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I'm having some difficulty getting it to work. I have uninstalled Samsung health and disabled fingerprint, pin, ect.

After that when I try to use it the screen is just black and doesn't show me anything. I have toggled for the app to appear on the cover screen through the settings app. I also tried to see if trying to add the widget through the cover screen will work and it doesn't appear there. Even when making sure I have it toggled off in settings page it still doesn't appear on the widget page on the cover screen.

I'm not sure what I am doing wrong and I have uninstalled and reinstalled the app a few times now and still can't figure it out. I even doubled check to see if Samsung health didn't reinstalled itself and it hasn't.

So I'm not sure on what to do

A logcat may help here. If you can launch the app itself, it has the option to save one to /sdcard/Android/data/com.sec.android.shealth/files

I'm loving the work being done here, the cover sceen for the flip seems like it could have a lot of potential. It's basically a large watch screen, so I dont know why they didn't implement a full wearOS implementation for it in the first place!

Curious to know what apps/widgets people have been running on the cover screen with this, that have been particularly useful?

That would hugely limit it. It's a secondary display. They just locked the launcher to their own. Hopefully, they'll remove that lock at some point.
 

nirurin

Senior Member
Nov 25, 2012
322
36
Bristol
That would hugely limit it. It's a secondary display. They just locked the launcher to their own. Hopefully, they'll remove that lock at some point.

Oh I think I said that without being clear - I meant that I wished the front screen had a wearOS style launcher, able to run and control apps from the phone from the front screen. Knowing samsungs track history, I very much doubt they'll unlock it themselves (at least not until a new phone release).
 
Oh I think I said that without being clear - I meant that I wished the front screen had a wearOS style launcher, able to run and control apps from the phone from the front screen. Knowing samsungs track history, I very much doubt they'll unlock it themselves (at least not until a new phone release).

It would likely be just a modified Settings.apk to unlock it. Haven't looked into it because I can't root my phone quite yet.
 

Chestburster107

New member
Sep 18, 2021
3
1
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3
A logcat may help here. If you can launch the app itself, it has the option to save one to /sdcard/Android/data/com.sec.android.shealth/files



That would hugely limit it. It's a secondary display. They just locked the launcher to their own. Hopefully, they'll remove that lock at some point.
I have figured it out after a hour of messing with settings and all that jazz.

I disabled the security of the phone a few more times and got it to show up and work finally.

Now the next hurdle is trying to figure out a way to keep the security enabled
 

tornado89

Member
Mar 8, 2010
16
0
Perfect project !
I'm having an issue. I can only see 6 apps, sorted alphabetically when I lunch the phone app. This restricts me from hiding unwanted apps. Is anyone else suffering from this issue ?
 
anyone else have to press the apps few times before they launch? it's very rare that apps launch on first press. :(

Swipe up or down before launching an app. It's an issue with the widget onUpdate not being called when they are first displayed. Samsung wants a proprietary launcher, but didn't make a good one.
 
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[email protected]

Senior Member
Jan 15, 2009
2,469
554
Stockholm
Swipe up or down before launching an app. It's an issue with the widget onUpdate not being called when they are first displayed. Samsung wants a proprietary launcher, but didn't make a good one.
great thank you, hopefully next Flip phone will get bigger outer display, this is useful when not needing the bigger screen, but I noticed some apps launch but closes almost immediately, nothing to be done there I guess?
 

nirurin

Senior Member
Nov 25, 2012
322
36
Bristol
The cover screen is so close to being a killer feature, but its just too closed down. Like even at stock being able to swipe and read messages is great, but you cant -delete- emails only archive them, and you can't reply to whatsapp messages without opening the phone.

Even watches now have keyboards. In theory I could get a galaxy watch 4 to go with this but then... whats the point in having the cover screen at all anymore.
 
The cover screen is so close to being a killer feature, but its just too closed down. Like even at stock being able to swipe and read messages is great, but you cant -delete- emails only archive them, and you can't reply to whatsapp messages without opening the phone.

Even watches now have keyboards. In theory I could get a galaxy watch 4 to go with this but then... whats the point in having the cover screen at all anymore.

The cover screen itself and Android 10+ support a full secondary launcher and full functionality. Samsung opted for an integrated launcher and limited widget support. I hope it is only temporary, but this project is an attempt to push the limits of widgets to give back at least some of that functionality. Unfortunately, certain things are beyond the scope of a widget.
 

nirurin

Senior Member
Nov 25, 2012
322
36
Bristol
The cover screen itself and Android 10+ support a full secondary launcher and full functionality. Samsung opted for an integrated launcher and limited widget support. I hope it is only temporary, but this project is an attempt to push the limits of widgets to give back at least some of that functionality. Unfortunately, certain things are beyond the scope of a widget.

Dont get me wrong, you're doing great work, I cant wait to see what people manage to do with this!
 

[email protected]

Senior Member
Jan 15, 2009
2,469
554
Stockholm
The cover screen is so close to being a killer feature, but its just too closed down. Like even at stock being able to swipe and read messages is great, but you cant -delete- emails only archive them, and you can't reply to whatsapp messages without opening the phone.

