You knew this was coming sooner or later. Android Auto has been viewed as a mostly closed system, if not by nature of the software itself (which is technically open source) then by the fact that it's an extension of Android running on a big chunk of metal installed in your car. But some intrepid developers over on enthusiast forum AVIC411 have discovered a way to boot software directly from the SD card slot on Pioneer's NEX series of aftermarket Android Auto head units. That paves the way for custom ROMs in your car, or at least your car's entertainment system.
Technically the Developer Preview builds of Android L that Google issued are meant only for, well, developers. But of course a ton of regular users have downloaded them to try out Lollipop, and those users tend to be the same ones that like to use root apps. The updated Android 5.0 preview builds for the Nexus 5 and Nexus 7 2013 issued yesterday broke the existing root functions, so SuperSU developer Chainfire issued a quick fix.
Unfortunately, that fix doesn't come in the form of an updated app - you'll actually have to flash a modified Android kernel to either device to get root working.
A few days ago, it was confirmed that Google had started asking manufacturers to brand boot animations with a specific "Powered by Android" lockup as part of Google's Mobile Services license. Samsung's Galaxy S5 and HTC's new One M8 both carry the branding, and today Motorola's Moto X and Moto G have joined the party, but Motorola has something else in store as well - a new boot animation just in time for April Fools Day. The animation features a UFO, bigfoot, and the Loch Ness Monster, all exposed by Motorola's spotlight. Check out the full sequence below.
The updated animation sequence comes in an update to Moto's Boot Services app on the Play Store.
Last night, 73v1n, the author of the last few CyanogenMod boot animations, posted an updated and completely revamped version designed for CyanogenMod 10. It's very likely going to become the official animation of the ROM in the future, but if you want some of this goodness on your device stat (especially if you're running CM 7 or 9, as the version number doesn't appear in the newest animation), you don't have to wait for CM10 at all - 73v1n has now uploaded it for everyone to enjoy.
There are 6 landscape and 7 portrait sizes, so you'll be able to find a good match for even the quirkiest of devices.
73v1n (a.k.a. @Xevin, a.k.a. Cameron Behzadpour), the creator of official CyanogenMod boot animations, dropped the version for CM10 a couple of minutes ago. Jelly Bean-colored, clean, and simple, yet, in my opinion, highly attractive, the animation hits the nail on the head. There no Cid, no controversy surrounding him, no outdated skater dude - just pure awesomeness. I won't spoil the fun - just watch.
CM10 Boot Animation
For reference, here are the previous boot animations.
In a feat that, according to the CyanogenMod team, serves "as an indication of potential," Jason Parker (aka kornyone) has managed to boot CyanogenMod 9 on the Nexus Q.
Starting with fastboot, adb pushing, and running "just about any sideloaded APK" (including XBMC), Parker has been pushing the Q's potential over the past week in an effort that has culminated in getting a CM9 build (based on the Tuna/Maguro repositories and prebuilt kernel) to run on the device. Not only does Parker have CM9 running on the Q, but he says that "overall it's functioning better than many devices I have ported on first boot."
Parker also notes, however, that the build is "very much a work in progress." While Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and "much else" works, sound is not yet functional and SystemUI experiences frequent crashes.
The boot animation from CyanogenMod 7 still ranks somewhere towards the top of my personal list, but this new one, created by the same designer Cameron Behzadpour (73v1n) using Adobe After Effects, is definitely a step-up.
It builds on top of his previous effort and is quite possibly the best-looking boot animation I've seen on Android so far. And it's officially coming to CM9. Excellent work, Cameron!
Update: Check out this unofficial take on the same animation, but without as much background noise that some of you may prefer:
I'm surprised this didn't come sooner, but better late than never, right? The full Galaxy Nexus (presumably GSM) system dump, together with boot and recovery images were leaked earlier today by none other than Paul O'Brien, the founder of MoDaCo, a talented developer, and creator of many custom ROMs. If you remember, previously only the apps as well as certain bits and pieces of Ice Cream Sandwich were made available for download.
The files were extracted by Paul from a test device running build ICL23D and are about 170MB in size combined. You can download all 3 of them over at MoDaCo.
Last night, I sent out a message from our social accounts praising the Epic 4G Touch's boot times. They amazed me as soon as I turned this Galaxy S II Sprint variant for the first time last Friday and haven't ceased to amaze me ever since. I have loaded up all the same apps and then some compared to any of my other phones, and still - the Epic 4G Touch blazes by the competition like no other device I've seen.
I promised you guys a video comparing the boot times of E4GT with the EVO 4G. Sure, that didn't sound like a fair fight, but that wasn't my point - I wanted to show the current EVO 4G owners (and other year+ old devices) how far technology has advanced in that year+.
The elusive Droid Bionic is finally within weeks of release (it should drop September 8th for $299.99), but if you want to pretend you already have one for a moment or if your current boot animation is not a gorgeous fiery bionic eye (is such a thing even possible?), then download this official Droid Bionic boot animation and sound. It won't grow you an extra arm, but it will make you the coolest chap in town (not really).
Update: I've dropped the frames into GIMP and created an animated gif version. It's too big to embed on this page but if you want to see it, click here.