Finally the Motorola Droid Bionic is available, and knowing you, Mr. Excited, you were first in line to grab one at the local Verizon store, huh? Well, you may have been in shock when you noticed how much LTE can affect your battery, or you are a conservative type with the battery and would rather turn it off when not in use, and luckily doing so can be quite simple. A few quick clicks and your LTE can be turned on and off, let's check out how.
Scroll to wireless and networks
Select mobile network
Click on network mode and select CDMA Only
Want LTE back, do the same and select CDMA/LTE instead of CDMA only and you are all set.
Odds are that you have at some point in time heard of UberSocial, a rather large cross-platform Twitter client that is extremely popular amongst the celebrity variety. And if you know anything about the application, it is probably that 50cent is a huge supporter. With an existing theme available for the BlackBerry and iOS versions of UberSocial, today they announced that Android users can download the theme for their devices The theme is available in a free and paid variety, the paid version of the app (which you once knew as Twidroyd) being $1.99 and brings you additional features inside, and both can be downloaded immediately. Full information after the break.
SlideIT is currently in its fourth iteration, and with that comes the introduction of skins. Scoff as you might, customization and aesthetic appeal are important to lots of people out there, so I've got to tip my hat to the SlideIT developers for making that so easy to do.
How does SlideIT function as a line-tracing keyboard, though? On its own, alright. If there's one thing SlideIT has going for it, it's that it's fast. I'm not just talking a little quick here and there. It feels like as soon as you're even thinking about being done with a word, SlideIT is ready to toss it out there. It's kind of uncanny and hard to describe what makes it feel so instant, but it does.
As far as word prediction goes, this is where I think SlideIT has room to improve (at least when compared to Swype). Word that are a couple of letters long (three to five), no problem. SlideIT has no problems spelling "it" or "that" or "looks," but it felt like once I got past words of five letters, accuracy went out the window. No, I meant to spell "fantastic." Was my trace so far off that it really deserves "??" as a prediction?
Other than that, there's not much to say. SlideIT is a keyboard, and a keyboard's for typing things out. Long-pressing works fine, and auto-spacing is all customizable via the settings menu. There's also a whole slew of language packs that can be downloaded from the Market, which is a good alternative to having to pick between all languages supported or just English and Spanish.
Overall, it feels like SlideIT is on the right track. There's a lot of good ideas there (ones I wouldn't mind seeing Swype eventually adopt), but until the prediction is better, it's not something I'd use normally. There's also the price to consider. SlideIT has a 15-day free trial, but after that, you're laying down $6.40 for the whole package. Again, language packs and skins are free.
Android phones are inherently connected. Google allows for excellent contact management, syncing across devices and platforms, and chock full 'o options. Sometimes, the easy ones can get lost in the shuffle -- like marking a contact as a favorite, and adding it to your "Favorites" (or starred in Android) group for easy access. Here's a quick tip that can alleviate a lot of searching for someone's email address or phone number.
Open your contacts application
Navigate to the tab that shows all your contacts, and search for the one you'd like to favorite
Notice the star (in our example it's circled in red in the upper left)
When the star is active, that contacts is in your "Favorites" group
Un-favoriting someone is just as easy, make sure they aren't starred. The real beauty is how this works on your Android phone. Every OEM skin is a little different (our example is LG's Optimus UI v2), but you'll be able to view individual groups in your contacts application settings. Once you have the people you talk to the most favorited (or starred), you'll be able to view them all in the "Favorites" group. Depending on your Android version, this group will be called "Favorites" or "Starred in Android." Select to display that group, and you have the short list and a lot less typing and searching. Double pro-tip bonus round -- many OEM dialers and SMS apps also will display the Favorites group, making things even easier.
Back in May Netflix, finally launched its long-waited Android app, initially only for a few devices. That list grew over time and eventually supported a large number of phones. The .apk was quickly discovered, however, and owners of devices, both phone and tablet, who hadn't received official support yet could install the app just fine. That's no longer necessary (and it's about time), at least for most phones, as Netflix has updated the app to support all devices running 2.2 (Froyo) and 2.3 (Gingerbread).
Tablet owners still looking for official support will have to wait a bit longer, but this is great for everyone with a smaller device.
