Some phone shots from today – and some screenshots

At the moment, all three neighbours’ cats are here, and all are sleeping. Two (Wilma and Crunchy) on my bed, and one (Cookie) on the sofa. Earlier, I caught Wilma on my lap with the phone in my hands:

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Wilma on my lap, Mörfelden-Walldorf 2022

I had been trying different versions of LineageOS on an older Google Nexus 10 tablet device which we had laying around unused, and after trying some unofficial ones I decided to try the latest official build which you can get from Lineageosroms.com, which is LineageOS 13.0 – [ Android 6.0.1 (Marshmallow) ] as you can see here:

Screenshot

That is some years old already as well (the tablet is about 10, this image more than 4 years old), but it is still a nice compromise between speed, stability, and features. Being the equivalent of Android 6 under its hood, I could even install the Zapp app from the F-Droid store, and so now we can watch Live and/or streamed TV on it, like so:

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News (via Zapp app, see F-Droid.org) on a 10 year old Nexus 10 device running LineageOS ‘Marshmallow’, Mörfelden-Walldorf 2022

I had to interrupt my activities to send Mitchie to work with the car, and when we came down to the garage I saw that some neighbour had parked a nice new Honda motorcycle right in front of their partly covered Fiat 500 and beside our car. After coming back, I took a quick pic of that as well:

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A brand new motorcycle, Mörfelden-Walldorf 2022

Oh, and when looking into my blog software today I saw that I’ve got a new version of that as well:

Screenshot

So I’ll have to see what’s new, and whether any of the also new templates (2022 and 2023) are looking good…

So all photos in this article came from my Pixel 4a phone, and the screenshots from my computer. As always, thanks for reading and for viewing.

Almost…

This could almost win me over – but it didn’t; the headphone jack is missing (and as a musician, I demand near real time; sorry). So my ageing Pixel 4a (or 5a if you live somewhere where you can actually buy these) is still the far better option.

A supermarket in “Vista” b&w

Taken with my Pixel 4a phone this morning, and edited it with the “Vista” b&w preset which is very contrasty:

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Lidl supermarket in “Vista” b&w, Mörfelden 2022

Taken from the (our) small car which you see reflected there. And like always, thanks for viewing.

OTA update for a 9 year old device…

… how cool! Just got an over-the-air update of LineageOS on the Nexus 5, a mobile phone from 2013:

LineageOS OTA update

It’s still based upon Android 11 – but considering that Google stopped supporting this device with Android 6 or 7, this is still worlds apart. Gotta *love* open source! Thanks to everyone involved, you guys & girls help saving the planet!

And like always, thanks to you for reading.

P.S.: A few days ago I’ve read that Android 13 – the version we currently have on our Pixel devices – needs at least 2GB of RAM to be installed, even the open source AOSP version. So I guess that would be borderline compatible for this older Nexus 5 device, but let’s see – Android 12 could still be coming in open source form for it. Love this…

“You must use Linux”

Made me smile:

“This section describes how to set up your local work environment to build the Android source files. You must use Linux; building under either MacOS or Windows isn’t supported. Keep in mind the important change to the /usr/bin/python binary as well.”

https://source.android.com/docs/setup/build/initializing

And yes, that’s Google, on how to build your own version of Android for phones or tablets…

Android 11 on a Google Nexus 5 phone

I wrote about testing /e/OS on the older Google Nexus 5 device which we still have, and I like it a lot. The privacy aspect alone, using microG instead of the Google services, is wonderful. However, the latest official Android from Google is version 6 (codename ‘Marshmallow’), and the latest /e/OS is still based upon Android 7 (codename ‘Nougat’), so they’re both quite old even when the build on /e/OS is from October 2021.

