3 years ago

From the mail bag: Managing two-step authentication for the ROM addict


Jean15paul writes,

I just read the article on using 2-step and I want to start using it, but I'm a ROM flasher.  How do I manage?  I think this could make a great article.

We think it could make a great article, too, Jean15paul. And it goes for users with more than one mobile device as well as flashers and ROM-a-holics. As safe as two-step authentication is, it was clearly designed for folks with one phone, and one computer, who don't like to erase and re-install either one. Unfortunately, this is a hard hurdle to cross.

The easy way, and the way I'm lucky enough to be able to do it, is with an old Android phone that's a dedicated authenticator. I reverted my Nexus One back to stock, and installed the authenticator app. I also use an authenticator for Blizzard games, so this worked well for me. I keep the phone charged, and any time I need a code I can start it up and get one -- until the power button goes out again, that is. This way I'm not ever locked out of my Google account, which can happen when flashing ROMS or jumping to a new phone.

Of course, that's not a good solution for most folks. If you have an old Android device laying around, I really recommend you try it (as well as printing out your 15 one-time use codes). If you don't have access to another Android phone, which is going to be most of us, things are a little bit rougher. The best solution I can find is to disable two-step authentication from the web (in your Google account settings) before you wipe and flash a new ROM. Once you're satisfied that it's worth keeping for a few days, re-enable it and go through the set-up with application specific passwords again. It's a lot of work, and adds a good bit of time to your set-up every time you flash a ROM. But it's also the best way to guarantee you're not locked out of your Google account.

Of course, since it's a pain in the you-know-what, most folks aren't going to do it. Never mind what you know, or what you've heard is best for your online safety, people always like to take the easy way out. With that in mind, I want to share a little nugget of wisdom passed on to me by a teacher about passwords. Long passwords with upper case and lower case letters are very difficult to crack. They are also difficult to remember. To make the remembering part easier, use the first line from a favorite song all in one word. For example, ItsAllRightIfYouLoveMeItsAllRightIfYouDont is a password that probably won't ever get cracked, but is easy for me to remember. It's just a pain to type out on an on-screen keyboard. But it's still better than being hacked.

Have a question you need answered? (Preferably about Android, but we're flexible.) Hit up our Contact Page to get in touch!

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3 years ago

Sony Ericsson MW600 Hi-Fi Wireless headset review


With the Sony Ericson MW600 Hi-Fi Wireless headset, you get a Bluetooth headset with an FM radio plus a killer feature. 


As Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory is fond of saying; “everything is better with Bluetooth.”  There are certainly people who will dispute that, but Bluetooth can be a great feature. This particular headset opens up a world of possibilities for your Samsung Galaxy S III (S3) and other Android phones.

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3 years ago

Spotify on the Amazon Kindle Fire


It's Spotify. You know, for streaming music. And it's on the Amazon Kindle Fire. And you can download it for free here. (And I got a $1 credit after buying it. So, really, it paid me to download. Sweet.)

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3 years ago

Scope review - the all-seeing eye of social networks


Scope is the current incarnation of a venerable social networking app that gives users quick access to Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, Tumblr, and Instagram.  I’ve been registered with SocialScope since its early days on BlackBerry, and was pretty surprised not only by how much it has changed, but also that it is yet again in a closed beta format.

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3 years ago

No excuses: It's time to turn on two-step authentication


Your Google account holds your e-mail, apps, music, books, documents, cloud storage, credit cards and more. It’s time to protect that stuff with more than a simple password.

If you’ve been watching the wider tech world over the past couple of days, you’ll be familiar with the recent misfortune of Wired writer Mat Honan, who succumbed to a devastating hacking attack that annihilated his iCloud, Twitter and Google accounts and locked down several devices in the process.

In Honan’s case, the attack was enabled by compromised (yet publicly available) personal info, as well as failures by Amazon and Apple customer support, rather than a traditional brute-force attack or contact with malware. But a crucial part of what allowed the attackers to take down not only his Apple accounts and devices, but also his Gmail and Google stuff, was the fact that he wasn’t using Google’s two-step authentication to protect his account.

Stories like these always bring home the importance of basic digital security precautions. And one of the most basic, yet most effective steps you can take to protect your account is turning on two-step.

