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Paranoid Android’s HALO Project Goes Open Source, Coming Soon to a ROM Near You

paranoid android halo

Some of the coolest custom Android development to happen lately has come from the folks that make Paranoid AndroidSince the launch of Facebook and their cool Chat Heads feature, PA has launched their own HALO code that allows for similar floating notifications in their ROM. Up until today it has been a PA exclusive, but they have decided to go open source with the project. 

Luckily for all us ROM users this means that if our developer wants to poke through the code for HALO they can implement it in their own builds. This means that the awesome floating notifications can be used by more users and in different ways. Give it some time, but you will be seeing this as a main feature in many ROMs going forward. Be sure to check out our hands-on with HALO to see how awesome it really is.

Via: +Paranoid Android


Cheers Mitchell! 

  • Brian M

    Stop saying ‘chathead’

  • Brandon Golway

    I do like this because it’s useful but I’ve always found recent build of PA to be pretty laggy on both my S4 and my N7, both of which are quad-cores and shouldn’t lag at all! Glad to know it will be coming to other ROMs too!

  • arkashkin

    I don’t really like this feature, too disturbing.

  • John Victor Gonzalez

    I’ve been using a standalone chathead/floating notification app that I found on xda developers. It’s very customizable and works with most roms:


  • _shall

    What app icons are those in the photo at the top of this post?

  • zurginator

    I just wish you could have it minimize to the top, rather than the side.

  • Mondo

    support LTE on the Nexus 4! PA was awesome (except not being able to have LTE)!

    • Hothfox

      Um, the Nexus 4 doesn’t support LTE in any case.

      • Mondo

        I’m on LTE right now. Cyanogenmod allows you to use LTE (If you have the correct radio and APN settings)

        • Hothfox


  • xchor

    A lot of new features and usability options have been introduced since the DL guys filmed this. Check out this video to see the updated HALO build https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d5WljHcOyXs

  • Tyler James Edward Hills

    AOKP where u at?!

    • Pedro

      A few of the devs have already mentioned that it wouldn’t be included. At least, not now. They have Ribbons and Last App.
      I’d suggest looking into the Last App button. I haven’t used it in a game, but it’s damn near instantaneous when switching between apps.

      edit: See Kit’s reply below

  • Jon Brashear

    I see its being used with GTalk (now Hangout) but does it work with MMS? Wonder if a dev can make a flashable zip for this feature 😉

    • drcmda

      it works with everything. every single android app that exists. of course you can fine tune which apps ping and which not via white and blacklists.

      doing this as a single app is impossible. all you would end up is the UI part, and even that in a half assed way as it would miss all the integration. the actual multitasking part would go overboard completely.

  • cowboybeebop

    They should just make it an app and sell it on the play store 🙂

    • Intellectua1

      Exactly.. I ran the new PA on my S4 for like 2 hours then I realized how much I missed the remote and Samsung calender and I’m just not willing to give that up.. It was good while it lasted tho..

    • tyguy829

      it’s way too deeply integrated for that. the best they can do is make it open source so other rom developers can integrate it.

    • drcmda

      its not about the money. google gives you a perfectly fine platform and amazing devices to run the open android code without any hacks. this is a major distinction from ios and pretty much the only thing that really makes a difference. you dont need to pretend that you live in a walled garden with the need of running petty hacks – no need at all for that.
      as always, an app can only use the sdk, nothing more. google sdk cant do any of it. then theres root apps, the most dirty thing you can install on your poor device, but even that can’t integrate.
      taking a stockrom and typing “git cherry-pick [commit-ID-from-PAs-Git]” and then “make” on the other hand is the cleanest way possible. what comes out of it actually looks and feels like native, because it is.

      • cowboybeebop

        I see, i did not release that, thanks for sharing that info. Just never found a ROM where i like 99% of the stuff on it, and could never make my own lol. PA are awesome though 🙂

  • rfranken

    If it could remember its position and slide completely off the screen when not in use…and work for all apps, and be disable for some apps, then maybe…just maybe it would be usable

    • in the PA roms you can “blacklist notifications for HALO” in the individual app settings.

      • PhoenixPath

        You need to post this…erm…louder. More people need to know this.

  • Josh Fischer

    I like the idea, and use it off and on, but the implementation I believe could be alot better. Hopefully as they continue to develop and refine it, it will improve.

  • ReturnOfTheMack

    It will blow your mindhole.

