How To Install CyanogenMod On Moto G 2014

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CyanogenMod is a highly modified distribution of Android operating system. It’s based on AOSP, is available for a wide variety of phones and includes features not found in other Android distributions. If you have an Android phone and you don’t flash CyanogenMod (or any 3rd party ROM) on it, then you aren’t using your phone to its full potential. CyanogenMod offers numerous advantages; both performance wise and feature wise. So many, that it you’ll almost feel like using a new phone. I’ll be writing another post about the various features and advantages of this.

The latest version of CyanogenMod is 12.1 and is based on Lollipop 5.1.1 (as of time of writing this post). Moto G 2014 users can follow the steps provided below to install CyanogenMod on their phone. For other phones users can browse XDA forum for appropriate steps.

Prerequisites

1. Make sure you have a good quality data cable which doesn’t disconnect.

2. Make sure your phone’s battery is fully charged. Do not proceed with a low battery.

3. Make sure you have enabled USB debugging on your phone.

Installing TWRP (skip if you already have this)

Step 1 Download and install the Minimal ADB & Fastboot installation from here –

http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2317790

Step 2 – Get the latest TWRP img file for titan (Moto g 2014’s code name) from the official download location and place it in the same folder where you installed Minimal ADB & Fastboot (typically C:\Program Files (x86)\Minimal ADB and Fastboot\). rename this file as TWRP.img –

http://dl.twrp.me/titan/

Step 3 – Connect your phone to PC using USB cable. Open Minimal ADB and Fastboot command prompt from desktop (if you made a shortcut) or from installation location. Type ‘adb devices’ and press enter. If your device is listed that means you have successfully connected your phone.

Step 4 – Type type following commands in sequence –

adb reboot bootloader
fastboot devices
fastboot flash recovery TWRP.img
fastboot reboot

Installing CyanogenMod

Step 1 – Download the latest zip file from here –

http://download.cyanogenmod.org/?device=titan

Step 2 – Copy this zip file in the SD card or phone memory.

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Step 3 – Boot into recovery mode – power off the phone, hold power button and volume down button together for 3 seconds and release the power button. Press volume down key to navigate to ‘recovery’ option and press volume up key to select it. You will now enter TWRP.

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Step 4 – Select Install and select the CyanogenMod zip file you copied in your phone. Swipe the slider at bottom to start flashing the zip file.

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Step 5 – Wipe Cache and Dalvik (you’ll see buttons for that in TWRP itself after flashing is complete).

Step 6 – You have successfully flashed CyanogenMod. All that’s left is setup. Now remove the SIM card (VERY IMPORTANT) and restart the phone. You’ll see the Cyanogen logo. The first boot takes time so be patient and don;t worry. You’ll see the familiar “Android is starting… Optimizing apps…” screen. Wait for it to complete. You’ll now see the CM setup wizard. Log in to you Cyanogen account  (create one if you don’t already have it).

Step 7 – That’s it. Congratulations, you now have the world’s most used 3rd party Android ROM!

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Installing GApps

CyanogenMod installation doesn’t come with Google Apps (GApps for short) pre-installed. You see, CyanogenMod is an open software, promoting freedom in every sense. You get the freedom of choosing whatever ecosystem you want – Google Play, Amazon, or some other store. That’s the fun of open source.

But lets face it, many apps are only available on Play Store and you may be well dependent on some Google service such as Hangout or G+. You can still flash gapps on your phone and get all the default Google Apps back to life. Here’s how to do so –

Step 1 – Download the latest version of gapps from here –
http://wiki.cyanogenmod.org/w/Google_Apps

Step 2 – Copy the zip file in you SD card or phone memory.

Step 3 – Reboot into TWRP recovery (just as you did when flashing CyanogenMod). Select Install, select the GApps zip you just copied and flash it.

Step 4 – Reboot your phone and you’ll be ready to go with all default Google Apps available. IF there is some app that you didn’t find, download it from the Play Store.

Known Issues and Solutions

1. I keep getting “xxx has crashed” or “xxx has stopped working” after I first started the phone.

Solution – I told you to remove the SIM card when starting the device for the first time. Can’t you read the instructions properly?

2. Various sensors like the accelerometer, compass, etc are not working.

Solution – Open CyanogenMod File Manager. go to settings > General Settings > Access Mode and select Prompt User mode. Go to root/data/misc, remove the sensors folder and reboot.

All credit and big thanks goes to XDA members luca020400 and LuK1337 and the whole CM team for creating such a wonderful ROM! You can browse the official XDA thread for latest updates.

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Reply To WhatsApp Messages From PC (And See Other Notifications Too)

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We all have been in the situation when our phone is lying far away from us (probably being charged) and you get a message and you are too lazy or tiered to go pick the phone. You can always remember to keep the phone close but that’s not always possible. What if you could reply to WhatsApp messages and other notifications form your PC itself? There are various solutions for this problem but the one I find working best is an app called Pushbullet.

