380
votes
2answers
590k views

How do I root my Android device?

This is a common question by those who have want to root their phones. How exactly do I root my Android device?
243
votes
6answers
64k views

Does constant charging harm my Android cellphone?

I usually disconnect my cellphone from the charger some time after it's fully charged because I'm afraid the battery could lose capacity over time if I don't. However, I believe modern electronics ...
240
votes
2answers
387k views

I've rooted my phone. Now what? What do I gain from rooting?

This is a common question by those who have just rooted their phones. What apps, ROMs, benefits, etc. do I get from rooting? What should I be doing now?
185
votes
6answers
171k views

Full Backup of non-rooted devices

I know I'm asking for the close-to-impossible -- as a real full-backup certainly requires root permissions. But still there are many folks around not wanting to root their devices -- afraid of voiding ...
154
votes
22answers
99k views

What can I do to increase battery life on my Android device?

What can I do to get better battery life on my Droid? Battery life seems awful. Less than 15 hours or so on normal usage.
132
votes
16answers
41k views

What are the alternative Android app markets?

How many competing Android markets (other than the Play Store itself) are there and are they any good? Which ones do you use and why?
123
votes
9answers
48k views

What is the difference between: Rooting, Jailbreak, ROM, Mod, etc.?

What is the difference between: Unlocking the bootloader (prerequisite for doing many, though not all, other things below) Rooting Jailbreaking ROM NAND and Nandroid Operating System Mod (e.g. ...
120
votes
18answers
24k views

How to take a screenshot with an Android device?

Is there a way to take a screenshot of an Android device and save it as an image file?
120
votes
5answers
559k views

How do I change the Google Play country?

Can someone tell me how to change the country preference for Google Play? I have searched high and low but in most of the forums people ask you to go to gmail settings > edit profile and change the ...
115
votes
7answers
76k views

How can I use my PC's keyboard on the Android emulator?

I want to run/test Android apps on the Android emulator and I want to type using my PC keyboard, as it lets me type and test faster. When I use the emulator though, it only accepts input from the ...
114
votes
2answers
18k views

When will my device get the Android 4.0 update (Ice Cream Sandwich)?

Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) was officially announced on October 19, 2011. (You can review the high level SDK changes in Android 4.0 or the official changelog at the official Android Developer's ...
113
votes
5answers
65k views

What actually happens when you swipe an app out of the recent apps list?

The recent apps list in Ice Cream Sandwich added the ability to swipe apps out of the list, thereby dismissing them permanently (and as far as I know this is a vanilla function, not a CM/custom ROM ...
109
votes
7answers
116k views

What does “to root a phone” mean?

I heard this phrase or the variants (rooted phone, rooting, etc.) in android forums but I don't know what it means. Can you explain it in simple terms?
104
votes
5answers
30k views

Are there any risks to rooting a device?

I see lots of tutorials telling me how to root my phone (Motorola Droid), but none of them mention any potential "side effects." Aside from a few relatively minor issues that seem to require rooting ...
102
votes
11answers
270k views

How do I view source in the Android browser?

Is there a way to view the source HTML in the Android web browser?
101
votes
1answer
147k views

Can I install Android on my non-Android device?

Many people want to try/use Android without buying a new Android phone. How can I install Android on my current phone or device running Nokia Symbian, Maemo, or MeeGo; Microsoft Windows Mobile or ...
97
votes
2answers
157k views

Where can I find stock or custom ROMs for my Android device?

There are several reasons to be looking for a ROM: Upgrading or downgrading your stock ROM Looking for firmware from a different region/language Flashing a custom ROM for different features, ...
94
votes
6answers
134k views

How to set up reverse tethering over USB?

My HTC G2 phone is rooted and running Cyanogenmod 7 I don't have a data plan. Sometimes I want to connect the phone to the Internet when there isn't Wi-Fi, to update Market apps, backup SMS messages ...
87
votes
13answers
249k views

What can I do to manage my phone's internal storage?

If you're not used to seeing the 'low on internal storage' notification, what is it that you're doing to keep your phone's internal memory from filling up so quickly? The 'SD Card and Phone Storage' ...
85
votes
1answer
67k views

When will my phone get the Android 2.3 update (Gingerbread)?

Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) SDK was released on December 6, 2010. (High-level user highlights) Of course, not all devices will get this update right away and others won't get it at all. Each ...
81
votes
7answers
18k views

Do I really need to install a task manager?

Does one really need to install a task manager? My phone does slowdown on rare occasions but it's not something that hampers regular usage.
79
votes
11answers
5k views

Is it possible to install an app and exclude some of its requested permissions?

Occasionally I want to install an application which requires certain permissions that I feel it really shouldn't need. Can I install the app without giving it these permissions? For example, GPS ...
78
votes
4answers
169k views

Android browser's about:debug, what do those settings do?

I have just found this hidden setting: Open Stock browser (Not Chrome on ICS. about:debug doesn't work in Chrome. Use remote debugging instead.) In the address bar, type about:debug, nothing should ...
76
votes
5answers
49k views

Why do so many applications require permission to read the phone state and identity?

Why do so many applications require permission to read the phone state and identity?. Specifically: Phone calls read phone state and identity For example Quickpedia is a Wikipedia portal, but ...
74
votes
14answers
53k views

How to use GPS/Maps without an Internet connection?

I need a way (possibly a third-party application) that allows me to use maps and GPS without an Internet connection. I don't use it by car, just for walking in cities. It would be nice if I could ...
69
votes
4answers
179k views

Battery Life and First Time Charging on Li-ion Batteries. Myth? [closed]

"Ok you bought a brand new mobile phone with brand new battery, after checking its working ok kindly switch it off and charge it fully (100%) then start using it. IT WILL INCREASE YOUR BATTERY LIFE.", ...
67
votes
5answers
341k views

How can I see what IP address my android phone has?

