5 Minute Posts About Something Cool: Throwback Episode
Previously on “5 Minute posts about something cool” we took a look at radio on Android. Today, we’re going to do a “throwback” episode and taking a look at a brave developer who opted to apply his skills to some older hardware.
With all the hype surrounding modern Android smartphones today, I thought it might be nice to take a look at development still being done by developers on legacy hardware, even though many have left to work on newer devices that more and more people will need their skills for every day. Our good friend D Two from XDA DEVELOPERS has been taking on exactly that challenge by continuing to support newer versions of Android Gingerbread and Ice Cream Sandwich for the proverbial HTC Blue Angel with a project called PXA DROID.
PXA Droid is probably the most complete Android solution for the blue Angel. While it isn’t quite complete, D Two does frequent updates on it and is quickly making progress to complete the project. According to the official thread on XDA DEVELOPERS, things currently working include the screen, infrared port, WiFI, Sound, Bluetooth, Power, Phone, 32MB Flash Storage, Buttons, LED Lights, Touchscreen, Card slot, keyboard, backlight, button/keyboard backlight, and the rumbler. D Two has acknowledged some problems with the sound, keyboard backlight, and phone (something about GPRS). The camera and suspend/resume function are nonfunctional, which can be a real killer for trying to just use the phone for day to day tasks (atleast the suspend/resume anyway).
D Two writes in the thread that he still wants to work on the Bootloader, NAND Chip Driver, Optimizing the WiFi driver, USB charging, LED Blinking, “init.rc”, the “battery workaround”, “OpenGL”, and the W100 Lib. According to the thread, donations have even been received from a few kind souls including kuapo, Fiona Bennet, Atakan Yilmaz, and Swiss420 when this was written.
In any case, if you have a Blue Angel and want something interesting to try with it, I’d strongly encourage you to check out the thread over on XDA DEVELOPERS. Even if you don’t have a Blue Angel, it’s a pretty interesting read and worth looking at for the developer who has enabled even the humble Blue Angel to run all our favorite modern smartphone OSes.
Until next time,
Yea, I loved my earlier devices too, but there was a reason why we moved on.
I still have most of them and they work, but I am not looking to go back to them anytime soon.
I want to continue to move on, not back. Maybe this guy should take on developing for some newer devices.
Would Love to see my Dell Streak 5 get some more attention before it lands in the used box near the end of this year.
It’s still fun to try. If you have those older devices sit there and depreciate, why hold onto them? Projects like this give us something to do with those devices, and I think the developer is good where he’s at working on that. For all you know, it might be all he can afford (although by the looks of his signature, he seems to do some work for the HD2 as well, which is a very new device), and now he can say that he did what they said would never be possible by porting all modern smartphone OSes to the BlueAngel. More for the “achievement unlocked” or “trophy awarded” value than as a practical “daily driver”.
But if you still think he should pursue developement of something else, let him know in the forum thread.
I agree that the HD2 is a worthwhile project.
But I was dreading pulling out the 8125 to give it a spin on something new.
The reason I kept the 8125 was, I would only have gotten back less than 1/3 of what I paid for it if I sold it. And I was almost hoping a project like this might come along.
But today, I would like to advance my knowledge of Android as it looks like I might stick with this OS through my next device. Maybe a project like this would help me, but it also might distract.
I don’t want to belittle anybody’s efforts on their projects. More power to anybody who tries to do a little more. And I retract any comment I said that said otherwise.