  • Carbon has had it for a weeks also.

    • Weber

      on the nightlies?

      • No special halo builds. Though it can be included in the nightlies now that source is released.

  • ragnarok180

    Good because I was just thinking “How awesome would this be on AOKP?” 😀

    • Kit Tihonovich

      Not happening.

      • ragnarok180

        Well why not? O_o

        • Kit Tihonovich

          Generally like to write features of our own.

          • ragnarok180

            Well then the “K” in AOKP is very misleading -_-

          • PhoenixPath

            Not at all. Everyone is free to kang from them as much as they like. 🙂

            It is the Android Open Kang Project after all. 😀

          • ragnarok180

            The same can be said for every other ROM out there. -_-


          • PhoenixPath

            You don’t say…

          • ragnarok180

            Nope. I did type it however…

          • PhoenixPath


          • ragnarok180

            Mmm yes… Quite so…

  • Shane Redman

    I enjoy PA, but I can’t really get into the HALO project. Just seems extra and sometimes intrusive. The small addition is just in the way of android’s core simplicity to me.

  • Mike Arnett

    I feel like I’m the only one who doesn’t like this feature. I like my stock android, with a few fixes. I understand that people like different things, but any more I feel like the major roms are all the same.

    • Shane Redman

      You’re not alone here…

    • Justin Barrett

      Exactly. What’s wrong with the notification bar? I don’t want things right in my face. That’s the beauty of choice I suppose.

      • drcmda

        its easy to bash things if you haven’t used them.

        perhaps you need to take a closer look at the notification bar, i don’t really think you understan its purpose from what you write. it is not meant for multitasking at all, it’s a simple aggregator, it collects notifications for you to review when time allows. that’s one approach, and fully valid. halo simply extends it for multitasking, giving you the capacity to respond to ongoing tasks on the spot without loosing your context. that is another approach, also fully valid. both approaches can nicely co-exist and since halo is fully integrated they actually do, one will not conflict the other.

        as for things being in your face. no. a swipe down and it hides, a swipe up to dismiss the notification and a drag and halo vanishes completely.

        the video up there is stone old btw and does not reflect halos current state. picture as well.

        • Justin Barrett

          I wasn’t bashing anything. Read: “That’s the beauty of choice”.

          Merely stating my preference is to not have to swipe anything away if I don’t want to see it. I’d rather it sit nicely in my notification bar. I can see why people want this feature though, and I think it’s awesome that developers listen to that and are expanding on the idea. That’s why Android is so great: you can choose what and what not to put on your device.

    • Stephen Cox

      Yeah, I am not feeling these either. But if people want them, more power to them!

      Android = Freedom of Options!

    • Intellectua1

      +1 on All the major Roms are the same now..

      • drcmda

        how exactly are all roms the same when PA has developed hybrid, pie and halo, slim nightmode, aokp ribbon, call statistics, etc. these are all individual features. sharing them via open source should not automatically mean things just get kanged and thats that, it can also mean they inspire further features and development and usually that’s what happened.

        • Intellectua1

          Apparently you don’t flash that many Roms, I’ve had plenty phones and flashed plenty Roms and I can tell you most all ROMs have those features (Hybird, PIe, now there’s a ROM on i717 that has Halo, etc) once these features go open source most ROMs pick them up…

  • jhebding

    It really is awesome, been running it on d2vzw and Carbon for almost a week.

    • NyReynolds

      What nightly is that? The latest one?

      • matt masino

        check out the carbon google+ page they have not added it to the nightlys yet. Halo builds are all built by hand still

        • NyReynolds

          Thanks. Will check it put.

  • qwerty

    bring this to cyanogen!

    • Butters619

      CM usually tries to stay pretty close to stock.

      • Heon Jun Park

        and then they brought Pie control….
        lets us dream freely

        • Butters619

          Good point

      • drcmda

        no, they don’t. you are not stock if you replace google services with your own, contrast a simple OS with complex things like kernel tweaks, or if you put hidden UI gestures on any free pixel thats available, etc.

        it’s a hobbyist fork, simple as that, one that moves away from google android to deliver its own benefits – why not. they are further from stock android than most other roms though.

    • JetBlue

      One of the developers said they most likely will not since it most likely breaks Android’s CTS. https://plus.google.com/u/0/116529392681402965733/posts/MPkswCL4e74

  • Jason Downing

    pretty stoked about it going open source. it’s an awesome feature