lundi 30 avril 2018

Xiaomi Mi 6 and Motorola Moto Z receive official LineageOS 15.1

LineageOS 15.1, the popular Android 8.1 Oreo-based custom ROM, was released in late February for a handful of devices. The official roster has since expanded to include devices like the Google Nexus Player, OnePlus 2, Google Nexus 6, and Exynos Samsung Galaxy S9/S9+ among others. Starting today, official 15.1 builds for the Xiaomi Mi 6 and Motorola Moto Z are available.

The Motorola Moto Z was released in mid-2016 with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 system-on-chip and Android Marshmallow, but it has received official updates to Android Nougat and Android Oreo. The Xiaomi Mi 6 was released in mid-2017 with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 system-on-chip and Android Nougat, but it too has received an official update to Android Oreo. Thus, both devices are capable of running Oreo, but for those of you who want an alternative to the OEM experience can now choose to flash official LineageOS 15.1 if you want.

For those of you who are wondering what features are available on the Android 8.1 Oreo-based release of LineageOS, check out our previous article that covers most of the features present in the release. If you want to download the release, then you can do so at the following links to the LineageOS website for each device:

Download LineageOS 15.1 for the Xiaomi Mi 6

Download LineageOS 15.1 for the Motorola Moto Z

Furthermore, we recommend you check out the official XDA forum for each device. Here, you can discuss the latest release as well as any tips, tricks, or other modifications for the devices.

Xiaomi Mi 6 Forum

Motorola Moto Z Forum

There are certainly other Android 8.1 Oreo custom ROMs for each device, but LineageOS is one of the ROMs that many people opt to wait for because of its strict requirements for inclusion on the official build roster. The ROM team members try to avoid releasing buggy builds such as the recent port of Android P to the Moto Z, but it’s up to you what bugs you are or aren’t able to deal with. For those of you who want a stable, fairly bug-free experience, then you may want to give the official LineageOS 15.1 builds a shot.

In other news, the Google Nexus 4 (mako) and Xiaomi Mi Mix 2 (chiron) were also added to the official build roster, but those builds will be made available next week. Once they go live, we’ll let you know.



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How to install LineageOS 15.1 on the Razer Phone

Google’s work that was done to create Project Treble has helped to rejuvenate the custom ROM community. Some devices that could take weeks to get working AOSP-based ROMs can run such custom ROM with a lot less effort. XDA Recognized and Social Contributor linuxct has been tinkering with Generic System Images on the Razer Phone since the Android Oreo Developer Preview was made available to the public. With some effort and help from the community, linuxct was able to install Android 8.1 Oreo-based LineageOS 15.1 onto the device. To give back to the community they have created a step by step guide that walks you through the entire process of installing LineageOS 15.1 from start to finish.

Razer Phone LineageOS 15.1 Razer Phone LineageOS 15.1 Razer Phone LineageOS 15.1

If you’re curious about what features the custom ROM has to offer, then check out our previous article that goes in-depth with the list of features. There’s a lot that the ROM brings to the table, especially since the device’s software is fairly close to stock Android without all the bells and whistles you might find in other OEM devices.

Initially, there were some bugs that caused various features to not work (including 4G LTE and audio output during phone calls) but these have since been fixed. Check out the guide below to learn more if you want to install a custom ROM on your device! Since the Razer Phone is Treble-compatible, that means you can also follow the guide to install Resurrection Remix or pure AOSP as well, as explained in the guide below.


How to install LineageOS 15.1 on the Razer Phone



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Get a dark theme for Sony devices running Nougat with Substratum

Substratum is the current go-to theme engine of choice for the majority of the Android enthusiasts within the community. It offers a robust platform for designers who want use their talents to customize the look and feel of both the Android operating system as well as individual applications. Different smartphone OEMs implement certain features that designers can include in their themes to offer complete support for certain devices. XDA Senior Member balrajs99 wanted to do this for Sony devices that are currently running Android 7.x Nougat, so they released a Substratum theme called Graphi.

Graphi is a dark theme that gives you the ability to choose the background and accent color you like the most. The developers want you to make sure you download Substratum from the thread linked below and that you don’t update it via the Play Store if you want to use this theme. It has been personally tested by this developer on the Xperia Z5 on Android Nougat but we’re told that it should work on all Sony devices running Nougat and Substratum.


Check out Graphi  in our Sony Themes and Apps forum



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GCam Tool 2.0 Moves all Google Camera Photos to any Folder, Prevents Flipping of Selfies and More

We’ve reported a lot on the Google Camera with HDR+ port here on XDA, and various developers have figured out how to get more of the features working on our devices. While lots of work has been done with the application in getting it working on as many devices as possible, not a whole lot of work has been done outside of the application. There’s not been much by the way of companion applications. Reddit user /u/naveenjn has created GCam Tool 2.0, which allows you to move all Google Camera photos to any folder on your device and prevent the flipping of selfies. It was initially created to move portrait mode photos to another folder due to how it took multiple photos in their own folder, but it grew from there.

The app is fairly simple and easy to use and costs $1 if you want to unlock all the features like selfie flipping. This feature is necessary as unlike most camera applications, the selfie camera does not allow the option for you to save the image you see in the camera viewfinder. As a result, selfies you take will be saved flipped. GCam Tool 2.0 will flip this back to the right way around if you enable that feature, before saving it. It’s simple and it solves one of the bigger complaints Google Camera has had since its release.

If you still use any of the Google Camera applications, then this app is for you. If you want to save your photos to an SD card, it’s the best solution available currently. If you don’t like your selfies being flipped when you take them, then this app is also for you. It’s got plenty of small features that anyone can benefit from, so give GCam Tool 2.0 a try and see what you think. It might just make taking photos that much easier.

