Author Archives: Juan Carlos Torres


Level Up! Heroes of Might & Magic III HD, OUYA, and cats

Build your own fantasy kingdom and, instead of just growing it with cutesy in-app items and fighting off even cuter monsters, defend it against seriously badass angles, demons, and mages. Or maybe you're more into cats. Lots and lots of cats. Which ever way you swing, we've got you covered in this week's edition of Level Up! But first, a few words from everyone's favorite, or previous favorite, champion of Android console gaming.

Samsung rumored to make bloatware optional, downloadable

Englightenment or desperation? Whichever your take on Samsung's motives, the Korean OEM is now reported to be slimming down its phone's experience even further. In addition to making the TouchWiz aesthetic fall in line with the new Material Design, it will also be moving much of its less frequently used but pre-installed apps out of the default installation and into Google Play Store, or perhaps its own GALAXY Apps Store, paving the way for a more Nexus-like experience of Samsung devices.

OnePlus names own Android ROM as Oxygen, Hydrogen in China

It's no secret that OnePlus is cutting its ties with Cyanogen over the fiasco with Micromax in India. It has been developing its own custom ROM to replace CyanogenMod in its future devices. And while it isn't yet revealing what that ROM will look like or will offer, it is now announcing its chosen name. Its ROM will be called "Oxygen OS", at least in the rest of the world. But in China, it will be called Hydrogen instead.

Microsoft invested in Cyanogen’s anti-Google war chest, says tip

According to sources familiar with the matter, Microsoft has invested in Cyanogen, Inc., making a small contribution in the $70 million of the $100 million that the startup claims to have been able to raise. The startup has so far only accounted for the $30 million of the total. More than just a magnanimous donation, however, this move is seen to be Redmond's play to wrest control of Android away from Google, a sentiment that it shares with Cyanogen. Of course, this rumor is likely to raise many mixed emotions over the future of the platform and Microsoft's involvement.

A behind the scenes look at CyanogenMod’s new Theme Engine

It has been but a year since but a year since CyanogenMod let out its theme engine, alongside the launch of CyanogenMod 11S on the OnePlus One. The Android ROM community, however, is hardly one to rest on its laurels and is once again working on a new theme engine in time for a Lollipop-based CyanogenMod 12 release. CM Theme Engine co-author Clark Scheff gives an overview of how the engine works and some of the idiosyncrasies theme designers have to consider.

LG G3 discovered to have hidden App Ops feature

Remember App Ops? Maybe not, especially after the heyday of Android Lollipop. It popped up, accidentally according to Google, around Android 4.3 as a way to let users make fine-grained changes to each app's permissions, without requiring root. Google eventually closed off access to App Ops in subsequent updates and we've never heard from it since. Until now. Apparently, LG has the same functionality hidden in the G3, which some have now been able to access, much to the rejoicing of power users.

Xbox One SmartGlass Beta finally gets OneGuide support

Looks like Microsoft is cooking up something tasty for its Xbox One faithful. It has just updated the beta version of its SmartGlass app with one very important feature: OneGuide. Now users in selected areas will be able to look up what's showing on TV right from the Android app itself. Thought just a small addition, it heralds the arrival of even more features expected to come really soon now.

Meizu unveils Meilan m1, new m1 Note variant, LifeKit platform

Meizu made quite a splash yesterday when it unveiled not one but three new products. Well, two and a half to be precise, as one is just a different variant. That variant is the new Meilan m1 Note for China Telecom, this time bearing a Snapdragon 615 instead of a MediaTek. Completely new, however, is its smaller sibling, the Meilan m1, with a 5-inch screen instead of the larger 5.5. And last but not the least, Meizu is expanding into your homes with a new LifeKit platform for smart appliances.

An unlikely couple: Android Community Deals mini giveaway [DEALS]

It's January already, isn't it? You might think it were still Christmas time becuase of this mini bundle of free goodies we have from Android Community Deals. If you remain undecided whether to dive into the world of Android app development, we have a free mini course for you. And if you've been dreaming of owning your very own pair of Beats branded headphones, without coughing up a single dollar, now might be the perfect time to try your luck.
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