The History of Police Scanners

The history of the police scanner goes clear back to the early 1930’s. The police would broadcast through a local AM radio Station. Anyone with a radio could hear the calls. A conventional radio system is basically full of frequencies. Frequencies are the channels of communication.

To hear transmissions you must program certain channels into the scanner. The first type of police scanners were crystal controlled with about four channels. To listen you would have to have a quartz-crystal tuned to that frequency and plugged into an internal slot. Each of those crystals would cost around $7.00 and eventually become very expensive to upkeep.

Then in the late 1970’s scanners that were programmable were invented. It had a keypad that you would enter frequencies with and the memory of the scanner would save all your frequencies. Then the trunked radio system came out and it allowed you to keep track of five to thirty channels or frequencies. A site controller is where users were automatically assigned frequencies. Like the emergency departments would have one frequencies or truckers would have another frequency. These types are harder to monitor because you are often switching channels even in between conversations.

Today, you have digital trunking scanners. It is a computer that encodes a voice transmission into streams of data and then the receiver will decode it so that an audible voice can be heard. They were first introduced in 2002 by Uniden and then in 2003, Radio Shack released their digital scanner. These are great to use because you can say things over the radio and it not be heard, but only by those who can decode it, which would be a few people. The only people who could decode the codes is those who are programmed for the channel.

Police scanners are nice to have because they are something different from TV and radio. You can sit in your backyard and understand why the police are going up the road and you know that it would be something to become alarmed over or something not to frit over. Police scanners are purchased because a person belongs to one of the emergency departments or just for the interest in the community.

Many times, there are announcements on a police scanner that will first be aired before any TV stations get a hold of the information. For example, you will be notified first from a police scanner about any tornados that touchdown or if the weather gets too sever before the news airs the information. This type of information is announced from the National Weather Service and is completely trust worthy. Police scanners can also be entertaining as much as informational because of all the silly things people will say over the air.



Source by K. Nielsen

Advantages and Disadvantages Of Installing a Custom Rom On Your Android Phone

WHAT IS A ROM?

R-O-M stands for Read Only Memory. ROM is an operating system which runs your droid and is stored in the read only memory of your phone.

To classify there are two types of ROMs:

STOCK ROM:

Stock ROM is pre-loaded into a device by the manufacturer and is optimized according to the device configuration. It has a lot of restrictions for the user.

CUSTOM ROM:

Android is open source, so developers can take the code and customize it to their taste, add features to it and build a new operating system.It is a customized android operating system normally stored on the read-only memory of your mobile phone and replaces the manufacturer operating system.

BEFORE INSTALLING A CUSTOM ROM:

Before installing a custom ROM a device needs to be rooted. Rooting an android devices means lifting off restrictions enforced by the manufacturer. Rooting enables tons of customisations for your device.Rooting changes your privilege from guest user to a super user. It is considered as a protective measure but some people don’t like them as it restricts them from some customization they want on their device. But keep in mind, rooting your device voids your warranty but some custom ROMs are worth it.

Installing a custom ROM has both advantages and disadvantages.

ADVANTAGES OF INSTALLING A CUSTOM ROM:

LATEST ANDROID VERSION:

One of the most common reason to install it is the updated android version. Users are able to install the latest version of android on their phone which makes their old phones look new. It does not only make them look new but also it provides the user with better performance as the newer version is more stable than the old.

PERSONALIZATION:

Another reason people choose to install it on their android phone is the tons of customisations available in them. Sexy and stunning themes can bring a new look to their devices. It enables the users to customize the UI (User Interface) to their taste.

OVERCLOCKING AND UNDERCLOCKING:

This is not really an advantage of installing a custom ROM, but instead it is associated with the custom kernel (a system file which is like a driver for the operating system) installed with that ROM. Well anyway, it allows a user to overclock or underclock their device. Overclock means to run the CPU processor or GPU of the device at higher speed than the one intended by the manufacturer. This provides you with higher performance but, I won’t recommend it as it can cause damage to the device. Underclocking is the opposite. It is the modification of the system to run at a lower speed then intended. It does provides you with longer battery life but, in exchange for some performance. You can also install custom kernels.