GCam Tool (Free+, Google Play) →



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Samsung Galaxy S9/S9+ with 128GB and 256GB of storage will be available May 1st

The Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+ launched a short time ago with 64GB of storage as the default option. For the vast majority of people, 64GB is a perfectly fine amount of storage. Especially if you use a lot of cloud storage and media streaming services. However, people who like to take a lot of photos and videos may run out of space. Samsung is launching more storage options to cater to those folks.

Starting May 1st, Samsung will offer 128GB and 256GB storage options for the Galaxy S9 and S9+. They are the exact same phones that launched previously with 64GB of storage, just with more storage. Same processor, same battery, same display, same everything. The only other difference is the price. You’ll be paying a pretty penny to get the extra storage space. Here’s how the pricing breaks down:

Galaxy S9 Galaxy S9+
128GB $769.99 $819.99
256GB $889.99 $939.99

The prices equal an extra $50 for each storage upgrade. Keep in mind you can still use a microSD card to expand storage up to 400GB with any of the models. These extra storage options will be available for pre-order on May 1st. They will begin shipping on May 18th. Anyone who buys any Galaxy S9/S9+ between May 1-17 will get a free pair of Gear IconX Bluetooth earbuds or a discount on the Gear S3 Frontier. Samsung is only selling the extra storage version on their own website. You won’t find them at carrier stores or Best Buy.


Source: Samsung



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Early First Look at the Honor 10

XDA has an early look at the upcoming Honor 10 phone. In this video we will unbox the new device and take a close look at it.

The Honor 10 shares the same Kirin 970 chipset found in the Honor View 10 and Huawei P20. This means that the same AI-powered camera is in the Honor 10, but this time it comes with Semantic Image Segmentatio technology. The camera can detect multiple scenes within the same frame and apply multiple filters precisely, creating much better looking photos. We have a full review on this camera in the near future.

Honor 10 Specs
Display 5.84″ 1080x2280p
Camera 16+24MP / 24MP
RAM 4/6GB
Chipset Kirin 970
Storage 65/128GB
Battery 3400mAh
OS Android 8.1

Honor 10 Forums
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Dublin Tech Summit 2018: Cybersecurity, Artificial Intelligence, and Privacy

I had the pleasure of attending this year’s Dublin Tech Summit which took place at Dublin’s Convention Centre on April 18th and April 19th. A number of famous faces were there, from the “e-celebrities” like YouTuber Casey Neistat to the geekier such as Jordan Evans of the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). There was something for everyone and there was generally somebody that you had heard of giving a presentation. While Casey Neistat focused on his life growing up and how he became a YouTuber, Jordan Evans talked about the work JPL was currently undertaking and their hopes for the future. Both presentations came with a lot of “fun” attached – information laced in with some comedy. Despite the seemingly lighthearted nature of the conference, things became a little more serious when Michael Chertoff, former United States Secretary of Homeland Security took to the stage to talk about cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, and privacy.

His talk, entitled “Exploding data: Reclaiming our Cyber Security in the Digital Age” initially focused largely on terrorism, opening his talk by giving examples of the ramifications of 9/11 and how it affected world travel as a whole. He focused heavily on how terrorism has molded much of our lives and how the Afghanistanian invasion happened as a result. Then came the kicker – the US had access to data collection methods that meant it could potentially have been prevented, but they simply hadn’t used them. He stated that if it had been planned the same way now as it had back then, the FBI would likely have intervened long before any lives were in danger.

So why didn’t the US collect this data?

Chertoff puts it pretty simply, explaining how the US government just never really thought about it. In the aftermath of 9/11, they discovered that the people’s data could be used almost as a radar to detect those who stand up as potential risks to the state. Then comes the question of privacy, where he admits that surveillance occasionally goes too far when it comes to the invasion of privacy. He uses examples of new machine learning algorithms used in x-ray machines in the airport. Despite being more invasive than ever, he asks if how that data is being used matters. Commercial companies use our data to exploit us for profit, while these machine learning algorithms simply are doing it to keep us safe. He also mentions that these x-ray machines being entirely operated by artificially intelligent machines means that nobody is actually looking at you, it’s all a machine. He brings up concerns about “Big Brother” in the book Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell, and how corporations have not just our data, but our subconscious data. Thanks to artificial intelligence, in ways we are worse off. It’s not just where you drive, he explains, it’s how and why you drive. In his opinion, it’s not just about hiding your data, it’s about controlling your data.

One of the biggest challenges we face in legislating for the coming of new technologies and even more intrusive algorithms is the age of said legislators, Chertoff continues. People who do not understand a topic completely should not be the ones to make rulings on it. He then mentions The Two Cultures, the first part of a Rede Lecture written by C.P. Snow. It’s a thesis which analyses how we have split mainly into two cultures as a society: science and humanities (or philosophy).

“We need to understand that as we design things, what are the ethical and philosophical implications?” Chertoff asks. “We need to bring philosophers and scientists together.”

As far as cybersecurity goes, he wouldn’t panic but he also agrees that there is a need for legislation particularly when it comes to the Internet of Things devices and companies should be held accountable for their security. Massive DDoS attacks have been made possible because of the existence of mundane devices like baby monitors simply because of the lack of care from these companies. There is no regulation or provisions for updating them in terms of vulnerabilities.

In closing, Chertoff tells us to judge if what we are doing is beneficial to ourselves when we provide our data to these companies. Calibrate your engagement based on how beneficial it is to yourself. You can’t get paranoid and disengage with everything, but at the same time, don’t become complacent either. He then says that while crossing the road can be risky, if you’ll look both ways you’ll probably be fine. Look both ways when you provide your data, make sure you know what exactly it is you’re getting into.