Pushbullet displays all your phone’s notifications directly on your PC or Mac or even your browser (Chromebook users rejoice!). You can reply to those notifications right from your PC itself. Here’s how to use it

Step 1. Install Pushbullet app on your phone. It’s available in Play Store and App Store.

Step 2. Install Pushbullet app on your PC. It’s available for Windows as well as Mac here – https://www.pushbullet.com/apps

You can also install it as a browser plugin on Firefox, Chrome, Opera or Safari.

Step 3. Visit Pushbullet.com and create an account. Login with the same account on your mobile.

That’s it, you’re done. You’ll now receive all your mobile notifications on PC. You do reply to WhatsApp messages, SMS, dismiss calls and even send files, links and texts to your device instantly.

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Windows Phone, Blackberry and Ubuntu users can try the similar app developed bu Pushbullet community using the Pushbullet API. A list of such apps is available here – www.pushbullet.com/apps

Android : Sync Facebook Contact Profile Pictures with Phone Contacts

If you are like me, you’re probably already bored with the dull placeholder image in you Android contacts. You have to face it every time you either call someone or receive a call from someone. Well, like everything this has a solution too. Many apps are available for the purpose but the one that does the job finest is the wonderful app called Sync.ME.

Sync.ME connects to your Facebook profile and syncs profile pictures of all your Facebook contacts with the contacts on your phone. Let’s see how we can do that.

Step 1. Install Sync.ME from Play store. You can get it from here –

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.syncme.syncmeapp

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Step 2. Tap on “Facebook” and log into it. It will then ask you to grant access to Sync.ME. Tap “Allow” and continue.

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Step 3. After successfully logging in it will search for all matches. This may take about a minute or two depending on your Internet speed.

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Step 4. After matching it will ask you to review the matches. You can quickly scroll through the list and remove any mismatched image, although it rarely happens). Click ‘Next’ to continue.

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Step 5. Now it will ask you to conform some matches that it isn’t sure about. This is a nice feature as it’s confirming from you instead of simply applying what it thinks is good. Click on the question mark next the contact name and choose the matching profile for that name or none if no match is correct.

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Step 6. It will now sync all matched profile pictures and apply them to phone contacts.

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The best part about this app (apart from it’s simplicity and elegant UI) is it will regularly check for updated pictures and sync them automatically. It will even remind your friend’s birthdays with a notification on your phone.

Android Lollipop New Features Tour

So everyone knows about the Android’s latest flavor – Lollipop, being launched. While only a handful of devices have actually received the update, it’s already being prepared with fast pace for other devices too. The update is considered as the most significant update to the Android operating system ever. So let’s check out the new features in Android Lollipop.

1. Material Design – this is by far the most noticeable change to the  operating system. Material design incorporates simple, colorful yet elegant looking UI elements that take your phone’s looks one level up. Most of the existing apps have already been updated to use this new design and the rest are on their way.

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2. New Quick Settings – The quick settings panel is completely changed. It not includes all commonly accessed settings. A single touch enables or disables features. It now also includes quick buttons for torch and casting screen. A new accessibility shortcut for ‘invert colors‘ is also available.

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3. Notifications – Android Lollipop has completely revamped the notification system bringing cool looks with better usability. You can also view and interact with notifications straight from the lock screen. Want even more control? You can control each app’s notification individually and decide to block it or make it  a  priority and display on top. You can also set only priority notifications to bother you.

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4. New Runtime – Android Lollipop introduces Android Runtime or ART as the default runtime. It’s a completely new runtime allowing apps to run 2-4 times faster than they did on Kitkat under Dalvik. It also brings support for 64 bit processors such as those found on the Nexus 9. ART also promises lesser memory consumption from background apps by compressing them.

5. Better Battery Life – with more efficient runtime the battery life definitely does extend. You can also view the time to full charge while charging in lock screen. The improved battery saver feature promises up to 90 min. of saved battery time when enabled.

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6. New Camera API – One of the very important feature of Lollipop is the new camera API. The new API allows apps to directly access the camera sensor. It also brings support for RAM images in DNG format. This will definitely lead to some great 3rd party camera apps with full manual controls.

7. Always On ‘OK Google’ – you can now say ‘OK Google‘ from anywhere without even touching the phone. You can even call this while your device is locked, but this feature is limited to devices with digital signal processing support as the new Nexus 6 and Nexus 9.

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8. User Accounts – Just like on PCs you can now also create multiple user accounts on your Android phone with Android Lollipop. You can also create guest account for temporarily lending your device to someone without the risk of them gaining access to your data.

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9. Screen Pining – With screen pinning you can lock the display to a single app. The home, back and overview buttons won’t let you out of the app. This is really useful when letting children or someone you don;t trust use your phone.

10. Security – Lollipop has many new features to enforce stronger security. Beginning with phone encryption, you can now encrypt your whole phone. This includes each and every data present on it. This feature will be useful for businessmen and other people who carry sensitive data on their phones. Then comes the feature that allows your wearable device to unlock he phone. If your phone get’s stolen the thieves won’t be able to unlock the device (unless he also stole the paired wearable device).

