Communicate with Your Android Device without Cables with PushBullet

Communicate with Your Android Device without Cables with PushBullet

Smartphones have essentially become substitutes for full PCs in many situations. We use them to watch movies, listen to music, and even play games. Nevertheless, traditional computers are still very important, as browsing the Internet on the big screen with full Flash and Java support is still more convenient.

What to do when you find a funny image or application that is not available in the Play Store? Grabbing a USB cable and installing it via ADB is time consuming. You can’t also share links, lists, or addresses with just one click that way either. But now you can, thanks to XDA Forum Member guzba, who developed an application and browser extension to easily communicate with your Android devices.

PushBullet gives you the ability to do the aforementioned tasks really easy and without wires, so you can forget about the cables. You can also share things with friends and family, so nobody forgets to buy the milk. The PushBullet browser extensi0n works with Chrome and Firefox. All you need to do is to install the extension and connect it to your profile. The communication works two ways, so you can easily exchange some messages with your friends.

You can find more information aboout the project in the original thread.

 

Advertisements

Motorola Xoom Still Alive and Kicking, Receives Functional KitKat

The Motorola Xoom is rapidly approaching its third birthday. And given its age, you would be forgiven for thinking that it is readily approaching time for retirement. However, thanks to innovations such as the recently covered bigpart partition layout, the device still clings to life.

Now, the device has highly functional 4.4.2 KitKat-based OmniROM builds, courtesy of  Forum Member Schischu, along with some help from quite a few other developers mentioned in the thread’s OP. Currently, there are only a few very minor issues with selecting alternate keyboards and audio dock volume controls. However, these are relatively minor and don’t hinder every day usage too greatly.

The builds require your device to be repartitioned to bigpart, if you haven’t already done so. After loading the special bigpart TWRP, installation is just like any other custom ROM.

To get started and breathe some new life into your Xoom, head over to the appropriate thread below:

 

Highly Functional KitKat Build for the Sony Xperia Ion

Despite all of Sony’s recent developer-friendly awesomeness, a few relatively recent devices have fallen through the cracks and have been left without official Android updates. While most of these devices generally have found vibrant aftermarket development communities that have filled these gaps, this isn’t the case for every device.

One such instance is the Sony Xperia Ion, a device that was only officially updated to Android 4.1.2 and never received stable aftermarket builds of Android 4.2 or 4.3. Now thanks to hard work by XDA Senior Member MrGezz and Recognized Developer RaymanFX, a nearly fully functional Android 4.4 KitKat build has appeared for the device. This release comes in the form of an unofficial CyanogenMod 11 release, and it builds on work originally created by FXP for their CM10 builds.

There are currently two known bugs: The LED indicator does not light up when charging, and the battery percentage does not initially show properly in the status bar. The first bug is only a minor inconvenience, as the battery still charges even though the light does not come on. The latter, while annoying, has a functional workaround that is accomplished by changing the battery status style in CM settings.

If you’ve got an Xperia Ion and want to give KitKat a try, head over to the original thread and get in on the action.

 

Google Nexus 5 and 7 are Your Top Smartphone and Tablet Picks for 2013

Back when we launched our Best of 2013 Holiday Gift Guide, we asked you to cast your vote and pick the best smartphones and tablets of 2013. Well folks, the votes are in, and you’ve made your voices clear!

Starting off with your top tablet picks, the winner by a mile was the Google Nexus 7 (2013) with 53% of your votes. Then in second place, we have the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 (2014) with 15% of the votes. Next up is the LG G Pad 8.3 with 10% of the votes. The remainder of the votes was split up between the Surface Pro 2 (6%), Asus Transformer Book T100 (4%), Dell Venue 8 Pro (3%), and other (10%). And for those of you wondering which was the most popular write-in, it was none other than the Sony Xperia Tablet Z.

As for your favorite smartphones, there was still a decisive winner, but the race was much closer than with the tablets. Your pick for the best smartphone of 2013 is the Google Nexus 5, with 29% of your votes. Next up, we have the HTC One, with 15% of your votes. Then, we have essentially a three-way tie between the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 (10.49%), Sony Xperia Z1 (10.29%), LG G2 (10.07%). The remainder of the votes went to the Moto G (7.69%),Samsung Galaxy S 4 (6.99%), Moto X (3.63%), Oppo Find 5 (1%), and other (5.94%). For smartphones, the “other” category was essentially split between the Google Nexus 4Sony Xperia Z, and Sony Xperia SP.

From these results, it’s clear that Google scored a home run with its most recent Nexus devices. Do you agree with these results? Let us know in the comments below, and of course ,GET BACK U ALL LATER!