He sees the GDPR as a good thing, pressuring companies into choosing the data they want to take wisely. The US can definitely benefit from something similar. He brings it back to artificial intelligence. When all that’s looking at your data is a machine, then where does the privacy violation begin? This is when philosophers join the design process, and he believes that there are discussions that need to be had not just about spying, but about the spying he says is deemed a necessary violation of privacy.


So what are your thoughts? What do you think about companies harvesting your data for a potentially mutual benefit? Is it a violation of privacy? Let us know in the comments!



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Xiaomi Mi A1 Android 8.1 Oreo beta update leaks with May security patch

Earlier today we broke news about the Xiaomi Mi A1’s successor. The Mi A1 was Xiaomi’s first Android One device and their CEO said there would be more this year. However, that doesn’t mean the original is getting left by the wayside. Android 8.1 Oreo beta ROM has leaked for the Mi A1 and you can download it right now.

xiaomi m1 a1 android 8.1

Users in the Xiaomi Mi A1 XDA forum have already got the update up and running, as you can see in the screenshot above. This is a leaked update to the beta ROM and it is still very much a beta. Currently, the stock camera doesn’t work but Google Camera ports are working. There aren’t a ton of new features going from Android 8.0 to Android 8.1. One noticeable difference is the black theme when you use a dark wallpaper. The other big thing is the May security patch, which isn’t even available on Pixel phones yet.

Users are reporting that Treble is not enabled and they don’t see the new adaptive icons. The new Power menu is included and VoLTE does appear to be working, but there is no logo. If you would like to try this beta update on your device, you can find the download link below. You will need to flash it through TWRP. Keep in mind there are bugs present in this release. Visit the Mi A1 forum link below to report on your findings. We expect the official OTA release to be available in the coming weeks.


Download  Android 8.1 ZIP Source: Xiaomi Mi A1 Forum



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Automatically timestamp and organize your photos with Picture Manager

Organizing all of the photos we take on our smartphones isn’t something that most people want to do manually. Cloud storage services like Google Photos can organize the photos you upload, but there are some people who want to keep their pictures private. This is where Picture Manager from XDA Recognized Developer j to the 4n becomes quite useful. The app can automatically timestamp and organize your pictures in a number of different ways. For instance, you can have Picture Manager move all photographs into folders that are organized by year and month, or even by the year, month, and day. Not only that, but you can also have the application rename the photograph with the proper timestamp. Picture Manager requires an Android 5.0 Lollipop device or higher to work but it’s free (with in-app purchases). It also comes with a Tasker plugin that enables you to start a batch process on different events (such as time, when a USB device is connected, etc.).

Picture Manager - Timestamp and Organize (Free+, Google Play) →


Check out Picture Manager in our Apps and Games forum



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Solid Explorer Is Now Optimized For Android TV And Chrome OS

In the years since it was released, Solid Explorer has built its reputation as one of the top file managers available for Android. It was installed over a million times and has a rating of 4.6 in Google Play Store. The popular file manager has finally made its way to Android TV and Chrome OS.

Usually, Android TV devices are shipped without any file manager. A user needs to go to the Play Store and install one to manage files. By all means, it’s not an easy task. While there are a lot of managers available, not many offer similar quality as FX File Explorer or Solid Explorer. The latter is finally available on Android TV and gets along nicely with every remote controller.

A version compatible with Android TV brings the same interface as the mobile app. By default, it opens two columns that allow moving files conveniently. When your system is rooted, you can even easily edit build.prop or other data without additional applications.

The newest Solid Explorer is also optimized to work on Chrome OS. Google’s operating system is first non-mobile OS that received official support from a Polish company NeatBytes. Before installing, please keep in mind that you can freely use the application for 14 days. After the testing period, you can either buy a license via in-app purchase or uninstall it. To get the latest version of Solid Explorer, head over to Play Store.

Solid Explorer File Manager (Free+, Google Play) →



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Honor 7X Android Oreo update now rolling out in the U.S.

The Honor 7X, a mid-range smartphone from Huawei’s sub-brand Honor, was launched with Android Nougat-based EMUI 5.1 out-of-the-box. However, the company had promised at the time of launch that the device would eventually receive the Android Oreo-based EMUI 8.0 update. Making good on its promise the company is rolling out the EMUI 8.0 update for the Honor 7X.

Starting today, Honor 7X owners in the U.S. will start receiving the official stable EMUI 8.0 OTA. The update is based on Android 8.0 Oreo and brings along many EMUI 8.0 enhancements. Speaking of the Android Oreo goodies, users can look forward to features such as Notifications Dots, picture-in-picture mode, autofill password manager, support for adaptive icons, and Instant Apps just to name a few. The EMUI 8.0 features include a new floating navigation dock, Face Unlock, updated settings menu, and more.

Here’s the full list of EMUI 8.0 features coming with this update, according to the official changelog:

  • New floating navigation dock: With the newly added home screen shortcut, the floating navigation dock lets users navigate and operate their device from anywhere on the screen.
  • Updated setting menu and Phone Manager: The redesigned Settings menu is clearer and more intuitive. The updated Phone Manager automatically optimizes the system based on usage patterns, keeping the smartphone running at top performance all the me.
  • Phone gallery recycle bin: Users can now restore photos and videos if they accidentally delete them. The Gallery in the new UI features a recycle bin which retains deleted photos and videos for 30 days.
  • Seamless LinkedIn integration: Contacts and Email in EMUI 8.0 let users sync the career details of their LinkedIn contacts, making it faster and easier to manage contacts across platforms.
  • Link up two Bluetooth device: Smartphones are now able to connect to two Bluetooth devices at the same me, boosting mobile experience and fun.
  • Face unlock: Scans a recognized user’s face to unlock instantly. It also prevents unlocking with closed eyes, and allows only device owners to see lock screen notification details, ensuring maximum security.

