Jump to content

PaulOBrien

Founder
  • Content Count

    42,177
  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won

    11

Everything posted by PaulOBrien

  1. I'm pleased to present my MoDaCo Custom ROM for the Honor 6 H60-L04! READ THIS WHOLE POST BEFORE YOU START! No, really, it contains everything you need to know. About MoDaCo Custom ROMs MoDaCo Custom ROMs are based on official ROMs. A MCR release is designed to feel like a stock Emotion UI ROM with optimisations, tweaks and complimentary additions that enhance the user experience. The aim of a MCR is to be ultra reliable for use on an everyday device. This ROM is part of the 'Unified Honor ROM' project - ROMs with the same changes are available for all current Honor devices. A MCR version with a more 'stock Android' like interface is under development. Requirements In order to use this ROM you must have a custom recovery (e.g. TWRP) installed. The ROM is installed at your own risk. A wipe IS recommended if coming from a ROM other than MCR or stock. BACK UP YOUR DEVICE BEFORE INSTALLATION! Features Based on the B820 custom ROM starter template (you may use MCR as a base for your own ROM) ROM fully optimised with the unique MCR scripts Updated power management policies to reduce instances of 'missing notifications' All apps in ROM updates to latest versions (a considerable saving of over 1GB on /data!) Busybox installed sepolicy patched boot image ready for root selinux permissive Removed 'icons' from /system/themes (themes no longer need to include default icons again) MoDaCo Custom Kitchen (coming soon!) Multi user support Multi window support Preloaded Stockify theme stub Numerous other small refinements - please see the gitlab commits for full details This ROM is completely in version control at gitlab! https://gitlab.com/u/paulobrien/projects Want more tweaks and changes? Post your requests in the support topic. Changelog Please see the post below this one for the changelog. Installation You should install this ROM on a device that has previously been updated to the B820 release. To install this ROM: Download the zip file from the links below and copy to your internal / external SD card. Restart your device in recovery mode PERFORM A BACKUP FROM THE MENU Select the option to apply an update zip, and select the zip file you copied to the SD card. Important Note: As this ROM is partially deodexed, first boot can take a long time. If you have not wiped, you can check for any issues with adb logcat. Be patient! Downloads Please do not mirror these downloads elsewhere. DOWNLOAD - r7-modacocustomrom-honor-6-h60l04-mogolia-b820.zip [ROMRAID] MD5: 915537f165033704724152b81877763b Support If you have a general question, please post in the topic. Thanks It's impossible to mention everyone who contributes to the Android community by name, but to everyone out there who does great work and shares it with us all - you have my gratitude and respect. Future Updates - READ THIS! By providing this ROM I am not guaranteeing that future updates will follow. Due to limits on my time and the fact that I have a large number of devices for short periods of time, it isn't possible for me to continue providing ROM updates indefinitely. And finally... Enjoy! P
  2. PaulOBrien

    Cydia Substrate released for Android

    Custom ROMs are one of Android's great strengths, but it's also nice to have the ability to modify a device without compromising the upgradability / stability of a stock ROM. This has become a reality of late with the release of the Xposed framework and now famed iOS developer Saurik, of Cydia fame, has released Cydia Substrate for Android, which offers similar functionality. Requiring root access (like Xposed), Cydia Substrate allows developers to create 'substrate extensions' that are then loaded into processes that they wish to modify. Developers use a provided API to make changes in memory as required, modifying both Java AND native code to their heart's content. :) Substrate itself is installed via the Play Store, but as it makes changes to your device, you should definitely back up first. There is a nice 'bypass' mode built in whereby holding the volume-up button on your device will disable Substrate. Extensive documentation on how to create modules is available at CydiaSubstrate website with clear code examples. I look forward to seeing how Substrate develops and the cool modules we're sure to see going forward! :) Finally, if you're interested to learn about the differences between Xposed and Substrate, Saurik has a post discussing the two online. Click here to view the item
  3. PaulOBrien

