30
Sep
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The Chromium issue tracker can sometimes prove to be a good source of juicy bits of information for those inclined to explore its depths. Most recently, we saw several UI refinements in the Bluetooth settings screen for Android L, but today an actual video has shown up depicting Chromium running on an even newer build - LRW87D, which is apparently just five days old.

First reported by Myce, the video demonstrates a Chromium crash, which itself isn't so interesting.

11
Jul
Nova-Thumb

There comes a point many, many months after the release of a new version of Android where devoted users just can't quash the desire to get their hands on an even newer version. A preview of Android L is already available for download, but unless you are willing to flash your device and put up with any number of potential bugs, I wouldn't recommend installing it on a phone you actually need to use.

28
Apr
XE16-Teardown

Last week I posted a teardown of the Settings app from XE 16. That was really just a teaser, because this update is huge. This time I'm ripping into the guts of every app on Glass. That's over 100 apks (counting multiple version updates from the last month), and there's plenty to see. I'm not going to waste time on a long intro, you know what you're here for!

18
Apr
2014-04-18 06.37.37

It seems like forever since we did our last teardown for Google Glass, but that doesn't mean there aren't a lot of things happening for the former Google[x] project. XE16 brought the first ever change in OS version, taking Glass from 4.0.4 (Ice Cream Sandwich) all of the way to 4.4.2 (KitKat). A minor hotfix from build followed with an undisclosed set of changes and a minor bump in build number.

14
Apr
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Included in Android's design guidelines is a section regarding iconography. The guidelines give very specific instructions on how to design a launcher icon for Android - it should have a unique silhouette, it should have a slight downward perspective, and it should be clearly visible no matter what wallpaper is behind it.

Many have opined, however, that it's odd that Google maintains different iconography for its apps on Android and their corresponding web services.

27
Mar
unnamed (7)

MyColorScreen's Themer is already an impressively powerful app for making your phone look cool. But for something that's supposed to encourage customization, it's surprisingly limiting - you can choose from a wide variety of user-created homescreens, but there aren't many options for tweaking them. With the latest update, Themer gives end users the ability to add some flair of their own via icon packs.

iconpacks

Themer should work with the vast majority of icon packs that are already in the Play Store and designed for more typical launchers like Nova and Apex.

24
Mar
newicons3

Now that the Chromecast is truly coming into its own, Google can turn its attention to the little things. Specifically, the icon. The current cast icon design works fine for some apps, but not so well for others. The new guidelines are aimed at making the status of the icon easier to discern across a range of apps designs.

newicons2

The old icon relied on a change in color to indicate connected/non-connected (see below).

10
Jan
Sam-Thumb

Last month we took a look at Google's Android Compatibility Definition Document, which stated that OEMs must use white icons if they're using translucent status bars. This change could provide a more uniform experience across Android devices, something that would be better for consumers and developers alike. But the question remains - will OEMs play ball? Well, the folks at SamMobile have gotten their hands on a leaked Android 4.4 build for the Galaxy S4, and it looks like the answer, at least from the leading Android manufacturer, may be yes.

10
Nov
nexusae0_image_thumb49

In our last Glass Teardown, we found a ton of new commands hidden in the resources of GlassVoice.apk, pulled from the XE10 update. Just a couple of days ago, XE11 rolled out to Explorers, and it's got even more to tell us about future Glass functionality.

In this teardown, we'll take a look at progress on functions XE10 hinted at, new resources that clarify some of our previous discoveries, and a couple of new things as well.

21
Oct
newsstand

Recently, we tore down an unreleased version of Google's Play Store 4.4 update and discovered that Newsstand, an upcoming Play service we first learned about back in March, had made some progress.

When we first saw Newsstand, it was in the midst of Javascript and CSS in the web Play Store. At the time, it looked like Newsstand would be an addition to the existing apps, books, tv/movies, music, and magazines categories, adopting its own yellow brand color (#FFD700 to be exact).

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