Have you ever tried to set up a gmail email address on android and once you are all done it won’t sync and it keeps giving you a CAPTCHA that will not accept anything to unlock it? Well here is the solution (Thanks drlove89🙂
So you have an Android phone or tablet. You may have been eying one of those e-readers too, like the Amazon Kindle or the Barnes & Noble Nook. Well the good news is that you can have all those features right on your Android device with the help of a couple of apps.
2 of the most popular apps out there are the Kindle app (by Amazon) and the Nook app (by Barnes and Noble). Kinda funny that the companies that are trying to sell you an ereader are the same companies that are offering you free apps to do the same functionality. Both of these apps are pretty straight forward. They have the built in bookstores that allow you to purchase books, and download free books, plus, you know, read your ebooks.
Along these same lines is an app put together by a little company called Google. Yeah, apparently the big guns of Google decided to jump into the ebook game with an app called Google Books. The same features as the above books, but the interface is a little more simplified. Also you have access to a ton of FREE public domain books.
The final app that I will cover here today is one of my favorites. Aldiko is an ereader that works with epub and pdf files. By far it is the most flexible ereaders, with a ton of settings you can tweak It also (like all the others) it has an ebook store that has a ton of free and paid books. There is also a premium version available too, so if you like it you can get the premium to support the developer.
The future is here! Well.., The future of mobile payments is here… As long as you have a Nexus S 4G on the Sprint network. What this means is that you now have the ability to use the RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) chip that is built into the Nexus S 4G along with the Google Wallet service to be able to swipe your phone at the checkout to pay for goods and services.
The antenna is actually built into the battery cover for the NFC portion of the phone (Short for Near Field Communication – Another name for RFID). Once setup the checkout reader will see your phone just like a swiped credit card. So (if you have the Nexus S) get yourself setup and enjoy the future today!
Just a quick not to say that Old Android officially has it’s own .com, and not the free .co.cc address that it used to have. This means that it’s easier to type and easier to remember (plus it will play a lot nicer with Google).
Watch for updates to the Old Android App as the address where it gets it’s information from will be different. And it needs some work on it’s icons too…
No, I am not talking about some psychedelic concept that the Beatles came up with in the 60’s, but instead a technology that allows you to stream your own music – from the cloud.
Before I get ahead of myself I wanted to explain what the cloud is and how it works. In it’s simplest form a cloud computing system is just a service that stores your data remotely instead of locally on your own computer. So in these examples your music is stored remotely, and accessed through an internet connected application. This saves you a bunch of space on your memory card for other things!
So try out the following 2 services. If you need an invite leave a comment and I’ll see what I can do!
Name: Google Music Description: Official Android player for Music Beta by Google.
The Music application features a redesigned UI and now supports Music Beta by Google.
Music Beta is a new service from Google that gives you instant access to your personal music collection on the web and your compatible Android devices without the hassle of wires or syncing.
Available in the U.S. by invitation only and free for a limited time. Request an invitation at music.google.com.
Not a Music Beta user? You can still use this player to listen to music on your Android device.
Name: Amazon MP3 Description: Introducing Amazon MP3 for Android with Cloud Player The new Amazon MP3 app for Android, available for free in the Amazon Appstore and Android Market, includes the full Amazon MP3 store and the mobile version of Amazon Cloud Player. You can use the app to shop the Amazon MP3 store, access music stored in Amazon Cloud Drive, and music stored locally on your Android device. Shop for your favorite music by searching or browsing the Amazon MP3 store. Play, download, and manage your Cloud Drive music right from your device using Cloud Player.
Shop the Amazon MP3 Store on the Go Shop over 15 million songs and over a million albums Find what you want by searching, browsing genres, or exploring bestsellers Get the same low prices, special deals, and free music you can find on the Amazon MP3 website Check back every day for the Daily Deal and Free Song of the Day Enter promotional or Amazon.com Gift Card codes Save new Amazon MP3 purchases directly to Cloud Drive for free
What’s Cloud Player? Cloud Player plays the music you save to Cloud Drive, Amazon’s secure online storage space for your music, photos, and other digital files. Save your music to Cloud Drive in two ways:
Shop the Amazon MP3 store and choose to “Save to your Amazon Cloud Drive” when prompted after order completion. Using your PC or Mac, upload your music collection to Cloud Drive so you can access it on your Android device via Cloud Player. Playing Your Music in Cloud Player Simply open Cloud Player from the Amazon MP3 app for Android and stream your music collection from Cloud Drive. With the Amazon MP3 app for Android, you can also play music from your device’s built-in storage.
Note: When streaming over a mobile carrier data network, you should consider changing your application settings to stream only when connected to Wi-Fi unless you have an unlimited data plan with your carrier. If you have questions about your data plan, please contact your mobile carrier.
This is a tutorial about how to use Google Voice while you are in a nutshell. No wait. It’s just a simple tutorial about how to use Google Voice. I always get those confused. So, what is Google Voice, and How do you use it?
Google Voice is a few different things all wrapped up together. It can provide you a voicemail number, or be incorporated into your own number as a replacement for your voicemail. It also can provide you with multi-carrier text messaging. This means that you can send a text message to any cell phone on any carrier, using your Google Voice number. Sprint even offers full integration now so you can use your Sprint number as your Google Voice number and not have to deal with 2 numbers.