REMOVAL OF BLOATWARE:

While rooting does enable the user to remove bloatware apps installed by the manufacturer but, still the user has to choose which app they want to use and which they do not and manually uninstall every single one that they don’t want to use. While custom ROM developers remove these apps while they create these ROMs, they don’t include them in their operating system, thus the user only has to install it and now his/her device is bloatware free.

CUSTOM MODS:

Tons of custom mods available for a custom ROM attract the users to install a it on their device. These custom mods vary from being really simple like increasing volume beyond the manufacturer limit to huge modification of the custom ROM like the multi-window mod or the pie controls mod.

PORTED USER-INTERFACE:

It enables a user to experience a wide range of UI and choose the one that suits them best. Like the Sense UI for the HTC phones which has been ported to many different phones enabling the users to experience a HTC phone without even buying a HTC phone. User can also choose to install the stock android on their phone which is faster than the customized one installed on phones like Samsung or HTC.

DISADVANTAGES OF INSTALLING A CUSTOM ROM:

BRICKING:

Another cause of user being hesitant of installing a custom ROM on their device is the fear of bricking which makes the device unusable and nothing more than block of brick. It is mostly feared because there is no way to recover a device from that state.

BATTERY LIFE PROBLEM:

These ROMs may not be fully optimized for your device which results in the battery life issues causing it to drain more, not charging properly or even damaging the battery.

HARDWARE ISSUES:

These ROMs may not support all the hardware on your device which may result in the non-fuctioning hardware or other issues, like the camera not working or taking picture at a lower quality.

BUGS:

These ROMs are not tested like the one pre-loaded by the manufacturer so this produces some bugs which produce instability, like applications force closing (which can be really annoying) or random reboots of the phone or the phone being stuck in a bootloop (really terrifying for a newbie).

CONCLUSION:

Well here are the pros and cons of installing a custom ROM, but you don’t fully know whats going on until you try it out. I, myself use a custom ROM on my phone and I am happy with it. But, everyone has their choice so you may make your and also keep in mind that neither I am responsible nor the ROM developer for what happens to your device.

——————————–HAPPY FLASHING———————————



Source by Wahaj Hussain

Challenges Faced By Android App Developers

While developing mobile apps, businesses target Android due to its massive worldwide mobile operating system market share. Alphabet has made Android available as an open source mobile platform. Also, it updates the mobile operating system at regular intervals with new features and enhancements. But the penetration rate of individual versions of the mobile operating system differs.

Alphabet does not regulate the Android smartphones, tablets, and phablets manufactured by various companies. Hence, the devices manufactured by different companies come with varying hardware features despite being powered by the same version of Android. That is why; it becomes essential for developers build mobile apps by targeting a wide range of devices powered by different versions of Android.

While planning, developing, and testing the mobile app, they need to focus extensively on its accessibility, functionality, performance, usability, and security of the mobile app to keep the users engaged regardless of their choice of Android device. Also, they need to explore ways to make the app deliver personalized user experience across varying devices and operating system version. They further need to address a number of common challenges to develop a robust Android app.

Understanding 7 Common Challenges Faced by Android App Developers

1) Software Fragmentation

As mentioned earlier, the market share of individual versions of Android differs. According to the latest data released by Google, the most recent version of its mobile operating system – Nougat – has a market share lower than its predecessors – Marshmallow, Lollipop and KitKat. Each new version of Android comes with several new features and enhancements. The developers have to include specific features in the app to make it deliver optimal user experience by taking advantage of these new features. At the same time, they also need to ensure that the app delivers rich and personalized user experience on devices powered by older versions of Android. The developers have to target multiple versions of Android to make the application popular and profitable in the short run.

2) Varying Hardware Features

Unlike other mobile operating systems, Android is open source. Alphabet allows device manufacturers to customize its operating system according to their specific needs. Also, it does not regulate the Android devices launched by various manufacturers. Hence, the devices come with varying hardware features despite being powered by the same version of Android. For instance, two devices powered by Android Nougat may differ from each other in the category of display screen size, resolution, camera and other hardware features. While developing an Android app, the developers need to ensure that it delivers personalized experience to each user by accessing all hardware features of his device.

