Fcc Car Launcher [official thread]

What do you want: a split screen functionality or a normal launcher behavior?


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SpeedFire-

Senior Member
Oct 11, 2011
2,003
1,572
Moscow
Hi, all!

Welcome to the official thread for FCC Car Launcher - a customizable auto launcher for android head units (Rockchip MTCB/MTCD+ and FlyAudio) as well as android smartphones/tablets.

Its major features:
- Full function launcher with supports of all standard third party android widgets
- Deep integration with head units (MCU etc). My mission here is to implement as many functions in the launcher itself as possible. In case of Rockchip devices to get rid of most xposed modules (my deep respect to their authors, great job, but they sometimes slow down the device significantly) and replace them with the normal built-in functions.
- Customization. The FCC Cat Launcher has some built-in customizable widgets which can help to make your home screen more personal (you can adjust widgets size, colors, features etc).
- Built-in music widget with support of FM Radio (with ability to give names to radio stations), Spotify, Google Music, PowerAmp, PC Radio, Neutron and Stellio players.
- One-click navigation widgets with quick route building (supports Waze, Google Maps, Yandex Navigator and other navigation apps).
- Phone calls via connected phone using 'Ok Google call [name]' request or by clicking on built-in Contact widget.
- Other features.

FAQ
1. I love MiniMap but can you put other navigation app there?
Unfortunately this is not possible. MiniMap is part of FCC and is based on Google Maps API for Android. It is not another app (not even a Google Maps app), that can be just replaced within the FCC interface. Android does not allow to integrate third party apps (navigation apps) inside another third party apps (FCC Launcher).
If your head Unit supports Split Screen (ie can display Two apps at the same time), this can be partially done with split screen.

2. Is it possible to cache maps for MiniMap for offline use?
- Yes. In the latest FCC Launcher beta version you can select Offline Mapbox map and download it to your device.
- For Google Maps - No. Caching is directly prohibited by Google license for using Google Maps API (MiniMap). Moreover, Google even does not provide developers with such a caching API. Therefore you will need a constant internet connection to use MiniMap. The somewhat good news is that the map itself does some short-term caching on your device, so it saves some data (but not too much).

3. Notifications are only popping up for a split second / flashing. How to fix this?
That means that animations are disabled on your device.
- Go to the device's Developer settings: FCC settings - System - Advanced - Developer settings (if it asks for code - it's "7890" for AllWinner T8).
- Scroll down and change 3 parameters "Window animation scale", "Transition animation scale" and "Animation duration scale" from "Animation off" to "Animation scale 1x".

4. Routing on Google Maps in MiniMap doesn't work. It asks for API key. What should I do?
- Turn-by-turn navigation in built-in Google Map fragment is directly prohibited by Google. Therefore it is not possible to use it. .However if you have your own Google Developer account (Google Maps API key) you can use it to draw a simple route line on the MiniMap. Please note that it will NOT have any turn-by-turn data like distance to next turn or estimated time of arrival.
I do not recommend to purchase Google Developer account just for this feature:
- Google Developer account will cost money for you (a one-off payment) which is reasonable only if you really want to develop android apps.
- Routing requests cost money. But currently Google provides a 200$ per month free usage for Maps, Routes, and Places every month which should be enough for individual usage.
Links: Get API key, Pricing. Don't forget to enable Maps API and Directions API in your Google Cloud Console.

Tutorial:

Translation to your language
Guys, many of you suggested your help with translation of the app to your native languages.
I have setup a translation project on OneSky site.
Here is the link: HELP TRANSLATE FCC CAR LAUNCHER

Links:
Release
channel: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=ru.speedfire.flycontrolcenter
Beta channel: https://play.google.com/apps/testing/ru.speedfire.flycontrolcenter
(I would suggest to stick with the release channel since beta channel can be really buggy sometimes and is intended for beta testers only)

As a developer I will be happy to discuss with you any ideas or issues.

Here is a couple of tutorials:
1) Quick look on home screen setup process:

How to write LogCat log:
You need to have ROOT:
1. Install LogCat Extreme LogCat Extreme
2. Select VERBOSE level of details (very important) Video 1
3. Write and send log: Video 2

Initial setup (do this if you see black screen):
Important checkbox during first setup:
giphy.gif

Please make sure to check that checkbox "Always allow FCC Launcher to add widgets..".

