Android ROM

Motorola bootloader could brick ROM-tampered phones

When we wrote yesterday about Motorola's confirmation that the DROID X, DROID 2 and - most likely - all future Android handsets from the company would come with a locked bootloader and thus make hacking pretty difficult, we didn't realise quite how difficult it would actually be.  According to MyDroidWorld, Motorola's locking system uses a so-called eFuse chip that verifies the handset's firmware (i.e. the ROM), the kernel and the bootloader version.  If it detects that a non-Motorola ROM has been loaded, then that's when the problem starts. If any of those three elements have been modified unofficially, the eFuse "blows" and the handset is bricked to the user.  Now, the eFuse can be reset but that can apparently only be done with specialist hardware that Motorola themselves had; in other words, you'll have to test quite how happy the company is with you loading third-party ROMs and then trying to claim under their warranty.  Considering yesterday's information, we're guessing Not Happy At All is the answer.

Updated Android 2.2 Froyo FRF72 for Nexus One leaks

A new version of Android 2.2 Froyo for the Google Nexus One has emerged, the FRF72 build, seemingly another beta version of the more widely available FRF50 build.  Shared by a source at xda-developers, the new ROM requires FRF50 to be installed first, and so far there have been no significant changes noticed by those who have tried it out. If you're feeling brave and experimental, however, you can download it yourself from http://android.clients.google.com/packages/passion/signed-passion-FRF72-from-FRF50.bc033f9e.zip; we're not sure how long that link will last, though there are mirrors linked here.  Instructions for installing the new beta are here.  As ever, installing beta software can leave your phone less than stable, though there are multiple people who have tried FRF72 and supposedly experienced no issues as yet. [via Android Police]

Android 2.1 arrives on HTC Kaiser, Vogue, Niki & Polaris

Hacking Android to run on Windows Mobile devices isn't new, but if you've got an HTC Kaiser (aka AT&T's tilt), a Vogue, Niki or Polaris lying in a drawer somewhere then how does Android 2.1 sound?  Over at XDA-developers arch-modder Sim4996 has been working on getting the Google OS running on the ageing WinMo devices, and with just a few remaining issues it's all working well. Bluetooth is proving unstable, and the camera doesn't currently work, but otherwise Android 2.1 plays nicely; WiFi, GPS, standby and - most importantly - the phone all work.  Of course, it also erases Windows Mobile in the process, so don't attempt the install if you were hoping to flip between the open-source OS and Microsoft's. [via Hack a Day]

Nexus One gets HTC Sense & Flash 10.1 with Desire ROM

One of the biggest differences between the Google Nexus One and the HTC Desire is that the latter comes with HTC Sense, but as predicted the homebrew ROM community has already addressed that.  The Desire isn't even on shelves yet, but already there's a custom Nexus One ROM - albeit heavily in alpha stage - which adds Sense together with Flash 10.1 to the Google-branded smartphone. There are a few drawbacks - the camera is locked at 3-megapixels, rather than its native 5, and can't shoot 720p HD video like the Desire - but things like the active noise cancelling microphones still work, even though that's absent on the Desire.  Obviously you'll need to root your Nexus One, and there's the risk of a) bricking it and b) running into ongoing stability problems from an alpha build, but this is still likely to make a lot of Nexus One owners happy. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tL60j3iDgLk[/youtube] [via Redmond Pie]

Orange HTC Hero gets 2.73.61.66 firmware update

HTC have released new firmware for the Orange version of the HTC Hero.  The software - version 2.73.61.66 for Orange - is available to download from HTC's support site; however it looks unlikely to be the much-anticipated Android 2.1 firmware update. The previous ROM for the Orange version of the Hero was 2.73.61.5, meaning this is likely a very minor update.  However HTC do not indicate what particular changes have been made, so we'll have to wait until an Orange Hero owner updates and lets us know any differences. [via CoolSmartPhone]

CyanogenMod 5.0 ROM for Nexus One released

Bored with the stock performance of your Nexus One? Fancy some cyanogen-style fun with a custom ROM?  The arch-modder has released CyanogenMod 5.0 for Nexus One (5.0-beta4), a new package of updates that's based on the latest AOSP code. The new ROM can be used with or without Google's apps, and comes with various enhancements preboiled in.  USB tethering is supported, as are FLAC audio files, multitouch support in the browser (with broader support on the way), various enhancements to the phone and contacts apps, and even a nifty hack that saves 40MB on data. You can download the new cyanogen ROM here

HTC Magic gets Sense UI update

HTC have pushed out a ROM update for the HTC Magic, and as promised it delivers their Sense UI to the Android smartphone.  The company had confirmed back in 2009 that Asian Magic handset would have access to an update, but it seems that all non-carrier-branded devices are now eligible.
"This ROM Upgrade for your HTC Magic will let you experience HTC SenseTM on your phone. HTC SenseTM lets you create a phone just right for you. You can customize your experience to be any way you like. Discover intuitive experiences that make everything you do on your phone effortless and delightful."
Unfortunately it looks like this update won't work for the T-Mobile myTouch 3G, though we'll wait to hear for confirmation from owners about that; HTC's site requires the serial number from your phone before it will allow you to download the new firmware, v3.05.401.3, so as to prevent you from accidentally bricking the handset. Even so, it's a good idea to back up your Magic before you start since HTC warn this update will definitely wipe it completely.  You can download the ROM here. [Thanks Paul!]

Cyanogen Nexus One ROM gets extra RAM access

Arch-modder cyanogen has updated his latest Nexus One beta ROM to include a new chunk of code that should free up more memory in the Android 2.1 smartphone.  The ROM - which you can download here - uses Google code which opens up access to the second EBI memory bank on the Nexus One. Of course, any modification to the standard ROM could do unpleasant things to your Nexus One if you don't install it properly, so attempt the install at your own risk.  And then let us know how you get on in the comments! [via Twitter]

Nexus One multitouch browser ROM hack released

The absence of multitouch on the Google Nexus One has proved a frustrating limitation for many owners - and an arbitrary one, too, since the HTC hardware itself certainly supports recognizing more than one point of touchscreen contact.  Happily what Google won't deliver, hacked ROMs will, and cyanogen has released a hack that enables multitouch in the Nexus One's browser. Actually, it's more interesting than that, as the crafty tinkerer has made sure that his multitouch framework will work not only in the browser but be potentially recognized by other applications.  That paves the way for pinch-zoom and other multitouch gesture support elsewhere across the system - Google Maps, we're looking at you - if developers decide to get their hands dirty and mod them. Installation instructions (and the ROM files themselves) are here; be sure to back up your bookmarks first, though, as loading the hack will delete them and your browser settings.  cyanogen says the mod will be rolled into an upcoming ROM designed for the Nexus One.
1 2 3 4 5 6