Creating an aesthetically pleasing home screen for your phone or tablet has become an art in itself, and an entire ecosystem packed with widgets, themes, wallpapers, launchers, and custom ROMs has built up to support it. Sometimes, it can be tough to find a winning combination of elements to create a beautiful and enduring home screen that provides both form and function.
For this reason, we have decided to open up a monthly call for gorgeous, well-decorated home screens of all shapes and sizes.
December's Home Screen Challenge – like our first two challenges – gave us a look at some extremely impressive home screens, pushing aesthetics and home screen tweaking to their limits. It was tough to pick just one winner, but in the end, suprafreak1000's zen-like reimagining of the Android interface won us over. Like always, we'll break down the winning home screen and explain each of its parts, so you, the reader, can design your own creation using the same elements.
The minds behind CyanogenMod have done it again, bringing nightly updates to several LG Optimus variants, and adding official CM7 support for the Epic 4G (not to be confused with Sprint's Galaxy SII variant).
Among the newly-supported LG devices are the Optimus 3D (p920), Hub (e510), Pro (c660), and Black (p970) (which is technically seeing the return of nightlies). It may be worth noting that the Optimus Hub and Pro both received RomManager support tonight, making it excessively simple to get CM goodness on the devices.
Our own Justin Case has been collaborating with Reid Holland (erishasnobattery) on TacoRoot – a tool that should root just about any HTC smartphone – for some time now, and with the recent additions to HTC’s official unlocking tool, they’ve decided to release it.
At the moment, it’s quite gnarly – it’s only a temporary root for now, and there are various issues with it (see below). That said, it’s incredibly useful for downgrading phones like the myTouch 4G, which can’t be unlocked or rooted with the most recent version of their software.
In a continued effort to unlock bootloaders everywhere using their online tool, HTC has added several exciting entries to the "supported devices" list. Perhaps the most notable of the new entries are the Droid Incredible 2 and HTC Thunderbolt. Officially, HTC's online unlock tool is compatible with all devices launched after September 2011, but the new additions reflect an effort to add compatibility for older devices.
Update: HTC just added the Incredible S to the mix.
Hot on the heels of the Droid Razr's leaked fastboot files, two more Motorola devices can now be restored to stock configuration in case of emergency.
Motorola's Atrix 2 and Droid Bionic have both had their fastboot files leaked in recent days, providing a bit of insurance for daring users and developers alike. The Atrix 2's files are available here, while the Droid Bionic's fastboot set can be found here.
Motorola Droid RAZR owners (and developers) received a bit of good news yesterday, thanks to a leaked set of fastboot files which allow your RAZR to be restored to stock in case of a soft brick or other unforeseen issue.
Many users over at XDA and DroidRZR.com forums have already reported success in flashing the files and restoring their devices, indicating that the fastboot set is, in fact, the real deal.
Update #1: HTC Vivid is unlockable as well - thanks again for the tip, jcase.
Update #2: HTC just updated the bootloader unlock site and announced that "All HTC Android devices launched after September 2011 are unlockable. The website will be updated accordingly to reflect this in the coming weeks.
Auckland GTUG, a New Zealand-based Google Technology User Group, uploaded a video to YouTube today demonstrating the power of the Android Open Accessory platform via an impressive Christmas-themed light show.
A product of GTUG's November coding session, the light show is controlled by an Acer Iconia A500 tablet, and the controller app allows for predetermined sequencing of up to 9 channels, and even supports syncing with music. Without further ado, here's the video:
On that note, all of us here at Android Police would like to wish you and yours a happy holiday season, and a joyous new year!