How to Root the OnePlus One

July 21st, 2014 by David Cogen

OnePlus Root

Even though the OnePlus One comes from the factory running CyanogenMod, that doesn’t mean it has root (aka admin) access from the factory, too. If you want the benefits of root access, which include running root-only apps or switching to a custom ROM, then you’ll have to still jump through a few small hoops to obtain it. Here is how to root the OnePlus One.

Note: This tutorial is done using Windows. This tutorial will erase everything on your device so please back up anything you don’t want to lose.

1.Install Java if you don’t already have the latest version. You can download it from Oracle’s Java site.


2. Download the OnePlus Toolkit, save it to your desktop, and double click the exe to install it.

Download the Toolkit

MORE: How to Root the Galaxy Gear And Use it With Any Phone

3. Click Download ADB Drivers in the toolkit.

 Download ADB Drivers

4. Click Install ADB Drivers in the toolkit and follow the prompts.

Install ADB Drivers

5. On the phone, go to Settings > About Phone and tap Build Number repeatedly until it tells you you are a developer.

Enabled Development Settings

6. Hit back and tap on Developer Options and turn Android Debugging on.

ADB Debugging Enabled

7. Connect the phone to your PC in via USB, tap Always Allow, and tap OK.

Plug In

8. Click Enter Fastboot/Recovery in the toolkit then click Enter Fastboot. The device will reboot into fastboot mode. 

Enter Fastboot

9. Click Unlock Bootloader. The device will reboot and require you to go through the setup process again (it will also erase everything on the phone so make sure you did a backup before this step).

Unlock Bootloader

10. Re-enable Android Debugging by repeating steps 5 and 6 above.

ADB Debugging Enabled

11. Click Flash in the toolkit.


MORE: Best Smartphones 2014

12. Select TWRP and click Download.

TWRP Download

13. Close the command prompt and click Flash.

TWRP Flash

14. Click Boot.


15. Select TWRP and click Boot.


16. On the phone, click Reboot.


17. Tap System.


18. Swipe to Install SuperSU.


19. Pull down the notification bar and tap Install SuperSU and tap play.

SuperSU Installer

21. Tap on Install.

Install SuperSU

22. Tap Open.

Open SuperSU

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23. Tap Continue.


24. Tap Normal.


25. Open the Play Store and install Root Checker.

Root Checker

26. Open Root Checker and tap Verify Root.

Verify Root

27. Tap Grant.


It should say Congratulations. You’re rooted.


David Cogen’s site,, is a popular site for rooting, jailbreaking, hacking, modding, and other how to’s to show you how to unlock your device’s true potential. Check out all of the OnePlus One ROMs in their ROM Repository that you can now install after finishing this tutorial.

Tiny Magnet Brings Wireless Charging to the iPhone

July 18th, 2014 by Chris Hutton

2 614x400Many Android smartphones come with wireless charging ability. However, Apple has so far avoided adding this functionality to the iPhone. Users can add a clunky case or other attachment so they can use wireless chargers. However, China-based startup HEVO LABS is hoping Kickstarter can help them simplify and miniaturize an add-on to make things seamless.

HEVO designed a Lightning-compatible microadaptor, which magnetically connects to the iPhone 5s charging port just like the MagSafe connector on a MacBook. The adapter is compatible with a variety of wireless charging devices. Among those devices are the Cabin portable battery case, the Cabin charging dock and the Magadaptor that plugs into the Lightning charging cord also from HEVO. The Cabin case also has the same magnetic connectors, which makes it compatible with the Magadaptor and charging dock.

MORE: 7 Killer Kickstarter Alternatives

The 2200mAh Cabin portable battery is slim compared to most batteries and offers up to 130 percent additional battery life. The charging stand can also sync the iPhone if connected to a computer. The magnet will keep the phone in its case, and makes it easy to shift between devices. 

