Welcome back to the Android Police Files, your #1 source for the brilliant stuff that the AP staff receives in our mailboxes. Since we last convened, a lot has happened. The latest version of Android shares a name with a branded product for the first time since 4.4 KitKat. The Galaxy Note8 was released, and it doesn't catch fire. And most recently, a Canadian 17-year old and his "youth leadership coach" tried to pass a Chinese ODM's phone off as their own and crowdsource it on Indiegogo.
There will always be new things going on in the world, but there's one thing that we know will never change: crazy people sending us crazy messages. Read More
The Huawei Watch 2 Classic's regular price of $369.99 puts it at the higher end of the Android Wear market. However, its price is somewhat justifiable - it looks good, has a high-resolution AMOLED display, the latest Snapdragon Wear 2100 processor, more RAM than its competitors, a large battery, GPS, and NFC. It's expensive because it has high-quality components. So what does the Porsche Design Huawei Watch 2 bring to the table for the extra $555? Read More
Samsung has been on a power trip since the launch of the Galaxy S8/S8+. On both of those phones is a fourth (or third, depending if you consider the volume rocker to be one or two) button that is a shortcut to Bixby, Sammy's new "personal assistant." Not understanding the will of some people, the giant Korean OEM decided to block the ability to remap the function of that button. Clever developers found a workaround, which Samsung recently blocked for some versions of the S8/S8+. And now, those clever devs have figured out another workaround for the crackdown. Read More
It's been over half a year since the last installment of the AP Files was published, and the world has undergone some drastic changes. There's a squeezable phone. Bezel-less phones now dominate the world. And the newest LG phones haven't had any major reports of bootlooping. I'm sorry, I had to.
Six months is indeed quite a long time, and it's definitely enough time for us to have received some more... let's call them interesting letters in our mailboxes. Read More
Remember those crazy expensive apps that only existed for you to show off how rich you are to your friends (and to make developers some quick cash from chumps)? The $999.99 'I Am Rich' iOS app from back in '08 comes to mind, but it turns out that those apps still exist on the Play Store. PENITAX, a Slovakia-based 'developer,' has just made all three of his lackluster $399.99 apps free for a limited time on the Play Store. Read More
Microsoft is getting ready for a big Windows 10 Mobile push after more than five years of toiling in vain on Windows Phone. In hopes of encouraging Android users to jump ship, Microsoft has released AppCompare, an app that tells you if the apps you have installed on your Android device are available on Windows Phone. If this sounds familiar, that's because Microsoft already tried this, and it didn't go well. Read More
Does the Tegra K1 in your Nexus 9 run a little toasty? Well, it's got nothing on NVIDIA's latest mobile chip design win, which is literally an oven. I'm sorry, NVIDIA, but the jokes basically write themselves here.
Owner testimonial: "My oven can play Doom 3!"
The June oven's big shtick is that it takes selfies of your food which, while completely ridiculous, is at the same time weirdly cool? Maybe? I don't know. What I do know is that this actually sounds like a pretty good oven, boasting a 350F preheat time of just 4 (four) minutes, which is sort of incredible. Read More
Now that the hustle and bustle of Mobile World Congress 2015 is behind us, we have time to address some of the comments and emails we've received over the past several months.
If this is your first time coming across the Android Police Files, here's what you should know: some of the people who reach out to us assume that there's a police force out there dedicated entirely to Android (whatever that means) or that we personally had a hand in every piece of code or software that comes out for their devices. Others are just plain paranoid.
Here, see for yourself.
This entry is not a letter, but a five-month-old comment (posted after our last edition of the Android Police Files) left on what is now a ten-month-old post titled "[APK Teardown] Google Play Services 4.4 Explodes With Android Wear Support, Firmware Installer, And Much More." It reads:
I dont really undrstand this stuff but in my personal opinion...as far as permussions go....well I think its all bs cuz they can get into n e thing on n e phone if they really wanted to.
Following on the success of the original xkcd Phone (which featured a blend of Android and iOS, a side-facing camera, and the ability to scream when falling), a successor has arrived that offers some of the best tech that 2014 has to offer.
The xkcd Phone 2 includes a revolutionary always-on front-facing speaker, which the phone will use to automatically cry when lost. With a built-in, ribbed, auto-rotating case made of 3D materials, the handset should feel comfortable in any hand size. And in a year where phones argued that HD wasn't HD enough, the xkcd Phone 2's MaxHD display competes by cramming over 350 pixels onto its screen (and doubling as a cheek toucher). Read More
Google's developers are notorious for including little jokes and easter eggs throughout all of their products. When your job consists of writing thousands of lines of code and testing obscure bugs, you're going to lose your mind without some kind of outlet. We usually see their sense of humor show up in Google Doodles, easter eggs, and even in the occasional bug report.
This time we're diving straight into the Android SDK to check out a function called isUserAGoat. This is for real, people. And as a few Android developers could tell you, it's actually been there since Android 4.2 (API 17). Read More