Make your Galaxy Nexus yakjuxw to a yakju

imageI might translate it later but so far this is only for Swedish readers who are still waiting for their Jelly Bean update (the forumpost linked in the bottom are in Swedish). Chances are that your phone has the build “yakjuxw” that will get the update later. Have no fear, transforming it to the international “yakju” is quite simple.

Just follow the instructions from the link and get ready for Jelly Bean: http://www.swedroid.se/forum/showthread.php?t=60862

Google+ in the wild, part 2

One post does not make a series so here comes part 2. More on actually using Google+, this time with a focus on those Circles that everyone keeps mentioning and how you can use them when posting. If you haven’t read part 1 you can find it here.

Enforced sorting of friends and contacts

Do you remember the GMail slogan “Search, don’t sort”? Cool, now forget it. Google thinks that sharing and reading is better when your contacts are sorted in to lists, so does Facebook (if this was a scientific publication you would find a link to that Mark Z statement), the biggest difference here is that G+ has lists from the start. You will therefore be forced to place your new contact in at least one Circle, you could of course create one huge circle but no good will come from that so please don’t. Sorting people into Circles are surprisingly funny, it looks good, you drag and drop and get neat animations to keep you going.

As I should have mentioned last post but didn’t you will every time you share something decide who will see what. This is in my humble opinion very intuitive and I hardly notice doing it. Still it’s the same function that you have in Facebook with lists just enforced and more user friendly designed. This is how it looks (in Swedish, sorry bout that).

This post would be shared with “Circles” (that’s “Kretsar” on the left) and a circle called “Friends” (you guessed it, “Vänner” on the right). Note that since “Friends” is one of my circles, this post would be shared with them even without me adding it, I have already selected “My circles” where it’s included. So why did I bother adding them again? The little popup in the picture shows some settings that I can set for each circle unrelated to each other. This is very well though out if you ask me. It means that I can share this post with all my circles and it will show up in their stream (a.k.a Newsfeed if your that kind of guy/gal) but for the circle “Friends” I choose not only display it in their stream but also Notify them by ticking the check box. I can also select that for those in that circle that haven’t yet created an G+ account to get my shared post via e-mail. Nice! I’m guessing however that we’ll see some misuse of both these features so a quick pointer, don’t notify all your friends of everything you post. They will not be happy. Also, if your friend haven’t got G+, don’t e-mail share everything you post with them. They will not be happy. One could guess that Google are trying to draw traffic, users and continuously pulling you back…

Now it’s time to get into something very very important. If you don’t understand this you won’t understand Google+. Dramatic entrance eh? Plus uses what in fancy words are called “asynchronous friendlist” (I love that word! I’m using it several times a day right now). In simple words it means that your friends are not the same thing as people that are friends with you. There is no friend request in G+ you just add whoever you want. “What a!” I hear you screaming but hold on. What Google is trying to accomplish is a replica of the Twitter way of following people you find interesting, there is even a default circle called “Following”. If the person you found interesting enough to follow feels the same way about you, he/she can follow you back and put you in any circle applicable. So what does the following mean? Nothing really. Adding someone to a circle has two effects, you can easily follow any public posts they make and you can easily share with that person as described above. You will not see post with limited visibility  (i.e. circles) and your posts will not show up in their stream. Your posts will instead show up in the separate “Incoming” feed for a person that you follow but that doesn’t follow you. Was that clear enough?

That’s part 2 folks, don’t know how many it will be but I have room for at least one more…
Oh! Almost forgot, now days you can +1 on any post here in the blog. Exactly what it does is not that clear, it will show on your Google profile, it might affect my search listings (but I don’t know how…) and I will get a bit happier. I consider it a tip-jar that doesn’t cost you anything to use :)

Google+ in the wild pt. 1

Not tired of reading about Google+ yet? Since I’ve been using it for a while now I figured I could share some thought on how it works, what you could do with it and maybe most interesting what Google need to do to make it work. First up, the conversations concept.

“Real life sharing and conversations, rethought for the web

Catchy? You bet. Does it really differs from other services? Sort of.
Google does it best to convince us that Plus really is different, not another Facebook, not another Twitter and most certainly, not another Buzz. The use of “Circles” are one thing that is a bit different. Facebook has list and encourages you to use them, Google instead call this circles and enforces it. When adding a contact you have to put them in one or more circles. Those circles are then the basis on who you share with, what you read and how private you want to stay. All to mimic how you decide what group of people to sit with at the party and what story you will share with them. This is not a major different, no matter how many times it’s repeated that people don’t use the lists in facebook. Some do (me included) and others could. It’s how those lists/circles are used that is the difference (and to some extent the creating of circles that really is simple and quite fun, yes I like organizing things).

