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All posts tagged "Android"

  • Android Wear 2.0, SA-bound watches revealed

    We've already known that Android Wear 2.0 was due for a release, but Google has finally made it official. The latest version of Google's smartwatch platform offers a variety of features, starting with the watchfaces. Android Wear 2.0 now lets you personalise the always-on aspect of the watchface with desired actions/information. "Simply glance at your wrist to check your next appointment, stock performance, progress on fitness goals, or whatever is important to you. A quick tap on your watch face lets you instantly order an Uber ride, start a workout, or get in touch with your significant other," Google wrote on...

  • 10 Android features you take for granted these days

    Android has been around for a relatively long time, the first Android-equipped phone launching in 2008. And it's been through loads of updates and iterations since those heady Cupcake and Donut days. Whether you were a long-time Android fan or joined more recently, you might be surprised at some of the features you take for granted in Google's mobile platform. WiFi hotspot A feature we all assume just works on our smartphone today, WiFi hotspot functionality (added in 2.2) allowed users to ditch USB modems/dongles and just use their phone. In a rather weird situation, more than a few Android users in the...

  • Which Chromebooks have/will get Android apps?

    When Google announced that Android apps would be coming to Chromebooks last year, the initial list of supported devices only stood at three. But the firm has since confirmed that all Chromebooks released in 2017 would be running Android apps. Then again, the real question is which older models are supported... Now, Google has quietly announced details on its Chromium blog (via Ars Technica), revealing an exhaustive list of Chromebooks/ChromeOS devices that have or will be getting Android app/Play Store compatibility. Google Chromebooks are cheaper and arguably less resource-intensive than PCs, with Android app compatibility making it stand out as well "While we won't...

  • Android Nougat update: here’s when your phone will get it

    As of 1 August 2016, Android Marshmallow had just over 15% of Google's OS market share, with Lollipop holding 35% and Android KitKat 29%. Why is this important? Well, for one it speaks of Android's version fragmentation, and secondly, Android Nougat is now officially available to some smartphones. While those smartphones include the likes of Google's Nexus range -- the LG-made Nexus 5X and the Huawei-made Nexus 6P -- more smartphones should arrive with the OS in due course. Additionally, we could expect to see manufacturers working on updates for your current smartphone. When will Android Nougat head to your phone?...

  • Hybrid gaming smartphone has MediaTek, Intel processors

    A new hybrid smartphone/gaming console promises a slideout gamepad, Android and Windows 10 in one package. The PGS or Portable Gaming System bears a resemblance to a Nokia slider smartphone or Nintendo DS, featuring two analogue sticks, face buttons, a D-pad and four shoulder buttons. The system is divided into Lite and Hardcore variants, sharing several common features. For one, they're both capable of dual-booting between Android and Windows 10. And in a crazy move, there are two processors in the system, in the form of an Intel Atom X7 chip for Windows 10 and a MediaTek Helio X20/X25 for Android. Other common...

  • Where’s the Google hardware love for SA? [Column]

    We've seen a slew of hardware from Google in 2016. There were the Google Pixel smartphones, the Google Home speaker and even the Chromecast Ultra peripheral. And all of these devices were pretty well-received by international media. But if anything, the products once again prove that the Mountain View firm doesn't take South Africa and the rest of the continent as seriously. Don't believe me? Well, the company confirmed to Gearburn this week that it has no plans to launch hardware on the continent any time soon. On the one hand, it's understandable, as South Africa is a small market. So why devote much resources...

  • Android Nougat only accounts for 0.7% of devices

    Google has released its latest statistics for Android distribution, revealing some interesting insights into the most popular versions of the platform. The company tallies devices running the latest Google Play Store app, which is compatible with Android 2.2 and above. The stats, as of 9 January 2017, show that Android 2.2 is finally not a factor anymore. Google drops Android versions with less than 0.1% marketshare from the chart. Android is nowhere near as fast as iOS when it comes to speedy updates -- unless you have a Nexus/Pixel How about the latest version of Android? Well, Android Nougat (7.0 and 7.1) only account for 0.7%...

  • LeEco put Android on a bicycle, because reasons

    Chinese firm LeEco has been pushing into the US market in a big way over the past 12 months, but its latest product isn't a streaming box, TV or smartphone. Instead, the company has revealed two smart bicycles running an Android-powered platform. The LeEco Smart Road Bike and Smart Mountain Bike both offer carbon fibre frames, 11-speed setup and lightweight design. But they also feature a 4-inch touchscreen and the so-called BikeOS platform (based on Android 6.0). In fact, the smart platform is powered by a 6000mAh battery and Snapdragon 410 chip. So what's this tech used for? "The system provides turn-by-turn navigation...

  • CyanogenMod shuts down, LineageOS takes place

    Arguably the most popular Android ROM around, CyanogenMod has revived countless phones and served as the Android community's ROM of choice (right next to the official version of stock Android). Now, the team behind the ROM has shut itself down, moving to establish what it calls LineageOS instead. The move comes several years after founder Steve Kondik created a company to develop and market CyanogenMod. "Yesterday, Cyanogen Inc (Cyngn) announced that they were shutting down the infrastructure behind CyanogenMod (CM). This is an action that was not unpredictable given the public departure of Kondik (cyanogen himself) from the company, and with him...

  • Where are the Android apps for dual camera smartphones? [Column]

    Dual-camera Android smartphones have been out in some form or another since 2014. The Huawei Honor 6 Plus and HTC One M8 offered dual-camera functionality back then, although the latter used a "depth sensor" instead of a dedicated second camera, to be fair. In any event, we've seen half a dozen dual-camera Android smartphones being released in 2016, from Xiaomi and Huawei to LG. Heck, even the newer Chinese manufacturers are hopping on the bandwagon. In other words, Apple was definitely a few months late to the party at best, bringing the dual-camera iPhone 7 Plus in September 2016. So imagine my...