If there is one thing that Android still lacks today, it is a seamless sync solution. Anyone who has ever used a iPhone would know how useful iTunes is for syncing to the iPhone. While Android is definitely much more open and easy to copy files to and fro from desktops, there is no double way sync (files new/deleted in phone are updated in Windows and vice-versa) for music even with a data cable.
Sync music to Android over Wifi with doubleTwist
doubleTwist available on Google Play is a great music player and also doubles up as a media sync solution for Android through the doubleTwist client for PC. The app takes your iTunes or Windows Media Player library and syncs it to your Android device.
Two-Way Sync : Any changes that you make to the music files on your Android phone / tablet are also synced back to the PC. So the music library stays updated no matter which device you are using to listen to your music.
AirSync : While syncing using a cable is possible with the free version, syncing over Wi-Fi needs a purchase of AirSync – an add-on feature for doubleTwist. AirSync is available for $4.99 in the Play Store. Apart from wireless syncing, AirSync also features AirPlay which lets you play to Wi-Fi enabled speakers and also Apple TV.
Setting up AirSync
The setup for AirSync is actually pretty simple. Open the doubleTwist app and enable AirSync
under doubleTwist settings. A PIN will be shown in the settings which will need to be entered on the doubleTwist PC app as shown below. This is required to authenticate your PC to be synced with your Android phone.
Once done, the syncing over Wi-Fi starts. The first sync will take quite some time especially on a slower connection but subsequent syncs are faster as they are incremental.
Your phone screen will stay on for the entire duration of the sync, so keep it sufficiently charged before starting the sync.
doubleTwist on Google Play || AirSync on Google Play || doubleTwist Sync App
Battery life is one of the things many people overlook when buying a smartphone. With increasing number of apps on smartphones coupled with HD displays, most of us struggle to get through for a day without charging our phones. While stock Android shows the remaining battery capacity in the status bar, it does not show the battery percentage. While this is possible through some programs like Battery Widget Reborn, Samsung’s Touchwiz skin already has this feature in it. It is just a matter of turning it on.
This is applicable for all Samsung Galaxy Android flagships like the Galaxy S5, S4, S3, Note 2, Note 3 and also for mid-range phones like the Galaxy Y, Galaxy Ace and Galaxy Grand.
Show battery percentage on any Samsung Galaxy Android phone
- Go into Settings from the applications drawer
- Click on More and go into Battery settings
- Check ‘Show Battery Percentage’ in indicator.
The battery percentage will now be visible in the status bar.
The ability to personalize the look and feel has been one of Android’s strengths right from the very beginning. While vanilla Android has not provided many bells and whistles, OEM’s like Samsung and HTC have built on top of vanilla Android to provide more customization features like ability to display battery percentage in status bar, notification toggles etc.
One such feature is customizing the phone by installing new fonts. Most of the best-selling Samsung Galaxy Android phones like the Galaxy S5, Galaxy S4, Note 3, Galaxy S3, Note 2, have got a nifty little feature using which you can change the font / install new fonts on stock Touchwiz. This option is also available in the mid-range and low-range phones like Samsung Galaxy Grand, Galaxy Ace and Galaxy Y etc. as well.
Samsung’s Galaxy phones come with five different fonts (Default, Rosemary, Choco cooky, Cool Jazz and Samsung Sans) from which you can choose. These are available in System Settings –> My Device –> Display –> Font. If this list is not sufficient for you, the good news is you have hundreds of more fonts to choose from.
Use Hi Font to install new fonts on Samsung Galaxy Android phones
We can easily install any custom font on the Galaxy S4 and Galaxy Note 3 using Hi Font. The app is free and has an extensive selection of fonts to choose from.
In the current version, My Font has over 182 English fonts with new fonts added frequently. Installing a font is as easy as select, download and set.
- Select the font to download and then click on Download
- After the download is complete, click on Use and confirm in the dialog box that pops up. Hi Font will attempt to attempt to install the new font (Make sure applications from ‘Unknown Sources’ is enabled in Security settings under Device Administration) like a normal app.
- Once installed, you can then find the font in Settings –> Display –> Font. The changes are applied instantly, no reboot required.
The app also has Spanish, French, Russian, Japanese, Korean and Chinese custom fonts for non-English users.
If you have a font locally stored, you can use this app to install and apply that font as well. Just copy it into the HiFont directory on your SD Card.
If you are running a self-hosted WordPress blog, check out Jetpack plugin by Automattic - the team behind Wordpress.
Jetpack aims to provide the awesome features of WordPress.com on any self-hosted WordPress blog without any additional integration on your existing blog. The price – free.
While Jetpack has a long list of features (28 at the time of writing this) and many more to come, below are the top 5 features why Jetpack for WordPress is a must install plugin.
- WordPress.com stats - Anyone who has had a WordPress.com blog previously, would know how beautifully detailed yet simple the inbuilt stats are. Although nothing beats Google Analytics in detailed reporting, seeing the stats right inside the dashboard is pretty convenient.
- Social Network Enabled WordPress Comments - Your readers can use their Facebook and Twitter logins to leave comments on your articles. This not only reduces spam but also provides a better professional look for your blog.
- Photon - Images eating into the bandwidth usage for your WordPress blog? Enable Photon in Jetpack settings. Jetpack caches your blog’s images and serves them from lightning fast WordPress CDN. You save bandwidth and your pages load faster.
