Thursday, 24 July 2014

OnePlus posts the AOSP image for the One

So, I've enjoyed my One thus far.  It's not bad, but I definitely have noticed the 'cracks in the facade'.  I've been having some touchscreen issues and the yellow is really predominant (whether it's that bad, or it's more likely that once you see it, you can't un-see it).

But the catchphrase of "Never Settle" has come in to echo today as they have officially released an option for the phone with the AOSP version ROM.

To use it, you'll have to factory unlock the phone (which I'm surprised it didn't come with already), and then flash your favourite custom recovery, then wipe, then flash the new ROM (and the accompanying GAPPS).

Doesn't make sense to you?  Then don't worry.

I'm willing to give it a go.  I'm still a bit chuffed that I have to factory unlock my phone (fastboot oem unlock here I come), which means wiping everything and then resetting it all back up.  I'd do it now, but there's no wifi around for me to use to set it up.  I was going to have to do it anyways to get myself root (as the OnePlus doesn't work with TowelRoot)

Take heed that there are some bugs with the AOSP:  gyroscope and VPN issues.  For what I'm using, it's probably ok.  Plus, if it fixes the touchscreen issues I'm having... all the better!

My only concern would be how are they going to continue to support it?  Will it get updates as per Google/Nexus, or is it up to OnePlus to deploy?


Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Google Play Store gets an Android L facelift

So I think most of us were impressed with what we saw of Android L back at I/O.

Well, it looks like they're readying our eyeballs for that new Material look with the new Google Play Store update to 4.9.13.

The front of the store doesn't look much different, but when you look at a specific app, you see the elements come into play, plus a much more 'front facing' video of the app, then the description, then screenshots.  I like the focus on the video.

Scrolling down you see the top element bar come into view.

Not bad.

If you haven't got the update +Android Police have you covered:

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

How do I use my Android device?

When it comes to using my android device every day it's usually pretty simple. My phone is my primary device for everything I do in general.

It all starts with a solid base and you can't have a more solid base then Nova Launcher Prim or Apex. Honestly two of the really hard to beat launcher. There's a few contenders like Go Launcher EX.

I'm not one to use the standard Android look that typically comes with every handset. I try to customize it as much as I can with whatever is available.

Anything from the clock to the notification bar. Make it your own.

Sad to say that people even today don't understand that with Android it's not about being XYZ is about making it your own experience and get people to say WOW.

Let's start running down the items I use on a regular basis. Yeah I have a phone icon but at the most in the month I'll maybe use the phone for 30mins at the most. My smartphone is really not being used a telephone device.

I'll be using text messages, emails. Now here's the part that probably most of you won't know from looking at my home screen, but I'm using hidden folders to store the various apps I use often. Before I go forward it's important to know that my internet icon is linked to chrome, the camera is linked to the Google camera app, email is CloudMagic, messages is stock CM11 sms app. Now this is currently but that could change by tomorrow morning.

I'm always playing around with apps so this may change.

Check these screen captures right below:

I use 2 folders one tools and one social. From the different apps I have in each one of them  your able to understand my logic behind it. These are the most used apps on my phone at any given time.

I'm able from here to access all my social apps, pictures, file browser, contact, emails, txt messages, camera etc. By nature I strive to make everything simple for me. People should look at they're smartphone as an extension of yourself and the home computer. There's still quite a lot you can't do from a smartphone due to screen limitation.

Most of us will use our smartphone and make part of our social life, Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Instagram and so on. We rely on our smartphone as if it was our BFF! If you'd like to take it a step further, we do our online banking, pay bills, transfer money and even pay for a purchase on ebay or at your favourite coffee joint.

Tell me, what do you use your smartphone in your daily life?

OnePlus Blizzzard of Invites

Love it or hate it, the Invite System that +OnePlus is using is still there, and there are tons of people still clamouring for an invite.

There's another contest for invites (or even bamboo cover).  5,000 invites will be given out after they close at 1015EDT on July 23rd.

Just gotta jump through a few hoops, fortunately, nothing tiresome.  Just like their page (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram) and/or post on the forum.


Tylt's Energi 2K now available for purchase

+TYLT is one of my favourite accessory companies.  They make some truly great products that not only work well and look cool, they are really built well.

Recently they have had one of their battery packs up on crowd-funding, but it's now available for purchase!  The Energi 2K is a wall adapter to help you charge up your phone when you can find an outlet, but also a built-in 2200mAh battery that you can use when you're not near a socket.

2200mAh may not seem much when many of the new flagships are running at 3000mAh, but the fact that it can plug in directly to the wall a) saves you having to lug a spare adapter AND a battery pack, b) let's you charge up the battery and your phone at the same time.

Not bad for $40 (consider what you'd pay for a decent wall charger AND a battery pack).

Now it says it's ready to buy, but when I go to the site it's still not listing, so you may have to wait a day or so before the website catches up to the news release!


Monday, 21 July 2014

Ryan & Sivan discuss the Oppo Find 7 and OnePlus One

Join us tonight for a quick online hangout to discuss the Oppo Find 7 and the OnePlus One.

Sivan will be showing off the Find 7, and I'll be showcasing the OnePlus

If you have any questions about either phone, just leave it in the comments and we'll address during our time on air!  I've even put on the Q&A option, so if you're watching and think of something, just pop it in!

The event will be at 10PM EDT.

Moto E now available at Staples

The ever economically priced Moto E is now available at Staples!

Remember, for $180 you get a pretty decent phone that's easily something your mother might like and actually use.

  • 4.5" @ 960x540
  • 1.2GHz x2 Snapdragon 200w/ 1GB RAM
  • 4GB storage
Pretty good device for the price.  And with near stock, the phone is gaining every update in a super timely manner.

Are you picking it up as a backup/burner?


OnePlus One Quick Impressions review

So as of Saturday night I plopped my SIM card into my new OnePlus One... until then I had been playing around with the settings and getting acquainted with the form factor and all things Cyanogen, which I hadn't used in quite some time.

After a weekend of my use what do I have to report?  Here's my quick impressions after a couple days.

And if you're looking for something more in depth; sit tight - as +Sylvain Le Bourhis will be getting his device this week too, we'll do a tandem review soon.

TL;DR - phone is pretty 'meh', nothing wowing to me.

Saturday, 19 July 2014

Joy Pinpoint Precision Stylus

I keep shopping instead of requesting products for review. This time I got the Joy Pinpoint Stylus when I went to Staples to pick up some ink for my printer.

Heavenly themes with the help of Zooper Widget Pro

Have you ever heard of Zooper Widget Pro? Until about 2 years ago I hadn't. When I got introduce to it, I felt inadequate because it completely confused me and I didn't understand its use.

I'm hands on, so for me to just read up on how to use was more like chinese. I understood the principal but until someone showed me how-to use it and the power it has it was a complete mystery.

With this I'm going to talk about one themer in particular +Roku. He brings a variety of themes for Zooper Widget Pro that are fierce! I'll be making an overview of Watch Dogs Uber Pnwed Update. If your in the gaming field you'll know exactly that this is basically to mimic the hacking phone that your character is using in the game.

Roku has gone to great length to bring you a solid theme and I'll show you more in details what's available within the packages.

It's important to remember that although there's a free version of Zooper Widget, Roku indicates that this will only be possible if you used the PRO version of the app. Also important to know that he has no links to the Zooper Widget Pro app as this belongs to a different developer.

A couple of screen capture later and you have the different section of the theme package that you can use with Zooper Widget Pro. The possibilities are endless really. It all depends of your creativity and how you'll use the widget.

Check out my own setup for this: (A few adjustment had to be made within Zooper Widget Pro)