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Walmart’s cheap Onn tablets are hackable (root, recovery & more)

This year Walmart launched a line of cheap Android tablets that sell for $50 to $100. While Walmart’s Onn tablets aren’t exactly high-performance devices, they do have one thing that helps set them apart from Amazon’s cheap line of Fire tablets — the Onn tablets run near-stock Android software with the Google Play Store and […]

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Gemini PDA handheld PC gets custom recovery & root

Now that the Gemini PDA is shipping to crowdfunding backers, we’re starting to get real-world reviews… and hacks. The handheld computer ships with Google Android, although it’s expected to support other operating systems including Debian, Ubuntu, and Sailfish OS in the future. Meanwhile, xda-developers forum member deadman96385 has ported TWRP 3.2.1 to run on the […]

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TWRP alpha released for Google Pixel phones (but you might not want to use it yet)

It’s been nearly a month since Google’s Pixel and Pixel XL phones have hit the streets. They’re the first phones to ship with Android 7.1 Nougat software with support for file-based encryption and seamless updates, thanks to a new partitioning scheme. But hackers who have been rooting smartphones and flashing custom ROMs for years have […]

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How to install Android 5.1 on a NOOK HD or NOOK HD+

The Barnes & Noble NOOK HD and HD+ were released in 2012, and the tablets offered high-resolution displays, dual-core processors, and microSD card slots, among other features. But they weren’t hugely successful for B&N, and the NOOK HD and HD+ were the last tablets the book store chain ever produced on its own. These days […]

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Moto G (2015): Root, Bootloader unlock, and custom recovery

Less than a week after the Motorola Moto G 2015 model went on sale, folks have already figured out how to root the phone and install a custom recovery. This opens the door for running apps that require superuser permissions, making complete backups of your device, and installing custom updates, firmware, or even replacement operating […]

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Custom recoveries for the LG G Watch, Samsung Gear Live crack Android Wear wide open

Android Wear is a version of Google’s Android operating system that’s designed for wearable devices such as smartwatches. But under the hood it’s a lot like the Android software you run on phones and tablets… so it’s not surprising that you can hack Android Wear watches much the same way as Android phones. We’ve already […]

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TWRP custom recovery for the Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch

Samsung’s Galaxy Gear may be positioned as a watch that lets you view notifications from your Android phone — but it’s actually a wearable device that has the guts of an Android phone — so it’s not surprising that people have figured out how to run ordinary Android apps, install custom ROMs, and even load […]

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Google Nexus 5: How to root, unlock the bootloader, install custom recovery (video)

Google’s Nexus 5 smartphone is the first to ship with Android 4.4 KitKat, and the stock software is pretty nice. But if you think you might want to install a custom ROM or custom recovery, it’s a good idea to unlock the bootloader right away – because it’ll wipe all your data, and it’s a […]

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Nexus 7 news: Wireless charging, faster than a Nexus 4, Root

Google’s new Nexus 7 tablet hit the streets this week. And almost immediately folks figured out how to install a custom recovery and root the tablet. Meanwhile, some folks tore apart the 2013 Nexus 7 tablet to see if it’s really what’s on the inside that counts, and they found a few surprises under the […]

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How to unlock, root Google Nexus 4, use custom recovery and more

The Google Nexus 4 is one of the first devices to ship with Google Android 4.2 Jelly Bean software. But if you want to install custom firmware, run apps that require root access, or make other changes, there’s good news: The Nexus 4 is just about as easy to work with as earlier Nexus devices. […]

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Safestrap lets you load custom recovery on Kindle Fire HD (and eventually custom ROMS too)

Amazon’s latest Kindle Fire tablets including the Kindle Fire 2 and Kindle Fire HD 7 and 8.9 inch tablets have locked bootloaders. That probably doesn’t matter much if you plan to just run the operating system that came with your tablet. But it causes a bit of a headache for folks that want to load […]