Read on to find out how and why you should do it.

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3 years ago

Jazz: Trump's Journey review - a platformer wrapped in a music history lesson


Jazz: Trump’s Journey has found its way into the featured section of Google Play following on a successful launch in the spring. The platformer game puts players in New Orleans around the birth of jazz, following a musician who’s chasing after love. Besides having a sincere and well-written story based on the early life of Louis Armstrong, Jazz: Trump’s Journey has a whimsical cut-out art style and classic soundtrack that suit the setting to a tee.

The platforming action itself is equally polished, and has a variety of deep gameplay elements, including hidden items, wall-jumping, and freezing time with jazzy trumpet solos.

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3 years ago

New Orbit review - gritty outer space living minus the oxygen shortage


New Orbit: Episode 1 landed precariously on Google Play late last month. The screenshots of minimalistic outer-space fare and gravity-based gameplay weren’t much to look at, but after playing for only a short while, it was easy to get pulled into a gritty story about surviving on the edge of civilization where even air is a precious commodity.

New Orbit follows the unlucky journey of a stranded engineer trying simply to find his way back home after his ship was blown up. With little more than an escape shuttle to get around, he has to deal with some of the nastier characters that inhabit the fringes of an intergalactic empire to get back home.

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3 years ago

Motorola teases 4G LTE phone; Update: Nothing to see here


​Update: Nothing to see here, folks -- turns Moto's just "engaging with Facebook fans." We'll have to wait awhile longer for our RAZR HD fix. (thanks @ChloeAlbanesius)

Original: Today Motorola's taken to Facebook to tease what seems to be an upcoming smartphone, and it's promising an "big reveal" before the end of the week.

Motorola says, "We'll give a clue each day all week and make the big reveal on Friday." The first clue states that the phone has "the power of 4G LTE," which doesn't give too much away. Of course, it's possible that Moto's just engaging in Facebook banter with its fans, but to us this bears the hallmark of pre-release hype.

We've seen plenty of (Droid) RAZR HD leakage over the past month or so. The device has shown up at the FCC, as well as in a series of leaked images, some of which bear Verizon's 4G LTE branding. From what we can tell, the RAZR HD looks like a cross between the Atrix HD and last year's RAZR MAXX, with the former's 720p display and on-screen buttons, and the latter's chassis style and kevlar back panel.

We'll be watching closely later this week for the eventual reveal. Moto fans, are you hoping for a RAZR successor on Verizon this fall? Let us know down in the comments.

Source: Motorola on Facebook

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3 years ago

Motorola Droid 4 soak test announced, ICS update incoming?


We've known for some time that the Motorola Droid 4 is on track to receive an update to Android 4.0 before the end of the third quarter. Now it looks like the long-awaited ICS upgrade could be close at hand, with the news that Motorola is preparing a soak task for the LTE-powered QWERTY slider.

According to posts on the Android Central forums, emails are going out to Droid 4 owners on the Motorola Feedback Network asking them to participate in the testing of a "new software release." Though ICS isn't mentioned by name, we'd be surprised if Moto were going to such trouble for another Gingerbread-based firmware revision. There's also no indication of when the soak test will begin, but based on earlier tests, we're probably looking at weeks, rather than months, until the public release is ready.

Source: Android Central forums

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3 years ago

How to adjust the call settings on the Galaxy S3



The Galaxy S3 allows you to adjust pretty much every setting you can think of

The Samsung Galaxy S III (S3) is one of the most configurable phones available. The good news is that you really don’t have to do anything out of the box and your Galaxy S3 will work fine.  But one area that can really be tailored to your personal tastes is in perhaps the most important of all apps -- the Phone app

The Phone app is one of the more robust apps on the Galaxy S3. The Call settings allow you to adjust everything from a call rejection list  a personalized EQ setting for better audibility.

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3 years ago

HTC's July revenues fall 45 percent year-on-year


HTC has announced its unaudited July 2012 revenues, following the company's difficult second quarter. Last month HTC's unaudited consolidate revenues were NT$25 billion (~$835 million), down 45 percent from July 2011, and down some NT$5 billion (~$168 million) from the company's reported May revenues.

The fall in revenues can in part be attributed to the disruption in sales caused by the launch of the Samsung Galaxy S III (S3). That phone arrived in the U.S. in July across all major carriers following a strong European launch.