Full setup process:
giphy.gif
 

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Last edited:

pa.ko

Senior Member
Dec 4, 2010
523
157
Thank you! Great launcher in deed! I really love many options, customisations and support for widgets!

Using it for some time and works great on MTCB with Malaysik ROM.

Highly recommended.
 
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pa.ko

Senior Member
Dec 4, 2010
523
157
Altitude widget

Agreed. I've already asked moderators to move this thread there (along with the other launcher's threads which are located here). Hope they can do this.

Great to have this official thread at right place :)

I would like to suggest new widget, if you are wiling:

Altitude. In addition to existing build-up widgets (odometer, speed), it would be nice to have altitude. For some of us enjoining off-road adventures in high mountains, it would be nice to have a snap view of GPS altitude.
 
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SpeedFire-

Senior Member
Oct 11, 2011
2,003
1,572
Moscow
Altitude. In addition to existing build-up widgets (odometer, speed), it would be nice to have altitude. For some of us enjoining off-road adventures in high mountains, it would be nice to have a snap view of GPS altitude.

Thank you for suggestions!
I've just sent a new version to BETA channel with two new features:
1. Auto-brightness with relatively good control on the levels:
2guw3uw.jpg


2. Altitude widget
 
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pa.ko

Senior Member
Dec 4, 2010
523
157
Thank you for suggestions!
I've just sent a new version to BETA channel with two new features:
1. Auto-brightness with relatively good control on the levels:
2guw3uw.jpg


2. Altitude widget

Wow! Great! Never seen such prompt reaction to feature requests :) Thanks!

BTW, your auto brightness control is great. For users wondering why so many sliders I'll tell that I struggled with 'dumb' auto brightness (with no additional control beside day/night levels) as they are either too bright or too dimm in dusk or dawn. So it is great to have it customisable to your needs.
 

pa.ko

Senior Member
Dec 4, 2010
523
157
Thank you for suggestions!
I've just sent a new version to BETA channel with two new features:
1. Auto-brightness with relatively good control on the levels:
2guw3uw.jpg


2. Altitude widget

1.
Latest beta crashes of I go to FCC settings (enters the main settings screen but crashes if I select FCC settings). So I could not access new auto brightness config to check how it works.

2.
Altitude works nicely. I'll suggest to round it to integer (remove decimals). Decimals take valuable space in widget and are basically useless as GPS altitude precision is in meters (even tens of meters to be exact in commercial GPS units)
 

SpeedFire-

Senior Member
Oct 11, 2011
2,003
1,572
Moscow
1.
Latest beta crashes of I go to FCC settings (enters the main settings screen but crashes if I select FCC settings). So I could not access new auto brightness config to check how it works.

2.
Altitude works nicely. I'll suggest to round it to integer (remove decimals). Decimals take valuable space in widget and are basically useless as GPS altitude precision is in meters (even tens of meters to be exact in commercial GPS units)

Hopefully both of the issues are fixed in new beta.

New feature:
- Ability to launch any selected app by clicking on the following widgets: Time, Distance, Av.speed, Altitude (see their preferences)
 
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SpeedFire-

Senior Member
Oct 11, 2011
2,003
1,572
Moscow
Would you please allow to add third party music player widget in your app.

They are allowed. This launcher supports all third party android widgets.

Moreover it has a built in music widget which supports: fm radio (with ability to give names to radio stations), Spotify, Google Music, PowerAmp, PC Radio, Neutron and Stellio players.
 
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Roerbakeitje

Senior Member
Aug 8, 2015
577
66
I suggest to make a YouTube video on a how to/overview of the launcher. The price is a bit high . I will rate this launcher now at a max of 3.99 dollars. For the premium version. Now it looks like you what to make fast money . I see this before with a lot of new apps. At the and it all goes wrong. Sorry to say this. Thanks for the nice developments at this stage
 

vassandrei

Senior Member
Jan 9, 2015
144
41
Moscow
Been using this launcher for the past couple of days. Works really well (px5 head unit). Gonna try to make a video of it soon. Keep updating and adding features, before this I was using Car Launcher Pro, but that seems abandoned. Basically what I'm always looking for is an attractive and functional launcher where buttons and text are large. Could we get a screensaver with time, current song, speed, and weather info on a black background (like in Car Launcher pro, only there it only showed time)
 

SpeedFire-

Senior Member
Oct 11, 2011
2,003
1,572
Moscow
Could we get a screensaver with time, current song, speed, and weather info on a black background (like in Car Launcher pro, only there it only showed time)

I think I can, but first I need to understand better why don't you just setup a separate screen with large widgets (this is all possible with FCC Launcher). Many users told me that the launcher helped them to get rid of screensavers since all the info can be made large enough and is available.