    Cydia Substrate released for Android

    Custom ROMs are one of Android's great strengths, but it's also nice to have the ability to modify a device without compromising the upgradability / stability of a stock ROM. This has become a reality of late with the release of the Xposed framework and now famed iOS developer Saurik, of Cydia fame, has released Cydia Substrate for Android, which offers similar functionality. Requiring root access (like Xposed), Cydia Substrate allows developers to create 'substrate extensions' that are then loaded into processes that they wish to modify. Developers use a provided API to make changes in memory as required, modifying both Java AND native code to their heart's content. :) Substrate itself is installed via the Play Store, but as it makes changes to your device, you should definitely back up first. There is a nice 'bypass' mode built in whereby holding the volume-up button on your device will disable Substrate. Extensive documentation on how to create modules is available at CydiaSubstrate website with clear code examples. I look forward to seeing how Substrate develops and the cool modules we're sure to see going forward! :) Finally, if you're interested to learn about the differences between Xposed and Substrate, Saurik has a post discussing the two online.
  4. Hot on the heels of my installAPK utility to let you install APKs from your Windows desktop, I now have another neat trick... which allows developers to distribute APKs as Windows EXE files instead. What do I need? NSIS install system - http://nsis.sourceforge.net APK2EXE (my suite) - APK2EXE.zip Your APK :) What does the end user need? The end user needs their device attached to their PC, with the appropriate drivers installed (which they can grab from http://android.modcao.com/usbdrivers). How do I use it? Follow these steps to create your executable! Extract APK2EXE to a new directory Add your APK to the directory Doubleclick APK2EXE.NSI and edit the 3 lines containing information about your application. Right click the NSI file, and select 'Compile NSIS Script' - this will create your install EXE Test your installer! <_< Done! B) P
  5. Have you ever got a bit trigger-happy and accidentally dismissed a notification without actually reading it first? I know I have and it's pretty frustrating to NEVER KNOW WHAT IT SAID. Thankfully there's a solution - a hidden notification log, as spotted by Abhishek Choudhary. The full process, detailed here, is actually surprisingly easy - you simply: Create a new widget on your desktop, selecting 'Settings Shortcut' Select 'Notification Log' from the options presented Use the new widget when you need to view the log Simple eh? If you would prefer not to use a widget, you can use QuickShortcutMaker from the Play Store to link to the Settings app $NotificationStationActivity, which achieves the same result. If you want to take it a step further (why wouldn't you?), you could even, assuming you're on Marshmallow with System UI Tuner available, create a custom tile in Quick Settings (courtesy of Custom Quick Settings from the Play Store) to achieve the same end. Neat!
  6. I'm going to straight up admit that, while EMUI does add a ton of useful tweaks and improvements to Android, not everything in it is to everybody's taste, particularly if you are a big stock Android fan. In this guide (which was written based on Honor 8 software version B101 but probably works well on most Huawei / Honor devices), I'll take you through ways to make your device feel more like stock. Feedback is welcomed and I'll be updating this document frequently with additional info and improvements. I am going to walk through the process from a freshly reset device, but you can of course pick out just the bits you want! Launcher After going through the setup wizard on your device and configuring your Play Store account, one of the first things you will likely want to do is replace the standard EMUI launcher. It's particularly non-stock feeling due to it's lack of app drawer. This is nice and easy, because the standard Android launcher is available from the Play Store. The process From the Play Store, ensure all currently installed apps are up to date (particularly 'Google'). From the Play Store, install 'Google Now Launcher'. In the Settings app, select the 'Apps' option, press the Advanced button and select 'Default app settings'. In this screen you can specify the standard Launcher. Choose 'Google App'. Press the home key and you're done, you should now have the standard launcher! Further tips On pre-Marshmallow devices, you may notice that third party launchers (including Google's) don't correctly make the top and bottom bars transparent. Sadly this includes my favourite launcher, Action Launcher 3. Another alternative, Nova Launcher, does have this feature however. Icon themes As you can see in the above images, even with a custom launcher installed, many icons (such as the Play Store) are 'customised'. These backgrounds are applied using a theme. The default Honor 7 theme is called 'Spectrum', but I've made a special version, 'Spectrum Pure' that removes these icon customisations. The process From this post on MoDaCo, download the 'Spectrum Pure' .hwt theme file. Copy the .hwt file to /sdcard/HWThemes on your device (you can use the built in 'Files' app for this if needed). Launch the 'Themes' app, select the 'Mine' tab, select 'Spectrum Pure' and press 'Apply'. When you go back to the homescreen, your customisations should be gone! Note that some launchers need to be restarted to pick up the change, so if in doubt, reboot your device. Third party apps A number of third party apps are installed out of the box, thinks like '50+ free games, 'Bubble Bash', 'Dragon Mania', and Puzzle Pets. You can get rid of these if you prefer. The process In the 'Settings' app, select the 'Apps' option. Select the app you would like to disable in the list and press the 'Uninstall' button. Further tips The Facebook and Twitter apps can be removed in the same way if you don't want to use them. Additional Honor apps As well as third party apps, a number of additional apps are included by Honor that have no stock Android equivalent. You can remove, in the same way as above: Backup Compass Honor Club Mirror Smart Controller (if you remove this though, you will need to install a different app to enable IR functionality) Vmall WPS Office The process In the 'Settings' app, select the 'Apps' option. Select the app you would like to disable in the list and press the 'Uninstall' button. Disabling un-uninstallable apps The above apps are all easily uninstalled, but there are also other apps that while you can't uninstall them, you can disable them. The apps you might want to disable are: Email (if for example you are using the Gmail app instead) HiCare Magnifier Notepad Weather The process In the 'Settings' app, select the 'Apps' option. Select the app you would like to disable in the list and press the 'Disable' button (this will be greyed out for system apps). Keyboards Out of the box the Honor 7 includes a Huawei customised version of Swype and 'Android Keyboard (AOSP)', which is a basic build of the stock Android keyboard. If you are not using Swype and you want to use the stock Keyboard, you should use the Play Store version rather than the provided build to ensure you get updated. The process From the Play Store, install 'Google Keyboard'. Launch Google Keyboard and complete the setup wizard (this is important!). In the 'Settings' app, select the 'Apps' option. Select the 'Menu' button and the 'Show System' option. Select 'Android Keyboard (AOSP)' and press 'Disable'. Select 'Huawei Swype' and press 'Disable'. Calendar Honor have replaced the stock Calendar app with their own, however Google Calendar can be installed from the Play Store. The Honor Calendar app is not un-installable or disableable, however using adb access from a computer, there is another solution. The process From the Play Store, install 'Google Calendar'. On your device, enable USB debugging by tapping on the 'Build Number' in 'Settings' -> 'About' multiple times, then from the newly visible development menu, clicking the 'USB Debugging' checkbox. On your computer, from a command prompt / terminal, run the command 'adb shell' - accept the security prompt on your device. Run the command 'pm hide com.android.calendar'. You should now have only one Calendar app in your launcher, as shown below (before / after shot!). Clock Just as with the Calendar app above, the stock Android clock application can be downloaded and the Honor equivalent disabled using ADB. The process From the Play Store, install 'Google Clock'. If you haven't already done so, on your device, enable USB debugging by tapping on the 'Build Number' in 'Settings' -> 'About' multiple times, then from the newly visible development menu, clicking the 'USB Debugging' checkbox. On your computer, from a command prompt / terminal, run the command 'adb shell' - accept the security prompt on your device if required. Run the command 'pm hide com.android.deskclock'. You should now have only one Clock app in your launcher. Messaging If you are not a fan of the Honor Messaging app, you can download and install the Google version and, once again, remove the Honor version. The process From the Play Store, install 'Google Messenger'. Launch the app and set it as your preferred handler for text messages. If you haven't already done so, on your device, enable USB debugging by tapping on the 'Build Number' in 'Settings' -> 'About' multiple times, then from the newly visible development menu, clicking the 'USB Debugging' checkbox. On your computer, from a command prompt / terminal, run the command 'adb shell' - accept the security prompt on your device if required. Run the command 'pm hide com.android.mms'. You should now have only one Messaging app in your launcher. Files, Music, Recorder, Videos Stock Android doesn't have a Files app per se, nor music, recorder or video apps. These can be removed using the same method as above. The process If you haven't already done so, on your device, enable USB debugging by tapping on the 'Build Number' in 'Settings' -> 'About' multiple times, then from the newly visible development menu, clicking the 'USB Debugging' checkbox. On your computer, from a command prompt / terminal, run the command 'adb shell' - accept the security prompt on your device if required. To remove 'Files': Run the command 'pm hide com.huawei.hidisk'. To remove 'Music': Run the command 'pm hide com.android.mediacenter'. To remove 'Recorder': Run the command 'pm hide com.android.soundrecorder'. To remove 'Videos': Run the command 'pm hide com.huawei.hwvplayer'. These applications should now have disappeared from your launcher. Screen Lock and Torch The Screen Lock and Torch shortcuts are currently parts of packages that can't be disabled without ill effects - these need to be removed via a custom ROM. FM Radio This can be removed using the 'pm hide' process, but this will remove all FM Radio functionality (there is currently no stock Android equivalent app). Calculator The stock Android calculator currently isn't available from the Play Store - I will post the APK here in due course. Contacts / Dialler The Contacts / Dialler cannot be changed to the stock Android versions at this time. Notification pulldown / Settings app / Stock app icons / Lockscreen The notification pulldown colours, settings app colours and icons, stock app icons and lockscreen can be modified using a custom theme. I am working on a 'Stock Android' EMUI theme that I will post here in due course. Stay tuned.