- Contact Form - Yes, but there are many plugins for creating Contact forms. But this Contact form is Akismet enabled.
- Carousel - Multiple images on a single blog post? Carousel as the name suggests creates a beautiful way for your readers to view all those images.
There are many more features – some of which are available as separate WordPress plugins. But Jetpack rolls together all of them to deliver a super-charged plugin which does all on it’s own. And yes, you can selectively enable and disable each of the Jetpack features.
The only pre-requisite is you need a WordPress.com account.
WordPress Plugin : Jetpack by WordPress.com
One of the many not-so-useful additions to the TouchWiz Samsung Galaxy S4 is the recommended apps list that pops up on the notification drop-down when you plug in a set of earphones. If you have looked closely, all it does is list the five apps you last used and hence it is not that useful. I like to have my notification drop down as clean as possible.
However, there is an easy way to disable recommended apps in Galaxy S4 without rooting it.
Remove recommended apps in Galaxy S4
- Go to Settings
- Click on More –> Application Manager
- Scroll to the right to show the All Apps.
- Scroll down till you find the app ‘PageBuddyNotiSvc’. Click on the app.
- Uncheck ‘Show Notifications’.
This removes recommended apps in Galaxy S4 in the notification drop down.
The Android 4.4 KitKat update wait is over for Samsung Galaxy Grand 2 owners. The Android 4.4 KitKat update for Galaxy Grand 2 has now been released by Samsung in India.
The Android 4.4 KitKat update for Galaxy Grand 2 brings features like white status bar icons, wireless printing support, ability to select default messaging app, expanded emojis along with improved performance and stability.
As of now, the update is available in only OTA update mode. It certainly won’t be long before the update is released for other geographic regions.
If you are using Adsense to monetize your WordPress blog, chances are the Adsense ad units have a yellow background on them. This is because Google uses <ins> tags to wrap the code for the Adsense ads. In WordPress, the code standard for ins tags is to include Yellow background a and this can be found in multiple WordPress themes.
The yellow background has other issues like it might decrease the CTR for the ads resulting in a decrease in revenue. Fortunately, this can be resolved easily.
How to remove the yellow background from Adsense ads in WordPress
Go to Appearance –> Editor and edit style.css (or custom stylesheet if you are using) to add the following code at the end.
background-color: #FFFFFF !important;
Save the edit and the yellow background will be gone from the Adsense ads.
The biggest thing coming out of the Android I/O 2014 event was the announcement of the next big version of Android code named L as of now.
Android L will bring two major changes – a fresh design focus through Material Design and changes to how Android displays notifications. It also brings battery usage improvements through Project Volta. While we will need Android L to get some of the improvements like battery usage and notification handling, we can get the Android L look on any Android device right now. And yes, no root required! XDA Member ivan23 has extracted various elements of the new Android L preview for the Nexus 5 and made them available for download.
For the Android L wallpapers and ringtones, we can use the files extracted from the Android L developer preview for Nexus 5. The wallpapers can be downloaded from here and the Android L ringtones and alarms can be downloaded from here.
Home Launcher - Chances are you already using a custom launcher. If it is anything other than Nova Launcher we recommend installing Nova launcher right now. Nova has already updated with Android L features like line folder preview, slide up animation and search bar. You can set the various options inside Nova settings.
Icons - Moonshine icon pack on Google Play is free and provides consistent Android L material design icons for your homescreen and app drawer. The icon pack can be applied through Nova Launcher –> Appearance settings.
Android L Keyboard - The keyboard in Android L comes with a new Material Design look which looks great. For non-Nexus devices, you can download it from here (Source : XDA-Developers) and install the APK. Make sure you have enabled installation of application from Unknown Sources and don’t have the Google Keyboard installed from Google Play.
Once installed, go to Google Keyboard settings and open “Advanced settings”. Select the color scheme “Material”.
Whether we like it or not, the Modern interface in Windows 8.1 is here to stay. Although, Microsoft has made it much easier to use the new interface there are still some quirks in Windows 8.1 if you prefer to always stay in the traditional Desktop mode and don’t want to see any bits and pieces of Windows 8.1 in there.
One of these is the Charms bar which pops up when you move your mouse to the top right corner of the screen. This can be irritating sometimes as we have the Close button for windows in the same place.
While Windows 8 did not offer a way to disable the Charms bar, Windows 8.1 added a new setting which allows disabling the Charms bar pop-up when hovering the mouse over the top right side of the screen.
Right click on Windows taskbar and click on Properties. Go to Navigation –> Corner Navigation and uncheck ‘When I point to the upper-right corner, show the charms’ and that’s it. The Charms bar will not irritate you when you take your mouse pointer to the upper right corner.
The re-design of the new Facebook app on iOS and Android has pretty much made users happy except for one major gripe – there is no way to access ‘Most Recent’ feed in Facebook app.
Facebook by default displays only Top news in the feed determined as per it’s algorithm. This results in you seeing articles posted one day back only today, so you miss out on any recent news which comes in pretty handy when you are checking news or when your favorite shopping sites put out time-limited offers.
However, the Facebook app for Android/iOS has the Most Recent option. It is only tucked away in a corner. Here is how you can get the most recent feed in Facebook app.
Open the Facebook app and click on the More button (the one on the extreme right) and scroll down to find the ‘Most Recent’ under the Feeds section.