As we previously learned with the EMUI 8 beta, the update also brings Project Treble support for the device, which adds the device to the short list of devices that has officially received Treble support with the Android Oreo update. That means that Honor 7X owners can opt to flash a Generic System Image based on AOSP Android Oreo such as LineageOS 15.1 if they choose.

The OTA has already begun rolling out and Honor 7X owners residing in the U.S. can look forward to receiving the EMUI 8.0 update in the coming days. As always is the case with staged rollouts, however, it might take some time for the OTA to reach all devices. Unfortunately, the company didn’t give any details on when it will expand the rollout to other markets. But here’s to hoping it will be sooner rather than later.

The Honor 7X was originally launched in China back in October of last year and was later brought to the international market in December along with the Honor View 10. It packs a 5.93-inch 18:9 display, HiSilicon Kirin 659 SoC, 4GB of RAM, 16MP rear and 8MP front cameras and a 3,340mAh battery.



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LG Watch Timepiece is arriving with Wear OS and no NFC

With smartwatches seemingly on the rise, LG will be launching a new smartwatch known as the LG Watch Timepiece, according to AndroidHeadlines. Not only is this the first LG smartwatch that will be released since the LG Watch Sport, but it will also be the first smartwatch to launch with Wear OS. Wear OS is the rebranding of Android Wear and is essentially the same software with a new name. We know basically everything about the device, except for what it looks like and how much it will cost.

The most interesting feature of the device is that while it will feature a 1.2-inch 360×360 circular LCD display underneath regular analogue watch hands. This smartwatch analogue watch hybrid should make for some cool and interesting potential features in the future. They can relay information by acting like a compass, stopwatch, altimeter, timer, or even a barometer. It’s unknown how annoying it will be to have the watch-hands over the display, but hopefully, it works fine in practice. With an IP68 dust and water resistance, this smartwatch will be absolutely fine for those wanting an activity tracker that can be used in the majority of sporting activities.

In terms of specifications, the first thing you’ll likely notice is the lack of NFC or GPS support. Apart from that, the watch comes powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 2100 and 768MB of RAM. It’s a bit disappointing that the same SoC that was found in smartwatches like the Huawei Watch 2 is still being launched in smartwatches in 2018. Also worth noting is the 4GB of eMMC storage and 240mAh battery. Once depleted, the analogue hands will still work for about 4 days. It will also charge with a USB-C port. It will have Bluetooth 4.2 support, along with Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n.

As for add-ons, it will arrive with a silicone rubber strap that can be swapped out for other straps of the same size (22mm) along with a charging cradle as well.

The LG Watch Timepiece is rumoured to be announced on Monday with two colour options: Aurora Black and Cloud Silver. It’s likely to be available sometime in June, but it’s unknown how much it will cost. There will apparently be mild differences between versions launched in different regions.


Source: AndroidHeadlines



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dimanche 29 avril 2018

Massive 18.4″ Samsung Galaxy View receives unofficial LineageOS 15.1

Although smartphones have gotten larger and larger, tablets have mostly been pretty consistent with display sizes ranging from 7-inches to 10-inches measured diagonally. The bezel-less trend hasn’t caught on with tablets (as it doesn’t really make much sense for them), though more devices have shifted to 4:3 displays to match the iPad. In late 2015, the Samsung Galaxy View was released with a massive 18.4″ 1080p display to buck the trend. It was an experiment that the company (nor anyone else) hasn’t attempted since. Official software releases have long since ceased for the device, but now work has started on bringing Android 8.1 Oreo-based LineageOS 15.1 to the device.

Samsung Galaxy View LineageOS 15.1

Top: Samsung Galaxy View. Bottom left to right: Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4, iPad Pro 12.2, Samsung Galaxy S3, Jelly Pro

The device was launched with Android 5.1 Lollipop and has not even received a single major software upgrade. The last official release is dated March 7th, 2017 with a build date of October 11th, 2016. Fans of the massive media consumption tablet have yearned for a software update for some time. The only custom ROM available for the device for the longest time was Android Marshmallow-based CyanogenMod 13 created by XDA Recognized Contributor deadman96385. deadman96385 has announced that he recently started working on bringing LineageOS 15.1 to the Samsung Galaxy View, and he has published his first unofficial build for the device.

Since this is just a preliminary release for testing, there are a few major bugs. First of all, the light sensor doesn’t work so there’s no adaptive brightness. You can use an app like Underburn if you really want automatic brightness control, though. Next, since the build doesn’t pass SafetyNet you’ll have to sideload Netflix as it won’t show up in the Play Store. Finally, the camera doesn’t work so you can’t use the device to do video calls just yet. There are also a few minor bugs, but we recommend you give the linked thread a thorough read to learn more (also because you should read any development thread regardless before you flash any custom software onto your device.)

Download unofficial LineageOS 15.1 for the Samsung Galaxy View



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Sprint and T-Mobile have agreed to merger, pending regulatory approval

We could soon see the number of major mobile carriers in the United States decrease from four to three if things go according to plan. T-Mobile and Sprint have finally agreed to merge, so long as the merger is approved by anti-trust regulators, that is. The companies were reportedly in talks to merge in September last year, and it was then later reported that discussions had been dropped – largely due to how much control Deutsche Telekom would have over Sprint (not to mention the valuation of the company’s shares as well). The companies have valued their combined worth at $146 billion, with T-Mobile paying about $26 billion for Sprint’s shares at $6.62 each. This is because T-Mobile is paying 9.75 Sprint shares for each T-Mobile U.S. share, which is about $6.62 to T-Mobile’s Friday closing price of $64.52.

