Can the latest version of the Moto G prove it’s the quintessential budget device?
The original Moto G was released to a good amount of fanfare, providing users with a cost-effective way of getting their hands on the latest version of Android (4.3 at the time). The Moto G 4G, which added dual-SIM capabilities, then quickly followed it up and lightning fast download speeds were achievable through 4G connectivity. The Moto G 2014 is the latest in the series that offers current G owners a recognisable device, but also one with several key changes.
This time around you’ll find predominantly the same design, with the only addition being the two front-facing speakers that offer superb clarity for your music. Motorola has still chosen the same curved back to help cater for the bigger 5” display and the device is just about usable with one hand, but a noticeable leap from the previous 4.5” screen. The bigger size also means it’s slightly heavier than its predecessors and chunkier as well. One of the biggest additions to the Moto G 4G was dual-SIM capability and thankfully Motorola has carried that over. Although it won’t be as big of a deal in the UK, access to dual-SIMs is perfect in locations where signals just aren’t very good. Another thing that’s carried over is the 2070mAh battery. It provides enough juice to get through the day, but the bigger screen puts it under a bit more pressure.
One thing we’ve grown accustomed to is the presence of stock Android on all Motorola devices. The same can be said here and it’ll be pleasing for those who want to customise the device themselves. There are a couple of additional apps, but we wouldn’t describe them as bloatware. Migrate can help you sync contents across from a different phone, Alert stores emergency contact information and Assist is a fantastic automation tool. Users have access to a decent 8GB of internal storage, but this is expandable to 32GB through microSD.
Google have unveiled their first Android One device, offering stock Android at budget prices for Indian users
Google have unveiled their first Android One device, offering stock Android at budget prices for Indian users. If it’s successful, the Android One line will be rolled out in Indonesia, the Phillipines, Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh before the end of 2014. We ask the experts if Google can really dominate the growing market in Asia and beyond and what challenges they will face.
While everyone expected an Android L announcement at this year’s Google I/O,o ne of the most crucial initiatives for Google’s mobile future was easily missed, as it wasn’t directly aimed at the US and European markets. Android One, a new hardware and software spec for low-end smartphones in developing nations, is intended to help Google expand the reach of its mobile OS in countries like India, China and beyond.
What exactly is it, then? Google is using the term “Android One” to refer to a set of hardware standards for smartphone manufacturers, standards which it hopes will speed up the process of developing budget handsets in emerging markets. Google is also providing the stock Android package – the same one used on the Nexus and Google Play Edition devices – then working with OEMs and carriers to give new customers the handsets and data packages they need. Essentially, Google gives manufacturers everything they need except the raw materials to build the product.
Moto Actions, Display, Sensor Services and Moto app add features to the new flagship
Just as Motorola released core features for the original Moto X via the Play Store, they have made new hand-waving gestures and notification features available to download as apps.
Releasing the features as individual apps allows Motorola to update functionality without waiting for a full OTA rollout.
The new apps are as follows:
Via: Android Police
The QV830 has a premium design with a budget price tag, but compromises have been made elsewhere
Tablets from small-name manufacturers are in abundance all over the world, but Gigaset, formerly know as Siemens, carries a little more pedigree than most with their experience in producing landline phones. The QV830 is a rare foray for them into the tablet market, but you wouldn’t think it when you first get your hands on it. The metal-backed 8-inch tablet has a distinct premium feel to it and the little flex in the otherwise plastic shell adds a certain amount of robustness to the device, but is very fingerprint friendly. All the standard ports are located at the top of the device and although there’s a clear amount of bezel, it isn’t too overbearing on the square shape of the tablet. At first we were unsure on the slightly awkward shaping of the QV830, but it lends itself well to two-handed use in both portrait and landscape modes.
The QV830 runs a mostlu stock version of Android 4.2.2, which although isn’t the latest OS update, Gigaset provides their own OTA Update app where you can manually add Android updates. It’s a nice addition that smaller manufacturers don’t really tend to cater for. Due to both the Cortex A7 quad-core processor and stock OS, moving around the tablet is an absolute pleasure. It handles multitasking well and has no problems dealing with the more demanding apps on the Play store. To take advantage of the more power-hungry apps, users will be using the microSD slot thanks to the poor 4.9GB of storage initially available. There’s a lot of talk about moving everything to the cloud, but companies should still give users decent internal storage.
Another cutback is with the QV830’s choice of cameras. There are an abundance of settings and features that would rival most photo-editing apps, but quality is grainy and colours are washed out. It’s also the one area of the tablet where lag is noticeable, but users will soon learn to stay well away from the camera on offer here. The last cutback users will find is with the 1024 x 768 resolution display. By no means is it a bad display, but there’s noticeable pixilation on app icons and background wallpapers. It’s a common cutback for budget devices to make, so we can forgive Gigaset to some degree.
Force ’incompatible‘ apps to run on Android by editing the build.prop system file
A new, powerful phone sits in your hand. It’s running a recent version of Android and you’re opening Google Play to install a useful new app – only to find that it is apparently not compatible with your device. How could this be?
It probably has something to do with your phone and how it is identified by Google Play. Perhaps the app is limited to a handful of devices because the developer doesn’t have the resources to provide wider support.
Whatever the case, there is a way that you can fool Google Play into thinking that your phone is compatible by editing the build.prop file. The process here is simple, but doesn’t come without risks. Accessing build.prop is not something you should choose to do without consideration of the impact to your phone’s stability. Essentially this is a high-risk edit, one that can brick your device, so care is needed. If you want to edit the file manually you should take a full Nandroid backup of your device storage. You’ll also need your phone to be rooted.
The first Android One devices will be on sale for $105 (6299 rupees).
Following on from the launch of Android One a couple of months ago, Google has now unveiled the first smartphones aimed at bringing cost-effective devices to emerging markets.
The initiative starts in India, where a selection of local networks will all be selling similar specced smartphones. Each smartphone will come with a 4.5-inch display, 5-megapixel rear camera, 1.3GHz quad-core processor, 1GB of RAM, dual-SIM slots and microSD expandable storage.
The first series of devices will be going on sale for 6299 rupees ($105).