  7. I'm pleased to present my MoDaCo Custom ROM for the Honor 4X CHE2-L11! READ THIS WHOLE POST BEFORE YOU START! No, really, it contains everything you need to know. About MoDaCo Custom ROMs MoDaCo Custom ROMs are based on official ROMs. A MCR release is designed to feel like a stock Emotion UI ROM with optimisations, tweaks and complimentary additions that enhance the user experience. The aim of a MCR is to be ultra reliable for use on an everyday device. This ROM is part of the 'Unified Honor ROM' project - ROMs with the same changes are available for all current Honor devices. A MCR version with a more 'stock Android' like interface is under development. Requirements In order to use this ROM you must have a custom recovery (e.g. TWRP) installed. The ROM is installed at your own risk. A wipe IS recommended if coming from a ROM other than MCR or stock. BACK UP YOUR DEVICE BEFORE INSTALLATION! Features Based on the B506 custom ROM starter template (you may use MCR as a base for your own ROM) ROM fully optimised with the unique MCR scripts Updated power management policies to reduce instances of 'missing notifications' All apps in ROM updates to latest versions (a considerable saving of over 1GB on /data!) Busybox installed sepolicy patched boot image ready for root selinux permissive Removed 'icons' from /system/themes (themes no longer need to include default icons again) MoDaCo Custom Kitchen (coming soon!) Multi user support Multi window support Preloaded Stockify theme stub Numerous other small refinements - please see the gitlab commits for full details This ROM is completely in version control at gitlab! https://gitlab.com/u/paulobrien/projects Want more tweaks and changes? Post your requests in the support topic. Changelog Please see the post below this one for the changelog. Installation You should install this ROM on a device that has previously been updated to the B506 release. To install this ROM: Download the zip file from the links below and copy to your internal / external SD card. Restart your device in recovery mode PERFORM A BACKUP FROM THE MENU Select the option to apply an update zip, and select the zip file you copied to the SD card. Important Note: As this ROM is partially deodexed, first boot can take a long time. If you have not wiped, you can check for any issues with adb logcat. Be patient! Downloads Please do not mirror these downloads elsewhere. DOWNLOAD - r7-modacocustomrom-honor-4x-che2l11-cherry-b506.zip [ROMRAID] MD5: a2e95970842118ba0d6035b8388088ad Support If you have a general question, please post in the topic. Thanks It's impossible to mention everyone who contributes to the Android community by name, but to everyone out there who does great work and shares it with us all - you have my gratitude and respect. Future Updates - READ THIS! By providing this ROM I am not guaranteeing that future updates will follow. Due to limits on my time and the fact that I have a large number of devices for short periods of time, it isn't possible for me to continue providing ROM updates indefinitely. And finally... Enjoy! P
  8. Introduction I have only had a Pixel for a few days now, so I’m not ready to do a full review, but I can give you my first impressions. I’m also taking questions on Twitter, so feel free to hit me up. I have the Pixel XL, the 5.5” model which is also joined by the 5” ‘regular’ Pixel. As well as the smaller screen, the junior model also has a FHD rather than QHD screen and a 2770mAh battery rather than the 3450mAh cell in the XL. Those tweaks aside, the specs are the same - you get a Snapdragon 821 processor, 4GB RAM, 32GB or 128GB storage, a rear mounted fingerprint reader, metal chassis with a glass panel, a choice of silver or black (I have a Silver XL) and, of course, Android 7.1, currently a Pixel exclusive and with exclusive Pixel features too. Although not a Nexus in name, let’s be honest and say that the Pixel is the next in a long line of Google devices that started with the original G1, a HTC built device (just like the Pixels). It’s fair to say that despite some very fondly remembered devices (the Nexus One being a particular highlight, again a HTC device), Nexus phones have often disappointed. Despite Google making big noises about photography, the cameras have generally been pretty poor (let down by a weak camera app too). Battery life has been underwhelming and there have been other issues too… but in generally they have been good value, or even cheap. The Pixels are not, starting at £599 for a 32GB Pixel and rising to an eye watering £819 for a 128GB Pixel XL. So, premium pricing for sure, but do you get what you pay for? No compromises Good news folks. These phones are the real deal. A record breaking score of 89 on DxoMark is completely synthetic, but in my testing so far, the Pixel camera is exceptional. I'll post samples pictures in the review of course, but the phone seems to easily hold its own against the Galaxy S7, which is a really great camera phone. That's impressive. The camera app is finally upgraded too, part of an Android OS release that feels tightly integrated, well featured, clean and modern. I like the Nougat refinements to an already well matured Marshmallow OS and the little changes in 7.1 add some visual refinement. So far, battery life is on par with what you’d expect given the capacity - no weird battery drains in use and excellent screen off performance (thanks Doze). The phone feels exceptionally smooth to use, with no noticeable glitching or lag (save for what is surely an early bug related to scrolling in some apps). Build quality is exceptional and although I think the black would be my preference over the silver (particularly as it's better suited to VR use than the white-fronted model), it’s a good looking phone. It’s unfortunate the blue isn’t in the UK though. The lack of Pixel cues is a bit disappointing (i.e. no light bar to match the Pixel C I'm writing on right now) but it is interesting to see only a simple ‘G’ so far as branding goes. Really, I think the only feature you could argue is missing is wireless charging, which still seems to elude metal bodied phones. Since Google’s dalliance with the technology in the Nexus 5, 6 and 7, it seems to have disappeared from the spec sheet, which is a shame I think. About that price The biggest problem for the Pixel phones is pricing. Sure, they are great phones, but is a £719 Pixel XL 32GB worth the outlay? Obviously that’s very personal, but there are a number of similarly specced phones that are hundreds of pounds cheaper. With the alternatives you won’t get Google’s own interpretation of the Android OS, fast updates and everything else that Nexus / Pixel stands for of course. You pays your money and you takes your choice I suppose. Right now, I maybe for the first time have a Google phone in my pocket where I don’t feel like another manufacturer’s Android offering will service me better in a key way and that really is the headline for so far. If you've pre-ordered a Pixel, I don't think you are going to be disappointed. Stay tuned for my full review. View full item
  9. Introduction I have only had a Pixel for a few days now, so I’m not ready to do a full review, but I can give you my first impressions. I’m also taking questions on Twitter, so feel free to hit me up. I have the Pixel XL, the 5.5” model which is also joined by the 5” ‘regular’ Pixel. As well as the smaller screen, the junior model also has a FHD rather than QHD screen and a 2770mAh battery rather than the 3450mAh cell in the XL. Those tweaks aside, the specs are the same - you get a Snapdragon 821 processor, 4GB RAM, 32GB or 128GB storage, a rear mounted fingerprint reader, metal chassis with a glass panel, a choice of silver or black (I have a Silver XL) and, of course, Android 7.1, currently a Pixel exclusive and with exclusive Pixel features too. Although not a Nexus in name, let’s be honest and say that the Pixel is the next in a long line of Google devices that started with the original G1, a HTC built device (just like the Pixels). It’s fair to say that despite some very fondly remembered devices (the Nexus One being a particular highlight, again a HTC device), Nexus phones have often disappointed. Despite Google making big noises about photography, the cameras have generally been pretty poor (let down by a weak camera app too). Battery life has been underwhelming and there have been other issues too… but in generally they have been good value, or even cheap. The Pixels are not, starting at £599 for a 32GB Pixel and rising to an eye watering £819 for a 128GB Pixel XL. So, premium pricing for sure, but do you get what you pay for? No compromises Good news folks. These phones are the real deal. A record breaking score of 89 on DxoMark is completely synthetic, but in my testing so far, the Pixel camera is exceptional. I'll post samples pictures in the review of course, but the phone seems to easily hold its own against the Galaxy S7, which is a really great camera phone. That's impressive. The camera app is finally upgraded too, part of an Android OS release that feels tightly integrated, well featured, clean and modern. I like the Nougat refinements to an already well matured Marshmallow OS and the little changes in 7.1 add some visual refinement. So far, battery life is on par with what you’d expect given the capacity - no weird battery drains in use and excellent screen off performance (thanks Doze). The phone feels exceptionally smooth to use, with no noticeable glitching or lag (save for what is surely an early bug related to scrolling in some apps). Build quality is exceptional and although I think the black would be my preference over the silver (particularly as it's better suited to VR use than the white-fronted model), it’s a good looking phone. It’s unfortunate the blue isn’t in the UK though. The lack of Pixel cues is a bit disappointing (i.e. no light bar to match the Pixel C I'm writing on right now) but it is interesting to see only a simple ‘G’ so far as branding goes. Really, I think the only feature you could argue is missing is wireless charging, which still seems to elude metal bodied phones. Since Google’s dalliance with the technology in the Nexus 5, 6 and 7, it seems to have disappeared from the spec sheet, which is a shame I think. About that price The biggest problem for the Pixel phones is pricing. Sure, they are great phones, but is a £719 Pixel XL 32GB worth the outlay? Obviously that’s very personal, but there are a number of similarly specced phones that are hundreds of pounds cheaper. With the alternatives you won’t get Google’s own interpretation of the Android OS, fast updates and everything else that Nexus / Pixel stands for of course. You pays your money and you takes your choice I suppose. Right now, I maybe for the first time have a Google phone in my pocket where I don’t feel like another manufacturer’s Android offering will service me better in a key way and that really is the headline for so far. If you've pre-ordered a Pixel, I don't think you are going to be disappointed. Stay tuned for my full review.
  10. PaulOBrien

