The idea of using a smartphone as a full desktop PC when connected to an external monitor isn't new. The now-dead Ubuntu for phones and tablets had 'Convergence' as one of its main features, allowing you to run full desktop Linux apps when you connected a keyboard and mouse (and display, if your device supported that). Read More
Have you grown tired of those pesky visual launchers, festooned as they are with childish icons and backgrounds? Do you have a good memory, and typically carry an external keyboard about with your phone for quick bash sessions? If Stallman is your shepherd and he maketh you lie down in open-source pastures, then this app might just be for you. Linux CLI Launcher replaces your home screen launcher with a pseudo-Linux command line. Read More
Motorola's Moto G5 Plus came out not too long ago. Meeting with positive reviews, it kept the crown as the king of budget phones. It packs in a lot of good specs for a low price point, which is a well-known hallmark of the G series. As seems to be the company's trend lately, Motorola has released the kernel source code for the capable device. Read More
There isn't really an easy way to run Android applications on the desktop. There are virtualization tools like AMIDuOS and Bluestacks, but those run Android apps inside a fixed window and can be slow at times. Anbox is a new project, currently in the Alpha stage, which aims to run apps alongside your normal desktop applications - as long as you use Linux. Read More
Canonical, the company behind the Ubuntu linux distribution, has been trying to make a dent in the mobile market for years. Back in 2012, it developed a feature that allowed phones to dock into full Ubuntu PCs, similar to Samsung DeX. That eventually evolved into Ubuntu for phones and tablets, a mobile OS specifically designed to work as as phone and portable PC. Read More
What is this witchcraft? DeskDock, now available on the Play Store, allows you to share your computer's keyboard and mouse with your Android device. If you've ever used Synergy, it's very close to that.
What's the point of something like this, you may ask? The primary use the developer provided was to make Android development much easier. With this tool, you could work on an application on your computer, push it to your device, and test it without your hands ever leaving your keyboard. But there are plenty of other potential uses as well - you could use your Android tablet as another monitor to watch media on, for example. Read More
The idea of a smartphone that magically turns into a full PC has been something of a pipedream for a while now. Motorola tried it with its Atrix laptop dock, Canonical is trying something similar with its Ubuntu Unity phone OS that can dock into a monitor. Even Microsoft is giving it a go with Windows Phone devices that can dock into a slimmed-down ARM Windows environment. The latest attempt with an Android base comes from "Maru OS," the brainchild of developer Preetam D'Souza. Read More
My first computer was an old laptop with a dead battery and a dial-up modem. It ran Windows XP, but I didn't have the money to buy expensive software like Microsoft Office or PhotoShop. I discovered OpenOffice.org, AbiWord, and GIMP. I used Firefox, Thunderbird, and Pidgin.
Back then free cloud services weren't yet around, and I didn't have a strong enough Internet connection even if they were. Without an understanding of what open source software was, such applications gradually formed the majority of what I used. When I later went to college, I embraced Linux, and my appreciation for open source software grew. Read More
João Dias, also known as joaomgcd on the Play Store, is one of those developers who are never, ever, content with the current capabilities of modern smartphones. He wants them to be more powerful, respond to more commands, allow more interactions, all from more interfaces. His AutoVoice app has been available for a while, allowing you to harness the OK Google interaction scheme to automate plenty of new actions and issue commands that Google's default algorithms don't yet understand.
Now AutoVoice is getting a lil' sister app, an AutoVoice Chrome extension for your Windows, Mac, and Linux computers. Thanks to it, you can perform the same actions on your phone, but while sitting at your computer (or from another phone too), like taking screenshots, sending messages, hanging up on calls, and more. João has made a demo video to show you the possibilities. Read More
SoundSeeder takes a bunch of Android devices lying around and turns them into a poor man's sound system by syncing audio playback across all of the phones and tablets so that they pump out tunes in unison. The app hit the Play Store in two parts last year, but now everything's bundled up into a single package. Not only that, it's now ready to shed its beta tag.
As you can see in the screenshots above, this release gets the app ready for Android Lollipop. Not only are there material elements sprinkled throughout the UI, there's a new navigation bar, a landscape mode, and support for tablets. Read More