Vast majority of highest grossing Android apps are free in Google Play

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We always knew that many of the free apps available on Google Play were actually some of the highest grossing— there’s no way Gameloft and Rovio (and many other developers) could continuously put out free games and not turn a profit.

In a new statistic from App Annie, it shows that a staggering 96% of the top 100 highest grossing apps in the Play store are actually free to download. Whether its heavy merchandising or in-app purchases, these apps are simply thriving above the rest.

In comparison, only 77% of the highest grossing iPhone apps are free to download, while 69% of the highest grossing iPad apps are free to download from the App Store.

So, developers: perhaps slapping a price tag on that new app of yours isn’t such a great idea after all!

Source: Mashable

CyanogenMod readying Device Finder app, general security improvements for CM builds

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With all of the angst some device owners have over recent incidents of government agencies tapping into user computer data via carriers and major industry players, along with general distrust of what corporations may be doing with user data, the CyanogenMod team is readying some changes and apps to help users be a little more secure. The first change, CyanogenMod Account, has been submitted to the CM Github so developers can review the code and provide some feedback before it is submitted to the nightlies.
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Yahoo! Weather app undergoes redesign, features gorgeous new UI

Yahoo_WeatherThe Yahoo! Weather app has undergone a complete redesign and the results so far look great. It’s got all the same great features that you would expect from any weather app, and also includes detailed information such as 10-day and 24-hour temperature forecasts, interactive radar, satellite, heat, and wind maps, severe weather alerts, animated sunrise & sunset times and wind & pressure modules, humidity sensor, UV index, and chance of precipitation and new home screen widgets. All photos in the app match your location, time of day, and current weather condition— any they aren’t corny mocked up photos either— all photos are submitted by users, which is a really neat feature as well. Check out the app for yourself to see how great the update truly is. Screenshot gallery and link to the app in the Play Store after the break.


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Root Explorer application updated by Koush, adds SuperUser compatibility, multi-file handling

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Koush, from CyanogenMod, has updated his Root Explorer app to version 3.1, which adds ACCESS_SUPERUSER permission for compatibility with latest Superuser version. (Users of Superuser will no longer be warned that Root Explorer has not declared this permission.) Koush also added the ability to change permissions and owners of multiple files at once. All the user has to do is select each file using the check-boxes, and use the action overflow/menu button to change the owner. This certainly makes in-app use more time-efficient for users.

Check out the link to the application in the Play Store after the break.

QR Code generatorPlay Store Download Link

Android 4.3 for Nexus 10 still isn’t supported in AOSP due to GPU driver issues

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Remember those issues with the Nexus 7 factory images that couldn’t be released because of proprietary graphic drivers? Unfortunately, the Nexus 10 seems to be running into a few of the same problems. The GPU binaries are unable to be released to AOSP which prevents developers from building Android 4.3 from source for the Nexus 10. Factory images are still available, but the source-builds are going to be held up by those GPU drivers and binaries.

Jean-Baptiste Queru confirmed the issues on a Google product forum and stated that only Android 4.2.2 could be built for the Nexus 10 until these drivers were released. Until then, a factory image is your best option if you want to tinker around with what Google has available for their flagship 10 inch tablet.

source: Google Developers

Google Forums

via: Android Police

Chromecasting any app that uses video or audio could be coming to CyanogenMod soon

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This is why I love Android. The simple fact that developers can take their stake in a product and customize tools to fit their own (and other users’) needs is a beautiful thing, and is perfectly displayed in what Koush from CyanogenMod has been doing for quite a while now (here, here, here, here, etc.).

Today, Koush announced that he has successfully built Chromecast into the CyonagenMod framework, now allowing any app with audio or video to cast directly to your TV. Yep, that’s right. You don’t have to wait for your favorite application to come out with Chromecast support anymore. So if you were holding off getting Chromecast until that glorious day finally came, it is no longer an acceptable excuse— unless of course you don’t want to load up CyanogenMod onto your phone, which is obviously a huge barrier for many of us that don’t want to deal with the rooting process.

Koush is pretty much breaking records right now considering the amount of stuff he’s developed for Chomecast so far, including streaming local videos/pictures to Chromecast, Dropbox support, RSS video support, and now showing Cast support built into the CM framework. Crazy stuff.

Check out the video after the break of Koush demonstrating it all for you, himself. Let’s hope this becomes available very soon!!