    MMM³ - MoDaCo Mod for MOJO now available

    We're prepping our review of the MadCatz MOJO review (details / buy), but the tweaks have already started flowing. :) The MoDaCo Mod for MOJO, which adds root and increased Play Store app availability to the MadCatz MOJO, is now available! The mod takes the form of a Superboot image (as used on many devices previously), with additional features to resolve the Play Store lack-of-apps issue caused by the lack of a touchscreen feature XML file. What is this? Superboot is a boot.img that when booted, will root your device the first time you boot (installing su and the superuser APK). No need to flash any partitions, no messing with the contents of your data partition, no overwriting the shipped ROM on your device, just boot the boot image using the instructions below and you're done! What are the pre-requisites? You need a MOJO (duh) and a USB Male A-A cable to carry out this process. And a computer I suppose (Windows, Mac or Linux). Any caveats? You should note that while rooting may affect your ability to receive future OTAs, reverting back to stock is easy enough. We'll cross that bridge when we come to it. ;) Download APPLY THIS AT YOUR OWN RISK! Superboot MMM³ - DOWNLOAD (ROMraid) - MD5: 835de32dd795d2825ade1ed1be422abfHow to use Superboot - Windows, Linux and OSXDownload the Superboot zip file above and extract to a directoryPut your device in bootloader mode - Unplug the power cable and any USB cables (the dongle can stay in), insert the USB Male A-A cable in the port labelled '2.0', then insert the power cable. 'Key driver not found.. Booting OS' will appear on screen.WINDOWS - install the device drivers from the directory you extracted above if required, then run 'superboot-windows.bat' as AdministratorMAC - Open a terminal window to the directory containing the files, and type 'chmod +x superboot-mac.sh' followed by 'sudo ./superboot-mac.sh'LINUX - Open a terminal window to the directory containing the files, and type 'chmod +x superboot-linux.sh' followed by 'sudo ./superboot-linux.sh'You will see 'Booting downloaded image' and a black screen, then the screen will return to 'Key driver not found.. Booting OS'. At this point, unplug the USB cable and the power cable, wait a few moments, then reconnect the power cable to boot as normal.For all the missing apps to show up on the Play Store, you may need to clear data on the Play Store in 'Settings -> Applications' and reboot, then run the Play Store again. Enjoy! :) P PS If you find this useful, please consider supporting MoDaCo by signing up for a MoDaCo subscription! Visit the store for further details! Click here to view the item
  11. We're prepping our review of the MadCatz MOJO review (details / buy), but the tweaks have already started flowing. :) The MoDaCo Mod for MOJO, which adds root and increased Play Store app availability to the MadCatz MOJO, is now available! The mod takes the form of a Superboot image (as used on many devices previously), with additional features to resolve the Play Store lack-of-apps issue caused by the lack of a touchscreen feature XML file. What is this? Superboot is a boot.img that when booted, will root your device the first time you boot (installing su and the superuser APK). No need to flash any partitions, no messing with the contents of your data partition, no overwriting the shipped ROM on your device, just boot the boot image using the instructions below and you're done! What are the pre-requisites? You need a MOJO (duh) and a USB Male A-A cable to carry out this process. And a computer I suppose (Windows, Mac or Linux). Any caveats? You should note that while rooting may affect your ability to receive future OTAs, reverting back to stock is easy enough. We'll cross that bridge when we come to it. ;) Download APPLY THIS AT YOUR OWN RISK! Superboot MMM³ - DOWNLOAD (ROMraid) - MD5: 835de32dd795d2825ade1ed1be422abf Download the Superboot zip file above and extract to a directory Put your device in bootloader mode - Unplug the power cable and any USB cables (the dongle can stay in), insert the USB Male A-A cable in the port labelled '2.0', then insert the power cable. 'Key driver not found.. Booting OS' will appear on screen. WINDOWS - install the device drivers from the directory you extracted above if required, then run 'superboot-windows.bat' as Administrator MAC - Open a terminal window to the directory containing the files, and type 'chmod +x superboot-mac.sh' followed by 'sudo ./superboot-mac.sh' LINUX - Open a terminal window to the directory containing the files, and type 'chmod +x superboot-linux.sh' followed by 'sudo ./superboot-linux.sh' You will see 'Booting downloaded image' and a black screen, then the screen will return to 'Key driver not found.. Booting OS'. At this point, unplug the USB cable and the power cable, wait a few moments, then reconnect the power cable to boot as normal. For all the missing apps to show up on the Play Store, you may need to clear data on the Play Store in 'Settings -> Applications' and reboot, then run the Play Store again. Enjoy! :) P PS If you find this useful, please consider supporting MoDaCo by signing up for a MoDaCo subscription! Visit the store for further details!
  12. PaulOBrien