Cabin’s Kickstarter currently offers the opportunity to preorder the three devices. Backers can preorder the microadaptor and Magadaptor for $25. Users can add a dock at the $59 level, or a portable battery at $99. The first 200 to preorder the whole package will pay $135. Any other preorders will cost$145. HEVO expects to release the first orders by November 2014. Cabin seems expensive when compared to wireless charger kits like the Duracell Powermat, but the number of accessories seems to make up for it. 

While the iPhone 6 is rumored to have wireless charging abilities, the current iPhone 5s or 5c doesn’t. Would wireless charging be a reason to swap from Android? 

How to Root the LG G Watch

July 16th, 2014 by David Cogen

Featured Image

Tech-savvy Android users have long enjoyed the process or rooting (gaining administrative control) their phones, but what about your smartwatch? By rooting your LG G Watch today, you can improve responsiveness and battery life a bit with a lot more options and mods coming in the near fture. Here’s how to gain root access to your LG G Watch.

Note: This method only works on Windows so you need a Windows computer to complete this procedure. 

1. Navigate to the Android SDK site if you don’t already have the Android SDK with the latest updates. If you do, skip to step 9.

SDK Site

2. Click on Get the SDK for an Existing IDE > Download the Stand Alone SDK for Windows.

Stand Alone SDK

3. Check that you agree to the terms and click Download the Stand Alone SDK for Windows.

Download SDK

4. Save the SDK to your Desktop.

Save to Desktop

5. Double click the exe file and follow the prompts.


6. Make sure it is c:\android-sdk\ in the text field when prompted before hitting Next.

Install Location

7. Continue until it installs and then check the box that says Start SDK Manager and hit Finish.


8. Check off Tools and click Install.

Check Tools


MORE: LG G Watch Review

9. Double tap on the Watch Face to bring up the voice prompt for Google Now.

Google Now

10. Scroll down and select Settings > About.


11. Continue to tap Build Number until it says you are a developer.


12. Go back and then tap on Developer Options and check ADB Debugging on.

ADB Debugging

13. Connect the watch to your computer via USB.


14. On your paired phone, check the Always box and tap Allow.

Allow RSA

15. Navigate to C:\android-sdk\platform-tools\ on your PC, hold shift on your keyboard, right-click in any blank area, and select open command window here.

Open Cmd Window

16. Type the following into the command prompt with hitting enter at the end of the line:

adb reboot bootloader

Reboot Bootloader

17. When it reboots, type the following into the command prompt with hitting enter at the end of the line:

fastboot oem unlock

OEM Unlock

18. On the watch, tap the right arrow and then the circle to accept.

Unlock Bootloader

19. Download the Root Boot image for the G Watch and save it inside the c:\android-sdk\platform-tools\ folder.

Root Boot Image

20. Type the following into the command prompt with hitting enter at the end of the line:

fastboot boot LGGW-rootboot.img

Flash Root Boot

21. Pair the device with your phone and renable ADB Debugging.

Reenable USB

22. Type the following into the command prompt with hitting enter at the end of each line:

adb shell


If you see root@dory, you are all set!

Root Access


David Cogen’s site,, is a popular site for rooting, jailbreaking, hacking, modding, and other how to’s to show you how to unlock your device’s true potential.


Smartphones with the Longest Battery Life

July 11th, 2014 by Mark Spoonauer, LAPTOP Editor in Chief

With their zippy quad-core processors and big screens, smartphones have never been more powerful–or more power hungry. Yes, specs and apps matter, but what good are they if you’re hunting for an outlet by lunchtime? If you want a smartphone that endures, check out the handsets that made our list.

These devices lasted at least 8 hours on the Laptop Mag Battery Test, which involves continuous web surfing over 4G LTE. We set each phone’s display to 150 nits to normalize for brightness and make sure each handset is receiving at least 3 bars of service. See for yourself which smartphones truly go the distance.


Tags: Smartphones | 99 Comments »

Most Anticipated Smartphones of 2014

July 1st, 2014 by Cherlynn Low, LAPTOP Staff Writer

2014 has already seen its fair share of quality smartphones, from the Samsung Galaxy S5 and HTC One M8 to the LG G3. But the year is far from over, and Apple fans the world over are chomping at the bit for the iPhone 6. Samsung is expected to take on its biggest rival by launching a new Note phablet (and possibly a metal S5). Meanwhile, Android purists are holding out for Google’s next Nexus. The coming months look pretty exciting, with the biggest names in tech battling it out for smartphone dominance. Here’s what we expect to see for the rest of the year.

