Tuesday, August 21, 2018

[Update: Registration open] Android Dev Summit will take place November 7-8

Android Dev Summit will take place November 7-8

Update 8/21: Registration is now open for the Android Dev Summit. To request an invite, you can visit the Dev Summit website.

Google I/O is likely the companies most popular developer conference, but the Mountain View tech giant is working with developers in a lot of different fields. The team will be hosting Google Cloud Next next week, the Chrome Dev Summit scheduled a few months later in November, and then they have others for AMP, TensorFlow, Dart, Firebase, and more. A couple of weeks before the Chrome Dev Summit, they are bringing back the Android Dev Summit and it will take place on the 7th and 8th of November.

The last time Google held an Android Dev Summit was back in 2015 and we haven't had an official response as to why they stopped doing it. It's possible that Google felt I/O was enough, but there are a lot of developers who like a smaller and more personal venue to discuss and learn about Android. Either way, that changes this year with the Android Dev Summit coming back in less than three months time. The summit will be a two-day event and will take place in the Computer History Museum.

For those unaware, the Computer History Museum is in Mountain View California and is right next to the Googleplex. This event will allow Google employees to host sessions on many topics within the Android ecosystem. They have some people there to go hands-on with the community to answer and discuss specific issues that attendees may be experiencing. Sadly, registration details have yet to be announced and they have kept the details about which sessions will be taking place a secret as well.

The company says that more information is coming soon, and if it's anything like their 2015 event, then you'll be able to watch all of the sessions live streamed on YouTube. The team encourages those who are interested to follow @AndroidDev on Twitter and to look out for the hashtag #AndroidDevSummit.

Source: Google

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Smartisan’s gestures make you physically move the phone to navigate the UI

smartisan gestures

Gestures are one of the trendiest features in smartphones today. As bezels get smaller, phone makers are trying to figure out ways to maximize screen space. Touch gestures are a way to do this, though everyone seems to have a different approach. Our own Navigation Gestures app can completely remove the nav bar. Google, on the other hand, has a hybrid solution. But what if touch was eliminated altogether? That's what Smartisan is trying to do.

Smartisan recently launched the Nut Pro 2S. If that name sounds familiar, we covered the Nut R1 back in May. The phone launches with an updated version of Smartisan's OS, which includes a new gesture-based navigation system called Infinite Screen. The interesting thing about this system is it doesn't require touch. You actually move the phone to use gestures. Sound crazy? It kinda is.

It's like everything on the phone is laid out in a giant grid. You move the phone in 3D space to access apps. You can see the woman in the video lift the phone up to launch the camera and take a selfie, then moving to the right to open the messaging app. All without touching the display.

Smartisan wants to minimize movement with fingers, but isn't it much more difficult to move the entire phone? I don't want to twist my whole body to the right every time I need to send a message. Or lift the phone above my head to take a quick photo. The idea here is interesting, but I think most people will agree that touch gestures are the way to go.

Source: Gizmo China

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Google Nexus 6 and Nexus 5X get AOSP Android Pie ports

Android Pie Android 9

As lots of devices get Android Pie ports on our forums, the Nexus 6 and the Nexus 5X are the next up to receive them. Both of these devices are pretty old and have had their official support cut-off. The Nexus 6 finished at Android Nougat, while the Nexus 5X finished off at Android Oreo. Android Pie has only been out for two weeks now, yet so many of the community's most popular devices have already gotten working ports. The list is growing every day, thanks to the work of some of the talented developers on our forums.

First up is Nexus PieX by XDA Senior Member argraur for the Nexus 5X. The only things that are actually fully broken are SafetyNet and VoLTE, quite the accomplishment for a newly released custom ROM. Even Google Apps and the camera work, some features which other developers have run into issues with. On the Nexus 6 port by XDA Recognised Developer Myself5 and the rest of the CarbonROM team, there's much of the same. Everything works, bar the mobile network sometimes after a reboot. That's easily fixed as well, as you simply need to enter a dialer code and enable the mobile network for it to work. It's certainly not a dealbreaker as it doesn't appear to happen every time after a reboot either. The only thing is that encryption is entirely broken. Don't even try it.

