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AOSP

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Partial iris scanner support in progress for future Android version

Even though face unlock has been a part of Android since Ice Cream Sandwich, several Android manufacturers have been working on improved versions over the past year, mostly in response to the iPhone X. The ill-fated Note7 had an iris scanning feature, the OnePlus 5T includes face unlock, and the Galaxy S9 has a hybrid of the two features. Starting with the next Android release, it might be easier for OEMs to add iris scanning to their devices.

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Project Treble compatibility unofficially ported to Xiaomi Redmi Note 4, more devices likely to follow

One of Android's biggest criticisms over the years has been how fragmented its version distribution is at any given time. At Google I/O in May last year, Google unveiled a plan to modularize the OS and make it easier to update. Project Treble, in short, separates out the base-level Android framework from the vendor implementation so OEMs are able to release OS updates without having to wait for chipmakers to update drivers.

Faster updates should increase the distribution numbers for the latest version of Android, but Treble could also be useful for custom ROM developers, allowing generic AOSP builds ("Treble ROMs") to be installed on more phones.

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Android may have native Wi-Fi Direct printing in the future

Android has a few different methods for printing, one of the easiest and most recognizable is probably Google's Cloud Print. But setting up and using a random printer from your Android-powered phone or tablet isn't quite as easy as it is from a more traditional laptop or desktop computer. According to the folks at XDA, though, that might change with the recent addition of Wi-Fi Direct printing to AOSP.  

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Canceled Pixel 2 'muskie' by HTC appears in AOSP, had 3830mAh battery and Pixel Visual Core on board

It's been a while since this news was relevant, but the Pixel XL's successor was initially codenamed 'muskie.' However, we learned that muskie was shelved in favor of 'taimen,'  which is the Pixel 2 XL we have today. But XDA has done some digging and discovered some interesting specs that muskie would have had. Among these is a massive 3830mAh battery, which is pretty interesting.

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Sony has added the Xperia XZ1 and XZ1 Compact to its Open Devices program

Sony has been a surprisingly developer-friendly Android phone maker, with its Open Devices program giving anyone the opportunity to build and flash custom versions of the OS firmware on its devices. A few days ago Sony published the relevant binaries for the latest AOSP version of Android 8.0 Oreo for a number of its phones, and now it's added two newer Xperia models.

The XZ1 and XZ1 Compact were launched at the end of August at IFA 2017 in Berlin. They're essentially the same as their predecessors, the XZ and X Compact, on the outside, with updated internals such as the Snapdragon 835.

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AOSP Android Oreo can now be compiled for Xperias through Sony's Open Devices program

Sony may not come to mind as one of the most developer-friendly mobile tech companies out there, but its Open Devices program proves otherwise. The latest fruits of this creation come in the form of AOSP Android 8.0 Oreo, which is now available for six Xperia smartphones.

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Android 8.0 Oreo settings app crashes for some when viewing Wi-Fi or mobile data usage

Picture the scene: you're near your monthly data allowance and you want to check your usage to see what you should turn off to avoid some astronomical overuse charges. We've all been there. But imagine when you get there your settings app decides to give up the ghost, over and over again. That's been the situation for Artem the last couple of days, as you can see from the tweet below.

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Developer discovers how to turn on Android 8.0's theme support without root, but it's a bit janky

Big news today over on XDA. It would appear that the OMS support added to AOSP made its way into Android 8.0 Oreo, and the enterprising developers at XDA have figured out how to leverage the nascent theming system. That is to say, support for Substratum themes now exists in stock Android as of Oreo, and the Substratum developers have just found a way to leverage that without relying on root, via a bit of privilege escalation and ADB, resulting in an incoming root-less theme management system for phones on stock Oreo, and it could be released within the next week.

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[Update: Dorado likely the Verizon Wear24] Commit reveals touch support is coming to AOSP recovery, and an unknown device named 'dorado'

A commit made yesterday to AOSP has revealed two juicy pieces of news. The more interesting thing is also the one we know the least about: somewhere there is a device named "dorado," and we have no idea what it is. The second and more immediately understandable tidbit is that Google is adding touch support to the AOSP recovery. 

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Sony adds Xperia XZ Premium to Open Devices program

Sony's latest phone, the Xperia XZ Premium, launched in the United States last week. As the name implies, it's a rather expensive phone ($799.99), but offers a few unique features like a camera capable of recording 960FPS slow-motion video. Sony has now added the phone to its Open Devices program, making it easy for developers to build AOSP for the device.

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