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Thread: LG Neon Plus TF equivalent?

  1. #16
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    Mine is a 16gb Sage Fire 7 9th generation 7" 1024x600 display, micro SD slot to 512gb, quad core, dual band WiFi, with Alexa.

    If I can do the Google route on it I'll say how it goes. Certainly would be nice viewing my docs on that size screen though it may take a while to get used to the keypad.



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  2. #17
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    If you haven't already, find a guide that pertains to the year and generation model you have, then just follow along. It's all about just "side-loading" four files (.apk type) in a specific order, and boom, you're done! Then you've got the Play Store. Some people (not myself) go so far as to install a different launcher to give a more "full Android" vibe to the device and hide most of the Amazon stuff. Not a biggie to me, and I am not into Amazon at all.

    The built-in keyboard does have a split option for double-thumbing, which is how I use mine (even in vertical "portrait" mode) , but I found that keyboard a bit wonky at times (although on the HD 8 it's a good size fit). So I installed SwiftKey (now a Microsoft product) from the Play Store and use that in split mode. I'm pretty basic and not too interested in fancy features, but it's quite a fine keyboard app. I don't think the Gboard app (Google's very popular kybd) has a split feature. There are a lot of other really obscure keyboard apps.

    I did at one point teach myself to learn how to use gesture or flow or swype typing, as I thought I might like it. I learned it and can do it fairly well, but I'm faster double-thumbing. I've heard you write about problems with hand steadiness, so I don't know which method would best suit you.

  3. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by whacker View Post
    If you haven't already, find a guide that pertains to the year and generation model you have, then just follow along. It's all about just "side-loading" four files (.apk type) in a specific order, and boom, you're done! Then you've got the Play Store. Some people (not myself) go so far as to install a different launcher to give a more "full Android" vibe to the device and hide most of the Amazon stuff. Not a biggie to me, and I am not into Amazon at all.

    The built-in keyboard does have a split option for double-thumbing, which is how I use mine (even in vertical "portrait" mode) , but I found that keyboard a bit wonky at times (although on the HD 8 it's a good size fit). So I installed SwiftKey (now a Microsoft product) from the Play Store and use that in split mode. I'm pretty basic and not too interested in fancy features, but it's quite a fine keyboard app. I don't think the Gboard app (Google's very popular kybd) has a split feature. There are a lot of other really obscure keyboard apps.

    I did at one point teach myself to learn how to use gesture or flow or swype typing, as I thought I might like it. I learned it and can do it fairly well, but I'm faster double-thumbing. I've heard you write about problems with hand steadiness, so I don't know which method would best suit you.
    Thank you for the good insights.

    Yes I have severe nerve damage to my hands and basic tremor that has escalated to something resembling Parkinson's.

    The limited range and pain forces me to use workarounds. I have a rest my phone and hand on a pillow or my lap to write, and for awhile I thought the bigger keypad was easier to hit the right keys. I got a Logitech Bluetooth keyboard which is a nice device and i could type with thumbs faster than one finger on my cell. Unfortunately it works with my older Alcatel and ZTE phones and no go with my newer LG, Samsung, or LG phones. So i don't use it much.

    I now am trying the method of making the cellphone keypad smaller and to the right of the screen since I'm right handed. It helps reduce how far i have to move my hand to tap the keys (or yap as the case may be). A keypad I could rotate slightly to face right might help too. I don't know if such an app exists.

    I usually type in portrait rather than landscape mode on cellphones because the screen is larger and can view more of the availlable tools. Landscape has a narrow screen. So if i used a tablet i would probably type in portrait mode.

    I used to type on typewriter or computer keyboards hours a day, miss the ability.

    I will look for the tutorial specific to my device. It sounds tantalizing. If it works, it will turn deadwood to kindling! I just wasn't impressed by the narrow range of Amazon app options and Google has a plethora of whatever one could want.

    Thanks very much for your experiential advice.



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  4. #19
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    Okay, I've installed the four apk's on the Fire 7 and am at the Google sign in page. It is updating Google apps... Has been for a long time. The options are cancel updates and sign in. How long should it typically take to update the apps? It's been going for fifteen minutes at least... And counting.

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  5. #20
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    I was writing a post and it crashed so here i am again.

    I said heck with waiting for an update that never ends and signed in. I'm now inside Google App store on my Fire 7 and will see how it goes. I'll try to install my most used apps like Gmail.

