Author Archives: James

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Does the Galaxy S5 have temperature and humidity sensors?

tldr; No. The Galaxy S4 surprised the world by adding Sensirion’s SHTC1 chip – a tiny, low power chip that can take accurate measurements of relative humidity and ambient air temperature. These readings are used in S-Health, we also collect … Continue reading

Posted in Sensors, WeatherSignal | 1 Comment

The State of LTE – Q1 2014

Using data from LTE users of OpenSignal worldwide we’re happy to announce our most comprehensive study of LTE experience worldwide to date. It shows huge variation across two key metrics: download speed and the amount of time users have access … Continue reading

Posted in Reports | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

“All units are ridiculous” – how to understand scale

I am occasionally and gratifyingly asked what I study – perhaps because I’ve never learnt to dress or shave properly despite having left university over 6 years ago. I say that I build apps to measure the world through mobile … Continue reading

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Android Permissions Misery

We recently noticed something pretty worrying when looking at our rating: After a year in which our averaged rating has climbed up almost every day, it has started to decline. Why? The app is working better than ever, with every … Continue reading

Posted in Android Development, App Update, FAQ | 4 Comments

Android Phones with Ambient Air Temperature Sensors

We recently published our findings on how outdoor air temperature can be extracted from readings of battery temperature, but we’re also excited by the growing number of phones with thermometers designed to directly measure the temperature outside the phone (rather … Continue reading

Posted in Sensors, WeatherSignal | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Your smartphone battery measures the weather

This is the story of the most surprising thing we have yet discovered at OpenSignal. Eighteen months ago we began gathering data on battery performance from our Android app – the metrics available on Android include charge level, voltage and … Continue reading

Posted in Reports, Sensors, WeatherSignal | 2 Comments

40 Developer Tips for Android Optimization

Here’s a good way to get into Android programming:  Find some code that does something similar to what you want to do  Adjust it to try to make it do your thing  Watch it fail  Troubleshoot using StackOverflow Repeat the … Continue reading

Posted in Android Development | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

The SHTC1: Inside the chip that powers WeatherSignal

I once cracked the screen on my Nexus One. If you’ve done this yourself you’ll know that to replace it you need to dismantle your phone to a near-molecular level and in doing so you get to see the exposed … Continue reading

Posted in Android Development | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

3.5% of clocks are over an hour out on Android

At OpenSignal, each datapoint we collect has two timestamps: the time the reading was taken and the time the reading was inserted to our server. Because we make extensive use of SQLite cacheing on devices, these times can be far … Continue reading

Posted in Android Development, Reports | Leave a comment

The story of how temperature and humidity sensors made it into the Samsung Galaxy S4

When we first heard that the Galaxy S4 would include both humidity and temperature sensors we were pleasantly surprised. We’d heard about a chip that could take temperature and humidity readings at the trade show Mobile World Congress, but had … Continue reading

Posted in Sensors, WeatherSignal | 4 Comments