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Official CyanogenMod Available for the Xperia M

Posted by wicked March - 4 - 2014 - Tuesday Comments Off

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Android is an amazing OS because OEMs can offer their users devices that suits everyone’s individual needs. A high-end flagship is not the best choice for everyone, hence why there are quite a few mid-tier and low-end devices released to the market.

One OEM that releases cheaper, but still nice devices is Sony. One of their devices intended for the mid/low-range market is Xperia M, code named Nicki. The device features some decent technical specification consisting of a dual-core 1 GHz Krait 200 CPU, 1 GB RAM, and 4 GB of internal storage.

FreeXperia announced official support for the Xperia M starting from FXP309. Much credit belongs to XDA Senior Member PecanCM, who did a great job bringing up the device tree and kernel. This announcement is a special one for FXP, as it’s the first device (and surely not last) to receive official support in 2014.

A new build for Xperia M is available to download on the project’s website. In the mean time, you can visit the thread by PecanCM and get the unofficial port for that device and read the full story on FXP blog.

SlimKat Updated to 3.0, Lots of New Features and Helpful Tools

Posted by wicked February - 17 - 2014 - Monday Comments Off

slimkitten

There’s good news for all of you SlimROM lovers! The developer team behind the famous SlimBean and SlimKat ROMs is pleased to announce that SlimKat has now been updated to version 3.0. The ROM, which is officially available for almost 50 devices and has over 100,000 downloads every week, recently celebrated having acquired over 1 million installs last year—quite an impressive number, indeed.

So, what changes are available in in version 3.0? The developers focused mainly on device frameworks, which have been refined to fit user needs. The full list includes the following:

  • Frameworks: EdgeGestureService give abbility to reduce the left and right trigger site on IME keyboard
  • Frameworks: SlimPie give user ability to reduce trigger heights if IME is active
  • Frameworks: TRDS fix possible UI freeze on auto mode change
  • Frameworks: Respect and handle shorcut custom icon resources
  • Frameworks: Add support for QC’s time_daemon
  • Frameworks: fix sdk build
  • Frameworks: Keyguard: Ensure that a widget and page is attached before attaching the ChallengeLayout.OnBouncerStateChangedListener
  • Frameworks: Revert “Make sure to turn off led after pulse()”
  • Bootable recovery: Load RTC offset on Qualcomm Krait chips, fixes the broken time & date
  • Dialer: Add WhitePages Canada reverse lookup provider
  • WhitePages API: Only reload page if the first load has the UUID for the cookie
  • Telephony: fix reverese lookup gms logic detection

And more which are available in the detailed changelog that can be found on the Slim site.

XDA Recognized Themer kufikugel and his crew are also baking something in the Slim oven to help other developers in making applications compatible with The Real Dark Slim. The SDK isn’t everything though, as the Slim team also published their own APK Tools to help themers to make user interface modifications.

You can find SlimKat by visiting threads for Nexus 4, Nexus 5, HTC One and many more, which are available in your home device’s Android development forum. The full list of devices and downloads can be found on the SlimKat homepage.

Chrome Apps Coming to Android and iOS, What it Means to You as a App/Web Developer and End User

Posted by Will Verduzco January - 29 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

todos

Back in September of last year, the Chrome team made Chrome apps a little bit more powerful. Rather than just being glorified web-apps, September’s update allowed Chrome apps to work offline, function outside of distracting tabs and text boxes, receive desktop notifications, interact with connected peripherals, and launch directly from your computer like any other application. One way of thinking about this could be that the update brought many elements of Chrome OS (including the Chrome App Launcher) to Windows PCs. And essentially what this meant was that Chrome apps were going to start being treated (and acting like) first class applications already on your computer.

Now, the Chrome team is extending support for this new breed of Chrome Apps to mobile platforms. This is being accomplished by leveraging technology in the Apache Cordova toolchain, which is used for building native mobile apps, using web languages like HTML, CSS, and JavaScript as a base. This set of APIs allows mobile app developers to access device hardware features like camera, accelerometer, and other sensors directly from JS. Thus, using these APIs, applications can be built that look and feel like native apps, but are not based on any native code. And given the high level of these web standards, such APIs lend themselves very nicely to cross-platform development—and that is exactly what the Chrome team has done.

At present, many of the core Chrome APIs are available to Chrome Apps running on mobile. These include features like OAuth2 sign-in, mobile payments (alpha), push messaging, file system and storage access, alarms, TCP and UDP socket support, Android notification support, and power controls. Obviously, many more APIs are in the works, including Bluetooth, USB, hardware info, permissions, and much more.

So what does all of this mean? It’s simple, really. This new breed of mobile apps will enable an entirely new class of developer to create applications that look and function just like the apps you’re already using. To end users, this means that more interesting and groundbreaking ideas that would otherwise be relegated to the web will be translated to actual Android application releases. And for developers, it means a lower cost of entry into application development on Android and iOS. Yes, native code will always have its place—particularly when a high level of performance is paramount. But this level of performance is not always required, and an easier point of entry may allow us to see the next simple utility that ultimately changes how we all use our devices.