If you're interested in giving both a try, you can download the ROMs for your devices below. Be sure to report any problems to the developer with a full logcat and any other information that can help solve the problem. Developing ROMs is hard work, and the key to fixing bugs is the taking of proper logs! Neither of these ROMs will be perfect and it's very likely things may break for no reason, so be aware that using them as a daily driver may not be the best idea just yet.

Android Pie for the Nexus 6 custom ROM Android Pie for the Nexus 5X custom ROM

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Google may be facing class-action lawsuit over Location History tracking

google youtube gaming

Recently, it was found that despite users switching off location history on their Android smartphones, Google was storing some location data of users on their servers. This isn't the first time they've been questioned over similar practices, though it doesn't appear anything came of it that time. Previously, the company said "You can turn off Location History at any time. With Location History off, the places you go are no longer stored." This turned out not to be true, as the company still saved information from the likes of Google Maps. Now they may be facing a class-action lawsuit in the US according to a report from ArsTechnica.

A lawsuit was filed in federal court last Friday in San Francisco by a man named Napoleon Patacsil. In the lawsuit,  it's argued that Google is violating the California Invasion of Privacy Act and the state's constitutional right to privacy. It seeks to attain class-action status, with an "Android Class" and an "iPhone Class." It will likely take many months before the judge determines whether there is a sufficient class or not.

What's worse is that this breaks the terms of Google's settlement with the Electronic Privacy Information Center back in 2011. Google back then agreed that it would not misrepresent anything related to "(1) the purposes for which it collects and uses covered information, and (2) the extent to which consumers may exercise control over the collection, use, or disclosure of covered information." Attorneys acting on behalf of the Electronic Privacy Information Center wrote a letter to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) outlining how exactly Google's actions are breaking the terms of that settlement.

Google declined to comment to ArsTechnica. Where this class-action lawsuit may go if it continues is unknown, as it is pretty clear that Google broke the terms of the agreement and was extremely misleading. We've seen them hit by the EU again and again over many issues in the past as well, meaning it could be hit by yet another record fine in the future as well.

Source: ArsTechnica

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Oppo F9, F9 Pro are now official in India with VOOC Flash Charge and tiny waterdrop notch

oppo f9

The Oppo F9 first popped up on our radar a few weeks ago when Oppo teased VOOC Flash Charging. Now, the Oppo F9 and Oppo F9 Pro are official. These devices have a lot in common, but there are some key differences. Let's start by comparing the specs in the chart below.

Specification Oppo F9 Oppo F9 Pro
CPU MediaTek Helio P60 MediaTek Helio P60
Camera Rear: 16MP primary sensor (f/1.85) + 2MP secondary sensor

Front: 25MP sensor

Rear: 16MP primary (f/1.85) + 2MP secondary

Front: 25MP (f/2.0)

Storage 64GB 64GB
Dimensions and weight 156.7 x 74.0 x 7.99mm, 168 grams 156.7 x 74 x 7.9mm, 169g
Display 6.3-inch 19.5:9 2280×1080 6.3-inch 19.5:9 2280×1080
Audio 3.5mm headphone jack, speaker 3.5mm headphone jack, speaker
Battery 3,500mAh 3500mAh, VOOC Flash Charge
Colors Black and Starry Purple Sunrise Red, Twilight Blue, Starry Purple
Miscellaneous Dual Nano-SIM, no NFC, ColorOS 5.2 based on Android 8.1 Dual Nano-SIM, no NFC, ColorOS 5.2 based on Android 8.1
Price Rs. 19,990 Rs. 23,990

As you can see, there are minimal differences. The Oppo F9 Pro has just a few extra features. They have the same MediaTek Helio P60 processor, but the Pro has 6GB of RAM compared to 4GB. The displays are identical as well as the camera setup. They both have 3,500 mAh batteries, but the Pro model has VOOC flash charging.