But on the XDA developers’ forum, I found a much newer ‘unofficial’ version of LineageOS for the same device, based on Android 11. To install that, you need a bootloader which can repartition the device a bit, and then you can find links for the image and also for the ‘pico’ sized version of OpenGApps here. And together with the usual tools from Google and the howto from LineageOS, this is quite doable…

So by now my old phone looks a bit different again, in fact, *much* different from /e/OS:

LineageOS 18.1 on a Google Nexus 5

And, checking the OS version, it indeed shows Android 11 (the build is only a few days old):

LineageOS 18.1 means/is based upon Android 11

So *that* is interesting, isn’t it? Ok this is an unofficial build – thanks z3DD3r from XDA devs – but I’m very curios to check out this one…

This would have been a bit easier with the Pixel 3a which we just gave to my brother, because for that one you’ll still get official builds, even LineageOS for microG (that would be the ‘sargo’ image of LineageOS 19.1 (based on Android 12.1) from the LineageOS for microG pages…)

How cool… I’ll play around with the one a bit now, and keep an eye on the folks over at LineageOS – will they offer Android 13 for ‘sargo’? And next year, Android 14 for both ‘sargo’ and ‘sunfish’ (codename for my Pixel 4a)? I’ll keep you informed.

Edit, from 19:18 same day:

I rearranged the home screen a bit, and now that almost looks like my Pixel 4a phone with its original Android 13 from Google. Have a look:

LineageOS 18.1 (Android 11) on a 9 year old Google Nexus 5 device

As always, thanks for reading.

New camera app

Which won’t make me any prettier 😉

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“Selfie” with Android 12
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“Selfie” with Android 13

After upgrading my phone to Android 13 I also got a new camera app. So I tried the b&w “Vogue” in portrait mode in both, don’t see many differences… both made with the front-facing camera which you’d also use for video calls. Both automatically sent to the PC using Syncthing.

As always, thanks for viewing and for reading.

Probably the last one I’ll get…

… at least on the Pixel 4a device (and no, I’m not going to buy a newer one). Android 13 is out since yesterday, and in case that is of any interest to you (because you also own a Google Pixel device >=4), the media is full of it. So I checked, and mine is upgrading to it right now:

upgrading to Android 13

So in a year or so I’ll have to decide which other system to upgrade to, most probably it will be MicroG for LineageOS.

… and done for now:

finished for now

As always, thanks for reading.

Syncthing

Currently trying out Syncthing on both my mobile phones and on my machine. And it works beautifully on all devices; now photos taken with one of the phones are sent to my machine automagically…

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Cookie’s pic transferred with Syncthing, Mörfelden-Walldorf 2022

As always, thanks for reading & viewing.

Trying out /e/

So starting this morning, I’m trying out /e/ on my Google Nexus 5 phone. Haven’t tried much so far, but set up a few contacts, email – the provided mail program is a fork of k9 which is nice, and I took some screenshots:

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Trying out /e/ 1/2, Mörfelden-Walldorf 2022
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Trying out /e/ 2/2, Mörfelden-Walldorf 2022

Of course the battery of my older phone isn’t as good as a new one, still have to see how long that will last between recharges. And the geolocation – see weather widget – is also not very precise, but that isn’t the phone’s fault, every other machine here which uses IP based geolocation based on the router’s address would show the same. The weather by the way is drawn from OpenWeatherMap, same as the weather widget in Gnome on Linux – very nice.

And yes, it looks like an iPhone, doesn’t it? But it’s an ePhone instead, with only free and open source software. So far I like it, even if it hasn’t (yet) all the bells & whistles of a modern Android, but let me explore more about it first…

As always, thanks for reading.

Update, from 13:49:

Not missing much so far… I’ve downloaded my own albums into the /Music folder on the phone, and the app shows them nicely:

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Music app on /e/OS showing my own albums, Mörfelden-Walldorf 2022

So far, this all looks like a fully functional mobile phone. Have to interrupt for now, so more later…

Update2, from 16:11:

Just sent Mitchie to work, taking only the Nexus instead of my Pixel phone. And I had installed OsmAnd for offline navigation:

https://osmand.net/

And what shall I say? That older phone with /e/OS connected to our Yaris Hybrid with Bluetooth, it played my music over the car stereo system and told me the route via OsmAnd, warning me about every pedestrian crossing (you can silence that if they’re too many). Perfect, and all of that without even inserting a SIM card into the device! Wonderful.

Again, thanks for reading – and more later.