Various topics on technology, mainly computers, software, open source, and the like.
A very nice surprise from Sony Ericsson. Even though Android does not have full and official support for Arabic until Android 4.0, their handsets do have very good Arabic support by default, even handsets sold in the USA and Canada.
If you have Android 2.1 or 2.3 and updated it to the latest update from your carrier, then you do have Arabic support. To check if it works, then just visit BBC Arabic and see if Arabic shows correctly and the letters are connected.
To enable Arabic typing, you need to press Menu, then select "Language and Keyboard", then under "Keyboard settings" select "Default input", then select "Writing Languages", and check "Arabic". You will then see a language switching icon on your keyboard (the "globe" symbol).
Not only does Arabic work well, the font looks much better than what is in CyanogenMod for example.
This is a a list of Android applications that I currently have on my phone. Some are more often used than others, but all are useful.
These apps are running on my Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc, which has Android 2.3.3 on it. Most of them ran on the Sony Ericcson Xperia X10 as well.
ADW Launcher is a fast and feature rich home application replacement. Use it instead of Sony Ericsson's TimeScape and your phone will feel faster.
This is great news!
Sony Ericsson decides to cooperate with independent custom Android ROM developers.
They started with publishing steps on how to unlock the boot loader, and how to build the Linux kernel for Xperia phones.
Thanks Sony Ericsson ...
As I wrote before, the USA/Canada mobile market is ruled by corporate interests. One of the myths is that there is a shortage of "spectrum". This gave way to auctions for spectrum. In turn this means that different companies make handsets that run on different frequencies, and the balkanization of the market, or prices going up as phones become multifrequency.
Now, Citigroup questions if US spectrum shortage is real.
Hope Canada listens too.
As the CBC is reporting, Mobilicity, a relative newcomer to the mobile market, is decrying the government auctioning off Long Term Evolution (LTE) "spectrum" to the bigger players (Rogers, Bell, and Telus).
This is the continuation of the industry lobbying for more balkanization.
Experimenting with the CyanogenMOD custom ROM on an HTC T-Mobile G1 Android phone, I frequently encounter that the camera would get a "force close" error. After the application exists, the camera app would not start again, unless you reboot.
Since this takes some time to do, and is inconvenient, I found another way to reset the camera without rebooting.
Here are the steps.
1. If you do not have the ASTRO file manager, install it. The link has the QRCode for it.
So, over the past few days, I had an interesting issue with Android 2.1 (Eclair) on a Motorola Milestone.
Suddenly, it decided to stop syncing emails with Gmail. At the same time, syncing the calendar worked fine.
I tried solving this using by selecting another label, and then went back to the Inbox and it seemed to work, but in fact, it did not. It would show the correct number of unread messages, but the actual unread messages will be from an old sync. Very confusing.
Here is the solution:
An apparently useful application for Android is Instant Heart Rate, which can be installed from the Android Market.
What it does is measure your heart rate using the built-in camera of the phone.
On my Motorola Milestone, there was a serious flaw though. Once you use the Instant Heart Rate app, the camera's brightness will be totally off: all your pictures will be severely overexposed (all white).
Motorola announced the Milestone 2 (demo video) a few days ago.
It has larger keys because they got rid of the right hand side cursor pad. This is the one thing that I miss in the plain vanilla Milestone.
Pocket Lint has an informative preview of it, with many pictures.
The Canadian mobile phone provider Rogers has many plans, but many choose the Pay As You Go, since it is suitable for their needs.
The bad part is that the plan does not include any data usage on Smartphones.
But there is a way to get this working on Android phones.