    Thankyou for the great advice, I couldn't have done it without the help of the people in this forum!



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  6. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by WheelieBoot View Post
    Okay, I've installed the four apk's on the Fire 7 and am at the Google sign in page. It is updating Google apps... Has been for a long time. The options are cancel updates and sign in. How long should it typically take to update the apps? It's been going for fifteen minutes at least... And counting.

    Sent from my moto e5 (XT1920DL) using HoFo mobile app
    It could be awhile. Those four apk's install core google apps. The first time you go to the Playstore it will update all of those apps as well as the Playstore app itself.

  7. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by cv91913 View Post
    It could be awhile. Those four apk's install core google apps. The first time you go to the Playstore it will update all of those apps as well as the Playstore app itself.
    I was able to log in to Google and have been installing my main apps. Gmail, Chrome, Yahoo mail, Google Voice, Google Drive, Google Docs, etc and only a few so far wouldn't work. TextNow wouldn't finish installing. I'm writing this now on the Fire 7.

    I installed G Board and it's different than on my phones. I can't customize the keypad in some ways. I can reduce its size but not as much as I want. I also can't move the keyboard to the right so it's easier to do one finger typing.

    But so far it seems to be working fine. Thankyou to everyone who commented and helped me set it up!!!



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  8. #23
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    Wow, you really jumped on that quick! Good for you.

    I don't recall any noticeable updating of those four apps when I first did this with mine, although I know they have updated. There are many versions of those available, and the initial instructions (if I recall correctly) for the recommended versions of them were not necessarily the latest versions. As long as it works it should take care of itself. People don't generally have issues with it.

    Keep in mind your Fire is a 16 GB storage device.

    I've had a pretty bad experience with the Yahoo Mail app not doing any notifications, either audibly or just to the Status Bar (top of the screen). So I ditched it and rely on the built-in Mail app, which I've come to like a lot, as it "fits" the screen space really well. It'll fetch Yahoo Mail as soon as every 15 minutes, and does incoming Push for Gmail (instant receive). Since I don't have any heavy feature requirements for email this works out pretty well. There are sometimes snags with the Amazon server that the Mail app communicates with, and you can get an on screen message that there's some problem communicating, but it doesn't last long and doesn't happen often.

    You may have discovered this, but on this device the "Docs" app/icon is pretty important. It's where default downloads go to (and not just documents), and if you open it there's an existing Downloads folder, so be sure to familiarize yourself with that. When I did the four Google .apk files (got them from APK Mirror) that's where they went and where I ran them from to install.

    Oh, I see in your recent signature a typical Fire tablet device name (the KFMUWI)!

    Gboard's different versions can have fairly varying features, and if you happen to have old enough devices they may have the predecessor product, called Google Keyboard. But chances are you may be seeing differences due to being on a tablet.

    I'm pretty sure with SwiftKey you can "float" the keyboard (after sizing it) and move it around pretty freely. Keyboard apps are pretty large when installed. I used to have an older version of Google Keyboard on mine, which I like better than any newer Gboard version. But due to wanting a split/thumb mode I switched to SwiftKey and removed the Google product.

    Also, for apps you install from Google Play versus the Amazon App Store, you may get update notifications from one about apps originally installed from the other (for the same app name). The Amazon update notification will always have a stylized "A" and the Play Store will have its characteristic triangular icon. You can always go with the Play Store version, but may get nagged by Amazon under some rare circumstances. Quite a few common "brand name" apps from the Amazon store are not so well curated and up to date as the Play Store versions. I was using a Roku app (from Roku) from Amazon for a while, and found out it was way behind in revisions and missing some features, and got it from the Play Store. But I still get nags from Amazon about it.

    I would also recommend (a pet thing of mine on these Fire tablets) some sort of cache cleaner, as there's no easy one stop way to empty the cache on them like there is on a typical Android phone (Settings>Storage>Clear the cache, or whatever). So I installed CCleaner and use it about once a week. If I found something that was smaller and as effective I'd switch to it, but this is working for now.

    Good luck in using this thing. I think they're incredible for the price, and are a great visual upgrade from a smartphone, size-wise. Display resolution not withstanding!