So, what do you really want from screensaver what is not available now via home screen? Thanks.
 

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  • 2
    Hope @SpeedFire- is doing well, and didn't receive that dead paper !
    2
    Hi, guys!

    I'm fine. Don't worry (for now) :)

    For Russian users - the latest version is finally published in the RuStore - https://apps.rustore.ru/app/ru.speedfire.flycontrolcenter
    However payment for Premium package is not yet available (the store allows receiving payments for companies only, it will be added for individual developers later).
    2
    @mariodantas because:

    There's currently no need for @SpeedFire- to release a new version on Play Store, but ofc he will do so when 4.000 is ready.
    Yeah sorry I didn't understand that, now I'm clear !
    1
    It´s a difficult time for all in the moment. We should give him his time and just crossing our fingers he is doing well and has just no time for working on the launcher.
    Yes I know that, hopping from my hearth that something will finish well for everybody, let's cross our fingers indeed.
    1
    Yes. It's almost the same as the version in the Play Store but with updated libraries. I wanted to upgrade to 4.000 everywhere, but 3.900 is to "reserve" some versions to adapt to the RuStore's in-app purchase API.
  • 56
    Hi, all!

    Welcome to the official thread for FCC Car Launcher - a customizable auto launcher for android head units (Rockchip MTCB/MTCD+ and FlyAudio) as well as android smartphones/tablets.

    Its major features:
    - Full function launcher with supports of all standard third party android widgets
    - Deep integration with head units (MCU etc). My mission here is to implement as many functions in the launcher itself as possible. In case of Rockchip devices to get rid of most xposed modules (my deep respect to their authors, great job, but they sometimes slow down the device significantly) and replace them with the normal built-in functions.
    - Customization. The FCC Cat Launcher has some built-in customizable widgets which can help to make your home screen more personal (you can adjust widgets size, colors, features etc).
    - Built-in music widget with support of FM Radio (with ability to give names to radio stations), Spotify, Google Music, PowerAmp, PC Radio, Neutron and Stellio players.
    - One-click navigation widgets with quick route building (supports Waze, Google Maps, Yandex Navigator and other navigation apps).
    - Phone calls via connected phone using 'Ok Google call [name]' request or by clicking on built-in Contact widget.
    - Other features.

    FAQ
    1. I love MiniMap but can you put other navigation app there?
    Unfortunately this is not possible. MiniMap is part of FCC and is based on Google Maps API for Android. It is not another app (not even a Google Maps app), that can be just replaced within the FCC interface. Android does not allow to integrate third party apps (navigation apps) inside another third party apps (FCC Launcher).
    If your head Unit supports Split Screen (ie can display Two apps at the same time), this can be partially done with split screen.

    2. Is it possible to cache maps for MiniMap for offline use?
    - Yes. In the latest FCC Launcher beta version you can select Offline Mapbox map and download it to your device.
    - For Google Maps - No. Caching is directly prohibited by Google license for using Google Maps API (MiniMap). Moreover, Google even does not provide developers with such a caching API. Therefore you will need a constant internet connection to use MiniMap. The somewhat good news is that the map itself does some short-term caching on your device, so it saves some data (but not too much).

    3. Notifications are only popping up for a split second / flashing. How to fix this?
    That means that animations are disabled on your device.
    - Go to the device's Developer settings: FCC settings - System - Advanced - Developer settings (if it asks for code - it's "7890" for AllWinner T8).
    - Scroll down and change 3 parameters "Window animation scale", "Transition animation scale" and "Animation duration scale" from "Animation off" to "Animation scale 1x".