Originally, the companies planned to merge in 2014 but felt that under the Obama administration the merger would be shut down. Both companies feel that they have a better shot of pulling it off under the Trump administration. If both companies merge, then that will create a new contender better capable of taking on AT&T and Verizon. It is unknown how U.S. regulators will view the merger, as the mobile telecommunications market in the U.S. has little competition. Reducing the number of companies active in the sector only strengthens that oligopoly. The first plan for the companies, if they are to merge, is to roll-out the first 5G network in the US to what could potentially be 100 million customers.

As for the company’s structure, current T-Mobile CEO John Legere will run the company, with current COO Mike Sievert becoming COO and company President. Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure and SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son will both sit on the company’s board. Deutsche Telekom will hold a 42% stake in the company, Sprint will hold 27%, and the rest is held by public shareholders. The combined company will have lower costs and greater economies of scale according to T-Mobile, and it will create thousands of American jobs. The company will be located in Bellevue, Washington.

While that’s all well and good, the deal will need to be cleared by regulators first. It’s unknown how exactly that will go down, but both companies are reasonably confident that it will go through.

What are your thoughts on the merger of T-Mobile and Sprint? Will this have negative consequences on the market, or will the merger lead to better plans in America? Let us know in the comments below!


Source: T-Mobile



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Magisk v16.4 Released with Improved MagiskHide & Android P Support, and More

When it comes to rooting solutions on Android, there’s not a lot that can beat Magisk. Capable of bypassing SafetyNet detection while being lightweight and open source, it’s the root solution of choice for most users on our forums. It even has frequent updates which bring better support and more features—despite the fact that XDA Recognised Developer/Recognized Contributor topjohnwu is currently serving mandatory military service in Taiwan. Magisk v16.4 has launched, and with it brings a number of improvements such as greater Android P support and MagiskHide improvements.

In recent times it seemed that application developers had learned to circumvent MagiskHide simply by running their root detection under another service. With Magisk v16.4, MagiskHide now correctly handles these cases and will also hide the current root status of the device to these services. Applications such As Pokemon Go employed this technique with the Pokemon Go+, the physical companion for the game. Users found that their Go+ would disconnect from their phone as the Go+ Bluetooth service would close when it detected root. It ran under the Pokemon Go package name, but was its own service that also detected root.

Another major addition is the inclusion of a more complete Android P support. Previously, you could use Magisk on Android P, but there were still a number of issues that needed to be ironed out. The main fix here is in the Magisk Manager installation on Android P, along with generic fixes in MagiskPolicy for AOSP which will prevent some system conflicts. In terms of updates to Magisk Manager, really there’s just a few crash fixes and Android 7.1+ app shortcuts.

If you want to read the full changelog, simply go to the link down below. You can also download the update from the same thread, or if you have Magisk already installed you can update it through the Magisk Manager application.


Read Magisk v16.4 Announcement



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Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S Android P OTA leaks early

With the first Android P Developer Preview announced in March, it brought a number of changes which you can test out now on the Google Pixel/XL and Google Pixel 2/2 XL. Surprisingly, Xiaomi has just announced that the Xiaomi Mi Mix 2s will also be receiving the Android P Developer Preview in the coming days, complete with all the features of Android P included. A tentative date of May 8th has been put forward as a release date, assuming all internal testing goes well.

This would be the first official public release of Android P for a non-Google device, though it’s unclear whether this will be closer to AOSP Android and not MIUI. It’s also unknown if the factory images will come directly from Google or from Xiaomi. The announcement post only states that the release will bring Android P’s features to the device, which you can read about here and here.

The post, however, has been taken down from the MIUI forums. Initially, we hesitated to publish this post because we thought it might have been based on false information. However, our friends over at XiaomiGeeks.com found that there was indeed Android 9.0 firmware in the works for the Mi Mix 2S. You can download it at the link below.

Download Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S Android P OTA

I am not sure how one can go about installing the leaked Android P Developer Preview OTA on your Xiaomi Mi Mix 2s. It might be possible to sideload it, but I doubt it since this will likely need to be approved for your device before it can be updated via the updater app. It may be possible to install by extracting the images and flashing over the partitions manually, but I would advise against that if you’re using the device as a daily driver.

Regardless, it’s surprising to see Xiaomi offer a preview release of the next version of Android; this is the kind of thing we would expect from Sony. Hopefully, other devices from Xiaomi will receive the P release and not just their flagship line.



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samedi 28 avril 2018

500 Firepaper will stop working on June 15th as 500px closes down API

Those of you who love having a random, but always great wallpaper, have surely heard about 500 Firepaper. It’s an application that was created by XDA Senior Recognized Developer Chainfire and it has been changing the look of many Android home screens since late 2013. Unfortunately, according to the developer, 500 Firepaper will stop working this June as the 500px is shutting down its API.

500px is a place where professional photographers share their work. Artists create their portfolios and upload their work to gain recognition for themselves. The site offers a few plans, including a free one that allows uploading seven photos a week. Photos are sorted by categories so that everyone can find some quality shots. The Canadian startup has been offering public API access since 2011 which is how 500 Firepaper has been able to operate. While the 500px API closure has yet to be confirmed on the company’s official blog, Chainfire announced that the API closes down on June 15th and henceforth his app will no longer work.