Another big plus to Google Voice is that you can make international calls through it, without hitting your carrier’s bill. You carrier will just see you call your Google voice number and not the international number, so you can take advantage of the great rates that Google offers. You can also have calls to you Google Voice number forwarded to multiple places, so you can use one number for multiple phones.
The web and Android interfaces are both well designed. Here is the feature list from our friends at Google:
One number. Make calls and send text messages from your Google Voice number.
Voicemail transcription. Voicemails are automatically transcribed to text so you can read them like email.
Free text messages. Send and receive text messages to numbers in the US and Canada for free.
Cheap international calls Make low-priced international calls directly from your mobile device.
Integration. Google Voice integrates with your device’s native address book or Google Contacts.
Custom greetings. Set up different greetings for different callers.
So you are looking to use your Android phone to keep in touch with people? Well there is an app for that… Actually a bunch of apps for that. Whatever social networking service you use, there is probably an official app, along with a handful of unofficial apps. Here I will cover some best of the best social networking apps.
1. Twitter – 140 characters or less? Twitter is arguably the most used social network site out there. Plus they have an official app that is a full featured app, available for free! Download Here!
2. Facebook – (almost) Everyone I know has a Facebook account. It even becomes one of those awkward situations when someone says they don’t have one… So get the OFFICIAL app that has all the great features you know and love (even chat). Download Here!
3. Google+ – The newest social network out there, Google+ is picking up speed, or at least it will once the whole invite only thing goes away… Set up your circles in style – on your android phone with their OFFICIAL app. Download Here!
4. Reddit – Although it doesn’t have an official app, there is an app out there that has some amazing reviews (“Fixed my cat’s blindness”) so I guess you can’t argue with that. So download “Reddit Is Fun” and see and share your favorite sites. Download Here!
5. LinkedIn – For the professional social networker there is LinkedIn, and for the professional social networker with an android phone there is the OFFICIAL Android LinkedIn app. Update your profile and network your self with all sorts of people. Download Here!
6. StumbleUpon – Less a social network and more an addiction, StumbleUpon is a link sharing service that loads up a randomly shared site right in your browser, or right on your Android phone. You can add a site, or stumble through existing sites. Plus give thumbs up and down. Download Here!
7. Myspace – Wait, is myspace still out there? Well for anyone out there that might still use MySpace, there is an app for that. Has all the major site functions built right in, plus it is an OFFICIAL app. Download Here!
8. Last.fm – The definitive social music site. This app was the first to take your music tastes and twist them into a sort of personalized radio station. With this OFFICIAL app you can also share your musical tastes with the built in scrobbler feature. Download Here!
9. Flickr – Although there is no official app for Flickr, there is an amazing alternative Flicka. It provides all the core features of Flickr and it has an amazing user interface. Download Here!
10. Digg – For the time being it appears as if the official Digg app has been pulled from the market, but there are a few to choose from. I wasn’t a big fan of any of them. If I had to make a decision, though, I would go with DiggDroid, or just use the m.digg.com site through the browser… Download Here!
ADB (Android Debug Bridge) is a fancy tool that Google has made available to Android users and developers. It is part of the Android SDK (Software Development Kit). Basically it creates a connection (Bridge) between the Android and the computer. It was originally used as a tool to achieve root on the phone, and to be able to do some additional functions, similar to a linux command line. A lot of the same commands can be done on the phone through a terminal emulator program (right on the phone), it is so much easier to be able to type it all on a full sized keyboard (plus it makes you feel more like a computer nerd).
Although all of this may seem a little complicated at first it is very simple to setup and use. At the bare minimum you just have to download the software, install it (I usually install it to c:android), change a setting on your phone (See “Phone Settings” below) and plug the phone and computer into the USB cable. A very simple installer has been put together entitled ADB for Dummies by AndroidSamurai that provides an installer that puts all the files in the right places. There is a simple command you can do to verify that everything is installed properly. Open up a command prompt (Start -> Run -> CMD) and switch to the “Tools” folder (wherever you installed the above mentioned software) and type the following command:
You should see a long string that will be the ID number of your phone. You don’t need to memorize it, you just need to see it there to know that the computer properly sees the phone. If you don’t see it, it is most likely an issue with a driver. Go to the manufacturers site, or simply search google for the manufacturer and the word driver.
Phone Settings – Another troubleshooting step is to make sure the phone is setup for the USB connection. To do this all you have to do (on the phone) is: Settings -> Applications -> Development -> USB Debugging (Make sure it is checked) That’s it!
Once you have it installed there are a few cool things you can do with it. Let’s say you want to make a backup of all the apps on your phone. All you have to do is key in this command:
adb pull /data/app ./
This will backup all the .APK files so you can reinstall them at a later time. So now lets show you how to do the restore. Put your APK files all into a single folder (c:apps), navigate to that folder and type in this command:
adb install *.apk
How about changing your boot logo? Easy as can be… Find a boot animation on the web that you want to use, and make sure it is a .ZIP file (that you have no need to open or modify, because it probably won’t work if you do) and rename it bootanimation.zip. Copy the bootanimation.zip file to your “Tools” folder inside your Android SDK installation. Finally type the following 2 commands to copy it to the phone:
adb shell mount -o rw,remount /dev/block/mtdblock3 /system
Watch the phone screen and you should see the new boot logo!