    Additional: The built-in web browser is also pretty good (called Silk). I'm sure it's based on Chrome, and looks a lot like it in the Settings areas. Lacks a few features, but if you try it and like it and don't need fancy, getting rid of Chrome will save you ~130 MB of space!
    Last edited by whacker; 06-03-2020 at 11:01 PM. Reason: More great info! Ha-ha!

  9. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by whacker View Post
    Wow, you really jumped on that quick! Good for you.

    I don't recall any noticeable updating of those four apps when I first did this with mine, although I know they have updated. There are many versions of those available, and the initial instructions (if I recall correctly) for the recommended versions of them were not necessarily the latest versions. As long as it works it should take care of itself. People don't generally have issues with it.

    Keep in mind your Fire is a 16 GB storage device.

    I've had a pretty bad experience with the Yahoo Mail app not doing any notifications, either audibly or just to the Status Bar (top of the screen). So I ditched it and rely on the built-in Mail app, which I've come to like a lot, as it "fits" the screen space really well. It'll fetch Yahoo Mail as soon as every 15 minutes, and does incoming Push for Gmail (instant receive). Since I don't have any heavy feature requirements for email this works out pretty well. There are sometimes snags with the Amazon server that the Mail app communicates with, and you can get an on screen message that there's some problem communicating, but it doesn't last long and doesn't happen often.

    You may have discovered this, but on this device the "Docs" app/icon is pretty important. It's where default downloads go to (and not just documents), and if you open it there's an existing Downloads folder, so be sure to familiarize yourself with that. When I did the four Google .apk files (got them from APK Mirror) that's where they went and where I ran them from to install.

    Oh, I see in your recent signature a typical Fire tablet device name (the KFMUWI)!

    Gboard's different versions can have fairly varying features, and if you happen to have old enough devices they may have the predecessor product, called Google Keyboard. But chances are you may be seeing differences due to being on a tablet.

    I'm pretty sure with SwiftKey you can "float" the keyboard (after sizing it) and move it around pretty freely. Keyboard apps are pretty large when installed. I used to have an older version of Google Keyboard on mine, which I like better than any newer Gboard version. But due to wanting a split/thumb mode I switched to SwiftKey and removed the Google product.

    Also, for apps you install from Google Play versus the Amazon App Store, you may get update notifications from one about apps originally installed from the other (for the same app name). The Amazon update notification will always have a stylized "A" and the Play Store will have its characteristic triangular icon. You can always go with the Play Store version, but may get nagged by Amazon under some rare circumstances. Quite a few common "brand name" apps from the Amazon store are not so well curated and up to date as the Play Store versions. I was using a Roku app (from Roku) from Amazon for a while, and found out it was way behind in revisions and missing some features, and got it from the Play Store. But I still get nags from Amazon about it.

    I would also recommend (a pet thing of mine on these Fire tablets) some sort of cache cleaner, as there's no easy one stop way to empty the cache on them like there is on a typical Android phone (Settings>Storage>Clear the cache, or whatever). So I installed CCleaner and use it about once a week. If I found something that was smaller and as effective I'd switch to it, but this is working for now.

    Good luck in using this thing. I think they're incredible for the price, and are a great visual upgrade from a smartphone, size-wise. Display resolution not withstanding!

    Additional: The built-in web browser is also pretty good (called Silk). I'm sure it's based on Chrome, and looks a lot like it in the Settings areas. Lacks a few features, but if you try it and like it and don't need fancy, getting rid of Chrome will save you ~130 MB of space!
    I ditched the Gboard in favor of Microsoft Swift board. Wow what a cool keypad! I've hardly used it but in setting up it has so many different themes and the sizing options are exactly what I wanted. It's very customizable for special needs. I like the directional arrows below the spacebar. Not going back to GooGoo board, in fact my cellphones are getting this keyboard.

    I may try the Silk browser and see if it's okay. I've used it but only a few times like when setting up Google. If Silk works well i may do as you suggested and ditch Chrome to save space. I need to get a micro SD card for it.

    I installed a File Manager + app that i use on one of my phones. I like its icons better than the docs format that came with the Fire. Easier to understand how to find things.

    Now that I have it set up to be GooGoo friendly I like the Fire MUCH better. The screen def easier to read. It may spoil me and I'll start collecting them like cellphones. No need to activate them with a tel# is a plus.

    I switched off auto updates and update notifications for Google Apps. I always do that on my phones but not able yet to find a way to switch off Amazon updates. The page i saw said if i didn't choose to update them manually it would update the next time i wasn't using it.

