: Android Build group

Google engineer explains white status bar icons and connectivity in Quick Settings

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The shift from blue to white icons in the status bar was one of the many visual changes to Android 4.4 KitKat. Another change was the location of your connectivity’s status. Prior to KtiKat, a gray internet or WiFi icon meant you had no internet connection; however, this is now orange and in a new location. Pulling down the status bar, you’ll see your usual notifications. Tap on the top right icon and you’ll see Quick Settings. If your connection is orange, you have no connectivity.

Google engineer Dan Sandler explained the reasoning on Google+. The white icons are much easier to see on a transparent background and blue could clash with a user’s wallpaper. The connectivity indicators were sent over to Quick Settings because of confusion among users. They had no idea what the change from blue to gray meant. And the up/down arrows for data are also in Quick Settings because it was using a fairly good amount of computing power just to display that information every time data was used.

Source: +Dan Sandler
Via: Android Police

Nexus 7 and Nexus 10 do not have Google Experience Launcher after Android 4.4 KitKat update

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According to a Nexus 7 owner over on Reddit, that device and the Nexus 10 do not have the Google Experience Launcher after receiving today’s update to Android 4.4 KitKat. As we noted last week, Google said that the Google Experience Launcher would remain exclusive to the Nexus 5 because they want “to see how users take to the Launcher on Nexus 5 before it offers it on other devices.” This Nexus 7 owner says the only changes he notices are the different icons for apps like Settings and Camera and the switch from blue to white in the notification bar. The update did not bring Google Now on the far-left of the home screen and still has the home screen count at five.

Source: Reddit

CyanogenMod Installer becomes official as it hits the Google Play Store

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ROM flashing has just become that much easier for all of us. Today, Cyanogen and his team have officially released their much anticipated CM Installer into the Google Play Store. While flashing ROM’s may be easy and 2nd nature to some, it can be scary and difficult to venture into for others. Now with the CM Installer, having CyanogenMod on your Android device is just “a click” away, so to speak. Just make sure your device is part of the “supported device list” and you can give it a shot. QR code and Play Store link will be after the break along with the full press release.

Android 4.3 update arrives on US Cellular Samsung Galaxy S 4

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Android 4.3 is eventually making its way to all versions of the Samsung Galaxy S 4. Following the Sprint and Verizon S4s getting 4.3 last week, it’s US Cellular’s turn to get the new software. In addition to 4.3, firmware version R970VXUAMJA brings Galaxy Gear support, Samsung’s KNOX enterprise security suite, and various bundled apps including Mobile TV, Slacker Radio and Amazon Shopping.

We’re still waiting for 4.3 to land on the AT&T and T-Mobile S4s. According to a leaked timetable, it looks like they will come on November 13 and 18, respectively.

Source: Samsung Support

Motorola files patent for “smart tattoo” on throat

Wearable Tattoo

We’ve seen some pretty crazy patents filed in the past few months, and simultaneously, wearables are becoming more and more popular in the mobile device industry.

But it still may be a bit surprising to find out that Motorola has just filed a patent for a “smart tattoo” which would be placed on one’s throat, and would act as a microphone to improve voice quality so well that you would be nearly crystal clear on the other end.

Most of these far-out patents don’t go into too much detail about how they will work, but Motorola’s filing actually gets pretty extensive. Hit the source link below for more information.

A lot of people think this idea is extremely ridiculous, and this could never possibly reach the market and be successful, but we have certainly been surprised before.

Via: Android Guys
Source: US Patent and Trademark Office

Images hint that Android 4.4.1 will come in the near future

Chromium

It’s almost a given that Android will get better and better with age. New updates are constantly being pushed, both by Google and the manufacturers which build your devices. Every once in a while, Google will release a new version of their operating system. And sometimes, we find out about them right after the announcement of the last.

That’s exactly the case we have here before us today, as a leaked image off the Chromium site depicting build KOT31B. Myce.com believes that this is the second version of Android Kit Kat 4.4 OS, possibly 4.4.1. It’s not expected to be full of new features like Android 4.4 was, but the usual bug fixes/performance updates will certainly be welcome.

Hit the break for the full image.

Google Glass ‘XE11’ update release notes posted by Google

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If you want to know all the details regarding Glass’ XE11 update, Google has just posted everything on their support site.

Here are some of the highlights:

Personalized search results have been updated, so that you can program “Home” and “Work” to the exact addresses. Directions will now be much more convenient. You can also search your Google Calendar, and see everything that’s coming up on your schedule.

There’s also an updated “swipe to setup” screen. If your device is new, you’ll see this right away but otherwise you’ll have to do a factory reset if you’re really that interested.

When you’re connected to Glass, you’ll also see a shortcut to Screencast in your notifications drawer on your phone.

Long press is also gone. To search, now you can just tap the touchpad three times while the display is off, or say “Ok Glass/Google” from the home screen.

Source: Google Support

 

Google Experience Launcher exclusive to the Nexus 5 for now

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For now, the Google Experience Launcher will remain available only on the Nexus 5. Google has told The Verge that its exclusivity could extend to last year’s Nexus 4, but for now they’re analyzing how users handle it on the newest Nexus device. Another possibility is for the Google Experience Launcher to be made available in the Play Store; however, that is likely far off as they would rather like to see devices get upgraded to the latest software version. So if you don’t have the Nexus 5, hang tight or see if there’s a KitKat ROM or leaked build available for your device. They’re showing up quite frequently. Hit the break for the full quote on what Google shared with The Verge.

LG encouraging app development for IR by making loaner devices available

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LG would really like to “inspire some great new apps” from developers that capitalize on the infrared remote sensor capabilities of their devices. To help bring that about, LG is making loaner devices available to programmers that want to work with LG’s new QRemote SDK in making those apps a reality. To take advantage of the program, developers will have to register at an LG Device Loaner Program website and complete an order form. If approved, the developer will receive the requested LG device, including the LG G2, for up to 30-days at no cost other than return shipping.

LG says the program was previewed last week at their LG Android Developers’ VIP event in San Francisco when the LG QRemote SDK was officially launched. Cecilia Son, LG’s mobile developer relations head says the response was very positive with several developers noting LG was “doing it right” in taking this approach.

Check out the full press release after the break for more details and information on how to sign up if you think you may qualify.

Leaked screenshot of Moto Maker shows wood backing option, should come in next two months

Wood Back Evleaks

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.

Source: @evleaks

RockMyMoto allows Moto X root after camera update

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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

 

Moto X camera app now being updated through the Play Store

Motorola Camera

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.