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Saturday, February 20, 2016

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French Media Company Vivendi Attempts Hostile Takeover Of Prolific Mobile Publisher Gameloft

Posted: 20 Feb 2016 11:17 AM PST

gameloftGameloft has been one of the most consistent (if not one of the most respected) game developers since the beginning of the mobile gaming boom, though the company began on consoles. Vivendi, an enormous French media empire with interests in music, movies, video games, and pretty much every other entertainment industry, is attempting a hostile stock takeover of Gameloft, according to Bloomberg. The larger company has already purchased over 30% of Gameloft's stock, and is now offering 6 euros a share for the remaining amount.

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French Media Company Vivendi Attempts Hostile Takeover Of Prolific Mobile Publisher Gameloft was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Alcatel Idol 4S and Idol 4 now official with reversible design and Boom Key

Posted: 20 Feb 2016 10:37 AM PST

After surprising lots of folks with its affordable Idol 3 phones last year, Alcatel is kicking off 2016 with two new models in its Idol lineup.

The Alcatel Idol 4S and Idol 4 were made officially official at MWC in Barcelona today. While the two phones have different spec sheets, they do share some features. For example, both include Alcatel's Boom Key, which beefs up the experience of using your phone in a few different ways. You can press and hold the Boom Key when the Idol 4 is in standby to quickly activate the camera's burst mode and capture some photos, press it while recording video to broadcast it out, or press it on the home screen to add a parallax effect and live weather display to the launcher.

The two new Idol 4 phones also include reversible speakers like the ones found on the Idol 3 devices. Combined with software that can adjust itself to the way that you're holding the phone, this means that you can use the phone upside-down just like you would if you were holding it right side up. Alcatel has also made sure that the sound comes out of the dual speakers correctly no matter which way you're holding the Idol 4.


Finally, the two Idol 4 phones share similar designs that include fronts and backs made of glass, with a metal frame sandwiched in-between them. The metal frames will be available in four colors: Gold, Rose Gold, Dark Gray, and Metal Silver.

So that's how the Idol 4S and Idol 4 are similar. Here's how they differ:

Alcatel Idol 4S specs

  • 5.5-inch 2560×1440 AMOLED display
  • Octa-core Snapdragon 652 processor
  • 16-megapixel rear camera with flash
  • 8-megapixel wide-angle front camera with flash
  • 32GB of storage (25GB available to the user)
  • microSD slot with support for cards up to 512GB
  • 3GB of RAM
  • 3000mAh battery
  • 4G LTE bands 1, 3, 7, 8, 20, 28A
  • Android 6.0
  • 153.9 x 75.4 x 6.99mm
  • Quick Charge, microUSB, NFC, FM radio, dual stereo speakers
  • Packaging doubles as a pair of virtual reality goggles, content can be downloaded from OneTouch VR Store built-in app

Alcatel Idol 4 specs

  • 5.2-inch 1920×1080 IPS display
  • Octa-core Snapdragon 617 processor
  • 13-megapixel rear camera with flash
  • 8-megapixel wide-angle front-facing camera with flash
  • 16GB of storage (10GB available to the end user)
  • microSD slot, supports cards up to 512GB
  • 3GB of RAM
  • 2610mAh battery
  • LTE bands 1, 3, 7, 8 , 20, 28A, 38, 40
  • Android 6.0
  • 147 x 72.5 x 7.1mm
  • Quick Charge, microUSB, NFC, FM radio, dual stereo speakers

Alcatel says that the new Idol 4 phones will debut this summer, but no pricing details have been given. Alcatel priced the Idol 3 phones pretty competitively, though, so hopefully we'll see some aggressive pricing on the Idol 4 series as well. If they are, Alcatel's new Idol 4 phones could be contenders in the ever-growing "affordable flagship" category of smartphones.

One other tidbit of news announced today is that Alcatel is dropping the "OneTouch" from its name. The company explains that with its business growing, it feels like the time is right to tweak its branding. Alcatel says that, going forward, it plans to "increase its engagement with millennial customers" and simplify its name, message, and device lineup.


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Facebook Messenger's Multiple Accounts Are Official On Android, Privacy Features Included

Posted: 20 Feb 2016 06:32 AM PST


Earlier this month, we reported the news that Facebook seemed to be testing multiple account support in its Messenger application on Android. The feature had been turned on for beta testers and some non-beta testers as well, likely to iron out some quirks and bugs before being officially rolled out to everyone.

