Thursday, July 25, 2013

mako

------------
Note 1: So you got a Nexus 4. Congratulations. You have an incredibly powerful device in your hands. This post is not N4 specific, so you can try several of these with any top-of-the-line Android device. N4 because all of these have been field-tested on mine. If you've got interesting apps/uses to share, shoot in the comments, I'd love to hear 'em. Otherwise, if 'Angry Birds' is all you've done, read on, you must. ;)

Note 2: I'm sure someone at Google is huge Guillermo Del Toro fan. Galaxy Nexus was code-named 'toro', Nexus 4 is code-named 'mako' (ref: Pacific Rim).
------------


Part I: use mako

Part II: root mako

Part III: sudo mako



Part I: use mako


a) Lock screen

Widgets were always the strength of the Android ecosystem, and 4.2 Jelly Bean added the capability to add widgets on the lock-screen. There are several lock-screen widgets, but none standout like Roman Nurik's DashClock widget, which is beautiful, and isn't heavy on the battery. There are several extensions for this widget available in the store, so suit yourself.




















b) Home screen

I use the Android stock launcher. What you see in the background is the Ice Galaxy Live Wallpaper. This fellow, Maxelus, makes beautiful wallpapers. Most of the widgets are created using Zooper Widgets, and the icon pack is Minimalist.

Nova Launcher is a popular choice for launcher replacement. It gives you a lot of options to customize just about everything. A shoutout to Buzz Launcher, which attempts to create a marketplace for out-of-the-box homescreens, which you can download and apply in a flash! Worth checking out if you are among the lazy ones.


Head here for some inspiration.
















c) Computer-phone connectivity apps (Productivity)

Chrome to Phone - Send links from Chrome browser on desktop to your android phone.

Phone To Desktop - Send links from your android phone to Chrome browser on desktop.

Desktop Notifications - Get notifications from your phone on Chrome browser on desktop as desktop notifications.

AirDroid - Transfer files to/from phone to desktop over wi-fi. Send SMS, use phone camera as a webcam, manage contacts, apps, music et al, from your desktop.

TeamViewer - Remote control/remote desktop your computer from your phone over a data connection.

GOM Remote - Control GOM Player on your computer through a remote-like interface on your phone.

Unified Remote - Use your phone as a keyboard/mouse for your computer.



d) Travel apps

FlightTrack - Beautiful interface which shows flight path on a map. Gives schedule and gate information. Excellent, excellent app.

Currency - Offline currency conversion.

Google Maps / Google Translate - Their 'offline' mode is sweet! Download maps, and language packs for offline use! Very, very handy if you are planning a foreign holiday soon!

Triposo - Travel guide.



e) Special mention

SMS Backup+ (backs up SMS, call logs, and now WhatsApp messages to Gmail!),
Clean Master (clear system cache),
Battery Doctor (battery optimisation),
CamScanner (excellent app to get scanner level quality for documents through the phone camera),
TrueCaller (it's creepy how they get the unknown numbers right, but they do),
Light Manager (customise phone's LED notifications),
SphereShare (photosphere images sharing community),
TV Show Favs (track TV show episodes), and
Default App Manager (manage default apps for any phone action).


...and since you will install so many apps, it is easy to get lost. Enter: App Dialer, yep, an app to find apps installed on your phone!




Part II: root mako


Rooting gives you the ability to flash custom ROMs on your phone. I haven't flashed any custom ROMs yet, I am pretty happy with the stock ROM. But rooting allows you to make full backups of your phone, and some pretty nifty apps. Most of the methods of rooting Nexus 4 factory resets the phone, and guides are easily available if you google it.


The method I used doesn't factory reset the phone. (Motochopper method)

1: Get motochopper and the drivers from here.

2: Root. Yep, that simple. A full guide here (they even have a video!). The guide is for Galaxy S4, but it works just the same for Nexus 4 (I've done it!).


All the other methods unlocks bootloader first, and then applies root. Hence the factory reset.

Motochopper roots without unlocking the bootloader. Once you have achieved root, you can unlock your bootloader using BootUnlocker (yep, there's an app for that!). Android 4.3 update was announced today, so there's a decent chance you'll lose root after the update. You can use Voodoo OTA RootKeeper to preserve root during the OTA update.








Part III: sudo mako

Well... you have a rooted phone. What now?

ShareKM - My favorite root app's gotta be ShareKM. It's brilliant! It connects the phone to your computer over wi-fi/data/bluetooth. Slide the mouse pointer from the edge of the screen, and voila!, the mouse pointer jumps to your phone! You can now use your computer's keyboard to type on your phone, or copy text from one to the other. It's really neat, you should check it out if you have a rooted Android device. Video of this app in action embedded below:





OBackup - Nandroid Backup - Nandriod backup means a full image backup of your phone. So if you mess up something tinkering, you can always restore the phone exactly to how it was. OBackup does cloud backups and you can schedule your backups, which is pretty neat.



LMT - LMT enable features on stock Android that are typically available on custom ROMs, and is often the reason why people do install custom ROMs. It isn't avaialble on Google Play, but can be downloaded from here. A full review here, and video of the app in action below:






Spend time configuring your phone, it'll be worth it. Tinker. Enjoy.

mako...

1 comment:

  1. Interesting app was unified remote. Thanks pulkit

    ReplyDelete