Make Your Gingerbread ROM Look Like KitKat

Android 4.4 KitKat was released two months ago, and it brought a lot interesting changes like a transparent status bar. But not many of you know that you can get a very similar effect on any ROM, even Gingerbread, and all you need to do is to visit the thread we’re going to describe below. With APK tool and good text editor like Notepad++, Gedit, or any UNIX-based notepads, you can easily make your status bar use a gradient background.

XDA Senior Member kk9999gada wrote a guide to describe the process of decompiling SystemUI.apk  to make the status bar transparent. He also provides the resources (a PNG file) needed to get this effect on your MDPI or LDPI device. The process of making your status bar more KitKat-like is very simple and takes a minute or two, so can be done while sipping some British tea. This modification proves that not only new, powerful devices with official and unofficial KitKat builds can have some of the best of Google’s UI tweaks.

If you have a Gingerbread device and want to add a transparent status bar to your favorite ROM, head over to the original thread and learn what exactly needs to be done.

Massive Facelift to Microsoft OneNote for Android Brings Share Intent and Multi-Window Support

Back in October, we talked about Microsoft’s Remote Desktop client for Android. The app came as a bit of a surprise at the time because unlike other Microsoft offerings on Android, this app worked quite well and was a legitimately good offering. Now, Microsoft has given a rather massive facelift to its previously less than stellar OneNote Android app. And much like their Remote Desktop client, the latest version of OneNote is surprisingly good.

Anyone who spent any appreciable amount of time with both the Windows and Android versions of OneNote would be quick to point out their differences. While the Windows app is able to take powerful and user friendly notes of any type, complete with pen support, ink annotations, and rich formatting, the Android app previously only allowed users to take very basic notes.

Now, Microsoft’s latest update to the OneNote app brings some key features that were previously lacking. While the Android app’s latest revision still unfortunately lacks pen and inking support, it packs several new features that make it much more of a contender to apps such as Evernote and the like.

Share Intent

The most important change brought by this update is support for Android’s powerful Share intent. Now, you can start a note from practically anywhere by using that application’s share function. This works with any app that supports the Share intent, even screenshots from the Gallery app.

Once a note has been added, a handy notification pops up, telling you that the content has successfully been added to your OneNote notebook. Tapping the notification then brings up the new content that you just shared.

Other Improvements

In addition to the newly found Share intent support, this update also brings support for multi-window on select Samsung devices. So if you happen to be running a Samsung device and ROM that offers split screen functionality, this application is in the supported whitelist. Of course, you could have always manually done this in the past with third-party root-enabled apps. That said, it’s nice to see more apps take advantage of this feature, even if it’s only on certain devices.

Finally, the application now offers vastly more powerful widget support. Rather than just being able to create simple notes from your home screen, you can now also view and directly access your notes.

This latest update now makes OneNote a legitimately useful note-taking app. Surprisingly, it is now a great option for those looking to try out a new notes app. But is it enough to win over users already happy with other solutions like Evernote? If you’re already in the Microsoft OneNote world as a Windows OneNote user, certainly. But if you don’t already use OneNote on the PC and you already have a working note-taking system with a cloud-connected notes app like Evernote, we find it unlikely that you’ll want to ditch your current solution in favor of Microsoft’s latest offering.

You can learn more about the changes in this latest version by visiting the source link below. And if you wish to give the latest version a try, head over to the app’s Google Play Store listing.

Do you think that this latest update helps to redeem Microsoft in the mobile space? Are you going to replace your current note-taking apps such as Evernote and Google Keep with OneNote? Let us know in the comments below.

 

 

Highly Functional KitKat Build for Sony Xperia S

You may recall that just yesterday, we featured a highly functional KitKat build for the  Sony Xperia Ion, a somewhat forgotten device that was only officially updated to Android 4.1.2 and never received stable aftermarket builds of Android 4.2 or 4.3. Yesterday’s work came from  XDA Senior Member MrGezz and Recognized Developer RaymanFX.

As it turns out, several loyal readers sent tips and told us in the comments about RaymanFX’s previous work on a different, but related device. Today, we’re going to take a look at another build created by RaymanFX (and the OpenSEMC team), this time for the Sony Xperia S.

Like yesterday’s build almost everything works. In fact, the minor bugs that afflicted the Ion release such as the nonfunctional charging light and battery status wonkiness are not present in the Xperia S release. The currently known issues are relatively few and minor, and include things like a nonfunctional FM Radio, the lack of stereo sound on the hardware speaker, and the notification drawer not rendering smoothly. Essentially, unless you have very specific use-cases, this is more than capable of being your daily driver.

If you wish to give KitKat a try on your Xperia S, make your way over to the original thread to get started.