According to some super sleuthing by Kevin Tofel over at About Chromebooks, one of Chrome OS' most requested features — installing Android apps from outside the Play Store without resorting to Developer mode — may actually, finally be on its way. Based on a comment provided by a developer in the Chromium bug tracker, it could make its way to users as early as the Chrome OS 74 or 75 releases. Read More
Mozilla has been pretty busy recently. Last month it updated its main browser, Firefox, with a much needed modern UI makeover, and back in the summer it launched a completely new browser, Firefox Focus. It's much simpler and faster than the standard Firefox app, and it's much more privacy conscious, too, with no tabs and automatic blocking of ads and trackers. There's also a Germany-specific version called Klar.
The company isn't taking a break anytime soon either, and a new unreleased app has popped up on the Play Store. Firefox Rocket appears to be similar to Focus, except it's specifically built for Indonesia and rather than privacy, the key USPs are that it's lightweight and fast, perfect for a region where mobile data and Wi-Fi aren't so cheap or easy to come by. Read More
It's Nougat day, finally. Google's latest and greatest version of Android is beginning its slow rollout to Nexus devices, plus the Pixel C and General Mobile 4G. Dev preview devices are getting the OTA almost immediately, but devices on Marshmallow are taking a little longer. Google has said it could take a week or two for everyone to get the OTA, but you don't need to wait that long. We're collecting the full Nougat OTA links right here. Read More
We already consider ES File Explorer to be the simplest way to sideload APKs to Android TV, but we didn't realize our old approach was actually the complicated one. Read More
In part two of our series on manually flashing OTAs to Android Wear devices, we're going to take a look at the Asus ZenWatch.
Before beginning, make sure you have the following:
- The latest Google USB driver and platform tools, both of which can be installed via the Android SDK.
- The OTA ZIP file that you want to flash.
How To Flash
- Go into the Settings app on your watch, then scroll down to "About," and tap on it.
- Scroll down to the build number and repeatedly tap on it until you see a toast notification telling you that you are now a developer.
Veteran Android users, particularly those who stick to Nexus devices, are well aware of the fact that you can usually flash OTA updates manually once someone pulls a link to the actual update file. This normally provides a much better option than waiting for your device to get the update sent to it, which could take weeks. Android Wear has this functionality as well, but each watch is a little different in terms of proper procedures for doing so. We're going to run a series of posts on how to manually flash updates to each Android Wear device that supports it (sorry, Moto 360 users) in the hopes of providing some clarity on the issue. Read More
The preview release of Android M has shown magnificent growth in the platform. There are new things for everybody to enjoy. While we're always excited to see new APIs and cool features – not to mention some pretty important bug fixes – we shouldn't overlook the interesting changes that have also come to the tools we use to work with Android and our devices on a different level. The preview SDK brings an updated version of ADB with a few new commands, including a handy new shortcut to reboot directly into Sideload Mode.
The new commands are visible on ADB's help text. Read More
Sling TV, a new hardware-free, online-only television service from the people behind Dish Network, is the most exciting thing to happen to IPTV in years. It's a $20-per-month alternative to cable and satellite that you access via the web, or more probably, apps on your mobile device or set-top I box. Sling TV is live today, offering a handful of notable cable channels with more available as paid extras.
The service is launching with an Android app, which is a refreshing change from some other online services we could mention. Read More
When Android runs on a TV, it's still Android, there are just a few checks in place to make sure users aren't installing unprepared phone apps to their big screens all willy-nilly, creating the kind of awful UI experience that could make a techie cry and any one else scrunch their face in confusion. In a way, Google's only trying to protect us from ourselves. Most TV viewers will want nothing to do with such shenanigans, so only apps that have been updated and declared compatible with Android TV work with the platform out of the box.
But this is Android, so it's possible to get around this restriction. Read More