The first time I tried using ADB after updating my PCs to Windows was a very unpleasant experience. What worked so well on Windows 7 was apparently borked in Windows 8 thanks to the new driver verification system that disallows unsigned drivers from running without this mode being first disabled, which requires a reboot. Upon subsequent reboots, driver verification is re-enabled, making the entire process tedious and beyond frustrating. I've since resorted to using a portable version of Linux Mint install virtualized within Windows – a less than ideal setup, it is.
Haven't you been waiting for something better to do with your photospheres than just uploading them to Google+ for other people to enjoy? Thanks to Photosphere Live Wallpaper, you can finally place them front-and-center on your home screen. The idea is simple, a live wallpaper that uses your spherical photography as a background. It's one of those ideas we've all thought of, but until now, has remained absent from the Play Store.
Facebook Home, the company's trumpeted home screen replacement effort, has been a popular point of discussion since before it was announced.
For those who missed the announcement, Facebook is looking to replace your device's normal launcher with a continuous in-your-face social bonanza, featuring a huge news feed on your lock screen, a new pop-up chat called Chat Heads, and pretty complete integration with the social network, allowing for status, photo, and other updates on the fly.
From poorly-executed "leaks" to potential legitimate sightings, there's been a lot of hubbub about Google's supposed unified messaging service, likely called Babel. This isn't necessarily surprising. After all, if you asked most Android enthusiasts what feature they most wanted from the platform in its next iteration, you'd hear a lot about unified messaging. We've tried to stay clear of covering every flurry of Babel-related murmurings so far, but today we saw something new – Google+ user Patric Dhawaan posted a screenshot of what he says is a notification in Gmail, triggered when "pruning" his inbox.
On April 12th, Facebook Home will arrive in the Play Store... for select devices. It's a homescreen replacement app, and for those who use Facebook regularly, might be something worth looking into. The demos of the app looked smooth and simple - there's a lot of that gesture business going on - and while I'm not exactly big on Facebook, I know I'm going to give it a whirl just to see what it's like.
As we all know, Facebook had an announcement earlier this week. The most pervasive social media outlet on the planet announced Facebook Home – a product that essentially amounts to a highly integrated launcher for your Android phone. It also announced the HTC First, a phone optimized for Home, offering a fully Facebook-ed experience.
The launcher is actually pretty nice – features like the unfortunately-named Chat Heads are almost enough to sell this writer on the idea of making an Android hamburger out of a phone, with Facebook Home serving as the top bun (or maybe the lettuce).
Talkray, from the makers of the incredibly popular touch-talk app TiKL, is an ambitious app – it looks to be your one-stop shop for mobile communication on the go, communicating through text, pictures, videos, and voice all for free. Until now, though, the app has had a fatal flaw – its design. While not the worst design we've seen, Talkray had, shall we say, unfortunate looks. Inconsistent styles, gradients mixed with flat elements, and Gingerbread-style tabs abound.
There are surprisingly few options out there for tracking details about your battery via live wallpaper (and those that are out there are quite ugly), but Battery Core seems to fill the niche quite nicely. The live wallpaper consists of a large, Tron-ish rotating disc, the speed of which varies by your remaining charge. Slow rotation means a low battery, whereas higher velocity means higher capacity. You also get text readouts of the level, charging / not charging status, voltage, and battery temperature.
Want to show off the fancy spherical photography prowess of your Nexus 4, but can't find buddy rocking Android 4.2? SphereShare is here to solve your shutterbug problem so that you can post those omnidirectional masterpieces somewhere other than Google+. The app is dedicated to the PhotoSphere feature, allowing users to upload their own photos for quick and easy sharing, or post them to a public gallery for all the world to see.
When it comes to getting various notifications while your device's display is off, a built-in LED is useful. However, it's far from perfect. Sure, you can customize each notification with something like Light Flow, but that doesn't let you know the message contents at a glance. And, of course, there are also devices that don't have an LED at all, like the Nexus 7 for example. If you're looking for more out of your notification experience, Knock²+ may be the answer.