Because the conversation concept doesn’t stop there, just like I can tell you a story that you later on will re-tell for another friend plus will let you reshare a post to any of your circles. This means that what was once a private conversation could go very public. Google just reinvented gossip. The nice thing with G+ gossip is that you will be notified and you can also do a “this is a secret don’t tell anyone” by disable resharing. So far Google hasn’t found a way to stop your friends from spreading it manually i.e. copy it or just use good old fashioned verbal skills. Google should make the share/gossip possibilities much more clear. Not only because it’s a very nice feature but also, like it or not people are used to facebooks way of (not) dealing with resharing, it doesn’t matter how much better this is. I’m guessing that failbook.com are just waiting…

People will of course be upset, I’m sure we will at one time or another hear a threat about a class action suite. In my opinion the conversations/sharing concept is great but it has to be made very very clear, we all know that people don’t read the instructions carefully and that will always be somebody else fault.

I think I’ll take a brake here and let this turn into a little series of post. Looking at one thing at the time is much more fun :)

Update your Nexus with Gingerbread

It’s time, took longer than I expected but now we have a link to get the GB update. So if you don’t have the patience, this is what you have to do to get Gingerbread up and running:

Get the file (directly from Google) here (note, made for FRG83G). Make sure you have at least around 75% battery remaining, you don’t want it shutting down during flash!

  1. Change the name of the zipfile to update.zip and put it directly in the root of your phone
  2. Turn off your phone.
  3. Press and hold Volume Down while pressing Power
  4. Choose the option Recovery (using volume keys and power to select)
  5. A screen with a Triangle and an Android will show up
  6. Press Volume Up and Power simultaneously
  7. Choose the option Apply sdcard:update.zip (using your Trackball)
  8. When its done, select Reboot

Welcome to a new updated version of Android :)

If you have a Nexus S it’s almost the same. Get one of these files:

If you’re running Android 2.3.1

If you’re running Android 2.3.2

On Nexus S you don’t have to rename the file, and you push [Volume Up] instead of down to boot into recovery.

 

Gingerbread!

Not much blogging going on here for a while. Finishing up one assignment, starting a new one and at the same time buying an apartment takes up a lot of energy. The good news is that my first post in a while can be the one announcing…Gingerbread (Android 2.3.3) is rolling out for Nexus One (and Nexus S). Announced by http://twitter.com/googlenexus.

They warn us that the roll-out might take a few weeks but we don’t want to wait for that do we? Hang on for a couple of ours and I’m sure I can find you a direct update link. See you then :)

Nexus gets Gingerbread
Original tweet

Nexus One updated again, nope not Gingerbread yet

My Nexus got a new two part update yesterday. I’m guessing that I wasn’t the only one jumping up and down hoping for Gingerbread (next major Android version) when it arrived but it turned out to be bugfixes and probably some preparations for Ginger.

Read about it here at Android Central.

Google comments via RyGuy in the support forum here.

And of course, if you can’t wait, get the file here (directly from Google) and update the same way we did last time:

Make sure you have at least around 75% battery remaining, you will not be happy if it shuts down during flash!

  1. Change the name of the zipfile to update.zip and put it directly in the root of your phone
  2. Turn off your phone.
  3. Press and hold Volume Down while pressing Power
  4. Choose the option Recovery (using volume keys and power to select)
  5. A screen with a Triangle and an Android will show up
  6. Press Volume Up and Power simultaneously
  7. Choose the option Apply sdcard:update.zip (using your Trackball)
  8. When its done, select Reboot

Then Tada! Nothing exiting happens. Your Android version is still 2.2.1 but your Build number changed to FRG83D.

Facebook goes fbmail

As everyone already figured out, Facebook is launching their own webmail service.
Haven’t tried it yet but the funny part is that I made some comments in discussions around the rumoured “Google Me” that what Google need is a decent dashboard/homepage, iGoogle just isn’t enough. I compared it to FB. Different services, one entrypoint. That’s what Facebook is good at, and Google simply isn’t.