    How to root your Hudl 2

    The following post contains information on how to root your Tesco Hudl 2. MoDaCo / I take no responsibility should anything bad happen to your tablet, regardless of how / why it happens. You should be aware that rooting your device may void the manufacturer's warranty and is a risky operation. If you don't feel confident following the steps in this post, do not proceed. Before you start, read through all of this post. Then read it through again. Failing to follow the steps correctly could lead to your device being rendered completely unusable (bricked). See above. It is advised that you do NOT install any OTA files without checking here first that it is safe to do so! What you need in order to use this root solution To use this root solution you need a Hudl2 (obviously), a Windows, OSX or Linux computer and a microUSB cable. Your Hudl2 MUST be running software version '20140924.194555' or '20141009.191216', detailed at the bottom of the 'Settings -> About' screen. Does my tablet version really matter? YES. If you attempt to use this root solution on a version other than that detailed above, there is an extremely high possibility you will brick your device. And that will be bad. The hudl 2 is great, but it's too thin to make a particularly good doorstop. How it works Normally when I create a root solution I prefer to use one of two approaches. The first is a 'superboot' image, which is loaded via fastboot and automatically roots the device. Unfortunately this is not possible on the hudl 2 as the 'fastboot boot' functionality is stubbed (not available). The second option is to build a custom recovery that allows flashing of update zips, which is flashed using 'fastboot flash'. Unfortunately this is not an option either - although fastboot flash is supported on the device, the recovery partition appears to be checksummed in some way. My attempts thus far to create custom recoveries have failed to boot, which is unfortunate. With this in mind I have instead built a custom system image for flashing via fastboot. It is completely stock apart from the addition of Chainfire's SuperSU root application. Granted, it's not the ideal way to root but for now, it works. I will continue to investigate alternative approaches. The dangers of rooting As I found out with my first bricked device, hacking around on the Hudl 2 is dangerous. If the device won't boot (perhaps due to a problem on the system partition) and ADB is not available, then there is no way to recover. Droidboot, which is used to flash the device for this root, is only accessible via 'adb reboot bootloader'. The recovery image can be loaded by powering on with the volume up button held, but this will only flash zip files signed with a key we do not have. Powering on with volume up and down buttons pressed produces a message on screen saying 'entering bootloader', but the bootloader (at least in the form accessed via 'adb reboot bootloader') is never reached. I'm not sure if this is a bug or intentional, but it's certainly not helpful. If you are going to hack your hudl 2, be extremely careful. Reverting to stock The quickest way to revert to effective stock is to use the 'unroot' option in the SuperSU app. Custom ROMs Due to the fact that I am currently unable to get custom recoveries booting, I am also unable to build TWRP or CWM for the device, which severely limits custom ROM options. In addition, I haven't yet tested flashing a custom boot image as this is almost certainly going to have the same issue as the recovery images and is a sure-fire way to a brick the device. DownloadRooted Image for 20150106.154003 (r1): DOWNLOAD (ROMraid) - ZIP MD5: 837b0a8beb5c0e21a6521b94c68d1fe0 / Image MD5: 4feb49cd6845aebcef96f05048bd6062Rooted Image for 20141009.191216 (r1): DOWNLOAD (ROMraid) - ZIP MD5: 3861a3769b08b671fd86c8d9d748e4a2 / Image MD5: 6d424b3f32c1b0fe94f1e841d5042e63Rooted Image for 20140924.194555 (r3): DOWNLOAD (ROMraid) - ZIP MD5: 9c58e25f5d9786555dc0f5e5f777fda1 / Image MD5: 9329255e0928c69e3ba6f5e4cde7fc6cADB / Fastboot tools: DOWNLOAD (ROMraid) - ZIP MD5: 299162039f527bc361221fb526976fc7How to root To root your device, follow the following steps:Ensure your device is fully charged. This is a safety net really, but good practice. It gives you time if something goes wrong. At the very least i'd recommmend 50% battery. If your device powers off for any reason or the flash is interrupted, your hudl 2 is toast.Ensure USB debugging is enabled. In 'Settings -> About', tap the 'build number' like a madman until a message appears stating developer mode has been enabled. Then use 'Settings -> Development' to enable USB debugging.Plug the device into your computer using the microUSB cable. A message will pop up on screen asking you to authorise the connection.Download and extract the zip file above to a directory on your computer. If you don't have ADB / Fastboot already, you should also download and extract that.Open a command prompt / terminal window to the location where you extracted the filesON A WINDOWS PC: enter 'adb-windows reboot bootloader', when the device has rebooted to bootloader enter 'fastboot-windows -i 0x1d4d flash system filename.img' - DO NOT INTERRUPT THIS PROCESS (where filename.img is the image file you extracted from the download zip)ON A MAC: enter 'chmod +x adb-mac' followed by 'chmod +x fastboot-mac' followed by './adb-mac reboot bootloader', when the device has rebooted to bootloader enter './fastboot-mac -i 0x1d4d flash system filename.img' - DO NOT INTERRUPT THIS PROCESS (where filename.img is the image file you extracted from the download zip)ON A LINUX PC: enter 'chmod +x adb-linux' followed by 'chmod +x fastboot-linux' followed by './adb-linux reboot bootloader', when the device has rebooted to bootloader enter './fastboot-linux -i 0x1d4d flash system filename.img' - DO NOT INTERRUPT THIS PROCESS (where filename.img is the image file you extracted from the download zip)Use the volume buttons to select 'REBOOT' on the device and choose the option with the power buttonEnjoy your rooted device!Support If you need support for this root, please post in this topic. Or just post to say thanks! :) If you'd like to donate to say thank you, you can do so on my charitable giving page or by signing up to a MoDaCo subscription.
  13. PaulOBrien

    Punch Club is now available for Android

    Gaming smash hit 'Punch Club' is finally available for Android, following its release on iOS and Steam. If you're looking for a retro, fun but ultimately challenging RPG that will have you laughing and screaming in frustration in equal measure, you should check Punch Club out. Be aware that progressing in the game requires as much dedication as keeping fit yourself - you have to put the effort in if you are to succeed! The game is available to download from the Play Store, priced at £4.20 in the UK - share your thoughts as you start your career! You can view the Android launch trailer below. View full item
  14. Gaming smash hit 'Punch Club' is finally available for Android, following its release on iOS and Steam. If you're looking for a retro, fun but ultimately challenging RPG that will have you laughing and screaming in frustration in equal measure, you should check Punch Club out. Be aware that progressing in the game requires as much dedication as keeping fit yourself - you have to put the effort in if you are to succeed! The game is available to download from the Play Store, priced at £4.20 in the UK - share your thoughts as you start your career! You can view the Android launch trailer below.
  15. PaulOBrien

    Huawei P9 Launch Event Liveblog #oo

    Today we will be liveblogging the launch of Huawei's new flagship, the P9. It seems likely that most of the details about the device have already been covered in a number of leaks - the Kirin 955 CPU, the 3GB/4GB RAM and 32GB/64GB storage, the 5.1" FHD screen and no doubt the EMUI4 software on top of Android Marshmallow. But what about that dual camera? If it does carry the Leica name as is rumoured, then it better be good - and the dual cameras better not be a gimmick. It's not enough now to have a decent camera, to really stand out as a flagship it has to be exceptional, both from a hardware and software perspective. Can Huawei deliver? Tune in to our liveblog from 2PM BST this afternoon to find out... in association with CoolSmartphone. View full item
  16. PaulOBrien