Now Facebook is ready to make the feature available for all. The Messenger team announced that multiple accounts are now live on Android under Settings > Accounts, and explained that this should make it easier for multiple members of the same family to use a single device to access all of their chats.

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Facebook Messenger's Multiple Accounts Are Official On Android, Privacy Features Included was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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OneDrive 3.9 Backs Up Photos From Multiple Folders And SD Cards

Posted: 20 Feb 2016 06:02 AM PST


OneDrive, Microsoft's cloud storage solution, is a nice alternative (or additional) option to Google Drive. The Android app has offered automatic photo uploads since Feburary 2014 when it was rebranded from Skydrive. However, for the past two years that the feature has been available, it has suffered from one major limitation: no automatic uploads from any folder except your camera roll.

This meant that if you used another camera application that stored its photos on another folder or if you had saved or received photos from other applications (say WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger or via email, etc...) or even if you had images on an SD card, you couldn't back them up.

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OneDrive 3.9 Backs Up Photos From Multiple Folders And SD Cards was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Here’s Yet Another LG G5 Leak

Posted: 19 Feb 2016 06:09 PM PST


Just two days before the event at MWC 2016, the LG G5 has been leaked yet again.

Evan Blass shares a potential press render of the LG G5 in his latest leak showing off the front and back. Here we get to see the new lockscreen wallpaper (and presumably the Always-On display as well) and a closer look at the rear camera + LED flash module. LG's rumoured fingerprint sensor is also present.


From the second picture, the phone clearly looks like it has a metal frame and body. The top bezel on the front of the phone might actually be slightly curved if this image is to be believed correctly. Specs for the phone include a Snapdragon 820 SoC, 4GB of RAM, and a swapable 2880 mAh battery.


The post Here's Yet Another LG G5 Leak appeared first on Android in Canada Blog.

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Using Credentials between your Server and Google Services

Posted: 19 Feb 2016 05:09 PM PST

Posted by Laurence Moroney, Developer Advocate

This is part 4 of a series on Google Sign-In that began with a blog post on the user experience improvements that launched with Google Play services 8.3. We then discussed the API updates that make the programming model much easier. Most recently, we went into how you can use Google Sign-In to authenticate a user with your backend server.

In this post, we'll discuss how you can have your users sign in via your app to authorize your service for access to Google APIs, such as Google Drive, on their behalf.

When using Google Sign-In, it is easy to extend your integration with Google by requesting additional scopes for API access after sign-in, like storing the user's pictures of food in Google Drive. Typically, you should request this access incrementally (not at initial sign-in) -- i.e. in the context of a user's actions (for example, after an app user's order has been delivered and they'd like to save a copy of their food photos), following best practices in user experience to make it most likely that the user will grant access, and aligning with the runtime permissions model in Android Marshmallow 6.0.

When you do this kind of integration, you probably want to access data from your server, so that you can continue to have access when the user is offline, or to store user-generated data in your own database. This flow would look like Figure 1. This also has the advantage of working across all platforms.

Figure 1. Accessing Google Services with Credentials.

To do this, follow these steps:

Step 1: As with the scenario in server authentication covered in the previous post, this sample provides canonical code for your Android app. In particular see the ServerAuthCodeActivity.

GoogleSignInOptions gso = new GoogleSignInOptions.Builder(GoogleSignInOptions.DEFAULT_SIGN_IN)
.requestScopes(new Scope(Scopes.DRIVE_APPFOLDER))
// The serverClientId is an OAuth 2.0 web client ID
// Details at: http://ift.tt/1Ud86SJstart step 4


This requires you to get a web client ID for your server. Details on how to obtain this are available here (see Step 4).

In this case, the scope DRIVE_APPFOLDER is requested, meaning that the user will be asked to give the app permission to access their Google Drive. In addition to this, a server auth code will be requested.

If the sign-in is successful, the auth code can be extracted from the account object like this:

if (result.isSuccess()) {
GoogleSignInAccount acct = result.getSignInAccount();
String authCode = acct.getServerAuthCode();

(Taken from onActivityResult in the sample here)

This auth code should then be sent to your server using HTTPS POST, and, after it is exchanged, will give your server access to the user's Google Drive. [Important: you should send the code in an authenticated call to your backend to ensure that it is a legitimate request from the active user].