Developers looking to get a preview of what’s to come should first hit up the project workflow on GitHub, and then get stet started by installing the dev tools, creating a project, and going from there using either command line or an IDE such as Eclipse. Your work in progress project can then be built and even uploaded to the Play Store if you so desire. And if you’d rather look at sample projects rather than diving into code just yet, head over to the sample apps section.

While this may seem like an incremental change–and in many ways it is–the future potential is exciting. And in a way, this can be seen as the first small step towards the further unification of the Chrome and Android platforms. Once you’ve gotten your feet wet with the dev links above, head over to our App Development forums and share your experiences. Also, don’t forget to leave your thoughts in the comments below!

[Source: Chromium Blog, GitHub]

Paranoid Android 4.0 Updated to Beta 3

Posted by wicked January - 22 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

PAB3

The KitKat-based Paranoid Android 4 has just entered beta 3, and with it come some pretty nifty additions to an already impressive portfolio of features. As announced and explained in a Google+ post, among the new additions are quick settings 3.0, the “on-the-spot” dialogue, immersive mode, and a new boot animation.

Users of PA 4 beta 3 will not take long to notice quick settings 3.0, which introduces dual tiles for select quick settings. Indicated by an icon in the top right hand corner with examples including WiFi, mobile data, and Bluetooth, users can flip the tile for more options. For instance, By flipping over the mobile data tile, you can also toggle between 2G and 3G data, a setting that normally would be another separate tile.

As for the “on-the-spot” dialogue, users will now be able to essentially ‘skip’ multiple layers of navigation, meaning you reach where you want to go quicker. As demonstrated in the video below, you can allow PA to automatically open up quick settings by swiping down from the right side of the status bar, rather than navigating to quick settings through the notification area. As of now, quick settings is the only function to have this “on-the-spot” feature, but more are soon to follow.

There is also a new boot animation in the third beta, as well as an improved immersive mode, which now allows you to hide either the navigation bar, the status bar, or both from the screen.

If you would like to check out the full change log and give the new beta a try, head over to the original thread and our Paranoid Android forum for more information.

Browse Java Code of Your Favorite Applications Directly from Your Android Device

Posted by wicked January - 11 - 2014 - Saturday Comments Off

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In the past few weeks, we’ve talked about several tools to decompile application and convert the output Java code. These tools, however, are for Windows and Linux PCs, and not Android devices. Naturally, these tools are very useful if you want to modify an application for your personal use or learn how to improve your own project.

Recently, yet another tool popped up to accomplish this task, but it has a unique twist. Show Java written by XDA Senior Member niranjan94 can decompile an application and show the code directly on your Android device. It’s a perfect solution for when curiosity takes hold, and you don’t have access to your PC.

The application uses two external tools: Class File Reader and dex2jar to get the code. The output is presented in an elegant, syntaxed form. Code is then stored on the SD Card, so you can even analyze it on your PC.

The application is still in a very early stage, which is described as Alpha by developer. There are still some bugs such as a slow decompilation process and lack of support for system applications. However, using the app is very simple. Just tap on one of installed apps and wait for result. Your device does not have to be rooted or have any additional apps installed.

You can learn more about this project and grab the newest APK by visiting the application thread.

Work-in-Progress KitKat OmniROM with for the LG Optimus Black

Posted by wicked January - 6 - 2014 - Monday Comments Off

lg-optimus-black-all

Google made a point to state that KitKat could run well on devices with as little as 512 MB of RAM. In the time since its release, we’ve talked about many projects that brought Android 4.4 to the most unexpected targets. And in addition to the memory requirements, the device must also have enough storage to house the ROM and GApps.

The  was released two-and-a-half years ago with Android 2.2 Froyo. Some devices simply refuse to find a permanent home in the drawer and gather dust, and the Optimus Black is one of these devices. A few weeks ago, XDA Senior Member Evisceration introduced an experimental build of OmniROM. Development is still at very early stage, so most of things aren’t working as intended. Two most noticeable bugs are no audio and a lack of network connectivity, so at this point it’s more for testing than daily driver. But hopefully, most of bugs will be fixed in time. And while the builds are currently “unofficial” due to their current early alpha status, the end goal is to make these the official OmniROM builds for the device. Nonetheless, it’s extremely nice to see KitKat at such old device, but it’s XDA and such things are perfectly normal to see.

If you are an Optimus Black owner or have one safely tucked away in a drawer, it’s time to prepare your hardware for some flashing. Make your way to the development thread to learn more.