3) No Uniform User Interface Designing Process or Rules

Google has not released any common user interface (UI) designing process or rules for the mobile app developers. Hence, most developers build Android apps without following any standard UI development process or rules. When the developers create custom UI interfaces in their own way, the apps do not look or function consistently across different devices. The incompatibility and diversity of the UI affects the user experience delivered by the Android app directly. The smart developers opt for responsive layout to keep the UI consistent across many devices. Also, the developers have to test the UI of their mobile app comprehensively by combining both real devices and emulators. But often developers find it daunting to design a UI that make the app look consistent across various Android devices.

4) API Incompatibility

Most developers use third-party APIs to enhance the mobile app’s functionality and interoperability. But the quality of third-party APIs available for Android app developers differs. Some APIs are designed for a particular version of Android. Hence, these APIs do not work on devices powered by different versions of the mobile operating system. The developers have to explore ways to make a single API work on different versions of Android. But they often find it challenging to make the app work smoothly on different Android devices with the same set of APIs.

5) Security Flaws

Its open source nature makes it easier for device manufacturers to customize Android according to their specific needs. But the openness and its massive market share made Android vulnerable to frequent security attacks. There are many instances when security of millions of Android devices has been impacted by security flaws or bugs like Stagefright, ‘Certifi-gate’ mRST, FakeID, Installer Hijacking and TowelRoot. The developers have to include robust security features in the application and use latest encryption mechanism to keep the user information secure despite targeted security attacks and security flaws in Android.

6) Android Search Engine Visibility

The latest data posted on various website depict that Google Play Store has a much higher number of mobile apps than Apple App Store. Also, a large percentage of Android device users prefer free apps to paid apps. Hence, the developers have to promote their mobile apps aggressively to accomplish higher download numbers and implement app monetization options. They also need to implement a comprehensive digital marketing strategy to promote the app by targeting the most relevant users. Many developers have to avail the services of digital marketing professionals to promote their apps aggressively.

7) Patent Issues

The users have option to choose from several Android apps offering identical features and functionalities. But developers often find it daunting to build apps with unique features and functionality. They often include features and functionalities in the app that make it similar to a number of apps available in the same category in the Play store. Unlike Apple, Google does not implement stringent guidelines to evaluate the quality of new apps being submitted to its app store. Lack of standardized quality assessment guidelines often make developers address issues related to patent. Some developers have to design and modify their apps in future to avoid patent issues.

Most Android app developers nowadays work in agile development environment to build Android apps rapidly. They have to coordinate consistently with QA professionals, and participate actively in the mobile app testing process. Hence, the developers also need to address a number of common issues in Android app testing.



Source by Arun Kumar Biswal

Android O: Looming Features to Look for in This Updated Android Version

Almost each passing year, Google announces latest updates on the Android OS. This year, Google is offering a brand new and feature-rich version of Android i.e. Android O or Android 8.0. The beta version of this platform is already out in the market and it seems that most of the features are going to take this Android O to a whole new level. Are you wondering about the impending features? Go through the article to get a pithy synopsis on the lucrative facets of this platform.

A Quick Look at the Impending Features

Google has confirmed that Android O is going to give the users top-notch ‘Fluid Experiences’ along with supporting the ‘Vitals’. Using this updated version, things would look better and more impressive on the Android screens and compared to the last released Nougat version, this would be more competent.

#1 Prioritized Notification

Managing your smartphone’s notifications and alerts would become way too much easier if you use Android O. It would rank the alerts; put such notifications on the lower priority that do not need your immediate attention. It sure would enable the users to concentrate on the essential tasks without getting interrupted with excessive unnecessary notifications.

#2 Smarter Connectivity

With the help of the lucrative feature ‘Wi-fi Aware’ of Android O, now devices can communicate with the Wi-fi network without any particular internet access point. This feature not only supports the Bluetooth Audio Codecs but also supports the LDAC codec. This latest Android version is going to introduce another feature of turning on the Wi-fi automatically to cater smarter connectivity.

#3 Customized Navigation

This enhanced feature is extremely beneficial for the people having large smartphone screens. Most of the time, navigating around the various icons on the screen becomes exhaustive. To cater a better solution to this issue, the upcoming version of Android is offering facility of System UI Turner that would be remarkably beneficial for adjusting the navigation buttons. You can either arrange the buttons on the sides or you can arrange them compactly at the centre.