The VOOC Flash Charging is one of the most noteworthy features of these new devices, even though the regular model doesn't have it. Oppo promises 2 hours of talk time with just a quick 5-minute charge. Another cool feature is the tiny teardrop notch. It doesn't take up much space and actually looks nice. The Pro model is also slightly heavier and comes in two extra colors. Of course, it costs a little more too. You'll pay an extra Rs. 3,000 for the Pro model.

Oppo did not share exact launch dates and availability information. Both devices should be going on sale in India soon.

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Nokia 6.1 Plus and Nokia 5.1 Plus launched in India with notched displays

Nokia X6 Nokia 6.1 Plus

Up until now, HMD Global's budget device lineup hasn't been impressive so far. The company has consistently failed to match competitors on the basis of its phones' specifications, pricing, and their value proposition. The Nokia 2.1, Nokia 3.1, Nokia 5.1, and the Nokia 6.1 were all guilty of this. The budget Nokia phones did have a significant plus point of pure Android One software, but in terms of hardware, HMD Global was clearly falling behind, and there was a need for something better.

In May, the company launched the Nokia X6 in China, which was followed by the Nokia X5 in July. Then, it announced that the global versions of these phones would be named the Nokia 6.1 Plus and the Nokia 5.1 Plus respectively. The Nokia 6.1 Plus has now been officially launched in India, alongside the Nokia 5.1 Plus. The specifications of both phones are listed in the table below:

Nokia 6.1 Plus and Nokia 5.1 Plus – Specifications at a glance

Nokia 6.1 Plus Nokia 6.1 Plus
Nokia 5.1 Plus

Nokia 5.1 Plus

Specifications Nokia 6.1 Plus Nokia 5.1 Plus
Dimensions 147.2 x 70.98 x 7.99mm, 151g 149.5 x 72 x 8.1 mm, 160g
Software Stock Android 8.1 Oreo (Android One) Stock Android 8.1 Oreo (Android One)
SoC Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 (4x 1.8GHz Kryo 260 Performance cores + 4x 1.8GHz Kro 260 Efficiency cores); Adreno 509 GPU Octa-core MediaTek Helio P60 MT6771 (4x 1.8GHz Arm Cortex-A73 cores + 4x 1.8GHz Arm Cortex-A53 cores); Mali-G73MP2 GPU
RAM and storage 4GB of RAM with 64GB of storage; microSD card slot 3GB of RAM with 32GB of storage; microSD card slot
Battery 3,060mAh 3,060mAh
Display 5.8-inch Full HD (2280×1080) IPS LCD with 19:9 aspect ratio, Gorilla Glass 3 5.86-inch HD+ (1520×720) IPS LCD with 19:9 aspect ratio
Connectivity Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 5.0 Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.2
Ports USB Type-C port (USB 2.0), dual nano SIM slots, 3.5mm headphone jack USB Type-C port (USB 2.0), dual nano SIM slots, 3.5mm headphone jack
Rear camera 16MP primary camera with 1.0um pixels, f/2.0 aperture
5MP depth sensing camera with 1.12um pixels, f/2.4 aperture
13MP primary camera with 1.1um pixels, f/2.0 aperture, phase detection autofocus (PDAF)
5MP depth sensing camera with f/2.4 aperture
Front-facing camera 16MP with 1.0um pixels, f/2.0 aperture 8MP with f/2.2 aperture, 80-degree field-of-view

The Nokia 6.1 Plus is placed above the Nokia 5.1 Plus in HMD Global's phone lineup. The phones have many differences in specifications ranging from display resolution (Full HD+ vs. HD+), SoC (Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 vs. MediaTek Helio P60), RAM and storage, rear cameras, to the front camera. The battery capacity is the same for both phones at 3,060mAh.

