Friday 29 November 2013

Mini sd card reader by Meenova for Android

One of the great things about Android is OTG support. The fact that you can attach a mouse and keyboard or an external hard drive and they work is just wonderful. OTG is short for "On The Go" and a lot of modern Android devices support this. Nexus devices, the Samsung Galaxy S2/S3/S4, the HTC One, the newer Sony Xperia devices along with the Moto X/G. To get it working you attach a little cable and off you go. 
When it comes to reading micro sd cards, especially on the go (pun intended), things become a little more difficult. You end up having to lug around not only a cable but a card reader also. 

This is where Meenova come in. They created  small simple sd card reader that plugs straight into your device without the need of any extra cables. 

There is no doubt that these look cool and at only $12, and a choice of 4 different clours, means this is the sort of thing that you just throw on your keyring, or pocket and off you go. Meenova started off as one of those strange quirky things on Kickstarter and after being fully funded the opened their door to the public on September of this year. 

Personally I think this so cool, it is something I know I would get a lot of use out of. And I think I am going to have to order one. I just felt that there was no need to wait before letting you all see them.

If you want to know more info, or want to place an order head on over to the Meenova website and choose your colour.

Sunday 3 November 2013

Android 4.4 Kit Kat and Low End Devices

Google claim that the recently released version of Android, 4.4 aka Kit Kat, will run on devices with only 512MB of RAM, which means older devices could run it. The problem is, unless it's a Nexus, or Google Experience device (and not the old Galaxy Nexus), it's up to the carriers and manufacturers to modify and release it for their devices. For those devices that will not get Kit Kat there is the option of rooting and installing a ROM such as Paranoid Android or Cyanogen Mod, but that is not really ideal for newbies or a casual user.

However since Google seem to be releasing parts of the stock OS as apps on Play that may not matter. Within hours of hearing of the announcement of Kit Kat there were blogposts appearing with download links to various parts of Kit Kat. I have installed the Google Experience Launcher, Google Search, Play Services and stock keyboard  ripped from the Nexus 5, on my Samsung GS3 which only has 4.1.2, and should be getting 4.3 in November, and may or may not get Kit Kat in the future.  So far it is running really smoothly, just as quick as Nova launcher that I was using before. I've not tried the latest Hangouts yet, though I think I may wait until that gets an official update. And I have installed everything without having root access. As you can see from my video, it's pretty smooth. Sorry about the quality of the recording, had to use my old LG Optimus 2X.

Since Hangouts and the stock Google Keyboard are already in Play, If Google released the Google Experience Launcher and other bits onto Play it would reduce the perceived fragmentation a little and it would make it easier for average Jo or Jill user to get the up to date look and some of the features of the latest OS version like those in Nexus/GE devices. It would also give those features to the highly modified manufacturer/carrier versions of Kit Kat that have their own bastardized launcher installed by default. In the meantime I'm quite happy with using my SGS3 with the apks I have installed until I get to try Kit Kat for real on my 2012 Nexus 7.