Tags: smartphones, Android Smartphones, Nokia Windows Phone, Apple iPhone | 9 Comments »

How to Jailbreak iOS 7.1.1 on Your iPhone or iPad

June 30th, 2014 by David Cogen


Pangu Featured

By jailbreaking (aka gaining admin rights) to your iPhone or iPad, you can do everything from changing the  system font to installing custom live wallpapers. Up until now, there was no way to jailbreak devices with  iOS 7.1.1, the current OS version. However, a Chinese developer team named Pangu has come to the rescue releasing a simple jailbreak for iOS 7.1.1 for all iOS devices. Before you begin, here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Note: The Pangu jailbreak is controversial and may deliver malware if downloaded from an unofficial source. 
  • As with every new jailbreak, the developers of the tweaks (the apps you use to alter the system after jailbreaking) will need to update their tweaks before they work well with the new 7.1.1 version of iOS.
  • This only works on Windows at the moment, but the developer has plans to release a Mac version. The procedure below will be the same regardless as you will just download the Mac version instead of the Windows version if it is available.
  • You must have the latest version of iTunes installed. If you don’t, please head to Apple’s iTunes page, download it, and install it.

1. Navigate to Settings > Touch ID & Passcode (or Passcode if not on an iPhone 5S) and tap Turn Passcode Off.

Turn Passcode Off 

2. Go to Settings > General > Date & Time and turn off Set Automatically.

Set Automatically Off 3. Change the date to June 2nd, 2014 and plug the phone into the computer via USB.

Change Date

MORE: 10 Tips and Tricks Every iPhone Owner Should Know

 4. Download Pangu to your desktop and double click it.

Pangu Program

5. Uncheck the box in Pangu (this stops it from loading other software on to your iPhone besides Cydia).


6. Click the ???? button.

???? Button

7. On your iPhone, tap on the Pangu app icon after the progress bar in Pangu gets halfway and pauses.


8. Wait for it to reboot a few times and you should see Cydia now on the homescreen.


9. Open Cydia and let it install everything. Then you’re done.

Open Cydia


David Cogen’s site,, is a popular site for rooting, jailbreaking, hacking, modding, and other how to’s to show you how to unlock your device’s true potential. If you want to see what you can do with your iPhone now that it’s jailbroken, head to the how to’s section of his site for videos on the best jailbreak tweaks you can now install.


How to Root the Samsung Galaxy S5 (AT&T and Verizon)

June 27th, 2014 by David Cogen

Featured Image

Shortly after the Galaxy S5 launched in April, we published a how-to which explains how to root (gain admin rights to) the T-Mobile version of Samsung’s flagship phone. Unfortunately, even the brightest Android developers could not find a root method for the AT&T and Verizon versions of the phone, until now. Thanks to Geohot, the kid who famously jailbroke the first iPhone, we have a way to root the Samsung Galaxy S5 on America’s two largest carriers. By rooting your Galaxy S5, you’ll be able to fully delete bloatware, overclock your phone or run one of many rooted apps.

Here’s how to root your AT&T or Verizon Samsung Galaxy S5.

1. Navigate to Settings > Security > Check on your phone and check Unknown Sources.


2. Navigate to on your device.

Go to Towelroot


MORE: 12 Worst Android Annoyances and How to Fix Them

3. Tap on the Lambda in the center of the page.

Tap the Lambda

4. Tap OK when asked if you want to download it.

Tap OK to Download

5. Pull down the notification shade and tap on the notification that says the Download Complete.

Tap download complete

6. Tap Install. 

Tap Install

7. Open TowelRoot from your app drawer.

Tap TowelRoot 

8. Tap Make It Ra1n and let it do its thing. 

Tap Make it Rain

9. Search for and install SuperSU from the Play Store.

Install SuperSU 

10. Open SuperSU one time and let it set up the binaries if needed.

Open SuperSU

11. Search for and install Root Checker from the Play Store.

Install Root Checker 

12. Open Root Checker.

Open Root Checker

13. Tap Verify Root.

Tap Verify Root

You should see “Congratulations!”. Enjoy. 



