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3 years ago

CyanogenMod 7 test release for the Samsung Vibrant

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Yes, you read that right -- The Samsung Vibrant now has its very own CyanogenMod 7 (official) test release.  It's clearly labeled as a TEST RELEASE, so don't expect miracles just yet, but finding and fighting bugs is half the fun of fooling with custom ROMs for many of us anyway.  You can find all the details and download information at the source link.

Let's be serious here for a minute.  You're probably never going to see an official Gingerbread build for the Vibrant from Samsung.  Yes, I think I was wrong.  That hardly ever happens.  CyanogenMod 7 looks to be the best, and logical choice for the Vibrant at this time, and it's something to at least keep an eye on.  If you do decide to take the plunge, you'll find help and support in the Vibrant forums here at Android Central.  [CyanogenMod forum] Thanks everyone who sent this in!

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3 years ago

Latest leak shows possible March 10 launch for the HTC Thunderbolt

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So about that HTC ThunderBolt release date ... We don't know when the hell it's finally going to be released. And at this point, we're not entirely sure who does. The Feb. 14 in-stock date at Best Buy didn't happen. And obviously that rumored Feb. 24 date has come and gone. We're still confident in the sources that brought us those bits of news. But you know what? Things change.

Now there's this image that appears in the Android Central Forums (among other places) that shows a March 10 launch. No telling how old it is, though, but at least it's something. And  that we've seen it distributed to a half-dozen sources at this point is making it smell like a coordinated effort, so maybe this one's the real deal, folks. [Android Central Forums]

By the way: That Best Buy store in Roseville, Calif., that tweeted a March 4 date has since killed said tweet. Maybe that means it's real -- maybe that means a single store doesn't know what it's talking about and doesn't speak for an entire launch. You decide.

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3 years ago

Google removes Facebook contact syncing on Nexus S, leaves it as is on Nexus One

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If you were a recipient of the Android 2.3.3 OTA that went out to the Nexus S, or went ahead and did it manually, you may have noticed that Facebook contact syncing is suddenly missing. That's because Google has purposely removed the feature from the Nexus S and all future "googlephones" because users can't pull those synced Facebook contacts off the phone, and if you decide to remove your Facebook account, those contacts will suddenly go missing. Google's official statement on the matter is as follows:

“We believe it is very important that users are able to control their data. So in the over-the-air update for Nexus S, we have a small change to how Facebook contacts appear on the device. For Nexus S users who downloaded the Facebook app from Android Market, Facebook contacts will no longer appear to be integrated with the Android Contacts app. Since Facebook contacts cannot be exported from the device, the appearance of integration created a false sense of data portability. Facebook contact data will continue to appear within the Facebook app. Like all developers on Android, Facebook is free to use the Android contacts API to truly integrate contacts on the device, which would allow users to have more control over their data. We are removing the special-case handling of Facebook contacts on Nexus S and future lead devices. We continue to believe that reciprocity (the expectation that if information can be imported into a service it should be able to be exported) is an important step toward creating a world of true data liberation — and encourage other websites and app developers to allow users to export their contacts as well.”

Interestingly enough, this won't be affecting Nexus One owners who also updated today because the Facebook app for the Nexus One was baked in to the stock software. Google says they don't want to remove a feature that users were already expecting to be available. With all of that in mind, do remember that OEMs like Motorola and HTC can re-enable this feature relatively easily. Both HTC and Motorola already use their own Facebook sync, so this may be a non-issue for many. [TechCrunch]

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3 years ago

Unlocking the Motorola Xoom bootloader [from the forums]

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We all breathed a collective sigh of relief when we learned that Motorola provided the Xoom with an unlockable bootloader, giving developers and hackers easy access to the hardware.  And since many of you guys aren't familiar with the concept and the way it works, allow me to direct you to Android Central member thefredelement and his Xoom unlocking guide.   He has everything laid out nicely for you to get the drivers and set things up so you're ready to go.

Keep in mind that this isn't rooting your Xoom.  With an unlocked bootloader and fastboot mode, there's no need to worry about finding exploits to root the OS.  Instead, developers will just build a package you can flash from a custom recovery with anything and everything you need to have complete control over your tablet.  I expect a custom recovery and those flashable packages in very short order.  [Android Central forums] Thanks thefredelement!

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3 years ago

Video how-to: Manually updating your phone to a new Android version

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Whenever we talk updating our phones, we inevitably talk about "manual updates." And that leads to the inevitable questions, "Is it safe?" and "How do I do it?"