Financially speaking, 2012 has been a difficult year for HTC. The company experienced a 35% year-on-year fall in revenues in Q1, followed by a 57.8 percent drop in Q2 due to weaker than expected sales of its HTC One series.

Last month HTC closed its South Korean offices following difficulties competing with Samsung in its own back yard.

Source: HTC

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3 years ago

GameKlip helps merge your Android phone and a PS3 controller


Using a Playstation 3 SixAxis controller with an Android device is nothing new. There have been methods around for a long old time on pairing the two devices for some all out Android gaming action. An app even exists in the Play Store nowadays to make the process even simpler. One aspect remains largely unchanged however, the phone is usually having to lie flat on a surface, or be propped up against something while you're playing. And that's not great.

We saw not all that long ago, a home-made solution designed for a Galaxy Note. It worked like a charm, but making stuff isn't for everyone. That's where GameKlip comes in, with their solution for a variety of Android phones. The GameKlip is simply a clip that allows you to secure your phone to the top of the your SixAxis controller for some gaming fun. 

Oh, and as an added bonus, if you own a Samsung Galaxy S 3, it seems that you can use a GameKlip with a wired connection out of the box. No rooting, no third party apps, just plug and play. It should be easy enough to try out on other phones too, since essentially all you need is a USB OTG cable, and the USB cable that came with your PS3 controller. Says the official website:

Does my phone support a wired connection to the Dualshock3 controller?

I have tested a wired connection with my AT&T Galaxy S3. I have seen videos of it working with the international version, and users have confirmed it is working on the Verizon Galaxy S3. I have not tested it with other phones, but I hear there are others that work. I recommend googling "your phone model + usb otg + sixaxis" or something similar. Most likely someone has tried connecting one already.

The GameKlip is available in wired ($23.00 / £15.99) and wireless ($15.00 / £10.49) play versions, and note that no software is included, it's just the clip. If your phone is lucky enough to work with a wired connection out of the box, then fantastic! For the rest of you, the old ways of connecting will still be required. Custom fitted for individual phones, the below are supported by GameKlip:

  • Galaxy SIII (All Variants)
  • Galaxy SII (Epic 4G Touch, Sprint)
  • Galaxy SII (Skyrocket, AT&T)
  • Galaxy SII (International)
  • Galaxy Nexus (HSPA+)
  • Galaxy Nexus (LTE)
  • Galaxy Note (AT&T)
  • HTC Evo 4G LTE (Sprint)
  • HTC One X (All Variants)

And, there's one more thing. The guy behind all this is working on a version for 7-inch tablets. That, we'd love to see. Pre-orders are open now, and there is international shipping available. So, if this is something that appeals, head over to the source link below for the full rundown. 

Source: GameKlip via Pocket Gamer

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3 years ago

Late-night distractions: Jump hurdles with todays Google doodle


Head to Google's homepage on your computer and check out today's Olympic-themed doodle, the hurdler. Mash the right and left arrow keys to run, tap the spacebar to jump. Go forth and waste time.

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3 years ago

LG bringing QuickMemo feature to Optimus L Series devices


LG has been busy making folks aware of their new QuickMemo feature for the past little while with the first U.S. device getting it being the LG Viper 4G LTE. Now, they're rolling out what is a maintenance release upgrade for the Optimus L7, L5 and L3 that will add it to those devices as well.

To accompany the release, LG will also be running a new commercial to highlight the feature. In case you're unaware of QuickMemo, it allows folks write using their fingers on captured screen images that can then be shared with others via text, chat, or email.

The video above gives off a good demo of it in action, although it starts off rather annoyingly. LG has noted they'll be rolling out the update globally come the end of Q3. If you're looking for the full press release, you'll find it below.

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3 years ago

Galaxy Note 2, Controlling PC with Android device possible? [From the Forums]


Just in case you missed out on some of the Android news today, now is the time to go ahead and get yourself fully caught up. Here on the blogs and in the Android Central Forums there is plenty to talk about. Have some questions? Need some help or just looking to chat Android? You know where to go, check out some of the threads below to get started.

We've got nearly 1 million members helping members and nearly 2 million posts in our Android Forums. Are you one of them? Join today!

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