Unfortunately, this means that you can no longer use the 500 Firepaper app will to retrieve any photos from 500px. Without a proper source of getting images, the application will likely be deprecated. So far the app has been installed over 500 thousand times, so we can assume that it generated significant traffic on the site. The news that 500px’s API will be shut down is a big blow to all photography lovers.

Those of you who would like to enjoy the application for the last few weeks of its existence can head over to its forum thread or go to the Play Store to get the latest version.

500 Firepaper (Free+, Google Play) →



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It is Time for Google to Fix its Android Security Update Problem

If the largest, richest OEM does a terrible job and gets away with it, how can we expect any better of the rest of them?

Samsung makes pretty good phones–great ones, even. They are also one of the few OEMs that actually profit on their device sales, and one of only two to make a sizable profit. People like their phones, in part because are reliable, have features users enjoy, and lately they have vastly improved their software. To our surprise, they’ve even killed off some of their annoying duplicate services and bloatware… anyone else remember Milk Music? In my eyes, they’ve come a long way, which should be exciting for all Android users too as they are one of the platform’s standard-bearers. But despite all of this, Samsung still cannot get their act together when it comes to security updates in particular, highlighting an industry-wide problem. If Samsung can’t do so, despite their tremendous investment in enterprise and software security, it’s not unexpected to see others will have an even tougher time. This is why it’s time for Google to finally step in on the situation.


Android Security, a Never-Ending Controversy

When I bought my Galaxy S9+ I was excited for many reasons. After testing the Note8 Oreo update for months, I could without a doubt say that Samsung had improved their software offerings quite a bit. It felt faster, smoother, more performant over the weeks (and not just right after flashing) than prior Nougat based builds, which was quite refreshing. They also were very quick on their security updates. Samsung would regularly have their Oreo beta builds running the most current security patches usually pushed within a week of Google announcing the bulletin. OEMs are often notified and ready to act a month ahead of the announcement, to give them time to have day one updates ready something most do not achieve. Samsung had also just finished changing their flagships to a more unified model and SKU scheme. Instead of the G965T, G965A, G965V, and so-on for every individual carrier, Samsung produces a singular base model G965U for the Snapdragon variant and G965F for Exynos. There still are other models like the N and FD variants and each carrier does get its own specific software revision, but the important thing is that generally speaking, I can install the unlock carrier variant software to my T-Mobile phone with no issues (Knox failing, or otherwise). Back in the old days, your options were more limited (T-mobile Note 4 users might recall having to flash the Canadian variant images for access to faster updates). Streamlining models is actually something many OEMs have done over the past few years, as seeing devices with specific hardware for a single carrier or market is less common.

This should have been a solid move in the right direction in terms of software updates seeing that they would no longer have to support individual SKUs but instead differentiate the phones in software for each carrier, and this software could actually be kept separate from the updated system files. Solid system on paper, but it has fallen flat on its face in real world application. While having the latest and greatest Android version is good, it is not what I consider truly important. What I feel is truly important is staying current in terms of security updates–many IT departments who require these updates for BOYD feel the same way, and Samsung just has not delivered. Neither has LG, neither has Motorola, neither has HTC, and neither have most others. I mainly focus on Samsung because they are the largest player, with the most resources to set a solid example for the rest of the market, but nearly every OEM partner has failed to maintain continuous security updates for the life of their devices. Further, pushing from lazy software support to outright deceit, just a few weeks ago a large investigation showed that even when Android OEM’s did update their devices, they sometimes would not actually contain the updates they claimed to deliver. Sadly though, Android security breaches are nearly an every week occurrence resulting in a huge list of devices that go unpatched even if Google had already been notified, pushed updates to partners, updated their Pixel devices, and notified the public. It is important to recall as well why we even have security patches in the first place: Stagefright.

The Stagefright vulnerability was one of the largest ever discovered, spanning nearly all Android devices at the time. This became public at the end of July 2015 and within a month Google announced their Android Security Bulletin program and has done so every month since that time. Through the nearly three years of bulletins security vulnerabilities have been handled ahead of time, and before they became massive embarrassing news pieces highlighting the millions of exposed Android devices, so Google with their partners deserve some credit for maintaining this system. But simply having the system in place is not enough when partners are taking multiple months to push patches out, giving malicious individuals time to develop, implement, and attack even brand-new devices through these security flaws. My Galaxy S9+ is missing dozens of security patches and while most of them may not apply to my device, and may be for older SOCs or hardware, there is not a single month that goes by that does not have a patch my phone could benefit from. Many times we like to blame carriers, especially in the US, for slow or absent updates, but Samsung is not keeping carrier unlocked versions of their phones up to date either. This is a major problem Samsung… This is a solvable problem, Google.

This is the part of the story where we put blame where it belongs, and for as bad as Samsung is, Google holds the ultimate reigns of responsibility here, because frankly, they aren’t being responsible in how they let other companies manage their brand. There are good partners out there like Essential, and even Razer who have done a solid job supporting their few thousand users and single model structure… Now before you throw Pixel Pixel Pixel in my face, hear this: Google has an obligation to ensure that their Android brand is well-represented, and brand new flagship devices running nearly three months of updates behind are not doing so properly. Why hasn’t Google stepped up and forced partners’ hands is anyone’s guess, especially given that Android has suffered one disastrous security issue after another. It could be that they are afraid of the Samsung’s and Huawei’s moving to their own forks, with their own App Stores, but I don’t think that is a valid concern. While these partners could do their own deal, the Google Play Store has more recognition, applications, and the ultimate user base splitting up would be detrimental to the end user and then these partners. There is a more sinister motive that could be at play though, one where Google simply doesn’t care, and their behavior of letting Android OEMs do their own thing with weakly or unenforced standards does lend itself to this argument. Their end goal could be to simply have more users, field and harness more data, and making the bar of entry nearly non-existent gets partners on board, especially those who have no plans for supporting the trash they sell. Ultimately, it gets Google the data they desire. Regardless of the reasons, Google has to hold their partners to acceptable levels of standards and one of which should be security updates go out on time, every month for all currently maintained devices. There should be a standard all OEM partners to maintain current security patches or risk losing their CTS validation for future devices.

