Galaxy Gear Gets Custom ROM Treatment, Features Custom Launcher and Web Browsing Support

Galaxy Gear

The Galaxy Gear smartwatch, a device hindered by its maker to only work on phones running TouchWiz, is becoming a bit more interesting this week. As reported today by several sources, the watch has sold only about 50,000 units, a number that is remarkably low considering how much marketing effort Samsung put into the device. Regardless of how many people are rocking one, you should know that there is in fact a group of developers working on the device on forums, and there are even some custom ROMs floating around. Who’d have thunk it?  (more…)

Modders Aim to Fix Nexus 5 Camera Before Google, Release Flashable Zip With All Sorts of Tweaks

nexus 5 camera

Early reports (and even our own personal experiences) suggest that the Nexus 5 camera, even with its Optical Image Stabilization, isn’t exactly on par with other top tier smartphone cameras. We wish that it was, but also aren’t exactly surprised as Nexus phones coupled with the stock Android camera app have universally been panned over the years. Google mentioned earlier this week that a fix could be on the horizon, however, modders over at XDA have taken matters into their own hands.  (more…)

How to: Flash Nexus 5 Factory Images

nexus 5 bootloader unlock

Part of the beauty of owning a Nexus device comes through the regular availability of factory images that can be used to return the device to a factory state. If you root, toss on a ROM, and tinker a bit too much, you may find yourself looking for a last resort to save your phone. A factory image can do that. Or maybe you need to wipe your phone clean because you are done with it and need to pass it along to a friend or family member (or in a back alley deal on Craigslist). Again, a factory image can do that. Think of a factory image as stock, out-of-the-box software for your device.

Google has been pretty good over the years at making these image files available shortly after they release a new update or version of Android. That situation hasn’t changed with the release of Kit Kat (Android 4.4) or the Nexus 5, as Google has already made the N5′s factory images available.  (more…)

How to: Root the Nexus 5

nexus 5 root

Now that the bootloader on your Nexus 5 is unlocked, you are probably thinking about whether or not you should flash a custom recovery and root. If you decide that root is for you, we’ve put together a set of instructions for you to root your device in the old school, manual way. The good news is that you don’t have to use our instructions, as there are already at least two automated methods out there that will get you to the same place. We’re just a bit old school, I guess, and like to do things the long way.  (more…)

How to: Unlock the Nexus 5 Bootloader

nexus 5 bootloader unlock

Whenever we get a new Nexus device, like the Nexus 5, our mind thinks two things immediately. The first is to unbox the device (Nexus 5 unboxing) and let you all see which product is up next for us to review. Once we are finished there, we immediately go and unlock the bootloader. Why? Well, because unlocking the bootloader of a phone puts the device through a factory reset. Rather than setting the phone up and making it all personal, we like to unlock the bootloader so that we don’t have to worry about it ever again. Once done, we can then get on about our business reviewing the phone and turning it into our daily driver. Plus, if we decide we want to flash a ROM, root it, or put on a custom recovery, we are all set to do that without issue.  (more…)

Verizon Galaxy Nexus Owners Able to Taste Kit Kat, “Shiny” OTA-Like ROM Now Available

verizon galaxy nexus

Last week when Android 4.4 was released to AOSP, developers started their task of bringing the latest version of Android to basically every device they could. It’s a reason we still love this hard-working community. With that being said, Verizon customers that still cling to a Galaxy Nexus, learned that their devices’ would not be receiving an official update to Kit Kat, and would instead be stuck on Jelly Bean forever. But given that the Galaxy Nexus is one of the most loved devices of all time, it didn’t take very long for the developer community to whip up some Kit Kat action for the device.  (more…)

Moto X Rooted After Camera Update, Get Your adb Ready

moto x

After receiving the latest camera-improving OTA update for the Moto X, almost everyone lost root access and has not been able to get it back no matter which carrier version you own. If you had been waiting patiently for a new root method, the good news is that your time has come. Thanks to his latest work called RockMyMoto, Justin Case has given you the opportunity to your root your Moto X once again, as long as you are willing to download a new root package and hammer out a couple of adb commands. But you are, right?  (more…)

First AOSP Android 4.4 ROMS Popping Up, Nexus 4 Included

Screenshot_2013-11-01-06-56-34 Screenshot_2013-11-01-07-07-28 Screenshot_2013-11-01-07-07-35

With Android 4.4 hitting AOSP yesterday, it was only a matter of time before the first set of stock ROMs started showing up for our favorite devices. An AOSP Nexus 4 ROM was the first to pop into our inboxes late last night, though we are sure there could be more at this point. For now though, we wanted to share this to get you into the comments and sharing others for other devices.  (more…)