There's this thing Google does with app updates. Or rather, maybe I should say doesn't do. And that's tell us what has actually changed.
You see, Google likes to roll updates out in stages. This makes sense. If there's a problem with an update, the company can halt the rollout without impacting as many people.
The thing is, Google doesn't typically update the changelog until the rollout is complete and everyone has received the latest version. This is a process that can take a couple of weeks.
Users who receive the update early on have to guess what's new, or come to us and hope that we've already done so (which we often do using the help of our readers—it's a very circular process). Read More
Earlier today, Kirill Grouchnikov, the face behind the Play Store Android app, detailed a set of relatively substantial design tweaks and RTL language support destined for an upcoming update. Unfortunately, the APK uploaded to APK Mirror shortly after did not seem to have the majority of these changes live just yet, but Kirill, who also announced his departure from the Google Play team, managed to sneak in one last parting gift.
And it's the best gift he could have possibly given us. Or at least me, considering I copy changelogs all day long for APKMirror.com. I think I now owe him 100 beautiful white roses. Read More
In the last several weeks, word of an upcoming Android 4.4.3 release started spreading around, for the most part based on sightings of new build numbers in server logs and bug reports, along with this tip by @LlabTooFeR. Of course, with so many 4.4.3 mentions, it's no surprise that these are actually legitimate and not creations of random trolls.
According to a source familiar with the situation, Android 4.4.3 is, unsurprisingly, going to be a pure bug-fixer release. We shouldn't be seeing new features or UI changes - Google is saving those for a more major release (let's not speculate on 4.5, 5.0, etc. Read More
Developers have certainly made great use of the Alpha and Beta distribution channels in the Play Store since they became available last summer. There was one glaring oversight: developers could only write a single block of text for the "What's New" section. This often led to changelogs that left beta testers in the dark about changes or confusing regular users with promises of new features and fixes that hadn't yet materialized in the stable channel. Well, this problem ends today. Google has finally opened up support for distinct changelog text for each channel!
Things don't look all that different from before. Read More
Following yesterday's Android 4.2.2 OTAs to various Nexus devices, Google today followed up with the push of all 4.2.2 open source code changes to AOSP. There is a lot here to parse through this time around compared to the minor 4.2.1_r1.2 commit from 10 days ago.
We've already identified some obvious user-facing changes, which we'll post about separately soon to keep it clean and organized. The purpose of this post is, as before, to find the low-level changes that may not be obvious. So move the beard out of the way and dig in.
Update: Ron detailed some new things here: New Android 4.2.2 Features: Toggle From Quick Settings, Better App Download Notifications, and Some New Sounds! Read More
Android 4.2.1 along with its source were released today, but outside of the December bug in the People app, it wasn't immediately apparent whether it contained other fixes and improvements or not. The list of files touched by the Nexus 4 OTA was extensive, but now thanks to developer Al Sutton, we can confirm that most of those were probably just minor edits to bump the version number.
According to Al and his handy AOSP diff script, here are the only changes in Android 4.2.1 (4.2.1_r1) open source code compared to Android 4.2 (4.2_r1). Note: There could be other changes in closed-source components. Read More
Buried deep within the changelog of Android 4.1.2 that arrived today is a very welcomed change to the way expandable notifications are handled by the OS. Introduced in Jelly Bean, expanding and collapsing notifications originally required two fingers to operate. Not anymore! A handy gesture now allows easy expansion and collapsing with just one finger, making it easier to perform this task while holding a device in one hand.
Collapsing is a little tricky at first and requires first pulling down and then up. Once you figure it out, it becomes a no-brainer, but is a little confusing if you don't know what you're doing. Read More
As a developer, I absolutely love days like today. If the high-level "improves performance and stability and fixes bugs" changelog of Android 4.1.2 isn't good enough for you, how about we dive into the actual low-level source code commit logs Android engineers made into AOSP since 4.1.1_r1.1 (JRO03D) all the way through today's release 4.1.2_r1 (JZO54K). These commit logs are spread over probably 100+ repositories, so hunting for all of them manually would probably take you days. However, thanks to Al Sutton, you can check them out all in one place.
Be prepared for lots of code jargon and incomplete git commit messages, which probably won't mean much to most of you. Read More
Remember the sudden 4.03.605.1 OTA update that unexpectedly hit some HTC Rezound devices earlier this week and brought global roaming with it? And the 4.03.605.2 full RUU that we followed up with shortly after? We've just gotten a hold of the full low-level Verizon changelog for these releases (the .2 one to be exact), so here's what's different compared to that final ICS OTA from only a few weeks ago (remember, half of the changelogs' value comes from knowing what to not expect):
- Global support enabled
- Let’s Golf 2 v1.2.1
- Skype video call – color incorrect
- Mobile Hotspot shows incorrect number of devices
- Time displayed after powering off and then right back on
- BUA+ read requests
- BUA+ not displaying in Landscape mode
- Data stall
- Mobile IM removed
- Guided tour video can now be found in “Basic Set-up and Usage Videos”
- Location settings pop-up removed
- Data widget updated
- IPv6 default set to “Enabled”
- VMM version updated to 0.37
- Static IP
- VVM notification in “all Messages” tab after deleting
- VCAST Music – removed MP3 purchase references
We're also hearing that the end date for this trial is September 3rd - presumably, that means that if everything goes well, that's the date it's going to get approved and possibly roll out to everyone shortly after. Read More
As you may have seen, I've been running Android 2.1 on my Sprint HTC Hero for a few weeks now, and I'd like to follow up the mega [p]review of all the new features with a few subtle observations that made me, a long-time Hero user, happy.
These may be small things but it takes only a few of them to take the overall phone experience to a new level.
By the way, if you want to experience Android 2.1 on your Hero without waiting for Sprint/HTC to release it, you can proceed to this how-to that I compiled just for you: To All Complaining About Android 2.1 On HTC Hero – Step 1: Chill Out. Read More