The Pixel 2 XL is a solid device, but its hardware under-delivers compared to other flagships

The Pixel brand is good and is Google’s way of establishing a benchmark for partners in regards to timely updates, but the Pixel brand is still quite niche, and Samsung is unlikely to relinquish their control of the Android market share any time soon. However, putting software aside for a moment, the Pixel phones have been relatively inferior to similarly priced devices on the market. Be it a late adoption of 18:9 or water resistance last year, or LG being a terrible hardware partner this year, the Pixel phones are, in at least some ways, a step down in terms of the hardware offered for the price compared to other flagships that can be bought. Samsung sells more flagship phones in the first month than Google hopes to sell altogether–brand recognition, marketing and hardware or software features all play a role, but the result is what ultimately counts. The Pixel brand’s impact on the market and mind-share is small and ultimately, when people think of Android, they think of the Samsung, LG, and Huawei devices of the world: all of which fail to properly maintain even their flagship devices.


The Android brand has been lambasted time and time again for its security flaws and slow updates, in great part thanks to these OEM partners.  It is finally time for Google to take control and hold these partners responsible for their behavior ,and establish requirements and rules to ensure all Android devices are as secure as they should be. Google has left it to manufacturers to manage the level of software support themselves for years no,w and all Google has been left with is a harsh tarnishing of their brand and image, resulting in damage that may never be undone.



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Developer gets Android P booting on the Motorola Moto Z

We’re just 10 days away from Google I/O 2018 where Google is expected to unveil a lot of details about Android P such as the rumored navigation gestures and Material Design revamp. The first Android P Developer Preview is available for the Google Pixel, Pixel XL, Pixel 2, and Pixel 2 XL and there’s a lot we’ve already seen in the first release, but there’s still a lot to look forward to before the final release of the new version of Android. For those of you without Google Pixel phones, you’ll probably be waiting a long time before P is made available for your device. However, developers on our forums aren’t going to wait for OEMs to officially update their devices (if at all), so they’re taking matters into their own hands. One such developer has managed to get the first Android P Developer Preview booting on his Motorola Moto Z.

The Motorola Moto Z was released in June 2016 with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 system-on-chip and Android Marshmallow. It has since received an official update to Android Nougat and Android Oreo, and it isn’t expected to receive Android P. XDA Recognized Developer erfanoabdi has managed to port Android P to his device thanks to unofficial Project Treble compatibility. This is now the second non-Google device we’ve seen able to boot Android P, although the last one was the Huawei Mate 10 Pro running on a heavily skinned version of it in the form of EMUI.

erfanoabdi was able to accomplish this by modifying the existing system image from the Google Pixel XL (marlin.) Using his custom script called “Capire Le Treble” which allows him to flash a device-specific system image on devices without a /vendor partition, he was able to flash the modified P system image from the Pixel XL onto his Moto Z that was previously running the official LineageOS 15.1 release (which, by the way, will be released Monday.)

For those of you who have followed our reports on Project Treble before, you may be wondering how this script works. In essence, it extracts the HALs in /system/vendor and places them in the Generic System Image (GSI) to be flashed; that way, flashing the system image won’t overwrite the HALs. After a few initial crashes and some heavy debugging, he was able to get Android P up and running. Here are some additional pictures showing off various P user interface elements and features.

Motorola Moto Z Android P Motorola Moto Z Android P Motorola Moto Z Android P Motorola Moto Z Android P Motorola Moto Z Android P Motorola Moto Z Android P Motorola Moto Z Android P Motorola Moto Z Android P Motorola Moto Z Android P Motorola Moto Z Android P

According to erfanoabdi, it’s not without its fair share of bugs. Things like the camera, Wifi, and radio currently don’t work. Surprisingly, Moto Mods seem to work although that’s also a bit buggy. Considering how much of a giant hack all of this is (Moto Z doesn’t support Project Treble and the system image is a modified marlin image rather than one built from source), it’s surprising this even works at all. Don’t expect to run this as a daily driver anytime soon; you’ll probably have much more functional Android P ROMs when the source code is released alongside the full release of P.



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Announcing the Official XDA-Developers Telegram Group

Last month, we launched the official XDA-Developers Discord server. It’s a great place to go for announcements, Android news, development, device help, and just general off-topic chat. However, we’re aware that not everyone uses Discord. We told you a Telegram group would be coming soon and today is the big day. The official XDA-Developers discussion groups are open for business on the platform.

If you’re unfamiliar with Telegram, it’s quite a bit different than Discord. They have mobile apps, desktop apps, and web apps for just about every platform you can imagine—Android and Chrome included. The XDA hub channel has links to groups for all the major OEMs and a general discussion group as well. If you’re a Telegram user, this will be the place to go for Android development, help, and discussion.

If you are interested in joining the group, then first head on over to the XDA-Developers Hub where you’ll find all links to join the other groups that you might be interested in. We recommend joining the General group and the group for the OEM of your choice.

