There are plenty of apps in Google Play these days, but a relatively small proportion are designed to unlock the power of a rooted device. Since it can be easy for these powerful apps to get obscured by the crush of retro, free-to-play, side-scrolling platformer games, we like to aggregate the best root-only apps on occasion. Whether you want to free up some screen real estate, change icons around, or manage your backups, the apps you need are right here.
Do you hear that? It's the sound of a thousand HTC fans modding the crap out of their shiny new HTC One Developer Edition smartphones. The Taiwanese company just posted the RUU (ROM Update Utility) for the American version of the One DE, giving would-be tinkerers a safe way to restore their devices if something goes boom. You can download the RUU at HTC's Developer Center. We'd post some direct links for you, but HTC is insisting you go through the Downloads page.
Congratulations are in order for the Team Kang, the developers of the Android Open Kang Project. As of yesterday AOKP is only the third community-created ROM to run on 1,000,000 Android devices, behind CyanogenMod and MIUI. The team announced their milestone on the aokp.co blog, noting that with the upcoming release of the first Android 4.2 Milestone build, they'll be shaking up the release process a bit.
Instead of the rather slow numbered build releases, AOKP will be automatically built and distributed from the team's servers every four days.
Update: So, scratch all that. Steve Kondik took to G+ today to say that CM will return the opt-out option and will not require users to share data. Though it's with a heavy heart, it seems. Expressing some exasperation, he had this to say on the matter:
We've got some good news for the open source development community today: HTC has released the kernel source files for the One SV, in 16 different varieties to account for slight differences between carriers and countries.
Although this may not be of immediate interest to consumers, as developers get their hands on the source, it should result in faster and more stable ROMs for the device in the future.
If you want to download the kernel source, which is around 100MB in size, to check it out for yourself, you can download it from the HTC Dev Center.
Of all the Android ROMs out there, few receive even a fraction of the love that CyanogenMod does. For users that like to flash ROMs and experiment with all Android has to offer, getting official Cyanogen support can be like Christmas morning. Today users of the HTC One XL and the old Verizon Motorola XOOM get to do a little happy dance as CyanogenMod 10.1 nightlies have become available for the XOOM, while an experimental build is up for the One XL.
Most college kids are at home this time of the year, celebrating the end of finals and/or nursing hangovers. But the ROM's scene's number one destination is hosting classes all year round at the the new XDA University site. XDA-Developers has been working on the extension of the main site as a destination for newcomers to the world of root, custom ROMs, and other Android modifications, as well as a place to learn about more serious Android development.
CyanogenMod is one of the most popular Android ROMs and is supported on a ton of devices already. The CyanogenMod 10 version being offered for the MetroPCS SGS3 is a nightly build, meaning it is the experimental product of a day's work. Bugs are to be expected, but CM10 is getting quite stable overall.
Jelly Bean may be all the rage at the moment, but the CyanogenMod team hasn't forgotten about their Ice Cream Sandwich implementation. Tucked in with the newly updated CyanogenMod 9.1 is support for the brand new SimplyTapp near-field communication system. SimplyTap is the labor of love of two dedicated CyanogenMod users, with the aim of broadening NFC payment usage via a more open implementation of the embattled standard. Currently the Tapp app is only compatible with CyanogenMod 9.1 - CM10 is moving a little too quickly to reliably add the necessary code.
If you're going to be messing around with custom ROMs at all, it's a good idea to have a nandroid backup at the ready. A recent backup can save you a lot of time and heartache if things end up going sideways. However, backing up your system used to mean rebooting into recovery and waiting for 5-10 minutes while everything progressed. That's not the end of the world, but every barrier to backing up makes people less likely to do it.