    Huawei P9 Launch Event Liveblog #oo

    Today we will be liveblogging the launch of Huawei's new flagship, the P9. It seems likely that most of the details about the device have already been covered in a number of leaks - the Kirin 955 CPU, the 3GB/4GB RAM and 32GB/64GB storage, the 5.1" FHD screen and no doubt the EMUI4 software on top of Android Marshmallow. But what about that dual camera? If it does carry the Leica name as is rumoured, then it better be good - and the dual cameras better not be a gimmick. It's not enough now to have a decent camera, to really stand out as a flagship it has to be exceptional, both from a hardware and software perspective. Can Huawei deliver? Tune in to our liveblog from 2PM BST this afternoon to find out... in association with CoolSmartphone.
  17. Do you have trouble getting to sleep because you mess around on your phone right up to the minute you go to sleep? If so, that may be due to over exposure to blue light from your device. "The cause is the photoreceptor in your eyes, called Melanopsin. This receptor is sensitive to a narrow band of blue light in the 460-480nm range which may suppress Melatonin production - a hormone responsible for your healthy sleep-wake cycles. In experimental scientific studies it has been shown an average person reading on a tablet or smart phone for a couple of hours before bed time may find their sleep delayed by about an hour." Twilight is one of the best (non root) options for managing this problem (if you are a root user you should check out CF.Lumen) and at 10p for the pro version, it's a no-brainer purchase right now. The app makes applies a filter to your device screen appropriate to the time of the day. It filters the flux of blue light emitted by your phone or tablet between sunrise and sunset to protect your eyes. The filter intensity is smoothly adjusted to the sun cycle based on your local sunset and sunrise times. The newly updated release also includes support for Android TV and Android Wear as well as auto-pause for specific apps. Interested? Head on over to the Play Store to download (and upgrade via the in app purchase). View full item
  18. Do you have trouble getting to sleep because you mess around on your phone right up to the minute you go to sleep? If so, that may be due to over exposure to blue light from your device. "The cause is the photoreceptor in your eyes, called Melanopsin. This receptor is sensitive to a narrow band of blue light in the 460-480nm range which may suppress Melatonin production - a hormone responsible for your healthy sleep-wake cycles. In experimental scientific studies it has been shown an average person reading on a tablet or smart phone for a couple of hours before bed time may find their sleep delayed by about an hour." Twilight is one of the best (non root) options for managing this problem (if you are a root user you should check out CF.Lumen) and at 10p for the pro version, it's a no-brainer purchase right now. The app makes applies a filter to your device screen appropriate to the time of the day. It filters the flux of blue light emitted by your phone or tablet between sunrise and sunset to protect your eyes. The filter intensity is smoothly adjusted to the sun cycle based on your local sunset and sunrise times. The newly updated release also includes support for Android TV and Android Wear as well as auto-pause for specific apps. Interested? Head on over to the Play Store to download (and upgrade via the in app purchase).
  19. How the large-screened Mate 8 can be your all in one business powerhouse - this article is sponsored content. Big screen, compact device, powerful internals A business powerhouse needs a big, bright, sharp, high quality screen – and the Huawei Mate 8 delivers with its 6”, full HD, IPS display. Traditionally large screens come at a price – devices are often unwieldy, hard to hold with one hand or excessively heavy. The Mate 8 has a class-leading 83% screen-to-body ratio, with ultra thin bezels that keep the overall footprint of the device down, while still delivering an experience that is part phone, part tablet. At only 7.9mm thick and 185g in weight – despite an impressive 4000mAh battery capacity - the Mate 8 won’t slow you down. While the Mate 8 is all about being your perfect business companion, you’ll not be left wanting anywhere for raw specifications. The very latest HiSilicon Kirin 950 processor, ample memory, storage and connectivity methods (including 5GHz WiFi) will satisfy the most demanding technology enthusiasts and the 16 Megapixel camera with optical image stabilisation deliver fantastic images in the most demanding of conditions. A front facing 8 Megapixel camera is ideal for ultra-sharp video conferencing. The built in beauty-shot mode is ideal for those early starts! Stop carrying 2 phones The Mate 8 is a dual SIM device. Are you carrying around 2 phones at the moment, one for work and one for your personal phone number? You don’t need to do that any more. By putting both SIM cards in the Mate 8, you can be ready to make or receive calls on either line, with intelligent outbound call routing and data service. If you simply have to be connected in as many situations as possible, loading up SIM cards from 2 different networks gives you twice the chance of having mobile coverage. Best of all, the impact of using 2 SIM cards on the battery is minimal. Dual SIM functionality is also ideal for frequent business travellers, who might want to use a local SIM card for data connectivity. You will no longer have to choose whether to get that connection or be able to receive your important business calls. The Mate 8, with it’s extensive band support, is the perfect international travel companion. Your business tools, mobilised The Mate 8 runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow, the latest release of the Android Operating System, and includes full access to the Google Play Store. Whether you use cloud based tools such as Google Apps, a traditional suite such as Microsoft Office or cutting edge business tools such as Slack or Podio, the Mate 8 has you covered. The preloaded Chrome web browser even offers an Internet browsing experience on par with your desktop computer. You might be surprised how much you can do with your Mate 8 - with Wireless Display, you can even broadcast your important Powerpoint presentation directly from your phone. An application for scanning business cards is included out of the box on the Mate 8, one of a number of useful tools that are preloaded on the phone to make your working life that little bit easier and, as part of Huawei’s EMUI software experience, enhance the stock Android interface. Huawei have taken the best of Android and built upon it. If the idea of writing longer business emails or documents on your phone’s on-screen keyboard worries you, the Mate 8 has you covered. Its 6” screen allows a great typing experience and the market-leading software keyboard ‘Swype’ is even pre-installed. You no longer need to give up device screen space to a hardware keyboard - the Mate 8 gives you the best of both worlds. Secure your work and personal data The Huawei Mate 8 is compatible with ‘Android for Work’. Android for Work separates business apps from personal apps so you can use your favourite Android device for both work and play, again helping you leverage the benefits of the dual SIM functionality. Android for Work allows you to set up a dedicated work profile for business content to ensure that work data never mixes with your personal content. Switch off work at the weekends… and keep your personal data safe during business hours. With full support for a number of third party remote management tools, your IT department are going to love the how the Mate 8 integrates with their BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) infrastructure. If it’s designed for Android, it’s going to work perfectly on your new phone. Regardless of whether your Mate 8 is used for work or pleasure, it’s important to know that your data is safe. An ultra-fast, rear mounted fingerprint reader keeps unauthorised users out of your phone and Android’s built in encryption and remote locate / wipe features provide the ultimate peace of mind. You can learn more about the Huawei Mate 8 on the Mate 8 microsite. View full item
  20. How the large-screened Mate 8 can be your all in one business powerhouse - this article is sponsored content. Big screen, compact device, powerful internals A business powerhouse needs a big, bright, sharp, high quality screen – and the Huawei Mate 8 delivers with its 6”, full HD, IPS display. Traditionally large screens come at a price – devices are often unwieldy, hard to hold with one hand or excessively heavy. The Mate 8 has a class-leading 83% screen-to-body ratio, with ultra thin bezels that keep the overall footprint of the device down, while still delivering an experience that is part phone, part tablet. At only 7.9mm thick and 185g in weight – despite an impressive 4000mAh battery capacity - the Mate 8 won’t slow you down. While the Mate 8 is all about being your perfect business companion, you’ll not be left wanting anywhere for raw specifications. The very latest HiSilicon Kirin 950 processor, ample memory, storage and connectivity methods (including 5GHz WiFi) will satisfy the most demanding technology enthusiasts and the 16 Megapixel camera with optical image stabilisation deliver fantastic images in the most demanding of conditions. A front facing 8 Megapixel camera is ideal for ultra-sharp video conferencing. The built in beauty-shot mode is ideal for those early starts! Stop carrying 2 phones The Mate 8 is a dual SIM device. Are you carrying around 2 phones at the moment, one for work and one for your personal phone number? You don’t need to do that any more. By putting both SIM cards in the Mate 8, you can be ready to make or receive calls on either line, with intelligent outbound call routing and data service. If you simply have to be connected in as many situations as possible, loading up SIM cards from 2 different networks gives you twice the chance of having mobile coverage. Best of all, the impact of using 2 SIM cards on the battery is minimal. Dual SIM functionality is also ideal for frequent business travellers, who might want to use a local SIM card for data connectivity. You will no longer have to choose whether to get that connection or be able to receive your important business calls. The Mate 8, with it’s extensive band support, is the perfect international travel companion. Your business tools, mobilised The Mate 8 runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow, the latest release of the Android Operating System, and includes full access to the Google Play Store. Whether you use cloud based tools such as Google Apps, a traditional suite such as Microsoft Office or cutting edge business tools such as Slack or Podio, the Mate 8 has you covered. The preloaded Chrome web browser even offers an Internet browsing experience on par with your desktop computer. You might be surprised how much you can do with your Mate 8 - with Wireless Display, you can even broadcast your important Powerpoint presentation directly from your phone. An application for scanning business cards is included out of the box on the Mate 8, one of a number of useful tools that are preloaded on the phone to make your working life that little bit easier and, as part of Huawei’s EMUI software experience, enhance the stock Android interface. Huawei have taken the best of Android and built upon it. If the idea of writing longer business emails or documents on your phone’s on-screen keyboard worries you, the Mate 8 has you covered. Its 6” screen allows a great typing experience and the market-leading software keyboard ‘Swype’ is even pre-installed. You no longer need to give up device screen space to a hardware keyboard - the Mate 8 gives you the best of both worlds. Secure your work and personal data The Huawei Mate 8 is compatible with ‘Android for Work’. Android for Work separates business apps from personal apps so you can use your favourite Android device for both work and play, again helping you leverage the benefits of the dual SIM functionality. Android for Work allows you to set up a dedicated work profile for business content to ensure that work data never mixes with your personal content. Switch off work at the weekends… and keep your personal data safe during business hours. With full support for a number of third party remote management tools, your IT department are going to love the how the Mate 8 integrates with their BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) infrastructure. If it’s designed for Android, it’s going to work perfectly on your new phone. Regardless of whether your Mate 8 is used for work or pleasure, it’s important to know that your data is safe. An ultra-fast, rear mounted fingerprint reader keeps unauthorised users out of your phone and Android’s built in encryption and remote locate / wipe features provide the ultimate peace of mind. You can learn more about the Huawei Mate 8 on the Mate 8 microsite.
  21. PaulOBrien

