A few months ago I wrote "Stock Android Isn't Perfect," an article where I turned my usual harsh UX critique on stock Android, instead of just picking on TouchWiz and Sense all the time in my reviews. The article went over pretty well, and even got a few responses from Googlers! I didn't cover everything that was wrong with Android, though, and there have been a bunch of updates since the original article, so it's about time I wrote a sequel.
Earlier this week, we got wind of a new OTA build JOP40G possibly hitting the Nexus 4 soon. I thought this update would finally be the elusive Android 4.2.2 that we've been hearing about, but it looks like that's not the case.
Yesterday, Google pushed some new open source code to AOSP (Android Open Source Project) marked with 2 new tags: android-4.2.1_r1.1 and android-4.2.1_r1.2. The build number corresponding to the 4.2.1_r1.2 release is - you guessed it - JOP40G (with mentions of JOP40F and JOP40E along the way too) - the same one we thought would be 4.2.2.
Update: The CyanogenMod team has chosen a new name: cLock. According to the Google+ post, the new name was chosen by virtue of its simplicity.
In a post to Google+ titled "Pitfalls of being so big" earlier this evening, the CyanogenMod team informed followers that CM had been served with a C&D (Cease and Desist) request regarding their Chronus clock widget.
For those unfamiliar, Chronus is CyanogenMod's acclaimed lock screen (or home screen) clock widget, introduced last December, that displays the time in Android 4.2 fashion along with configurable calendar and weather information.
If you've got a hundred dollars to burn and love awesome technological toys, J&R has a deal for you. The self-described "gadget wonderland" is offering the Sphero ball for $99.99, a $30 drop from its normal price of $129.99.
For those unaware, the Sphero is a robotic sphere than can be controlled from your smartphone or tablet. The concept sounds simplistic, but all it takes is a bit of imagination to make Sphero an awesome gadget.
If you own a French RAZR i, time to start hitting that 'check update' button. The update to Android 4.1.2 is officially beginning to roll out, and in Q1 2013 - as promised.
If you want the update right now, but are afraid of losing root, there's good news on that front, too: you can. The new root instructions and files are located here. An updated, pre-rooted fastboot file can be found here, which should put your unlocked RAZR i on French firmware.
Au's Infobar phone line has been around since 2001, always featuring plenty of color and hoping to bring innovative ideas to the smartphone world through eye-popping, unique design. Bringing another stylized entry to the lineup, Au has posted a brief dossier on the new Infobar A02, designed by Naoto Fukasawa and manufactured by HTC.
One of the device's main claims to fame is its apparent use of HTC's ImageSense chip, allowing for smooth burst capture.
I have no problem admitting that I see absolutely no practical use in running Android on a desktop PC. Still, I have to give credit where credit is due – WindowsAndroid is just downright neat. In a nutshell, it's a not-so-creatively-named project from a company called Socketeq that aims to run Android natively within Windows. That means without emulation.
So, how is this possible? With hard work, determination, and a small bit of fairy dust – that's how.
Way back in December 2011, Sony began releasing 'alpha' developer ROMs for some of its phones being upgraded to Android 4.0. Then it released beta ROMs that did slightly more stuff. Now it's done the same with Android 4.1 for the Xperia T.
These ROMs are developer-facing in every sense of the word, though, and aren't intended as a way for power users to get early access to the next version of Android.
The lads at the Android Open Kang Project have been busy expanding the 4.2 version of their custom ROM, thankfully expanding on the three officially supported devices in the initial release. For Build 2, all four major US variants of the Galaxy S III are supported (but not the international version), as well as the Nexus 7 3G, and the Nexus 10 for good measure. Flash-ready ROM files are available on the AOKP website for the Galaxy Nexus, Nexus 4, and Nexus 7 WiFi as well.