AWESOME THINGS YOU CAN DO WITH YOUR ANDROIDJuly 29, 2014 / byTalha Masood / Categories : Tech
In Pakistan people have this weird habit to see your phone and I love to customize my phone as much as possible so when people see my phone and by see I mean thoroughly check my phone they usually say “this feature is cool how can I get this on my android” or “how can I make my android look as awesome as yours” okay I’m exaggerating but still they usually say something similar. So I thought lets put the entire setup of my android here. Before we start you need to have your android rooted and bootloader unlocked otherwise some of the things can even break your device. Most of the things will work on any android by any manufacture though some of the things I’m going to include require stock android or near stock android operating system. If you are using a nexus device or Moto X, G or E or some other device running stock or near stock android then you don’t have to worry about anything. So lets start:
I like to customize every element I can of my android phone. Changings start from the lockscreen. Here on the lockscreen I’m using an Ultimate Custom Clock Widget called Peek instead of normal android clock. Doing this is possible even without root. You just need a device running android 4.2+. However if you have an android below that version you can use Widget Locker and get the same look.
You can use any clock widget I usually use the widgets made by different developers for UCCW and Zooper.
Ultimate Custom Clock Widget: http://bit.ly/13zxcgY
Peek UCCW: http://bit.ly/WKTIaE
You can also use an app called “Android L Lock Screen” It gives notifications on the lockscreen though I don’t use it because it doesn’t allow changing the clock widget but still it’s a pretty good app.
The reason why I like onscreen buttons more than capacitive buttons is because you can mess around with onscreen buttons. The main icons of the navbar have been changed. You can use SoftkeyZ though I’m not using softkeyZ here these icons were inside a theme pack called Flux. If you swipe the navbar to the right you can access toggles and the music player on the left this is done by an xposed module called Xtended Nav Bar this is so handy I hardly ever have to access the quick toggle page in the notification panel.
Xtended Nav Bar: http://bit.ly/WKV0Ch
Flux Theme: http://bit.ly/WKV1Gn
I like to keep the home screen as simple as possible. Just a few icons, a clock and the rest of the space empty to enjoy the wallpaper. The clock widget is another UCCW widget called “Bebas Clock”. Notice how the navigation and status bar are not visible? That’s because immersive mode is on. Immersive mode or Expanded Desktop hides the status bar and the navbar so the apps can take the center stage. The status bar is not entirely gone you can still swipe down to open it and with Paranoid’s Hover and Halo you don’t really need to use the status bar at all. Hover gives you heads up notifications and halo can store the notifications. To get hover and halo you will need to flash a custom rom, which has those features. Or instead of hover you can use Android’s own heads up notification system. Android 4.4 had heads up notifications officially but at the last second they removed it out, although they kept the code alive in the framework. Cyanogen Team actually found this and well the developers turned it on. You don’t really need cyanogen rom to get heads up notifications you just need android 4.4x. Just install the Xposed Module “Heads up notifications” to get it working.
This is actually Google Now Launcher the default one which comes on all stock android phones. The annoying thing about Google Now Launcher is that you can’t remove the search bar and you don’t have much control over the settings. The solution comes by some very amazing developers. There’s an Xposed Module called Xposed Gel Settings and that allows you to change almost everything in Google Now Launcher including icons, removing the searchbar, hiding apps in the app drawing and even controlling the grid size of the app drawer and homescreen without losing Google Now screen.
Bebas Clock: http://bit.ly/1zp29WH
Heads up notifications: http://bit.ly/1zp2mZZ
Xposed Gel Settings: http://bit.ly/1zp2xo1
Icon Pack: http://bit.ly/1zp2R6m
You might have noticed the different Icons of Toggles they are from the theme “Flux” and doesn’t that blurred notification bar look awesome? That is done by an xposed module called “Serajr Blurred System UI” and I used another xposed module called “Xblast Tools” to get the notification header translucent.
Serajr Blurred System UI: http://bit.ly/1zp4TDw
Xblast Tools: http://bit.ly/1zp5pkZ
It was sort of annoying to me that every time I wanted to open an app I would have to minimize the app I’m using, go in to the app drawer and then open the other app that’s such a long process. The app sidebar you can see in the screenshot is available everywhere in the system. Whenever I want to open a new app I just quickly swipe from the left choose the app and done. I’m actually using here an app called Glovebox though if you are using a custom rom then see in settings a similar system called “App Bar” will be there. You can use an xposed module “Xblast Tools” to get the app bar aswell.
On the other screenshot there’s android L multitasking or recents panel. That’s actually not the same one from Android L this one is built by Paranoid Android its available on Paranoid Android 4.5. If Paranoid Android team officially supports your device then if not already your device will get Paranoid Android 4.5 with Android L recents in a few weeks.
Xblast Tools: http://bit.ly/1zp5pkZ
Paranoid Android: http://bit.ly/1zp8664
Acdisplay is one of my favorite apps of all time. When you get a new notification it shows them on a beautiful minimalistic screen its like notification peek from Paranoid and Active display from Moto X. The good thing about this is that its completely free and I haven’t faced a bug yet. Its completely awesome you have to try it.
That pretty much sums up my whole phone. Some of my favorite apps are Pocket, Reddit Now, Sound Cloud, Link Bubble and Google Keep. If you have any questions or want to suggest an app please comment down below. I usually post screenshots of new things I try on facebook. You can follow me here.