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Pixel 4 Motion Sense gestures can be remapped but you need root access

Pixel 4 Motion Sense gestures can be remapped but you need root access

The radar-based Motion Sense is in danger of becoming the Pixel 4's Bixby Button, unwanted and unused. Or to be more precise, it's unused because it's actually unavailable in most markets, at least officially. Perhaps that's the reason why Google is in no hurry to make any Motion Sense API available to app developers to use outside of Google's official list. Fortunately, just like Motion Sense itself, some developers have developed ways to work around those limitations but it won't be an easy task.

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Pixel 4 low screen brightness has a fix that requires root

Pixel 4 low screen brightness has a fix that requires root

If Pixel phones are supposed to represent Google's vision for the perfect Android phone, the Pixel 4 is doing a rather poor job at it. In addition to some concerns about face recognition security, the wasted potential of Soli radar, and the newly-revealed durability problem, the Pixel 4's screen is also generating some disappointment among owners. Fortunately, most of these problems can be fixed through software. Unfortunately, one such fix requires users to root their phones first.

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Nokia 7.2 reported to have an unlockable bootloader

Nokia 7.2 reported to have an unlockable bootloader

HMD Global may be earning accolades for its speed in rolling out updates to its Nokia phones (still not as fast as Essential, though) but it doesn't have a good reputation among some Android modders and hackers. In particular, Nokia phones are notorious for practically being useless as far as rooting and using ROMs are concerned because the bootloader gates are tightly locked. It seems, however, that the Nokia 7.2 might be the first of its kind to be different though it remains to be seen if it's by accident only or by intention.

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Right to Repair ruling has huge implications for Alexa, consoles, cars

Right to Repair ruling has huge implications for Alexa, consoles, cars

If you follow the technology industry, there's a good chance you've heard the phrase "right to repair" at least once or twice. While many manufacturers want to restrict consumers' ability to repair the devices they own or take it to a third party for repairs, there are people on the other side of that argument who have been trying to keep that right. This is a battle and a debate that has raged on for years at this point, but today, Right to Repair proponents were granted a pretty huge win.

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Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL now rooted with Magisk

Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL now rooted with Magisk

The Pixel phones have replaced the Nexus line and while the former may have more exclusive features than the latter, that doesn’t always make them less open. In fact, just a few days after the Pixel 3 finally became available, it has already been rooted. Not the usual SuperSU root method, mind, but with the more modern modular Magisk framework. Suffice it to say, the Pixel 3 and 3 XL are about to become even more interesting in the hands of modders and hackers.

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Pokemon GO scans users’ files to root out rooted phones

Pokemon GO scans users’ files to root out rooted phones

While rooted devices may have security implications for owners themselves, they’re also seen as potential threats to one specific class of Android apps: online games. Rooted devices have the potential to install modified versions of the game that could, in theory, give players an unfair advantage. That’s why some developers, by default, prevent rooted devices from playing their games. While that may be understandable, Pokemon GO developer Niantic Labs is using a rather controversial method to do so.

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Snapchat Alpha is fast and smooth: here’s how to get it

Snapchat Alpha is fast and smooth: here’s how to get it

The heat that Facebook and Twitter are getting over various issues have put social networks under a microscope. It is also giving their rivals a chance to spin the narrative in their favor. Snapchat, who also recently received a lot of flak for its hugely unpopular UI redesign, is one that definitely needs such a positive spin. And this fledgling Snapchat Alpha hidden deep in the Android app could be the image, not to mention performance, boost it sorely needs.

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Android Pie makes call recording impossible without root

Android Pie makes call recording impossible without root

Google giveth and Google taketh away. New software versions are often expected to bring in new features and remove bugs but it isn’t unheard of for things to happen the other way around. There are some cases that features presumed to be there forever are suddenly yanked out without as much a warning. That definitely feels like the case with the sudden inability of non-root call recording apps to work in Android 9 Pie. That said, it probably shouldn’t come as surprise despite being an unfortunate “regression”.

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Rootless Pixel Launcher version 3.6 released for free

Rootless Pixel Launcher version 3.6 released for free

This week the developer known as Amir Ziadi released version 3.6 of his Rootless Pixel Launcher for Android. Those users that've never used this launcher before - it's good stuff. It's ready to roll with just about everything you could possibly want that's possible inside Oreo. All SORTS of features are jammed into this launcher, and it's entirely free to download and use.

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Pixel 2 panorama bug still unfixed, workaround available

Pixel 2 panorama bug still unfixed, workaround available

While many still swear by Google’s second-gen Pixels as the smartphones to beat, even their fiercest fans won’t deny how problematic they were at launch. And while the Pixel 2 XL has the lion’s share of complaints, even the smaller Pixel 2 was not without problems. One of those has remained unaddressed in the 8 months the phone has been in the market. Unsurprisingly, a frustrated developer has stepped to offer a workaround, but it’s not as simple as it sounds.

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Android P rootless custom themes: Google says no

Android P rootless custom themes: Google says no

Android is a highly customizable operating system but there are still some things that you can’t easily change. Almost ironically, the simplest customization, applying themes, isn’t possible without rooting your device. In Android 8.0 Oreo, however, developers have found a way around that limitation, creating the Substratum app and subsequent themes around it. Starting Android P, however, that workaround will no longer work and you’ll have to make do with theme engine your OEM has or, in the case of Google Pixel phones, none at all.

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Galaxy S9 Zero Camera Mod removes limits to improve quality

Galaxy S9 Zero Camera Mod removes limits to improve quality

Samsung boasts of how it has reimagined the smartphone camera in the Galaxy S9 and S9+ but it might still fall short for some more professional mobile photographers. There are certain restrictions placed that may not make sense for some of these advanced users. Those might need more than just a simple third-party camera app. The Zero Camera Mod is definitely more than just that and can greatly improve the Galaxy S9 camera experience, provided you're willing to go for a bit of an adventure.

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