Hey AC folks, I just thought I would share my knowledge with everyone who is new to the Nexus 4. I got mine yesterday after the debacles of November 13th and 27th (never forget). I moved from the Nexus One, which I had ample time and dev support to mod to my heart's content.
So here is the absolute must-have initial setup for my Nexus 4.
1. Unlock Bootloader and Root
If you have a Nexus, chances are you want to tinker. Not necessary, but come on, give it a try, it can't hurt nothin'. I recommend the Nexus 4 Toolkit
from mskip over at XDA. If you donate a few quid (he's a Brit) you get access to the newest updates right away (the Donater's Features). This gets you access to root and such at the bleeding edge of Google updates, etc.
If you're going to unlock the bootloader at any time in the life of the device, do it right away as it wipes your phone. Don't set the damn thing up and then unlock (like I did back in the day with my Nexus One). Root is the key to city, so to speak. It unlocks all the cool doors for apps and mods that are otherwise unsupported. You must unlock the phone's Dev Options (Settings -> About Phone -> tap 'Build Number' at the bottom ~7ish times).
Also, the Nexus 4 Toolkit lets you backup your apps using the system tool in a seamless way. Very useful. Here is the latest free version
as of 12-11-12.
2. Add Flash
Flash is needed on the Nexus 4 right now, as some websites don't recognize the Chrome Mobile browser, and subsequently don't load up HTML5 content as they should. They leave you with Flash content because they figure your browser can see it. They are wrong. You'll need to install Flash for now.
First, go to Settings -> Security and allow 'Unknown sources.' This will let you install the Flash APK. Then get the APK file
on your phone (either email or copy it via USB) and then load the APK using Astro
, or any other app that lets you access the file structure of the phone.
You will also need to install a browser that can play Flash (Chrome can't, remember?) so I recommend Firefox Beta
3. Install VLC
I love VLC on my home computer. The Android app is still in beta, and not available in the App Store in many countries. Well, now that you've allowed Unknown Sources, just install it yourself via sideload! APK here
4. Nexus 7 Sounds
I happen to also have a Nexus 7, and I love the thing. What I don't love are two Nexus devices going off on my desk with different notification sounds. When I get an email, I want the same notification sound on all my devices. Well, not all of the system sounds on the N7 are available on the N4 and vice-versa. So, just add the sounds from the N7 to the N4 and problem solved! Copy the .ogg files into the corresponding folders on the N4 and you're all set. Here is a .rar with the sound files for the Nexus 7
. I prefer Proxima
5. Random apps and such
- I do not vouch for all these apps. I use them, they work for me, I am cool with their settings, access rights, etc. but you may not be. Follow at your own peril.
I used SMS Backup +
to sync all my texts from my old phone. Cool app.
I used Contact Sync for Facebook
to sync my Facebook contacts (including profile photos) with my Google contacts. It seems to work OK.
I use AdAway
to kill ads. Root required. I guess there are ad blockers out there that don't require root, but I have heard they aren't as effective. Must have for a mobile device.
I use Astro
for accessing the files on my phone. Great app, been using it since Android 2.2
I use Handcent SMS
for texting. I'm sort of tied to it out of habit (been using it since Android 2.2). Maybe not the best, but it works for me.
I use MX Player
to play the video files that VLC can't. Great app.
I use Reddit is Fun
for my F5 habit. Seems like the best reddit app out there.
I use TeslaLED
for a phone flashlight. I like the widget. Been using it since 2.2
I use MuteWidget
to silence my phone. There might be faster or better ways of quieting a phone, but I don't know them. Great widget.
I use Battery Widget
for a quick visual and numerical battery gauge. I like it the best of all I've tried.
I use the Nexus Revamped Live Wallpaper
. Very cool, lots of granular control that improves a Nexus classic.
I use Voodoo OTA Rootkeeper
. Not sure if it works post-4.2, but one can dream.
I use Autorun Manager
to kill any processes I don't like (such as Google's notifications for OS updates which you can't dismiss).
I use tTorrent
because I paid for it years ago when it was the first (and best) torrent app.
Well, there we are. That's my basic setup. Root, Adobe Flash, VLC, Nexus 7 sounds, and then a smattering of apps to sync my old phone. I provided download links to the Toolkit, APKs, and the system sounds that point to a Dropcanvas folder I created (they are safe). Let me know what you guys think.