Hot on the heels of Samsung and its Oreo beta for the Galaxy S8, for which an update has already been released, Essential has posted an Oreo beta image for owners to flash. Also now present are regular factory images, which were previously unavailable. The only caveat is that you must sideload it via ADB; there's no OTA. Read More
At the beginning of the month, Samsung started rolling out its Android 8.0 Oreo beta to its Galaxy S8/S8 Plus devices in the US, UK, and Korea. The company isn't resting on its laurels, it seems, as the second beta build is already making its way to users. The firmware may have the build number G950FXXU1ZQK4 or G955USQU1ZQK6 depending on which region you're in. Read More
It was beginning to look like Google wouldn't get around to releasing platform distribution numbers this month, but it just came through. The news, however, isn't great if you've been pulling for Oreo to catch on. After debuting last month at 0.2% market share, Oreo is up just another tenth of a point this month. Meanwhile, Nougat saw a more substantial increase. Read More
Google's history with Bluetooth is a bit rocky, but it looks like at least one Bluetooth bug in Android isn't entirely Google's fault. The so-called "phantom call" issue appears to be the result of a third-party app. Namely, Skype Lite. Uninstall that, and you should be all good. Read More
If there's one thing sure to ruin your day, it's a crashing smartphone. Even worse if the bug proves so bad that your phone eventually insists you do a factory reset, losing data in the process. This is exactly the situation that has befallen a number of Nexus and Pixel owners in recent days, and it's all to do with an adaptive icon bug that was discovered by the developer of third-party Facebook wrapper called Swipe. Read More
Battery life is always the weak link in our smartphone-centric world, and you often find yourself baffled by the reasons why your battery drains way too fast one day and then seems to last forever the second day. Android has been trying to remedy that for many and many versions, and the latest Android 8.1 Developer Preview adds one more weapon to your arsenal in the fight against battery drainage. It won't help you win the war, but it will more easily answer the question of which app has been misbehaving and how.
On Android 8.1, if you check the Battery settings, you may see one app highlighted at the top with a red warning battery icon. Read More
The month is getting underway, and that means it's time for Google to issue its monthly raft of Pixel and Nexus updates. The updates will filter down to phones in the next day or so, but the system images and OTA files for most devices are available now if you want to sideload. There's not a ton new here, but as this is a November patch level, you should have protection from the KRACK vulnerability. Read More
The LG V30 was released in South Korea a month ago, and it arrived in the United States soon after. The phone shipped with Android 7.1.2, and LG sadly didn't give a timeframe for an Oreo update. However, it looks like the company has been hard at work on an Oreo update, and South Korean residents can try it today. Read More
Password manager Dashlane has been beta testing support for Oreo's autofill feature, and now the testing is over. Dashlane 5 is rolling out with support for autofill in Android 8.0, but that's not all. The new app can also act as a mobile authenticator and there are more languages. Read More
One of the new toggles you'll see in Android 8.1's developer preview is hidden in Developer options, under the Networking category and is called: Tethering hardware acceleration. The description, "Use tethering hardware acceleration if available," doesn't do a lot to clarify the ambiguity of the new option, and the speculation from AP alumni Ron Amadeo and a few users has been that it would use a more efficient method for tethering that relies on hardware. We've been looking into it to try to understand what it does and there are hints here and there that favor that explanation.
First, there's new code in Android that's related to this new "tetheroffload.control" and I also found a few APIs in the Android HIDL related to it with explanations of the different control types. Read More