11. New Adaptive Brightness – Unlike Kitkat, Lollipop has a better way to manage adaptive brightness. You first set a base brightness level before turning adaptive brightness on. It then adjusts the screen brightness relative to that base brightness. This is useful for people for whole low brightness was just too low.

12. New Lock Screen – the new lock screen allows direct access to camera and dialer along with showing all (or enabled) notifications.

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13. New Overview – Unlike Kitkat’s simple 2D list, Lollipop has a completely new super cool looking card flow layout for recent apps. You can elegantly swipe the cards up and down for scrolling or left and right for closing them.

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14. New Contacts App – While Kitkat had separate phone and contacts app, both have been merged into a single, much better app in Lollipop. The new dialer looks cool and colorful. You can access speed dials, recent calls and all contacts by swiping left and right. The call screen has also been completely changed and looks much better now.

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15. New Easter Egg – Lollipop contains a whole Flappy Birds clone game as an easter egg. To access sit go to Settings > About Phone and tap quickly on Android Version. Then hold on the lollipop image that appears.

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How to Upgrade Indian Moto G 2014 to Android Lollipop

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Android’s latest flavor of the highly popular mobile operating system Android is out and it’s called ‘Lollipop’, following the alphabetic sequence of names. Second Generation Moto X and Moto G were among the first phones to receive this latest version of Android. Unfortunately, the update is not launched for all users. It’s under what is known as SOAK test (much like closes beta testing). from the day when Lollipop was launched several bugs have been removed and the update is not almost fit for general public release. If you have an Indian Moto G 2014 (XT1068) and don’t want to wait for the OTA update to arrive you can grab the update and install it yourself. Let’s take a look how.

The method is different for different system versions so check yours. You can check your phone’s system version by going into Settings > About Phone. you’ll find the system version mentioned at the end.

For system version 21.11.23:

 

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Step 1. Download the Android Lollipop 5.0.2 OTA update form wither of these links –
https://mega.co.nz/#!31MxzbgB!qRfXchh9FfOOliKnenY2uRyDGyCW5URCpKG78jxsbIw
https://mega.co.nz/#!DNsiCahK!gIIsAX4HA8K8NKdEl_0N6xINzyRSvmm8OHCwmquTpgg

Check this page for updated links if neither link works –

http://forum.xda-developers.com/moto-g-2014/general/official-lollipop-indian-ota-captured-t3002674

Step 2. After downloading the file place it in your memory card (or internal memory if you don’t have one).

Step 3. Go to Settings > About Phone > System Updates. An update should pop up. Choose “I’m in.” to begin with the process of updating.

 

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Step 4. You’ll get a message saying “Install system update” in a few seconds. Choose “Install now“. Now the phone will power off and the update will be installed. You’ll see a screen saying “Installing system update”. It will take about 5 minutes to install this update.

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Step 5. Your phone will now restart. You’ll see a message saying “Android is upgrading… Optimizing apps“. In this step Android is optimizing all apps for the new Android Run-time (ART) environment. You’ll also notice the new color and animation. This process may take 5-10 min. depending in the number of you had installed on your phone.

 

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Step 6. That’s it, now your phone is ready for use with the latest Lollipop 5.0.2 OS installed. You’ll now see the new system version as 22.11.28.

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Once you have updated your phone, visit this post for all the new features in Lollipop – Android Lollipop New Features Tour

 

For system version 22.11.14 –

Users of this version first need to upgrade to system version 22.11.23 and then follow the steps mentioned above to install Lollipop 5.0.2.

Step 1. Download the 21.11.23 OTA update zip file from here –

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B3rTyJJIiCCZZTJIZkNwZ0dGX0U/edit?pli=1

Place the downloaded file in internal memory.

Step 2. Turn off the phone. Now hold the volume down and power keys together. Keep the volume down key pressed and release the power key followed by volume key. Use volume down key for navigation and volume up key for selecting an option. Select Recovery > Update from sdcard and select the zip file placed in the internal memory. Press power button with the zip file selected to begin with the updating process.

Step 3. Once the update 22.11.23 is installed follow the steps mentioned above to install Lollipop 5.0.2.

 

Source – XDA

How To Sync Facebook Birthdays To Android Calendar

Most of us rely on Facebook for reminding our friend’s birthdays. But you don’t always have to open Facebook to see whose birthday is today. You can sync all your birthdays (and other events) from Facebook to calendar in your Android phone. Lets see how can we do that.

Step 1 – Open your Facebook account and click on ‘Events’ in the left toolbar.

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Step 2 – Right click on ‘Birthdays’, below the list of events in right side.

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Step 3 – Click on ‘Copy Link Location’ from the menu. Now open your Google Calendar account in web browser.

Step 4 – Click on the down arrow corresponding to ‘Other Calendars’ and  choose ‘Add by URL’ form the menu that opens.

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Step 5 – In the dialog box that opens paste the link that you copied form Facebook’s events page and click ‘Add calendar’.

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That’s it, now your Facebook’s birthdays will appear in Google Calendar in a few minutes and will also sync to your Android phone. You can also manually refresh calendar in phone by choosing the refresh option in calendar.