Both phones are major upgrades over the Nokia 6.1 and the Nokia 5.1 respectively. This is because they are the first Nokia budget/lower mid-range phones to use newer SoCs such as the Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 and the MediaTek Helio P60. For example, the Snapdragon 636 in the Nokia 6.1 Plus is significantly faster (>40%) than the Snapdragon 630 in the Nokia 6.1.

In terms of software, both phones are powered by the Android One platform. Currently, they run Android 8.1 Oreo, and HMD Global states that they are "ready" for the Android Pie update.

Pricing and availability

The Nokia 6.1 Plus and the Nokia 5.1 Plus will be available in Gloss Black, Gloss White, and Gloss Midnight Blue colors. Both phones will be available exclusively online via the Nokia Shop and Flipkart. The Nokia 6.1 Plus will go on sale from August 30 in India for ₹15,999 ($229), and users can pre-book the phone on the Nokia Shop from today.

HMD Global states that the price for the Nokia 5.1 Plus will be announced closer to the sales start date, which will be sometime in September.

In terms of launch offers, Airtel customers will receive ₹1,800 instant cashback and "240B data over 12 months" on the plans of ₹199, ₹249, ₹448.

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The DOOGEE S70 is The World’s First Rugged Gaming Smartphone

DOOGEE has been very experimental with the phones they've been releasing lately. Their phones bring unique and original designs, great specs, massive batteries, and durable builds. Their newest rugged phone is designed to combine two very important features in a world-first combination: durability and gaming.

The DOOGEE S70 is the first rugged gaming smartphone. This phone will focus on providing an amazing gaming experience, while maintaining high durability standards.

Game Mode丨Gamepad 24 Million Photosensitive Unit
IP68丨IP69K丨MIL-STD-810G 1.4μm Large Pixels
5.99'' FHD+ Screen (18:9) 16MP SAMSUNG Front Camera
Helio P23 Octa-core 2.5GHz 5500mAh Battery
6GB+64GB丨Cooling Boost 24W Flash Charger
12+5MP SONY IMX363 Rear Cameras Wireless Charging
Dual PD Auto-focus NFC

"The DOOGEE S70 has a powerful GPU and 6GB of RAM. The S70 features great compatibility in motion compensation technology, image quality enhancement and dark light processing. This outstanding phone achieves unhindered game performance to set you free in the game world."


The camera is also a heavy focus of this device. The main camera is made up of a 12MP SONY IMX363 with a 5MP depth of field lens. This combination will take clearer photos with the f/1.8 aperture. The camera uses 1.4µm pixels giving you fantastic low-light performance.

The selfie camera is a 16MP Samsung sensor with an f/2.0 aperture. Use the beauty mode to take stunning high quality selfies.

Get more game time with the large 5500mAh battery

Extreme cooling efficiency keeps temperatures low even when gaming.

"Differing from the previous models, the S70 is an advanced full netcom rugged phone. It supports global network frequencies with broader coverage than the iPhone."


The DOOGEE S70's powerful specs and massive 5500mAh battery were put to the test on some of the most popular games. Here are the play times you can expect with the following apps.

Candy Crush / Heartstone / Clash Royale / Minecraft: 15 Hours

Fortnite / PUBG Mobile: 11 Hours

Pkemon Go / Ingress: 9 Hours

DOOGEE has implemented several features to add to the durability of this phone. You'll find that the screen is shatterproof, an aluminium alloy frame, corner protection, and suspended borders. The phone has an IP68 protection rating, making it water and dust resistant.

The features built into the S70 will make this a high performing phone when you're playing your favorite games. But DOOGEE understands that in order for a phone to really be called a "Gaming Phone" you have to have some new hardware that will make gaming on Android better. That's where the DOOGEE G1 comes in. This Gamepad is designed specifically for the S70. You can clip this accessory to your phone to enable a gaming joystick controller. Check out this video to see it in action.


Follow the Indiegogo campaign for the DOOGEE S70 to get the latest info on this smartphone.


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