We asked this question over two years ago in a weekend poll, and now we're asking again: is your primary Android device rooted? We all probably have a vague idea what rooting is even if we don't root our phones or tablets, but those of you more familiar with customization probably have pretty specific reasons for doing it, and experience with the rooting process over the years.
Both the Nexus 6 and Nexus 9, Google's latest phone and tablet, have already been rooted by Chainfire, and the process isn't especially difficult - in fact, you can do it automatically with a simple script.
Back when I was using CyanogenMod on my Galaxy S3 and when Google didn't have a decent Gallery alternative, QuickPic was my go-to replacement photo browser. It was fast at combing through thousands of images and had a clean and clear interface that made it easy to get to the photos you wanted to view. Even though I personally have less reasons to use QuickPic now, many users are still hooked on its lightness, speed, and simplicity.
There are a lot of good options in the mid-sized tablet range, and if you're a fan of Samsung's designs, the Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4 is among the best. Right now you can grab a refurbished black model off of eBay for $199.99, a full $200 off of the retail price. Of course, it's not quite the latest model (that would be the Galaxy Tab S, with its AMOLED screen), so most retailers have it discounted, but it's still a fantastic deal.
A new build of CyanogenMod 11S for the OnePlus One is ready, so it's time for some fixes to another batch of awful bugs that you wouldn't expect any modern phone to ship with in such large numbers. Many of these problems should fade away following this over-the-air update. Here's the provided list of changes folks can expect within the 44S build:
Sony's back to its AOSP tricks, working to release some functional (if not exactly ideal) versions of the latest release of Android based on open-source code. This time they've quickly put together Android Open Source Project builds for the flagships of the last two years: the Xperia Z1, Z2, and Z3. You can see the bone-stock builds running in the video below.
As always with Sony's developer promotions, these builds aren't intended for end users - they aren't provided with any kind of promise for reliability or functionality.
In the Android Police review of the OnePlus One, we called it "the best flagship you can't buy." That will change soon: the independent and often divisive manufacturer has finally seen fit to set aside its invitation system and start selling phones the old-fashioned way. Pre-orders will be available via OnePlus.net starting on Monday, October 27th at 15:00 GMT (8 AM Eastern time).
But it just wouldn't be OnePlus without some needless complication, right?
Sony's relationship with "pure" Android is an interesting one. As a company they generally make it easy to root or otherwise modify their phones or tablets, with a few notable qualifiers. The AOSP for Xperia project, which provides the basic tools for building standard Android ROMs on popular devices, is also one way that Sony stays relevant for those who buy phones with the intent to add aftermarket software. Today it gets two new flagship options, the older Xperia Z1 and Z2.
The OnePlus One has had its share of bugs, but there has been one issue that effectively breaks the phone without the owner being even accidentally at fault. One minute you're swiping through the app drawer looking at the best way to kill time for a couple of minutes, the next you're hit with a spontaneous reboot and staring at a phone that boot loops indefinitely, leaving you with a bricked device.
The problem is suspected to stem from the "persist" partition getting corrupted during the reboot, even though CyanogenMod doesn't use this particular location.
I'm quite cynical about OnePlus as a company, but I have to admit that I've heard a lot of praise for their phone from everyone who has tried it despite its many bugs and issues. However, there's one less reason for everyone to complain now, since the XNPH38R OTA update has started rolling out in stages according to an announcement on the OnePlus Forums.
After XNPH33R, which fixed many of the phone's issues in August, XNPH38R brings a slew of new features and most importantly, solves the One's glaring touchscreen problem. Artem has been testing out this fix and has noticed better speeds while typing and improved responsiveness with multitouch.