So this is a brief look at what ADB does, and how to get it. For more information check out the official Android ADB site and learn all you can on it. Also remember to backup before messing around too much. We are not responsible for data loss!
Some “Best of the Best” accessories for your Android phone:
Ringtones. You would imagine the your options for ringtones would be so much better than on a normal non-smart phone, and you would be correct in that assumption. There are multiple ways to get ringtones and even multiple ways to make your own ringtones onto your phone.
For starters, the way that android organizes his ringtone management is (in my opinion) very well laid out. On your memory card there are a bunch of folders. If you look very carefully you will see a folder called “media”. If you don’t have one, create it. then inside of that folder you should have an “audio” and a “video” folder. Then inside of the “audio” folder you should see the below group of folders “alarms” “music” “notifications” and “ringtones”. This is the place on the SD card where the Android OS looks for sounds.
So if you want to make a tone that is for a phone call put it in the “ringtones” folder. For an alarm put it in the “alarms folder, etc. Modern android phones (version 2 and up) will support multiple file formats. The main ones are .ogg and mp3. So you can manually cut down a music file with a desktop application and copy it to your phone’s memory card in this folder and you are good to go. But wouldn’t you like something easier?
The easiest method of making a ringtone is to do it right through the "Music” icon that is preloaded on your phone. Let’s say you are listening to your MP3 collection and you hear a song that you want to make your ringtone. No worries, just press the menu button at the bottom of your phone (while the song is playing) andyou will see an icon called “Set as Ringtone” (see image below). That’s it. It will do the dirty work for you – create the tone and set it as your default. Can’t ask for an easier option. Although there is a pretty big downfall to this. It creates the tone just for the first 30 or 40 seconds of the song.
When your phone rings you don’t always want the intro of the song (although the beginning of the pictured Radiohead song is pretty badass). Let’s say you want the tone to start at around 2:42 when the hard part kicks in. So you need a solution that will let you pick that certain chunk of the song and make that your tone. That’s where RingDroid comes in.
RingDroid is an app that lets you create a start and stop point of an MP3 file and turn it into a ringtone/alarm/notification. All right on the device, Plus it gives you an option to set it as your default tone. The best part of the app is that it is a FREE app available from the Android Market, or through the Google Code site. See the image below:
Description: Create ringtones from your own music library, or record new ones on the fly! The original open-source ringtone editor for Android, first published in 2008 and downloaded by millions of users worldwide. Create your own ringtone, alarm, or notification sound from an existing audio file, or record a new one directly on the device. This application is compatible with most Android devices running system versions 1.6 (‘donut’) through 2.3.x (‘gingerbread’).
For the 3rd installment of Root – The “What?” “Why?” “How?” I will be covering an option for root users called overclocking (or underclocking – depending on what you are looking to do). Overclocking is the process of speeding up your processor. In the case of a lot of phones the manufacturer will underclock the processor, essentially slowing it down a tad to give you the benefit of better battery life. A couple of examples of this are the original Motorola Droid (Verizon) and the HTC EVO Shift (Sprint).
With overclocking you have the ability to undo what the manufacturer has done and then some. On some devices where the manufacturer has set the speed at 500MHZ you have the ability to overclock it to 1.2GHz, or even faster. Therefore you end up with a crazy fast phone that would have the ability to run the latest cutting edge game without having to shell out the money for a new device.
So you are probably asking what the downside to this is? Well aside from the possibility of ruining your phone (as with anything root) you will notice a drastic decrease in the battery life. Which is why I mentioned that the manufacturers will underclock the devices to give them a battery boost. So for the people not looking for performance, and just want to make it through the day without needing a charge on their way home from work, underclocking is a great option.
BUT: What if you could have the best of both worlds? The ability to jump the speed up for your games and slow it way down when it’s not in use. Well you can do that with the below apps. Just mess around with the profiles and you can set it to do whatever you want. Well check out the below recommended apps.
Name: Android Overclock by JRummy16
Description: Make your device blazing fast and save battery life by using this user friendly app! You can overclock to increase speeds or underclock to save battery life. Set custom profiles to increase performance to the max. Android Overclock also includes tons of extra tweaks and hacks to make your device truly your own. As shown on droid-life.com and other popular android news sites it is the user-friendly and easy way to fully customize your device.
Description: SetCPU is a tool for changing the CPU settings (capable of overclock and underclock) on a rooted Motorola Droid, Nexus One, G1, G2, Samsung Galaxy S, myTouch 4G, Motorola Xoom, or one of many other devices to improve performance or save battery. SetCPU also allows you to set up powerful profiles to change the CPU speed under certain conditions, such as when the phone is asleep or charging, when the battery level drops below a certain point, when the phone’s temperature is too high, or during certain times of day. See the screenshots for examples of how you might set up profiles.