Everyone these days owns a smart phone, which either has windows, Mac or Android OS. Android is most popular among all. Being an open source platform, it can be installed by any phone manufacturer, that makes the manufacturing cost of these phones much lesser than the phones having their own OS or any that is paid.
What are Android Applications and their APKs?
Applications that are developed for Android platform are Android application. Each application when developed carries many different files and folders within it, that defines its functionalities and resources, and in order to run that app in mobile, one need to create an archive that contains all the necessities. This archive file is known as Android Application APK, i.e. Android package kit.
What does an APK consist of?
APK is a full package containing all the necessary data and files that is must to run an app on a Mobile Phone. It consist of
· Source code used to define App’s functionalities, in general terms referred as classes.dex.
· Manifest file, i.e. the file that specifies the
1. Permissions that application needs.
2. Its flow
4. Version codes
7. SHA-1 Digest.
· Libs, is a directory containing compiled code or jar files, used as library for applications.
· Assets, it is a directory that has arbitrary files like fonts, audio, texts etc. in it.
· Resources like XML files that define the layout of different pages of the application.
· It also contains META-INF directory and res directory.
When an app is developed, after its testing, an export APK is generated where the developer signs the app with a secret key to prove his authority over the app. Now, this Signed APK is uploaded to Google play store for its availability for Users.
When a person is downloading an application from any source such as Play Store, he is actually downloading and installing the APK of that application on his phone. Other than Google Play Store, one more place where you can find Android applications absolutely free and without even having an account on Google is APK MIRROR.
What is APK MIRROR?
APK MIRROR is a website that allows you to download any application that you can find in Google Play Store, without having an account. No extra money is charged for uploading or downloading Applications, and high security measures such as verification of certificates and authorization check of signatures are performed while uploading application in order to provide highly trusted and original applications to the users that are present in Play Store.
No Android Application for APK MIRROR is currently available in Play Store, you have to download the APK of the desired application first from the website and then install it on your phone manually.
One most unique feature that the website provides is to bring you back to the older version of the app if new one isn’t up to the mark. Yes, APK MIRROR lets you find and download the previous version of the app, if you aren’t happy with the current one.
Source by Shalini Madhav
According to many people, mobile games are not good at all. They don’t think mobile games are popular. However, the fact is that on everyone’s phone you may see a few games installed. Let’s find out why they are so popular in the here and now.
Free or Inexpensive
One of the main reasons behind their popularity is that they are available free of charge. Actually, developers use a lot of other ways to generate money for their efforts. This helps them keep making more games. That’s the reason you can see a lot of games that are available for a couple of dollars. Even most of them are free.
Everyone loves free stuff, especially the good stuff. For instance, you can download Final Fantasy for free. Even popular titles, such as Pokemon Go can be downloaded for free. You won’t have to pay a penny for them.
Although Android games feature a retro feel, as they are relatively easier to develop. However, there is no compromise on quality. You will see that the most recent titles compete with top titles like Super Nintendo and Genesis. As a matter of fact, you can find tons of 3D games that allow you to get the most out of your Android handset. They offer amazing experience.
We can’t deny the fact that there are some not-so-good games for Android. The thing is that most of them are entertaining.
Unlike other platforms, Android offers a lot of special stuff. Other systems, such as Nintendo 3DS is mobile. Moreover, their budget is a sign that they make great games. But Android is far ahead of Nintendo because the platform is open to everyone.
Since we all need to stay in touch with our family, friends, colleagues and relatives, we use cell phones. If you are waiting for someone, playing a mobile game is a great idea. This will help you pass time without getting bored.
Moreover, you have thousands of titles to choose from. Since a cell phone is always in your pocket, you can play your favorite game whenever you want to.
Immersion and Novelty
Just like Pokemon Go, Android offers a degree of immersion that no other platform has been able to offer. Many mobile games give a real-life experience. They make people feel great at all times. After all, entertainment is important for all of us.
There is something special about mobile gaming. For instance, mobile phones help some genres expand as they can’t work on other consoles. Let’s take an example. You can find a lot of brain games that have extremely hard questions.
Since you can use your phone on the go, you won’t need to carry your laptop or cell phone with you to play games. You can just take out your smartphone and launch your favorite title to keep yourself occupied.
In short, Android games offer a lot of advantages over other consoles, and that’s why they are so popular. Hopefully, we will see tons of Android games down the road. Hope this article will help you.
Source by Shalini Madhav
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
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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:
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.
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.
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).
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.
Source by Wahaj Hussain
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
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