Even watches now have keyboards. In theory I could get a galaxy watch 4 to go with this but then... whats the point in having the cover screen at all anymore.
you can reply to whatsapp message with voice, I tried and it works. :)
 

Ptrprkr

Member
Sep 15, 2021
22
2
It doesn't seem like the tests to bypass the rotation issues really improved anything, so they've been reverted for now. Instead, the widget itself has been blocked from rotation updates. This shouldn't have any impact on apps it launches.
So, portrait apps will launch once, during when they can be used. Once you close the launcher, it requires a reboot of the phone, to get the launcher back. Again, only for portrait only apps. Not crazy about using them in portrait mode anyway, so just commenting on the issue.
 
I assume only with the samsprung launcher version of whatapp? And not the default notification?

The notifications on the cover are similar to those no the lock screen. I have not checked, but it may be possible to get full notifications with some setting for privacy, but they prompt opening the phone to respond.

There is no alternate version of apps created by the launcher, but it does run in a separate process to prevent being automatically killed off my memory management. Other apps may inherit the process. This helps to reduce the need for any special battery optimization settings.
 

nirurin

Senior Member
Nov 25, 2012
322
36
Bristol
The notifications on the cover are similar to those no the lock screen. I have not checked, but it may be possible to get full notifications with some setting for privacy, but they prompt opening the phone to respond.

There is no alternate version of apps created by the launcher, but it does run in a separate process to prevent being automatically killed off my memory management. Other apps may inherit the process. This helps to reduce the need for any special battery optimization settings.


Sorry, probably another example of me not knowing the right terminology. I wonder how someone was replying to whatsapp messages from the cover using voice, without having it require the phone to be open. I assumed it was opening whatsapp as a different widget, instead of the notification panel.
 

cujoe31

New member
Jan 30, 2011
3
0
Would anyone know or try to see if gpay or Samsung pay would still work? Since you need to disable swipe etc to get into the phone? Also even if it needed to be disabled on the phone would it work on the galaxy watch as you can still set a swipe or password to get into the watch to use gpay or Samsung pay. Any response would be appreciated. Thanks cujoe
 

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  • 5
    Widgets on the cover screen are granted Settings.canDrawOverlays without the need for permission approval from the user?

    With the option off in the app settings, the app never requested the permission and instead simply verified that it was already granted. That is interesting...

    and now the big news:

    Portrait apps may now be fully functional, if my testing is correct.


    The permission approval button when launching the app from the drawer shouldn't be required, but it exists in case it will help with any finicky apps / devices. It will request system settings and overlay permissions.

    System settings permission will allow the widget to temporarily disable the automatic rotation option, while the overlay permission creates a fake view over the widget that is locked in portrait and steals focus from the widget to avoid it forcing the layout back to landscape. This will not, however, prevent apps with landscape support from functioning normally.

    A new caveat I found is that, when charging, tapping power and waiting won't exit the current app. I do not intend to address this right now. The reason being that the controls to have the power button return to the widget also force a screen timeout to return to the widget and can cause issues with the app being displayed when opening the phone.

    A quick and dirty workaround to change apps when charging is to simply open the phone a bit. This will reset the widget without breaking the expected functionality.

    As it stands, the power button and a timeout will not kill the current app unless they exceed two seconds and will not kill the app at all when charging. This allows long-term use of a single app, which fits most use cases. Other options to switch apps, such as volume button overrides, are also being explored.

    @ChrisChoi314 it appears your list of incompatible apps was lost in the cleanup. If you still find any, you can post the list on the issue for it.

    3
    Except I'm using swipe or no lock screen(both supported configs according to your OP) and the bug is occuring

    Sounds like you should relearn how to read instead of blaming the user for reporting a bug with your app because I clearly stated that I disabled the lockscreen entirely and still couldn't launch apps without either restarting the phone or removing the widget and enabling it again

    It's not my job to bug report for you, I'm doing you a favor by telling you about it, don't be rude and blame me for experiencing a bug you wrote into the code...

    I'm trying to understand your issue to fix it. I'm not obligated to release free software or provide you with any support at all. If you choose not to report a bug and you're the only one that appears to be facing it, how much are you hurting anyone else?
    2
    Thanks to whoever made the YouTube video. I have been working on improving the initial startup / return loading. It shouldn't require a restart. That is definitely inconvenient. I don't believe it does now, but I will start throwing that into the testing.

    The next big feature planned is to try prioritizing apps with notifications. This will likely be second to adding some form of indicator.
    2
    Yes. I even tried hitting the power button and then leaving my phone cover screen off for about half an hour but when I eventually turned the cover screen back on it was still in the current app, even with my phone off the charger. I consistently get the same result no matter how long I wait.

    I did a number of other things to try to rectify the issue - I made sure the permissions were approved (allow app on top and allow app to change system settings), I cleared the launcher's cache and data, I performed a soft reset, I uninstalled and re-installed the launcher, I went into the phone's recovery mode and wiped the phone's cache, and did an app repair (re-optimizing all apps on my phone). Beside doing each of these things, the power button and timeout still does not kill the current app on the cover screen.