    TWRP Recovery 3.0.2.0 for Honor 5C

    I've been working on creating the basic device tree needed to get the latest TWRP built for our Honor 5cs and most importantly, accepted as an official TWRP recovery. Until the recovery is officially approved, you can download a test version here! Flash using 'fastboot flash recovery filename.img' from bootloader on a bootloader unlocked device. DOWNLOAD - twrp-3.0.2-0-nemo-modaco-rc1.img - MD5: a6ab9da03d2661fb9f46ce6c7cafc3c3 P
  22. I bet you wish the battery life on your phone was a little bit better don't you! Well, here's MoDaCo's 10 top tips for improving your device's longevity. Optimise your screen brightness When you check your device's battery usage, you'll see that the screen is more than likely up top. Especially on newer devices, the screen is a power suck. Now, aside from not looking at your device, a great way to save battery is to be more savvy when it comes to screen brightness. Generally speaking having it permanently set to a low brightness isn't that practical, but don't set it permanently to a high brightness - use auto brightness where possible. On some devices, auto brightness isn't that brilliant, so what if you could set your own thresholds and tailor auto brightness to exactly how you like it? You can, thanks to a utility in the Google Play store called Lux. I use Lux and after the initial setup period, i've found it to make a big difference. [*]Shorten your screen timeout Another screen tip, this time it's shortening your screen timeout. Generally this is set to 30 seconds or even longer on some devices, but really, you don't want the screen to stay on when you've stopped using it do you? I have this set to 15 seconds. When you DO want the screen to stay on is when you Are using it. On the Galaxy S III the 'Smart Stay' functionality looks after this, but if you aren't using one of those, you should check out Screebl Beta in the Play Store. This app looks at the movement and angle of your device to determine if you're using it. It works great! If you're on Jelly Bean already, you can also disable the Screebl icon in the notification area. Uninstall / freeze unused apps You know all those apps you've installed from the Play Store and never really use? Now might be a good time to cull those as a number of them might be impacting your battery. Whether you're firing them up yourself or not, they may have services running in the background using CPU (and therefore battery) and perhaps even syncing data with the Internet. If you're reluctant to uninstall 'in case you need them' and you're on Ice Cream Sandwich or above, you can 'Disable' them, this stops them using any resources but leaves them accessible at the click of a button. Note that disabled apps also get updated as normal from the Play Store, so you can disable an app and if an interesting update comes in, re-enable it to check it out. Check your sync settings So you've cleared out your unwanted apps and everything you have installed now you really need. The next step is to go through each app in turn and check the notification / sync settings. You might be surprised to see how often apps are going off to the Internet to check for updates, using valuable power. Take the 'Words with Friends' app for instance - it syncs every 5 minutes to check for new moves. You can save a bit of battery by extending that and the same goes for any app. Think about your usage patterns, how important the app is to you and set the sync time accordingly. If you can enable push (or replace the app with one that supports push), even better! Disable that Live Wallpaper Sure, that Live Wallpaper looks pretty, but there's a good chance it's quite a battery suck too. Not only that, you might be surprised how much smoother your device feels with a regular wallpaper instead. Static wallpapers don't have to be boring... the excellent Wallbase application has a ton of great backgrounds! Look for rogue apps Now that you've got all your apps sorted, it's time to look for any 'rogue' apps affecting your battery life. The best tool for this is BetterBatteryStats. Available in the Play Store or free from XDA-Developers, the application gives you a lot more detail about what's going on in your device. One of the key areas to investigate is 'Partial Wakelocks' - this will show you applications that are stopping your device sleeping properly, which is one of the main culprits when it comes to battery drain. [*]Turn off WiFi / Bluetooth when not in use [*]A bit of a no brainer this one - running WiFi and Bluetooth radios when not in use isn't a great idea. If you're feeing nerdy you can create profiles yourself using Tasker to work some magic, or there are a number of utilities in the Play Store to make things easier. Wi-Fi Matic is a great app to enable / disable WiFi based on network cells (it works fantastically). A strategy for automating Bluetooth toggling depends a lot on how you utilise it. [*]Make Latitude smarter [*]Are you using Google Latitude to report your location? Are you sure? Best go in to Google Maps and check...? Latitude is a great way of reporting your location to friends and family, but it can be a bit brutal on battery life too. Aside from turning off location reporting altogether, a neat solution is to use the third party application Backitude. This allows you much more control over your location reporting allowing you to reduce the impact on your battery. I've throttled my location reporting to every 15 minutes, only via WiFi with cell backup and with 'location steals' enabled (if I am using GPS, it will use that for reporting my location). I've seen a real positive improvement since I started using it. [*]Check you're on the latest ROM release [*]No matter how much you optimise your battery usage, sometimes there are ROM optimisations that can be made and to take advantage of these you should always make sure you are on the latest release. This is particularly key if you picked up a new phone at the start of it's life cycle - early ROMs can be particularly inefficient and are quickly superceded by significant updates. [*]Formulate an 'extremely low battery' plan [*]OK, so you've done all of the above and you're ready to test out your improved battery. The thing is, there are STILL going to be times when you're running low on juice. What i've done is put a low-battery-mode in place (via Tasker, but you can do it with other tools) to eke out those last few %. Things like dimming the backlight, disabling Bluetooth / WiFi, switching to 2G, disabling background sync etc. can make all the difference, so it's definitely worth doing. I hope you've found these tips useful... let us know how you get on. Do you have a top tip of your own? Share! P View full item