David Cogen’s site,, is a popular site for rooting, jailbreaking, hacking, modding, and other how to’s to show you how to unlock your device’s true potential. If you want to see what you can do with your Samsung Galaxy S5 now that it’s rooted, head to the ROM repository to flash a custom ROM and open up a new world of possibilities.

Top 10 iPhone Alternatives

June 17th, 2014 by Mark Spoonauer, LAPTOP Editor in Chief

Apple’s iPhone 5s is one of the best smartphones in the world, but it has some drawbacks. Its 4-inch display, though bright, is significantly smaller than the 5 to 5.5-inch screens found on today’s leading Android handsets. And while its interface is slick and easy to use, it’s not nearly as customizable as Android, or as unique as Microsoft’s Windows Phone. If you’re looking for something different than Apple’s smartphone, these are the handsets for you.

Tags: Apple iPhone 4, T-Mobile myTouch 4G Slide, HTC Sensation 4G, HTC Thunderbolt | 34 Comments »

Top 10 Smartphones

June 12th, 2014 by LAPTOP Editors

Your smartphone is the one thing that never leaves your side because it can do it all. But the best smartphones do everything well. A great handset takes amazing photos, offers a bright and crisp HD screen and has enough speed to help you multitask with ease. There’s also plenty of variety out there when it comes to software and the overall user experience. That’s where we come in.

Once you’ve decided on your platform of choice — Android, iOS or Windows Phone — then it’s time to pick a device. At Laptop Mag, we test every major smartphone on the market and rate each one based on design, features, performance and battery life to help you make the right call. Here are our top 10 smartphones, ranging from the most sleek and compact handsets to the biggest phablets.

Tags: Smart phones, carriers, Android Smartphones, Apple iPhone | 163 Comments »

Samsung Z Offers First Tizen Smartphone

June 2nd, 2014 by Marshall Honorof

s image sm z910f combination gold dynamic1 675403Tizen, Samsung’s homegrown mobile operating system, has already been a part of Samsung cameras and smartwatches, but never its smartphones. The Samsung Z will change that by being the first smartphone to run on a Tizen OS.

The information comes by way of Samsung Tomorrow, Samsung’s official electronics blog. The Samsung Z is a rectangular black phone with rounded edges and a 4.8-inch HD Super AMOLED display. The unique OS, which is a versatile, customizable program based on Linux architecture, sets it apart from the competition. (This is not to be confused with the Android OS on other Samsung phones which, by contrast, is a versatile, customizable program based on Linux architecture.)

MORE: Tizen OS: 10 Things to Know About Samsung’s New Android

The Samsung Z also promises a “differentiated user experience” and faster startup times than a comparable Android phone. The device also sports a 2.3-GHz quad core processor, an 8 MP rear camera, a 2.1 MP front camera, 2 GB RAM and Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity. Size-wise, the Samsung Z will be 5.44 x 2.74 x 0.33 inches and weigh 4.80 ounces.

Touting the inclusion of a fingerprint scanner, Samsung also promises that the Samsung Z will be a very secure smartphone. This is probably true, as Tizen’s relatively short time on the market means that malefactors have not yet developed many harmful programs that target it.

Users in the West will have to wait awhile to get their hands on the Samsung Z, though. The phone will be available in Russia in Q3 2014, followed by “other markets” sometime later. Whether North America and Western Europe will be part of these markets is yet to be seen.

Samsung theoretically has a lot to gain by using its own OS on its smartphones rather than licensing Android from Google. Whether Tizen proves to be a viable choice for smartphones and tablets is something that the Samsung Z will help evaluate. 

Tags: Samsung Z, Samsung, Tizen, Smartphones | No Comments »

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