#4 PIP (Picture in Picture)

PIP, a vital part of the Android Tv is now going to become a crucial part of the smartphones and Android O is making it possible. With this latest feature, multitasking is going to reach on a whole new level. For instance, while enjoying a video on the phone, at the same time you can continue chatting using another app. More interestingly, you can adjust the video screen according to your wish so that it doesn’t guard your chat screen.

#5 Advanced Protection

This Android 8.0 would make your smartphone visible and more secure. While using any game or app, a tiny card would show up on the phone screen indicating that the app scanning process is going on for the malware and viruses.

#6 Easy Selection of Sound

Initially, while setting up any ringtone from the files, it was necessary to copy the file to the storage system of the phone. Moreover, finding the MP3 using file manager and setting it from the settings of system sound was a bit complex process. Now, Android O is offering you a direct option to select sound of your choice.

If you wish to experience this latest Android O version, the public beta is available now in the market. If the device you use is compatible with it, just install it on your device; enroll the device for the public beta program and wait until the OTA update comes out.



Source by Rob Stephen

Google Can Help You Find Your Lost Smartphone

Introduction

Google Inc. has come out with an easily installable search feature. Using this feature, users just need to type in ‘Find my phone’ command to know the approximate site of the device. On receiving the command, this new search feature fetches the result and shows the place as the nearest point on the screen. The user has to make sure that he has installed latest Google Android application. Apart from this, he has to switch on the site tracker service of Google Android Manager. What else this feature is capable of doing for the benefit of its users? In this article, we would be looking at this new application in more detail for the benefit of the readers who may find it helpful.

Search Missing Phone Feature

If you have misplaced your Smartphone or left it somewhere in the house, you don’t have to become panicky. The search engine developed by Google would find it for you within seconds. The users just need to type in the command ‘Find my phone’ on a search engine feature to know the approximate location of the device. The company talked about this feature in a blog post. Only catch is that new searching feature only works with Android phones. This means that mobiles using other operating system cannot be tracked at all. The feature also helps the user to lock and erase the data off if he or she feels that his or her device is missing. The feature does this job remotely. The user doesn’t have to report to the customer care centre for locking the stolen device.

How it Works?

Normally, the Android Device Manager allows the user to ring his device from anywhere. The users can use this functionality to find a missing device. They need to keep the ring option on. After that, the feature would make the phone ring for about five minutes and wait for the device to reply back. This period is long enough to help the people easily find the missing phone. Besides this, users have to make sure that the tracking service in their phones is switched on. In order to make use of this feature, the users have to install the latest version of the Google application on their registered device. The ringing functionality works well with the place tracker to find the device. If there is no response, the feature cautions the users to decide whether they should lock their device remotely. After getting the reply, the feature remotely removes data and locks the device.



Source by Balakrishnan Lekshminarayanan

Google's Android Oreo Was Announced Sometime Back – What Sets It Apart From Its Predecessors?

So you must have started seeing Oreo in many devices as Google expands its rollout. The most popular devices to carry Oreo are Google Pixel, Pixel C or Google Pixel XL and Xiaomi. Many companies like Huawei, Samsung, Motorola, Sony, HMD Global etc have been confirmed to support the update later this year. The company announced Project Treble (for those who do not have Google-branded phone) to ensure that Android Oreo update comes to many more devices than previous operating system.

Coming to the features and functionality – Is it what all you can do with when the new update arrives?

  1. Smart text selection

The text selection feature in Android Oreo is going to 'Rock' – as the OS will know to select all the text, when you try to copy and address. Smart text selection feature has the ability to tap on the selected text.

This feature makes it easier and quicker to use the device. If it is an address, it will begin direction there. And if it is a phone number, you can dial the number directly from the screen.

  1. Video Multi-tasking

This is not entirely a new feature, but can be said as an advanced version of existing multi-tasking feature. The picture-in-picture feature of Android Oreo allows users to switch from one screen to the other easily.

For example – if you are watching Netflix, and you suddenly remember an email you forgot to send, you can keep Netflix on small window and send email at the same time. This feature is great on large and medium screen phones.