Meet JOdin3: A Web Tool that Flashes Your Samsung Device

Posted by wicked January - 5 - 2014 - Sunday Comments Off

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Odin and Heimdall were pretty badass gods in the Nordic mythology. But to Samsung device owners, these are important and powerful tools designed to flash stock ROM files, much like Flashtool on Sony phones. In short, they are an essential part of Samsung Android development here at XDA.

Many times in the past, we’ve talked about XDA Senior Recognized Developer AdamOutler‘s CASUAL, otherwise known as Cross-platform Android Scripting Unified Auxiliary Loader.  The cross-platform Java-based tool allows you to perform many cool tasks like rooting, flashing stock ROMs. and so on.

The project is now on a different level, as Adam has presented JOdin3, a web browser-based and offline flashing tool. With JOdin3, you are able to flash stock Samsung firmware directly from your browser. The project is a collaboration of between Adam and XDA Senior Developers Benjamin Dobell and Ralekdev, and XDA Senior Members Loglud and jrloper.

You need to have Java installed on your PC in order to use JOdin3. Heimdall is also required, but it will be automatically downloaded and installed. As it’s a cross-platform tool, it works flawlessly on Windows, Mac, and Linux.

More information regarding this project can be found in the original thread. You can read more about CASUAL on the official website of the project.

[Thanks to XDA Recognized Contributor benkxda for the tip!]

Direct Smali to Java Converter Makes Smali More Developer Friendly

Posted by wicked January - 2 - 2014 - Thursday Comments Off

android+eclipse

Android is meant to be open source. And most components, despite being covered by the Apache license, have publicly available source code. Unfortunately, the sad truth is that only Nexus devices owners can do Java modifications without digging into Smali assembler language, which is not simple and needs much more effort than Java. Also, decompiled applications can’t be imported to Eclipse or Android Studio.

There are some tools like GetJava that already can do the job, but in most situations the result isn’t 100% accurate and some files still need to be translated to Java. XDA Senior Member darkguy2008 decided to start a project aimed to provide a better solution than JAD or JD-GUI.

The project is still at a very early stage, but most things are working already. This project is written in C# and needs Visual Studio 2012 and .NET Framework 4.5 installed to work properly. Hopefully in the future, it will be possible to use it on other operating systems like Linux or Mac OS X. Undoubtedly, this project has terrific potential and with help of other developers, the Android development can be significantly improved.

More information regarding this converter can be found in the original thread, so don’t hesitate to go there and give some input to the developer. Of course, you can also contribute by pushing some patches to the Github repository.

Bear in mind that tools like this should not be used to get some freebies from paid apps and re-release it under your name. Developers sell their work for a reason, so you should use it only for educational purposes.

T-Mobile and International Variants of Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Get Unofficial KitKat

Posted by wicked December - 30 - 2013 - Monday Comments Off

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The Galaxy Note 3 is one of Samsung’s newest devices. It’s an extremely powerful piece of hardware, placed smack dab at the top of the food chain in Android devices. The device was originally released with Android 4.3. But naturally, it hasn’t taken too long to get unofficial, but highly functional KitKat builds working on the device.

XDA Senior Member deadman96385 released the first Android 4.4 builds for International and T-Mobile variants of the Galaxy Note 3. Liquidsmooth, which is a modification of Android provided by the developer, is still at a very early stage of development, so many things need to be polished. The current list of things not working isn’t that long, but includes some important things like the inability to hang up calls and random data drops for both variants, as well as a lack of audio and problems with SD mounting in the international variant. Hopefully, though, these issues will be fixed soon. This is surely good news for all Note 3 users, as this big fella can get more and more development in the future.

If you are are a happy Note 3 user and want to try some AOSP magic, visit the T-Mobile or International thread and get the newest build. And if you have an idea on how to fix remaining bugs, don’t hesitate to push your code contribution or provide some logs to the developers.

Three-ROM KitKat Combo Hits the LG Optimus 4X HD

Posted by wicked December - 29 - 2013 - Sunday Comments Off

LG P880 (2)

LG produces many powerful devices. Two perfect examples would be two latest Nexus phones sold by Google. But this South Korean corporation has released quite a few devices with their own OEM skins and customization, and one of these is the LG Optimus 4X HD, also known as X3—quite a unique naming scheme indeed.

The Optimus 4X HD was initially a locked device. But after the release of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, this quad-core phone has become more developer friendly and can be bootloader unlocked. XDA Forum Moderator laufersteppenwolf and XDA Recognized Developers Adam77Root and Demetris recently issued multiple releases of KitKat-based ROMs on the very same day. Now members can choose between CyanogenMod 11, SlimKat, and OmniROM. The list of what works is quite impressive, as the only noticeable problem area is the camera. The LG Optimus 4X HD is one of the very first devices with Nvidia Tegra 3 chipset (Nexus 7 received an official update) to get an unofficial KitKat port.

If you’re an Optimus 4x HD user, head over to the threads below to select which ROM fits you best:

Don’t forget to leave feedback for the developers.