Step 2: On your server, you will then exchange the auth code for tokens using the GoogleAuthorizationCodeTokenRequest class:

// Set path to the Web application client_secret_*.json file you downloaded from the
// Google Developers Console: http://ift.tt/1Vs6QsT
// You can also find your Web application client ID and client secret from the
// console and specify them directly when you create the GoogleAuthorizationCodeTokenRequest
// object.
String CLIENT_SECRET_FILE = "/path/to/client_secret.json"; // Be careful not to share this!
String REDIRECT_URI = "/path/to/web_app_redirect" // Can be empty if you don't use web redirects
// Exchange auth code for access token
GoogleClientSecrets clientSecrets =
JacksonFactory.getDefaultInstance(), new FileReader(CLIENT_SECRET_FILE));
GoogleTokenResponse tokenResponse =
new GoogleAuthorizationCodeTokenRequest(
new NetHttpTransport(),
String accessToken = tokenResponse.getAccessToken();
String refreshToken = tokenResponse.getRefreshToken();
Long expiresInSeconds = tokenResponse.getExpiresInSeconds();
// You can also get an ID token from the exchange result if basic profile scopes are requested
// e.g. starting GoogleSignInOptions.Builder from GoogleSignInOptions.DEFAULT_SIGN_IN like the
// sample code as used here: http://goo.gl/0Unpq8
// GoogleIdToken googleIdToken = tokenResponse.parseIdToken();

Then, create a GoogleCredential object using the tokens from GoogleTokenResponse:

GoogleCredential credential = new GoogleCredential.Builder()
.setTransport(new NetHttpTransport())

If a refresh token is available, you can persist the credentials using StoredCredential for later use if you need ongoing access to the API on behalf of the user.

Step 3: The credential can then be used to access Google services. Now, in our food delivery scenario, you might want to store or retrieve photos or receipts of finished deliveries in Google Drive. For example, it would look something like this:

Drive drive = new Drive.Builder(new NetHttpTransport(),
.setApplicationName("Auth Code Exchange Demo")
File file = drive.files().get("appfolder").execute();

This demonstrates the use of Google Sign-In credentials where your server can make Google API calls on behalf of your users. To learn more about this, and all Google Sign In technologies, visit the Google Identity Platform website.

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YouTube Kids v1.50 Adds 'Pause History' And May Soon Offer Most Of The YouTube Red Subscription Features [APK Teardown + Download]

Posted: 19 Feb 2016 04:48 PM PST


Version 1.50 of YouTube Kids started rolling out early Thursday morning. This update brings a really great new feature, and parents are going to love it. It's now possible to pause the watch history of YouTube Kids, and it doesn't affect the rest of your YouTube apps. A teardown also shows that parents will soon enjoy the benefits of YouTube Red, as well. As usual, if the update hasn't hit your account yet, jump to the bottom of the post to find a download link.

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YouTube Kids v1.50 Adds 'Pause History' And May Soon Offer Most Of The YouTube Red Subscription Features [APK Teardown + Download] was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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DROID Ultra/Maxx/Mini won’t get Lollipop, Motorola offering discounts on newer DROIDs

Posted: 19 Feb 2016 04:05 PM PST

We have some bad news for the owners of the Motorola DROID Ultra, Maxx, and Mini: The three devices will not be getting updates to Lollipop. If the end of support came today, that would be fine, but Lollipop is quite old and the devices never received it.

To ease the pain, Motorola is offering owners of the DROIDs discounts on a newer Motorola device. No better way to get over the pain of a poorly supported Verizon exclusive device than to buy another one, right? Current owners of the devices may purchase a DROID Turbo 2 for $100 off (down to $524) or a DROID Maxx 2 for $50 off (down to $334). Head to this site if you want to take Motorola up on that offer.

I can't say that buying another DROID device is a great idea if you value support for updates. Motorola seems to be doing pretty well with its flagships, but the lower-end phones have suffered after the Lenovo buyout. Owners of the DROID Ultra/Maxx/Mini, will you be purchasing another Motorola phone?

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