Manual updates are just like over-the-air (OTA) updates. Only difference is that instead of letting your phone download the update from a server somewhere, you download it yourself, move save it to you phone's SD card and then manually start the update process. In an OTA update, the phone does all this for you. But the big difference is that there's no waiting with manual updates.

In the video above -- edited for time purposes -- we walk you through manually updating the Nexus One to Android 2.3.3 Gingerbead. And note that this is for a stock phone -- unrooted, stock recovery, the whole nine yards.

The general process is similar for most phones, though you'll want to follow the instructions for your specific device. And as always, if you have more questions, hit us up in the Android Central Forums.

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3 years ago

How to manually update your Nexus S to Android 2.3.3

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The Android 2.3.3 (GRI40 for those keeping score at home) OTA update for the Samsung Nexus S has started to roll out, but there's no need to wait -- it's a breeze to manually install.  Think of it as the OTA update, with less of the A.  What you need to do:

  • Grab the OTA package here [ link via XDA]
  • Rename it to update.zip.  This isn't needed for the Nexus S bootloader, but it makes things easy.
  • Copy it over to the internal storage on your Nexus S.
  • Power off, then hold volume up and power to reboot to the bootloader.
  • Using the volume key to navigate, select recovery, then use the power button to confirm
  • When you see the warning triangle and arrow, hold the power button and tap volume up.  You'll see a menu.
  • From the menu, select "apply update from /sdcard", and choose update.zip from the list.
  • Let it do its thing and update your system, radio, and other partitions.  When finished, choose "reboot system now"
  • Enjoy!

Sound off in the comments how things are going for you.

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3 years ago

Gmail update crashes prompt pulling from Android market

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We've had a couple reports of the latest Gmail update no longer appearing in the Market, and now we have a reason why.  It seems that users who were still using a 2.2 version of Gmail and updated to the latest version had some stability issues.  Users who updated from a 2.3.x version are unaffected.

If you are experiencing bugs or crashes since updating, Google recommends you remove the update by by going in to Settings > Applications > Manage applications > Gmail > Uninstall updates.  A fix is in the works, and we expect an even updated-ier version soon. [Google Mobile help forums]

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3 years ago

How to manually update your Nexus One to Android 2.3 Gingerbread

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The Nexus One's over-the-air update to Android 2.3.3 Gingerbread (erm, not Android 2.4) is starting to push out. But if you can't wait (that'd be us), you can manually install the update. It's the same thing as the OTA update, just, not OTA. Here's how to install:

  1. Download the update from here. [link via XDA]
  2. Rename the file to update.zip. Note that if you're using Windows, just rename it to "update" (no quotes, of course) because it's already a zipped file.
  3. Copy the update.zip file onto your microSD card.
  4. With your Nexus One off, hold down the trackball and press the power button.
  5. You'll be booted into a white screen with three Android robots on skateboards. Select "Bootloader."
  6. On the next screen, select "Recovery."
  7. Your phone will reboot, giving you a picture of the Android robot and an exclamation point inside a triangle.
  8. Now press the power button and volume up button at the same time. It could take a couple of tries.
  9. Now (using the trackball this time) choose "Apply sdcard:update.zip" and let things run their course.

Easy peasy! Enjoy!

Update:  Seeing getprop/status 7 errors?  You'll need to update your version of Hboot.  If you're not familiar with fastboot and flashing, have a look here for the long (but easy) way.

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3 years ago

HTC Thunderbolt spotted, gets hands-on in the Android Central Forums

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There's no quicker way to become the cool kid on the block these days than to have actually seen and used an HTC Thunderbolt. (We're having jackets made.) And that's just Android Central Forms member O.G Incredible has been doing -- and causing quite the tizzy in the process. Before you start crying "Troll!" -- he's uploaded a few pictures. So put down your pitchforks, raise a glass to the O.G OP, and hope the TB gets released ASAP. [Android Central Forums]

P.S.: That's pretty cool, but we're still partial to our video shot in a Las Vegas In-and-Out-Burger. Just sayin'. :p

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3 years ago

Android's official Twitter app updated

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Looks like Android's "official" Twitter client just got updated. Here's what's new:

  • Timeline now maintains its position when you exit/enter the app.
  • Tapping on a map thumbnail now opens to a full screen map.
  • Fixed crashes when in landscape mode.
  • App refreshes with latest Tweets upon launch.
  • Other various bug fixes.

Good fixes, all. You can update directly in the Android Market, or we have download links after the break.

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