I would like to know what IP-address my Android phone has. E.g. if I use my phone over WiFi, how can I get the local IP-address that is assigned to my phone?
66
votes
11answers
91k views

How to disable battery full notification sound?

When battery has been charged full, my Galaxy S phone gives the same notification sound that is used when I receive SMS. Is there a way to disable the sound without also disabling sound from SMS? It ...
65
votes
1answer
95k views

Why can't I press the Install button when installing applications from unknown sources?

I'm trying to sideload an application, as seen in the picture below. I have allowed the installation of applications from unknown applied actions in settings, but I can't seem to press the install ...
65
votes
4answers
131k views

How can I uninstall applications that are locked by phone vendor?

I'm using a Samsung I9000 and I have some annoying apps that came pre installed by the phone vendor, like a music store, a custom web browser and other memory leaking apps. Those crappy apps can't be ...
65
votes
4answers
263k views

Can not unlock my Android device as have no internet connection?

I have an Android device which is running Android 4.0.3 (or something like that). My little brother decided to try and guess my lock screen pattern the other day, and ended up locking me out. I ...
65
votes
6answers
17k views

How to backup an Android device?

Can anyone recommend a good way to backup Android devices? Ideally I would like to do this wirelessly and, not only backup my data, but also my user settings. Is it possible to backup an image of an ...
64
votes
1answer
5k views

What linux distribution is Android based on?

Did Google use some existing distribution (Debian, Red Hat, etc.) to create Android, or did they use the bare essentials (kernel, file system and some mandatory files)?
63
votes
6answers
50k views

What is the right way to close apps in Android?

I'm new to the Android platform, and this is probably a dumb question, but... How do you close an app? When I'm in an app, and I want to get out, I just click on "Home" and move on, but I just ...
63
votes
4answers
22k views

How can I view title text for a web image (xkcd.com) on an Android based browser?

How can I see the title alt text for website images on an HTC Desire? I'm currently using the Dolphin HD browser but I can't see a way of getting the alt text.
62
votes
4answers
228k views

Where in the file system are applications installed?

I have installed a few Android applications both with the adb install MyApplication.apk command and via a webserver (like an alternative to Android Market). But where in the Android file system on my ...
62
votes
2answers
42k views

What does it mean when the connectivity icons in the status bar go white/gray?

The connectivity icons (Data, Mobile Signal, Wifi) in the status bar on my Nexus S are normally green, but sometimes they go white. I can't seem to figure out what this means, as I still have a signal ...
61
votes
6answers
58k views

My Gmail is signed in through the app on ex-boyfriend's phone

I had my email signed in on the Gmail app on my boyfriend's phone who is now on the other side of the country. I've asked him a couple times to disconnect it but recently checked out Google Play and ...
61
votes
14answers
70k views

How can I download an APK file from the Play Store?

I can't download apps from the Play Store on my Android device (maybe due to a network issue), so I'm wondering how could I download the APK file of an app on my PC from http://play.google.com/store?
61
votes
5answers
192k views

How can I view and examine the Android log?

There is a lot of interesting stuff in the Android system log, that is helpful in many ways find root causes of problems identify misbehaving apps How can I view and examine the Android log?
59
votes
5answers
65k views

How do you extract an App's data from a full backup made through “adb backup”?

I have been backing up my Nexus 7 with adb backup to back up all files into an encrypted backup. I see that you can restore from a backup with adb restore, but that would wipe all my existing data on ...
56
votes
6answers
3k views

Is it possible to install Android on a PC?

Is it possible to install Android on a PC? If so, how would this be accomplished?
54
votes
10answers
6k views

How can I do development on my Android device?

I have a pretty long commute to work and own an android phone. I figure it would be nice to do some simple programming on the way. I'm not picky on which language to code on. I usually have an ...
54
votes
10answers
17k views

How to search the Play Store by permissions?

How do I specify that I do not wish to see apps that require for example internet access? Or to only show apps that use a specific permission? A specific repository with search on its webpage? An app ...
52
votes
1answer
201k views

What is *Cell standby* and how can I keep it from eating my battery?

Looking up my battery statistics, I almost always find Cell standby amongst the top consumers: I never thought that "idle" would use so much energy. I saw that other people encounter similar ...
52
votes
1answer
22k views

When will my phone get the Android 2.2 update (FroYo)?

Android 2.2 (FroYo, short for "Frozen Yogurt") was released over the Summer 2010, however not all of the devices that will get this update have received it yet. Each manufacturer and carrier needs to ...
50
votes
10answers
36k views

How do I back up Google Authenticator?

I'm starting to use Google Authenticator for more and more things now, but I've just realized that if I lose my phone, or if I need to wipe and restore it to install new firmware, I will lose all of ...
50
votes
10answers
177k views

How to move phone contacts to Google?

When I create a contact on my Android phone, I can choose to store it to the SIM, the phone or to Google. If I choose phone, is there an easy way that I can move or copy that contact to Google (so it ...
50
votes
1answer
252k views

How can I stop applications and services from running?

When my phone starts up there are several application/services running in the background that I would rather not. And when I press the Home button while using an app, that app usually goes into the ...
50
votes
1answer
57k views

How do I update Android on my device?

This Community Wiki question is designed to be the "canonical question" for questions asking how to upgrade one's device to a new Android version. I want to get a newer version of the OS for my ...

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