    4. Routing on Google Maps in MiniMap doesn't work. It asks for API key. What should I do?
    - Turn-by-turn navigation in built-in Google Map fragment is directly prohibited by Google. Therefore it is not possible to use it. .However if you have your own Google Developer account (Google Maps API key) you can use it to draw a simple route line on the MiniMap. Please note that it will NOT have any turn-by-turn data like distance to next turn or estimated time of arrival.
    I do not recommend to purchase Google Developer account just for this feature:
    - Google Developer account will cost money for you (a one-off payment) which is reasonable only if you really want to develop android apps.
    - Routing requests cost money. But currently Google provides a 200$ per month free usage for Maps, Routes, and Places every month which should be enough for individual usage.
    Links: Get API key, Pricing. Don't forget to enable Maps API and Directions API in your Google Cloud Console.

    Tutorial:

    Translation to your language
    Guys, many of you suggested your help with translation of the app to your native languages.
    I have setup a translation project on OneSky site.
    Here is the link: HELP TRANSLATE FCC CAR LAUNCHER

    Links:
    Release
    channel: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=ru.speedfire.flycontrolcenter
    Beta channel: https://play.google.com/apps/testing/ru.speedfire.flycontrolcenter
    (I would suggest to stick with the release channel since beta channel can be really buggy sometimes and is intended for beta testers only)

    As a developer I will be happy to discuss with you any ideas or issues.

    Here is a couple of tutorials:
    1) Quick look on home screen setup process:

    How to write LogCat log:
    You need to have ROOT:
    1. Install LogCat Extreme LogCat Extreme
    2. Select VERBOSE level of details (very important) Video 1
    3. Write and send log: Video 2

    Initial setup (do this if you see black screen):
    Important checkbox during first setup:
    giphy.gif

    Please make sure to check that checkbox "Always allow FCC Launcher to add widgets..".

    Full setup process:
    giphy.gif
    11
    pity that the developer is not dedicated to solving several bugs of this fantastic launcher, too many bugs for daily use is not so good unfortunately

    How the Hell can you say that when @SpeedFire- has dedicated 100's , if not 1000's of hours developing this launcher, and for peanuts !!

    I remember a time last year when he was on vacation, and even then, each night he worked on FCC, fixing bugs and greatly improving what was already there.

    FCC is probably one of the most COMPLEX apps on Playstore.

    My understanding is that he basically developed FCC for HIMSELF, because he was not satisfied with what was currently out there, and was good enough to share his work with anyone wanting to try it.

    Because of technical complexities, this launcher is designed and developed for a limited number of Android systems, but that number is increasing all the time as he add new Units to those currently supported.

    If you go out and purchase some obscure, budget China unit, that is not supported, you cannot blame anyone but yourself, if then you experience issues.

    Just because you paid the developer a few dollars because YOU CHOSE TO DO SO does not mean that you OWN him, and can demand that he jumps at your every call ... it's not his work -- it's his HOBBY -- and you probably knew that going in .. so lighten up and stop giving him such a hard time.

    BTW, I am also a developer, and I can tell you, if anyone else got involved in this complex app, it would most likely get totally screwed up, and dye -- that is assuming one could even find someone who would be willing to put in the time for next to nothing, while having the technical ability to actually contribute anything to the project.

    Thank you @SpeedFire- for clearly the best Android launcher on the market, and for all your time and dedication in constantly improving it. It is very much appreciated I am sure by the majority of those using it, and you will always have my full support going into the future.
    10
    Guys!
    It seems that I've found the best solution for Normal / Split-Screen modes. Take a look:


    Here is a short demo of two modes in the alpha version:
    1) Normal mode - launcher does not support split screen (bad) but behaves as a normal launcher and is not visible in the list of recent apps (good).
    2) Split screen mode - launcher supports 50/50 multi window mode (good) but is visible in the list of recent apps (bad).

    Every user can select the preferred mode!
    8
    The app is now returned to the Play Store :)
    8
    New beta is out:
    - All skins are re-designed for 6x10 grid (instead of previous 6x7 grid). You need to re-apply skin if you want to switch to a new skin.
    - You can choose your favourite skin during first time setup process.
    - Time widget has new options to granually change Time and Date font sizes as well as to swap Time and Date positions
    - Re-written code for album arts in Player widget. Hopefully this will fix most issues.
    - Some other fixes.
    - For built-in skins Icons are automatically setup when put on home screen or moved (based on skins' settings for particular Icon slot).
    giphy.gif