While many people are enjoying — or lamenting — the upgrade to Android 10, there are some out there that are just as interested in the final source code. With each major release of Android, a huge code drop is made to the Android Open Source Project (AOSP) with everything a developer needs to build the latest version of the OS. As of this morning, the code is now fully available and ready for consumption. Read More
Those of you who usually swipe your notifications away to the right (like me) may have taken some time to notice that expelling them to the left is no longer an option in Android Q. As is this case on some Chinese phones, swiping left gives you only snooze and alert settings. Thankfully, it looks like this is going to be customizable by the time the final Q release comes around. Read More
Samsung (and others) have been teasing the concept of foldable phones for a short while, and that flexible dream has been a science fiction-level goal for years. But up until today, it was anyone's guess exactly how that might have worked when it came to software implementations in Android. But fret not, Google has just revealed at the Android Dev Summit that our favorite operating system will have native support for folding form factors. Read More
Unbeknownst to most users (myself included until recently), Android apps on current and previous versions of the OS get unrestricted access to your network activity. There's no permission for you to accidentally say okay to, it's just allowed for all. This means that any app can detect when another app is connecting to an external server, and while the content is not visible, even just the source of the connection could be used for a nefarious purpose.
With a renewed focus on privacy and data collection, not least in the wake of the recent Facebook scandals, this type of potential security flaw clearly needs to be addressed. Read More
Google has given its Android Open Source Project (AOSP) website a considerable makeover, making it much easier on the eye and much more user-friendly too. The update brings it in line with Google's own Material Design guidelines, improves the mobile view, and introduces new top-level tabs to improve navigation. Read More
The OTAs have been rolling out since yesterday and as of today we can get some Nexus Factory Images fresh out of the oven. It's now time for AOSP to get caught up. Google is in the process of uploading Android 7.0 Nougat and its first official build NRD90M to the Android Open Source Project.
This is obviously a major version release, so there's quite a bit of code to transfer and that always takes quite a while. Read More
Sundar Pichai made a series of statements at recode's Code Conference yesterday that seem to have the internet aflutter. Pichai claimed that Google would be adding more software features to future Nexus devices, specifically: "You’ll see us hopefully add more features on top of Android on Nexus phones... There’s a lot of software innovation to be had."
Some have taken this to mean that "stock Android" on Nexus phones is no more. That Google will begin to differentiate just like its partners, with proprietary features and software, and that this marks a move away from a "purer" interpretation of Android. This makes sense until you actually think about it, because Nexus phones haven't run "stock" Android in years, and it's time for us to have a conversation about what that word even means, let alone the idea that Google's interpretation of Android is somehow "purer."
For starters, all of the following applications that ship on Nexus phones today are closed-source. Read More
According to a Bloomberg article published this morning, Google has been actively tracking the time it takes Android device manufacturers to update their handsets to a new version of the Android OS. Better yet? There are supposedly discussions happening inside Google as to whether or not to make the stats public, as a sort of "name and shame" directive to encourage manufacturers and carriers alike to update their handsets more quickly. To which I respond: oh god yes please, do this, Google.
The report also mentions a few other tidbits that are interesting, and we'll get to those, but let's focus on what I will now call The Android Update Wall Of Shame, which should very much be what it is called if Google does, in fact, publish it. Read More