    Alright, well it shouldn't be long as on a secondary "exit button" and I'll see if I can replicate that in the process.

    After a long look into possibilities, it seems like the power handling is the only option available, since button presses are passed to the new app. To support functionality for everyone, the power button support will be added as a user preference.
    2
    ... I don't even know how to respond to this.

    EDIT: Resolved
  • 10
    In all fairness, I don't think i've explained why the limitations are what they are and should probably have done that a while ago.

    The cover screen is effectively like plugging in a second screen on a previous S or Note series phone. DeX is effectively a secondary home launcher. Since this screen is part of the phone, instead of connected by a cable, a second launcher is used instead of DeX.

    The outer screen supports a second launcher, such as Nova or Smart Launcher 5. It also supports a primary launcher having a secondary launcher activity. Samsung, on the other hand, has disabled this support in favor of a hardcoded launcher that's built into the firmware.

    Samsung's launcher has been broken into the home screen, which is the clock selection, and widget pages. It's been further limited by only allowing certain widgets to be available on the widget pages.

    Being a system app signed by Samsung, they've gone a step further. The widgets allowed must system apps or signed by Samsung, as well. One loophole exists, which is Samsung Health. It does not need to be a system app, since you can install it from Google Play. It also doesn't need to be signed by Samsung for whatever reason. It does, however, still need to match up with the expected widget inside the expected app.

    This app takes advantage of the loopholes by using the specific component name (package / package.activity) of the Samsung Health widget and the package for Samsung Health. Because of this, the app must also be a widget, though. It cannot be a full launcher.

    Widget functionality is limited, but can support launching apps. This is another loophole that uses the widget list support to act as a fake launcher. Since the core launcher behind the widgets is still a launcher, it will launch apps on the cover screen.

    Like a normal Android screen, configuration changes are handled by the current activity being displayed. In this case, that would be whatever app is launched. The widget gets taken along for the ride. To minimize the impact of the launched app, the widget is designed to ignore any configuration changes, which would usually trigger the list to refresh.

    A few unique problems exist because of the cover screen being composed of widgets. One is that they do not follow the expected life cycle of a widget. They are not refreshed when they appear, which is why a swipe is sometimes needed to make list items clickable. Another is that they cannot perform any of the prep an activity provides, such as handling the lock screen. When an activity requests overriding the lock screen, it only extends to the activity and not to any it launched.

    This leaves us with what you see. A widget that exploits a bunch of loopholes within the limitations of the widget framework.
    9
    This is a WIP launcher for the cover screen that allows you to run apps without opening the phone.

    This is primarily useful for checking recent messages, running background tasks, or performing actions that do not require a keyboard or the full screen.

    Current limitations:
    • Apps require Screen lock type set to None / Swipe in Settings -> Lock screen
      • Bixby unlock can be used as a workaround for other lock types

    • Keyboards will not open on the cover screen and some app functionality is limited
      • Firmware limitation by Samsung - Secondary IME support is disabled

    • Switching apps requires tapping power and waiting for at least two seconds to close the app before launching the widget again (turn on cover, swipe to widget). The app list, however, can be swiped closed.

    • Samsung Health must be uninstalled to free up the package name for the whitelisted widgets. Installing this app will then add it as an option in the cover screen widgets.
      • Firmware limitation by Samsung - Widget package name or signature




    This app replaces Samsung Health and will not work with any other app that requires uninstalling Samsung Health.​


    Thanks @CarudiBu for discovering the workaround to load a custom widget.
    5
    Done. Now you can hide / unhide apps for the widget with a long press on the item (in the app settings).
    5
    Widgets on the cover screen are granted Settings.canDrawOverlays without the need for permission approval from the user?

    With the option off in the app settings, the app never requested the permission and instead simply verified that it was already granted. That is interesting...

    and now the big news:

    Portrait apps may now be fully functional, if my testing is correct.


    The permission approval button when launching the app from the drawer shouldn't be required, but it exists in case it will help with any finicky apps / devices. It will request system settings and overlay permissions.

    System settings permission will allow the widget to temporarily disable the automatic rotation option, while the overlay permission creates a fake view over the widget that is locked in portrait and steals focus from the widget to avoid it forcing the layout back to landscape. This will not, however, prevent apps with landscape support from functioning normally.

    A new caveat I found is that, when charging, tapping power and waiting won't exit the current app. I do not intend to address this right now. The reason being that the controls to have the power button return to the widget also force a screen timeout to return to the widget and can cause issues with the app being displayed when opening the phone.

    A quick and dirty workaround to change apps when charging is to simply open the phone a bit. This will reset the widget without breaking the expected functionality.

    As it stands, the power button and a timeout will not kill the current app unless they exceed two seconds and will not kill the app at all when charging. This allows long-term use of a single app, which fits most use cases. Other options to switch apps, such as volume button overrides, are also being explored.

    @ChrisChoi314 it appears your list of incompatible apps was lost in the cleanup. If you still find any, you can post the list on the issue for it.

    3
    Also done. Now the switches work as they were intended and long press is no longer used.