Join the XDA-Developers Telegram Group



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vendredi 27 avril 2018

Google Pixelbook may support booting Microsoft Windows

recent commit indicates that the Google Pixelbook could receive support for booting and installing Windows from USB, a functionality previously unavailable due to poor firmware support on Kaby Lake and Skylake devices.

screenshot of the commit,

It’s pretty clear what functionality this code merge brings.

This update is related to previous reports of Alt OS functionality,  the addition of an Alt OS [Alternative OS] picker screen that we previously suspected could be related to booting Windows or Fuchsia, but it looks like the evidence is in favour of the former being true.

Unfortunately, these updates were merged to a unique firmware branch of the Pixelbook called “eve-campfire,” which is different from the normal branch “eve.” The campfire branch isn’t public (yet) and is being developed and tested internally by Google, so it’s difficult to say whether we’ll see Alt OS functionality in the wild.

The Google Pixelbook was released in October 2017 along with the Google Pixel 2/2 XL Android smartphones. It’s a high-end laptop running an operating system that, for now, doesn’t offer the kinds of tools to take advantage of its hardware. That may change soon with the introduction of Crostini to Chrome OS, which allows for running Linux apps on Chromebooks. Bringing Linux apps to Chrome OS is a great way to bring more professionals into the ecosystem, but there will still be plenty of holdouts who are reliant on Microsoft Windows.

If this functionality does arrive on the public build of the Pixelbook, though, it’s one matter to boot Microsoft Windows and another to get drivers coded to suit the hardware. Pixelbook owners, don’t get your hopes up just yet.

Sources: Chromium code-review, Mr Chromebox [reddit] [website] for his firmware knowledge



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Latest WhatsApp Beta lets you export your data in compliance with GDPR

In recent months, the technology industry has started a long-overdue focus on user privacy. We have had headlining news stories about privacy on social networks. In the EU, stronger data protection laws will come into effect soon. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was adopted back in April 2016, and it will go into application from May 25th, 2018 after a two year transition period. We have explained the implications of GDPR for developers.

The General Data Protection Regulation stipulates that companies must allow users to download a report of their account information. Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, has already released a tool which allows users to download their account data. Now, Facebook-owned WhatsApp, the world’s most popular IP-based messaging app, is also preparing to add a new tool to export user account data in compliance with GDPR. It’s worth noting that WhatsApp has a daily active user base of 1 billion users, which makes GDPR compliance even more important.

WABetaInfo found that WhatsApp beta for Android version 2.18.128 contains an option to create a report of users’ WhatsApp account information and settings, which they can access or port to another app. The company nnotes that the report will not include users’ messages.

Users can request a report for their WhatsApp account by going to Settings > Account > Request account info, and the company states that the report will be ready in 1-3 days. Consumers will have “a few weeks” to download their report before it’s deleted, and they can’t cancel their request unless they delete their account. The report contains user data such as group names, contacts, profile photos, etc.

Right now, the create report option is only available in the latest WhatsApp beta for Android. Users can expect it to arrive in the stable version of WhatsApp in the coming weeks, which will ensure that the company complies with the EU’s most robust data protection law yet.



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Pixel Launcher’s “At A Glance” Widget Now Available In the Latest Google App Beta

The Google Pixel launcher that comes pre-installed on Google’s devices brings some unique features that usually are ported to other launchers. One of the features called “At a glance” can now be enabled on every Android device via latest beta of Google app.

“At a glance” is a useful widget that shows the date and current weather. It also reminds you of upcoming events from your calendar. The Pixel Launcher version even shows how much time is left to a certain event, but the version provided by the Google app lacks this function. Nevertheless, an updated beta that started to roll out this morning adds an option to enable the “At a glance” widget on every Android device.

At the moment we can’t confirm whether or not Google plans to roll out this feature via the stable channel. We can only assume that probability is high. What do we know about the widget? It’s 4/5 x 1 and does not offer any form of resizing. It is also nearly identical to the one available on the landing page of the Pixel Launcher. We highly recommend comparing both versions. You can learn more about rootless Pixel Launcher from an article we published earlier this year.

There are some applications available that already offer “At a glance” experience on Android devices. “Another Widget” does a good job of replicating the look. If they don’t pass the quality test for you, head over to Play Store and opt-in to become a beta tester for Google app. Please keep in mind that beta availability differs in some regions. While an update is available for some, the rest might have to wait a day or two.

Google (Free, Google Play) →


Source: 9to5Google



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Essential web store now open in the UK, France, Canada, and Japan

Despite the shortcomings Essential has come across as they launched the Essential Phone, they’ve attempted to make amends by the way of improvements to their services with many software updates. Beta testing Android Oreo across multiple releases is an example of how the company wants to make things right and get things done properly the first time around. Essential is one of the only manufacturers to bring Project Treble supported to an already released phone, for example. The Essential Phone’s launch certainly wasn’t smooth, but now the company is aiming to sell the device to a lot more markets than before through its website – namely the UK, France, Canada, and Japan.

A number of conclusions can be drawn from the expansion of Essential’s target markets, all of which spells good news for the company’s future. If it’s expanding then that means it still sees a future in which it can compete and thrive. Not only that, it also means that they are likely clearing stock in preparation for the launch of a future device. Both are good for the Android ecosystem, and with the Essential Phone turning out to be a pretty good phone in terms of support, hopefully, the company can continue its upward trajectory going into the launch of their second phone.

It appears it’s not all doom and gloom for the company, even though it appeared as such at the phone’s initial launch. With the arrival of new modifications and what looks to be a new phone on the horizon, things can only get better from here. If you live in one of the newly launched regions you can grab an Essential Phone while stocks last over on their website. With this news, it may also well be viable to wait for the second phone in their lineup and pick that up instead.


Essential’s website



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