    I'll try to combine all my emails under the resident email app. I added my outlook email to it but two others i have to try again. Might try to put Yahoo in. The icons all over the screen looks like an app drawer but I can create folders. I already put a bunch of the Amazon apps in one until I can decide what to do with them.

    This could be mucho easier to write on, it sits on my lap without holding it and without a pillow, can see the screen better. I'm liking it much better each minute. Ah oh, now I'll have to buy another!!

    Thank you so very much with your advice and help with it, including the Swift Keyboard recommend. I am glad I mentioned that I got it because it led to solutions. This is a great forum, so many helpful people who take time to answer our questions.



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  10. #25
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    Compared to a regular Android tablet, when you install an app on these it goes to the bottom of the "Home" screen (tab named "Home"). Being the lazy person I am I may have, early on, tried to rearrange all the existing Amazon icons to get my intended icons on top. But I gave up, and just organize things from the bottom and work from there!

    Part of the reason for that is, Amazon goes through various promotional binges, and they'll drop a huge icon right at the top of the Home Screen, which if you're working down the list of apps you'll notice some day that things aren't in the same order anymore! Scroll back to the top and you may see a large icon for something Amazon thinks you'd be interested in. Long press on it, and the choice you want is "Not Interested". It'll go away and your icons will go back to normal locations. This isn't an ad for a product. More like an ad for a tablet service. Easily dismissed.

    Yeah, making folders for all the Amazon apps you won't normally use is a good idea. I just work from the bottom, and I assume it's a bottomless bottom! I'm used to it now, and I just scroll down and there's my stuff. I have a few of the utility-oriented Amazon apps near the top of my working group, such as Settings, Docs, Contacts (which is synced to my Google account), Calculator, and a few others. The Maps app is a bargain version of Here We Go, and not bad for free. If I need map stuff I just use a browser and go to Google Maps usually.

    I figured SwiftKey would be worth a look. Glad you like it!

    Don't know how easy your grip width is (how easy it is to grab the tablet), but if you ever get a chance at an 8" version give that a try. It is markedly better in its display resolution, from what I've read from reviews. Also the sound is better (dual stereo speakers with a Dolby enhancement); and a bigger battery.

    But maybe the 7" is the right one for you.

    These things are totally addictive!

  11. #26
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    I'm attaching a screenshot of the Fire 7 with Microsoft Swift keyboard I set up. I installed Gallery to edit my pics. Name:  Screenshot_20200603-221604.jpg
Views: 23
Size:  51.9 KB

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  12. #27
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    What's that note pad app called? Notepad? There's a zillion of those with the same name!

    You've gotten fancy with your keyboard theme colors I see!

  13. #28
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    Huh. I completely missed that Microsoft had purchased SwiftKey!

    I always loved the now defunct Swype better than SwiftKey in my early on testing, and eventually ended up with Gboard when it became clear that Swype was nearing the end. I first used Swype on my Windows Mobile 6.1 Samsung Omnia SCh-i910 in 2010!

    I may need to check out SwiftKey again!

    EDIT:
    I just checked the Play Store SwiftKey reviews, and it seems like there are a lot of complaints about the more recent versions...maybe I'll just stick to Gboard for now.

  14. #29
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    My only beef with SwiftKey (using it now on the Fire HD 8 tablet) is that with the split/thumb setting, even with all the setting and sizing options, you can't widen the split in order to make the reach in from the sides to the innermost keys smaller; decrease the reach distance in other words. Certainly better than the full width keyboard style, but even in portrait (vertical) mode (pretty much all I use) it's a tiny bit uncomfortable. The built-in keyboard (which also has a split feature) is better in this regard, but has its own set of drawbacks. It can get into a serious lag mode when you're cruising along typing, and it'll just start missing letters leaving you with jibberish unless you throttle back on your typing speed. And I'm not a speed freak by any measure.

  15. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by whacker View Post
    What's that note pad app called? Notepad? There's a zillion of those with the same name!

    You've gotten fancy with your keyboard theme colors I see!
    It's Notepad Simple ad free. Mine is the free version. There's a pro version i haven't tried.

    It's a great little minimalist app that works very well for me. It's by Panagola. Here's the Google Play link.

    https://play.google.com/store/apps/d...la.app.notepad

    Can change the pad theme colors but yellow is my favorite. Can send or email the notes.

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