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Smartwatches gaining speed in industry, inWatch One now available with Android 4.0

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There was once a time when smart-watches were merely a concept out of Dick Tracy and Bond films, but these days, they’re more than just real— they’re practical, and becoming more and more popular, as manufacturers continue to jump in with their own versions.

An “inWatch” wristwatch has just been released which features GSM connectivity and even runs a custom build of Android 4.0, which is a huge step up from it’s little brother, “i’mWatch.” The device also ships with a 1.54-inch 240 x 240 capacitive display, a dual-core 1.2 GHz CPU, a 2 megapixel camera and a 500mAh battery. Sounds like the specs of a low end phone from just a few years ago! (Obviously withholding the screen size and battery.)

Alternative connectivity options include WiFi, Bluetooth and GPS radios. The custom Android build is known as “inDroid,” and is created to fit the device’s smaller screen, which works with some of China’s most popular applications including WeChat, Sina Weibo, QQ, and Baidu music.

If you’re interested in this handy little device then head over to the company’s website— price is RMB 1,788 (around $293 USD).

Source: Engadget  

 

Nexus 7 tablet experiencing difficulties in getting factory images available for the masses, causing Jean Baptiste-Queru to give up and leave AOSP all together

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As excited as we are about the ushering of the new Nexus 7 tablet, there have been some quiet— but major technical snafus for the Android hardcore which has resulted in one of the most important pieces of the AOSP disappearing from the project all together. Tech stud Jean Baptiste-Queru officially confirmed the various rumors regarding his AOSP position and thus, confirmed that he was leaving everything all together because of his frustration with the difficulty of getting factory images for the newest Google tablet. Check out the following for his reasoning:

 

Well, I see that people have figured out why I’m quitting AOSP.

 

There’s no point being the maintainer of an Operating System that can’t boot to the home screen on its flagship device for lack of GPU support, especially when I’m getting the blame for something that I don’t have authority to fix myself and that I had anticipated and escalated more than 6 months ahead.

 

The reasoning is certainly legit, but what’s really eye-opening is the part where he talks about a Google flagship device not being able to boot to the home screen because of the lack of GPU support. Android purists will recall that the Nexus 4— which also features a Qualcomm Snapdragon chip— originally didn’t have the factory image and source code released in full. Naturally the issues were addressed, but owners of the device weren’t able to enjoy the true Nexus experience since the source code/factory images couldn’t be modified. Now we’re going through the same exact issue as the Snapdragon-powered Nexus 7 doesn’t have the factory images available to the masses. Is it a coincidence that both devices that two Snapdragon-based Nexus devices have had factory image issues? Probably— but one thing’s definitely for sure: it’s certainly going to suck not having Jean Baptiste Queru for our AOSP needs. Hopefully the Android team will find some sort of fix or remedy for future Nexus devices.

source: Android and me

Moto X Active Display now available on any Android 4.3 device

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One of the best new features on the Moto X is its Active Display Functionality, which periodically displays critical notifications on the lock screen without any user input. If you’re not planning on getting your hands on a Moto X, you’ll still get a chance to try out the new feature thanks to developer niko001 from XDA-Developers, who has developed “ActiveNotifications,” which simulates the Moto X feature on Android 4.3 devices.

Here’s what niko001 had to say about his app:

It uses the new “Notification Listener” service introduced in 4.3 and therefore has minimal impact on your battery. If you own an AMOLED-phone, the “battery saving” feature should work automatically, since black pixels are simply not turned on. The app comes with similar features as the Moto X Active Display (such as not turning on when the device is inside your pocket, purse, or lying face down). Unfortunately, relying on the 4.3 Notification Listener also means that you need a device running Android 4.3 (which are pretty scarce at the moment)…I’ll think about creating a version for older versions of Android if there is enough interest.

So basically the application will currently only run on the Samsung Galaxy S 4 Google Play Edition and the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, but if you’re using custom firmware you can make use of “ActiveNotifications” as well. Check out the link to the app in the Play Store after the break as well as a gallery of screenshots.
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Images of Oppo N-Lens N1 appear, could be the best camera-phone ever

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We haven’t heard much about the upcoming Oppo N-Lens N1 phone, but it could end up being the next best thing to come to market in the camera-phone industry.

Pictures of the phone recently leaked, which suggest that the phone will come with Xenon flash and a 13-MP camera powered by an “Owl” image chip which contributes to better low-light shots.

The phone is expected to sell in China for $480 off-contract, which is pretty expensive for a Chinese phone. There aren’t too many other details about the phone, but you’ll certainly hear it from us when they come around.

Via: PhoneArena
Source: Weibo