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I waited several weeks for my brand new Nexus 7. I opened the box with lingering anticipation, powered it on (without charging it first, even though I know better), salivated as I saw the new home screen, and started downloading app after app hoping to find a barrier that this little beast couldn’t surmount. I found nothing. I found absolutely nothing this quad-core $200 steal couldn’t lay to waste.

Satisfied? I should be. Am I? No. I’m an Android lover, and Android lovers aren’t so easy to please…


Android has an excellent array of security apps to protect you against threats of malware and viruses. But in my opinion, privacy issues are a far greater concern.

What permissions and elements of my phone are newly installed apps using? How safe is the private data I store on my phone? This was a gap in my knowledge that I wanted to fill – and LBE Privacy is a great tool for this job.

The app protects my privacy, and safeguards services that could cost me money if the wrong apps gained control of them. It does all this with a beautiful and intuitive interface. (more…)

I spent a long time trying to find a valid root guide for my HTC Desire HD on Gingerbread. When I finally did, I ran into a few snags. To help people who wish to root their Desire HD in the future, I’ve written this guide, to try to explain everything clearly so the risk of making a mistake or getting stuck is minimal. (more…)

I am sure you have seen the recent articles in many Android blogs concerning the fragmention of Android. It’s a topic that comes up time and time again, including on this site.

In this article I’ll explain what fragmentation is, for those who aren’t quite sure, and also why Android users needn’t be concerned by it. (more…)

Did you know you can wipe the default version of Android and install a completely new, customized version of the operating system? Thanks to Android’s open-source nature, you aren’t bound by any copyright agreements, meaning that makers of phones allow you do this and — following HTC’s recent announcement to unlock their bootloaders on their devices — may even encourage you to do so.

Before you start tinkering with any kind of custom ROMs, you’ll need to “root” your phone (the Android version of jailbreaking; this basically allows you to access your phone’s core) which isn’t as scary as you might think. Rooting your phone is quite a simple process and brings a wealth of advantages.

Jailbreaking. Rooting. Hacking. These are terms used to signify a person’s rebellion against their stock software. It’s very popular on mobile devices, especially smartphones, and also on games consoles (if you don’t mind being sued by the manufacturer).

Rooting is the term most often used when referring to Android hacking. The term means to break the device’s metaphorical walls in order to gain better access to the device and it’s operating system to allow better end user control of it’s functions. Michael James Williams already covered the question “To Root or Not to Root?“, as well as the actual process of rooting. But now, let’s take a look at the main difference between iOS’s jailbreaking and Android’s rooting.


We’ve been talking a lot about rooting, this week. We looked at the pros and cons of doing it, how to back everything up before doing it, and how to actually do it.

We’ll definitely be posting more about the topic soon, including reviews of custom ROMs and apps that can only be used on rooted devices, but in the meantime, we’re curious as to how many people have already rooted.

Let us know by voting in the poll. If you have more than one device, and you’ve rooted one but not the other, you can vote “yes” for one and “no” for the other.

I’d like to clear up some misconceptions: rooting doesn’t mean installing a custom ROM like CyanogenMod, and it doesn’t necessarily mean wiping your internal storage. All it means is unlocking your device so that you gain some extra system privileges, giving you the ability to install a custom ROM like CyanogenMod (and do a number of other neat things).

The method for doing this varies from device to device, and could change over time. So, rather than writing a guide that will only be relevant to one type of device and may soon go out of date, I’ll show you how to find the best way to root your specific phone or tablet — assuming there is a way. I’ll also include a walkthrough of how I rooted my HTC Desire, with photos, so that you can see how quick and easy the process can be.


If you’ve had an Android device for a while, you’ll have heard of rooting: breaking certain safeguards placed on your device so that you have complete control over the underlying software and operating system. Some Android users swear by it, and tell you that you’re not getting the full Android experience if you don’t root; others are perfectly happy with their phones in the state they bought them, and see no reason to change.

There are advantages and disadvantages to rooting, so in this article I’d like to help you answer the question: should you root?

There’s many a reason for you to want to take a screen capture on Android. Maybe you’re a developer wanting to take publicity screenshots of your app? Or maybe you’re wanting to become a writer for a site like this but have no idea how to source images for your post? Well, let me explain.

Unfortunately, screenshot taking is not as easy as on alternative platforms. It involves the Android SDK and USB debugging. So find that cable and get started! (more…)