  23. I bet you wish the battery life on your phone was a little bit better don't you! Well, here's MoDaCo's 10 top tips for improving your device's longevity. Optimise your screen brightness When you check your device's battery usage, you'll see that the screen is more than likely up top. Especially on newer devices, the screen is a power suck. Now, aside from not looking at your device, a great way to save battery is to be more savvy when it comes to screen brightness. Generally speaking having it permanently set to a low brightness isn't that practical, but don't set it permanently to a high brightness - use auto brightness where possible. On some devices, auto brightness isn't that brilliant, so what if you could set your own thresholds and tailor auto brightness to exactly how you like it? You can, thanks to a utility in the Google Play store called Lux. I use Lux and after the initial setup period, i've found it to make a big difference. [*]Shorten your screen timeout Another screen tip, this time it's shortening your screen timeout. Generally this is set to 30 seconds or even longer on some devices, but really, you don't want the screen to stay on when you've stopped using it do you? I have this set to 15 seconds. When you DO want the screen to stay on is when you Are using it. On the Galaxy S III the 'Smart Stay' functionality looks after this, but if you aren't using one of those, you should check out Screebl Beta in the Play Store. This app looks at the movement and angle of your device to determine if you're using it. It works great! If you're on Jelly Bean already, you can also disable the Screebl icon in the notification area. Uninstall / freeze unused apps You know all those apps you've installed from the Play Store and never really use? Now might be a good time to cull those as a number of them might be impacting your battery. Whether you're firing them up yourself or not, they may have services running in the background using CPU (and therefore battery) and perhaps even syncing data with the Internet. If you're reluctant to uninstall 'in case you need them' and you're on Ice Cream Sandwich or above, you can 'Disable' them, this stops them using any resources but leaves them accessible at the click of a button. Note that disabled apps also get updated as normal from the Play Store, so you can disable an app and if an interesting update comes in, re-enable it to check it out. Check your sync settings So you've cleared out your unwanted apps and everything you have installed now you really need. The next step is to go through each app in turn and check the notification / sync settings. You might be surprised to see how often apps are going off to the Internet to check for updates, using valuable power. Take the 'Words with Friends' app for instance - it syncs every 5 minutes to check for new moves. You can save a bit of battery by extending that and the same goes for any app. Think about your usage patterns, how important the app is to you and set the sync time accordingly. If you can enable push (or replace the app with one that supports push), even better! Disable that Live Wallpaper Sure, that Live Wallpaper looks pretty, but there's a good chance it's quite a battery suck too. Not only that, you might be surprised how much smoother your device feels with a regular wallpaper instead. Static wallpapers don't have to be boring... the excellent Wallbase application has a ton of great backgrounds! Look for rogue apps Now that you've got all your apps sorted, it's time to look for any 'rogue' apps affecting your battery life. The best tool for this is BetterBatteryStats. Available in the Play Store or free from XDA-Developers, the application gives you a lot more detail about what's going on in your device. One of the key areas to investigate is 'Partial Wakelocks' - this will show you applications that are stopping your device sleeping properly, which is one of the main culprits when it comes to battery drain. [*]Turn off WiFi / Bluetooth when not in use [*]A bit of a no brainer this one - running WiFi and Bluetooth radios when not in use isn't a great idea. If you're feeing nerdy you can create profiles yourself using Tasker to work some magic, or there are a number of utilities in the Play Store to make things easier. Wi-Fi Matic is a great app to enable / disable WiFi based on network cells (it works fantastically). A strategy for automating Bluetooth toggling depends a lot on how you utilise it. [*]Make Latitude smarter [*]Are you using Google Latitude to report your location? Are you sure? Best go in to Google Maps and check...? Latitude is a great way of reporting your location to friends and family, but it can be a bit brutal on battery life too. Aside from turning off location reporting altogether, a neat solution is to use the third party application Backitude. This allows you much more control over your location reporting allowing you to reduce the impact on your battery. I've throttled my location reporting to every 15 minutes, only via WiFi with cell backup and with 'location steals' enabled (if I am using GPS, it will use that for reporting my location). I've seen a real positive improvement since I started using it. [*]Check you're on the latest ROM release [*]No matter how much you optimise your battery usage, sometimes there are ROM optimisations that can be made and to take advantage of these you should always make sure you are on the latest release. This is particularly key if you picked up a new phone at the start of it's life cycle - early ROMs can be particularly inefficient and are quickly superceded by significant updates. [*]Formulate an 'extremely low battery' plan [*]OK, so you've done all of the above and you're ready to test out your improved battery. The thing is, there are STILL going to be times when you're running low on juice. What i've done is put a low-battery-mode in place (via Tasker, but you can do it with other tools) to eke out those last few %. Things like dimming the backlight, disabling Bluetooth / WiFi, switching to 2G, disabling background sync etc. can make all the difference, so it's definitely worth doing. I hope you've found these tips useful... let us know how you get on. Do you have a top tip of your own? Share! P
  24. After announcing the Google Play Games functionality at Google I/O, many gamers wondered how long it'd be until Google released an app to provide a home to Play Games rather than having information about your gaming littered around all over the place. Well, the wait is over - the Google Play Games is available to download now. Downloadable form the Google Play Store, the new app lets you discover new games, play with friends and see what they're playing, join multiplayer games, track achievements and scores and compare your scores with other players. Upon first firing up the application you'll see the games in your Google Play download history (if you want to remove apps from here do it by firing up Play Store and removing the app from the 'All' tab of 'My Apps'). Your own games can be sorted by install date, most recently played or you can just display games currently installed. You can see players in your contact list (and view their recent gaming activity), the ones you have engaged with most recently and also players 'you might know', drawn from your circles on Google+. Finally, a useful 'Recommended Games' option lets you see feature, popular and most interestingly popular multiplayer games ready for download. It's a very solid start for the app and will be invaluable for Android gamers. Head on over to the Play Store to download. Click here to view the item
  25. After announcing the Google Play Games functionality at Google I/O, many gamers wondered how long it'd be until Google released an app to provide a home to Play Games rather than having information about your gaming littered around all over the place. Well, the wait is over - the Google Play Games is available to download now. Downloadable form the Google Play Store, the new app lets you discover new games, play with friends and see what they're playing, join multiplayer games, track achievements and scores and compare your scores with other players. Upon first firing up the application you'll see the games in your Google Play download history (if you want to remove apps from here do it by firing up Play Store and removing the app from the 'All' tab of 'My Apps'). Your own games can be sorted by install date, most recently played or you can just display games currently installed. You can see players in your contact list (and view their recent gaming activity), the ones you have engaged with most recently and also players 'you might know', drawn from your circles on Google+. Finally, a useful 'Recommended Games' option lets you see feature, popular and most interestingly popular multiplayer games ready for download. It's a very solid start for the app and will be invaluable for Android gamers. Head on over to the Play Store to download.
×

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.