Google obviously didn’t listen to me and I still use my different Google services very much separated from each other. Sure, I can connect everything with Buzz and that’s a small step in the right direction. Now facebook are taking a huge stab at one of Google’s user driving services. Where that will end up…I still have troubles seeing FB creating a better mailservice than Google given what they achieved so far but who knows?

For me its simple, no matter how big and powerful Google are/get, I still prefer trusting them with my data over Facebook any day. Trackrecords mean a lot and FB doesn’t have a cute one. We’ll see if I changed my mind in a year or so!

Android update for Nexus One

This morning I awoke to the news of Android 2.2.1. This time around the rumour

Android 2.2.1 - FRG83
Android 2.2.1 - FRG83

mill didn’t catch it before launch but on the other hand…what does it do? I don’t really know since Google hasn’t published any blogpost, changelog or anything.

One thing I do know is that it updates something with the Exchange support (if you have an existing connection you’ll have to accept admin rights for the app that seems to be related to enforcing policies). I don’t have my own exchange server any more so I can’t really try it out and my Google Apps account is yet to show any changes. I’m guessing we will know more later today. No matter what, it’s nice to see Google keeping a high pace with updates for my lovely Nexus!

How to get it, if you don’t have the patience to wait for the Over The Air Update of course (translated from Swedroid):

Get the file (directly from Google) here (note, made for FRF91). Make sure you have at least around 75% battery remaining, you will not be happy if it shuts down during flash!

  1. Change the name of the zipfile to update.zip and put it directly in the root of your phone
  2. Turn off your phone.
  3. Press and hold Volume Down while pressing Power
  4. Choose the option Recovery (using volume keys and power to select)
  5. A screen with a Triangle and an Android will show up
  6. Press Volume Up and Power simultaneously
  7. Choose the option Apply sdcard:update.zip (using your Trackball)
  8. When its done, select Reboot

Welcome to a new updated version of Android :)

Chrome to phone – a preview of the future?

I installed a new Google Chrom Extension a while back called Chrome to Phone. The idea isChrome to Phone logo quite simple, now and then you will be using your computer and realise that you need the information on your desk/laptop screen on your mobile device. Instead of typing it in you send the information to your phone and we’re not talking about just text here. I made a short list on what’s supported:

  • URL (web address), send it and your phone will automatically open your browser and take you to the same page you had on your desktop
  • Google Maps links, been planning your travel route with Google Maps and don’t want to redo it on your phone? Send it and it will open in Google Maps
  • Select plain text and it will be sent to your phones clipboard, ready for pasting in an text message, mail, facebook status or whatever you choose. Just long-press then select paste
  • Select a phone number and press send, like magic your phone will launch your dialer (default or custom) with the number already populated. Sweet
  • YouTube links, of course they launch your native YouTube app

As far as I’m aware there is only an Android version, and it requires you to run Android 2.2 (FroYo). On your device you need to install a service to “catch” the information and you have to be logged in with the same Google Account. To stop misuse of course.

Been trying it out now for a while and it will definitely stay installed. It’s cool, it’s simple and actually quite useful. When we have the same implementation for sending music, pictures etcetera I’m guessing that there’s really no reason to connect your phone to your computer via cable any more :)

Learn more and try it out: http://code.google.com/p/chrometophone/

New licensing service for Android Market apps

Yesterday Google announced a new licensing service on the Android Developers Blog.

To put it simple Google is listening to developers complaining about there applications being too easily copied and spread (finding paid apps on the major piracy networks are quite common). This is a very good thing, it’s the developers that keeps driving Android forward and of course they should be paid for their efforts when they ask for it. The new service will certainly not be unbreakable (it never is) but as long as it’s easier to pay that’s what the majority of users will do.

The problem is that it won’t be easier. Google still hasn’t enabled paid apps for a majority of the world (done country by country). For me in Sweden that means that there isn’t any easy way to pay for my apps (possible yes, easy no and the question is if the “workarounds” are much more legit than downloading the apps). Today I don’t use any paid apps since I can’t get hold of them and paying the developer at the same time.

This is simple marketing:

  • Android will gain popularity with more quality apps on the market
  • More apps will be developed if the developers gets paid
  • More developers will get paid when more users has access to paid apps
  • repeat loop until happy

Conclusion, nice one Google but remember that the original problem that lead to the common use of downloaded paid apps is still there. A problem “you” created. As long as the disease remains it won’t help that you’re treating the symptoms. Give us paid apps, not in a year, ASAP. Not until then will the problem be truly solved.

Also reported by: Swedroid