So for all you phone owners out there who have Froyo or Gingerbread, hit the link after the break for the official Netflix app.
For many of us, half the fun of getting a new Android phone is digging in and trying to break it make it our own. The Droid Bionic is no exception of course, and folks are having a blast getting methods all sorted to root and customize the Bionic, unlocking it's full potential. I love it when new phones come out, this is the kind of stuff an Android geek lives for.
But the other side of the coin is that we often need a way to get things back to normal, whether it be because we changed our minds or might need a little hardware warranty work done. We're not going to get into the moral argument of what your responsibilities are once you decide to root (we have forums for that), I just wanted to let you guys know that the latest version of Pete's Motorola Root Tools allow you to fully unroot your Droid Bionic -- as in no leftover bits left behind. I asked the man himself, and sure enough, his tool gets in the system and removes all binaries, returning your phone to a fully unrooted state.
This is important. Some previous methods to unroot phones left the su binary behind and only removed the visual traces of being rooted -- leaving your phone a bit unsecure. Pete has you covered here, though. The same tool you use to root your Bionic will unroot it, and do it the right way. Remember, it won't restore bloatware that you've removed or restore settings you may have changed, you'll have to sort all that out beforehand. Until we can dig up a factory .sbf file for the Bionic, this is the best solution. Just use it wisely, and be sure to thank Pete if it saves your bacon. Grab the latest version of the tool and read the particulars at the source link.
Vodafone UK has updated its "coming soon" page with details of the Samsung Galaxy Y, a new budget device that was unveiled as part of Sammy's shake-up of its Android device line-up a few weeks ago. The Galaxy Y seems to be an updated version of the Galaxy Mini, which we reviewed earlier in the year. Packed into its tiny 3-inch chassis is an 823MHz CPU, which runs Android 2.3 and TouchWiz 4.0. Unfortunately the Galaxy Y's screen hasn't received much of an upgrade from the Galaxy Mini -- according to the official spec list, it still runs at an eye-punishing QVGA (240x320) resolution
No word on pricing or availability yet, but you can probably expect this one to be free on most contracts, and reasonably cheap on its own.
If you've picked up a Motorola Droid 3, and love to tinker with things, listen up -- files have surfaced that will allow you to restore your D3 to a "factory-like" state and, more important, recover a unit that won't boot up. We have to be clear here -- this is not a standard stock .sbf file. If you use these files, you will no longer be on Motorola's upgrade path. This is for emergency use (or for hackers to fiddle with) only.
Now don't get scared off. While nobody is 100 percent sure, it looks like this is a copy of the software that Droid 3 soak testers were using, and it was pulled back for some reason or another by Verizon and Motorola. They aren't some files cooked in a random hackers basement, they are signed by Verizon with production keys. The only known drawback to using them is that you'll not be likely to get a future OTA update because you're running the wrong version -- which beats the heck out of a bricked phone you can't use.
Like all things Motorola, they might not be valid links forever. If you love your Droid 3 enough to dig inside and try to break it, go grab them and squirrel them away for a rainy day. Visit the source link and read all the details, and if the day comes when you need them, you're covered.
Upon getting your HTC Sensation you might wonder what additional accessories may be beneficial for you and your device. What style case? Replacement or extended battery? Car charger or wall charger? These are all pretty common questions, and we're here to help you make those decisions on accessories for the HTC Sensation a breeze.
Before we begin, let's look at the top four best selling HTC Sensation accessories:
Check past the break for our full roundup on the hottest HTC Sensation accessories.
Let's hope the recent upheaval in the TouchDroid realm -- that's the endeavor to get Android properly ported onto the nearly extinct HP TouchPad -- doesn't completely derail the project, but things have looked better, folks. There's been some back and forth about code, and some milk spilled, apparently. But there's also the video you see above, which walks you through booting a very alpha build of Android on the TouchPad.
Again: Very alpha. As in, 99 percent of you (and us) have no business trying this, even if you happen to have a TouchPad. In fact, if you manage to sit through this entire video, you're better men and women than we are. This is low-level stuff, and we're perfectly happy kibitzing this one. More deets are at the links below, and let's hope things get started again eventually.