Sunday, 8 August 2010

Andoird 2.1 upgrade

I have T-Mobile G2 (aka HTC Hero).
I bought this phone round about October 2009; it had Android 1.5.
I kept hearing that we'll get an update to the firmware which had many benefits along with performance improvement. The first upgrade was supposed to be 1.6, but it got delayed, then delayed again, then further delays.... until Android 2.1 was out.
Personally, I was looking forward for the upgrade mainly for three reasons:
1- "Hoping" the new release will support Arabic
2- Performance
3- Battery life

On Saturday 10 July 2010, I received a pop up on my phone to upgrade the firmware; having waited for so long, I was so glad to see that prompt; it downloaded with no problem, but failed to install; basically, part of the setup was to reboot the phone (automatically), once rebooted, I got exclamation mark inside a triangle, and nothing happens.... the only way to get the phone back to remove the battery and put it back in.
I left it for a week hoping I'll get the prompt again, but nothing...
I called T-Mobile support (a week later, on 17/07/2010), they suggested leave it till the end of the month, as I should get the prompt again, and it should work....
A week later (24/07/2010), I got the prompt again, and exactly the same thing happened as the first time.
I called support again, ... they suggested many things, and I tried them all, and nothing worked. even a factory reset, didn't work.

On HTC website the T-Mobile section, was providing ROM version was, which I already had (the exact version) on my mobile.
Being so desperate to get the upgrade, I downloaded it and installed on my phone (even though during the installation it said you don't need to install this if you already have it). It installed with no errors.
I got the prompt to upgrade again, and this time, it took longer, but at the end I had Android 2.1 :)

After the upgrade, I had an issue with Facebook HTC Sense and Google Contacts sync. The issue was, some of my Google contacts not appearing on my phone, some were, but without their Facebook "thumbnail" image showing next to their name.
WARNING: I didn't mind removing all my contacts, as I just got the firmware upgraded after a factory reset on the phone. Don't attempt this on your phone!
I got it resolved by deleting Facebook for HTC Sense deleted from the phone (Menu -> Settings -> Accounts & sync -> Facebook for HTC Sense -> Remove account), and on Facebook, I went to Application Settings, and deleted the HTC Sense application, then I re-added them (on the phone and on Facebook), and left it.
That fixed it for me, but I didn't see any change till the next day.

- Performance was a lot better, response time, etc..., having experienced the slowness, it's really nice to see that improvement.. it felt like it's a new hardware.

- Unfortunately, still no Arabic support, which is odd. If you browse a web page with Arabic contents, you'll see squares.... iPhone, Blackberry and many others come with Arabic support as default. Not having this support in Android, is a really drawback for Android.
Honestly, I didn't expect Android not to support Arabic by default. If I knew that it didn't support Arabic, I would have second thoughts about buying the device.
To read more about Arabic Android issue, click here...

Many have Arabic support on Android, but they rooted their phone, something that void the warranty! Why would someone want to void their warranty for something not available in Android phone, but is available on most other platforms ?

- Battery life, I didn't any notice improvement as I still have to charge roughly every 24 hours, maybe it's down to my setup and applications that I have running.

Overall, many major improvements from Android 1.5 to 2.1, mainly (for me) the response time..., but lacking Arabic support (still), is a major drawback.