You will be able to pop a video screen out of its application into a small panel on screen, allowing you to use the phone while keeping an eye on the action. You will certainly appreciate the greater versatility and multi-tasking benefits offered by this OS.

  1. Notifications

Android Oreo allows the notification dots to appear above the apps that have pending notifications. This feature was not enabled in previous versions, making it difficult to view new notifications. You can carry out with a single tap on the dot to get contextual menu actions.

Google introduced notification spots to apps in Android Oreo, allowing users to quickly see what is happening without the need to open the app. You can simply swipe the notification bar and get details about the notifications you have. This feature is similar to Apple's 3D Touch enabled bubble pop-ups. A long press on the small colored circle on the top rich of the app icon will pop-up the display and show more information.

  1. Autofill

Users need not go through the pain of typing information each and every time, as the 'Autofill' feature in Android Oreo fills the information automatically. The information is filled by the OS automatically from the app or web.

Remembering the long passwords is hard. However, it is to stay safe when you are online. The previous version of Android OS allowed you to use a number of weird workarounds to help you copy and fill in your account details.

The new version Android Oreo allows apps to register, as the autofill providers within the system log you in. All you need to do is pick autofill provider in any language and input settings. Android will request login details form the app whenever you need.

  1. Adaptive app icons

Google is encouraging its users to interact more with app icons through this new update. It is providing developers with tools to make the interactions a bit fun and engaging.

The app icons could come alive when the users interact with them or scroll through homepage screens. It's potentially a new feature and we are more interested on what developers can do with it.

  1. Great speed and performance

According to Google, Android Oreo will load the apps and boot the device at double the speed of Android Nougat, resulting in slicker operation. Google's done with a whole load of work under the good to make faster iteration of its mobile platform. This enhancement will likely improve the performance of even the cheap devices.

Google also limits the frequency of location updates in background for better health of the system. It is two faster than the previous generation with faster boot. App developers will love this feature.

  1. Great power to Google Assistant

The new OS Android OS gives additional powers to Google Assistant making it a lot more useful. Google Assistant will be open to developers, who can leverage it within their applications. This means, it can be used inside the application, serving to bolster the usability of applications in long run.

This sort of innovation is needed, if it is to become indispensable. Google ensures that Assistant grows and evolves beyond smart devices.

  1. Play more with new emoji

There is no doubt that emoji are firmly enriched in our day to day life. They have got their own movie for crying out loud. Google committed itself to the latest additions of the ever expanding emoji family in Android Oreo.

When it comes to presenting the users with fresh emoji, Google falls behind Apple. The inclusion of latest expressions will likely delight the Homeland Generation. You can find more than 60 new emoji. The best this is Google is going to redesign the entire emoji catalog. So, keep out for fresh new look when Android Oreo lands on your device.

  1. Save Battery life

The main focus of Android Oreo is battery life, speed and security with great control over the apps. Google is moving slowing in the direction of its rival Apple's iOS with great restrictions on what all you can do with app. The restrictions places on background apps reduce the performance demand on device, speeding up the operation. This means all the devices will see more battery life once Android Oreo is installed.

Google says that Android Oreo is much smarter when it comes to let apps run in background, reducing the amount of power and money they use. This leaves more of the battery to use in tasks that you use regularly.

  1. Keyboard navigation

The biggest improvement in Android Oreo is the keyboard navigation. Users are allowed to navigate easily with a more reliable and predictable model for "arrow" and "tab" navigation. This feature helps both end users and developers.

Beside the above, Wi-Fi awareness is the new feature in Android Oreo that allow Wi-Fi devices to talk to each other via an ad hoc local network. Google is set to add Sony's LDAC codec to improve low-latency audio. You can also see a few improvements to the camera app. Google is reworking on the camera app, offering a new double-tap feature to quickly get 50% zoom. Android app developers believe these new features will be a game changer for them.

Finally, no Android OS would be complete without Easter egg. However, the one we see in Android Oreo is not the most impressive one we have seen till date. Go to settings and tap System -> About Phone. You will see big Android O. Tap it repeatedly to get an octopus.



Source by Rahul Singh