Wouldn’t it be nice to have Beats Audio quality on your Android device? Well now you can, sort of.
Top mod AwesomeBEATS adds extra controls and boosts to your rooted device’s audio settings, letting you make the most of the audio options of Android. It’s a slightly fiddly process to get it installed though, and you’ll need a couple of apps and processes installed before you even get started to make it work. First off you’ll need a rooted device, and you’ll need to know what ROM you’re running as well. You won’t need a computer to work your way through this tutorial, but you should be pretty confident about what you’re doing when it comes to playing around with rooted devices, as we’re going to be poking around with the Linux-based innards of your phone or tablet using Terminal Emulator.
We ran the tutorial on a Nexus 7 (2012) rooted with WugFresh (wugfresh.com) and didn’t hit any major snags, but if you don’t know how to recover and restore your rooted phone, it might be best to get to grips with that before you try this. If you’re using a Nexus as well, get pro tips on restoring on page 40. When you’re ready, load up the Play store on your phone or tablet and we can start installing all the extra bits and bobs we need before we start installing AwesomeBEATS.
Switch on the Nexus 6 hidden LED for an alternative notification alert to Ambient Display
If you look carefully, you might spot a glint of light reflecting in your Nexus 6’s top speaker grill. This is an LED that Google and Motorola decided the flagship phone needed, but haven’t enabled as default.
Why would you want a flashing LED instead of using the Nexus 6’s Ambient Display? Perhaps you don’t want your entire screen to light up whenever you get a notification. Maybe you just want to tinker with your Android’s features.
In either case, here’s how to replace Ambient Display with a Blackberry-style blinking light for notifications.
There are some pretty slick things that the iPad and iPhone can do that would be nice to have on your Android device. One of them is gesture controls which involves pinching, swiping and tapping to navigate around your device.
With Good Mood Droid Gesture Controls you can add these to your Android device and you can create your own too. It’s pretty easy to get to grips with, and within a few minutes you’ll be using all sorts of gestures your own way to get around. You’ll need a rooted device, and you’ll need to download an app from the Google Play store. There’s nothing complex here, you won’t need to do much more than installing the app on your device and it shouldn’t take you more than a couple of minutes to get everything up and running. So grab your phone or tablet, point it to the Play Store and let’s get started.
1. Download the app
Squeeze as much speed and gaming performance out of your device as you can with this rooted app
The deeper you get into rooting your Android device, the more you’ll find to play around with. If you’re an avid gamer and you’re looking for more control over your graphics settings, the kind that you might get with a PC, then GLTools is definitely the app for you. It lets you tinker with a whole heap of settings that you normally wouldn’t be able to.
You’ll need to know a decent amount of graphics terminology, and you’ll need a rooted device to make it all work. You can grab the app itself from the Play store, but it needs root access to play around with the games you’ve installed on your phone or tablet. It’s especially handy if you’re running a lower-end device and want to give things a bit of a kick. When you’re ready, go ahead and visit the Play store.
Here’s how to cast to Chromecast without being on the same network, and enable mirroring on devices that aren’t currently supported
Chromecast is a media streaming adapter from Google that lets you directly stream content to any HDMI-equipped TV, by pairing it with a tablet, smartphone or computer. The only sticking point here is that the controlling device must be connected to the same Wi-Fi network as Chromecast for it to work. This is fine when you’re using it on your own, but having to hand out your Wi-Fi password to visitors is an unncessary hassle.
Google has a guest mode planned that will make this easier, but they’ve yet to implement it. You can enable this guest mode feature early, thanks to the #Configurator for Root app. This app can enable hidden features or settings in certain Google apps, by modifying the overrides table in the gservices.db database. This method requires a rooted Android, but not a rooted Chromecast.
This tutorial will show you also how to enable a second hidden feature: mirroring. Mirroring lets you view the contents of your device onto a big screen by casting your Android screen to a connected TV.
The Nexus 9 gets warm during use – this optimised kernel can help reduce the temperature
The Nexus 9 has a very powerful processor – a 64-bit Nvidia K1 with 192 graphics cores. This power makes for great experiences, especially gaming, but the device does get warm in the top-left corner. The source code for the Nexus 6 kernel source is available from the AOSP repository, and a number of respected community developers have already released custom kernels which tweak settings to let the system run cooler without affecting performance. They also offer a number of other enhancements controlled by kernel companion apps. The kernel is flashed to a device as part of the boot image.
This tutorial is taken from Android Magazine issue 46’s ‘Hack Your Nexus’ guide, on sale 24 December 2014. To ensure you never miss a copy of Android Magazine, buy it here or subscribe now.