From what I’ve observed with the Samsung i8510 Innov8, it is apparent that Samsung will continue to produce updates for the i8910 up to at least the end of 2010. That’s really promising considering that many people thought the i8910 had reached the end of its life cycle and it had been left out in the cold.
So, the question is, what are they going to be doing in this time? Fixing bugs only? From my meeting, it appears as if the features are generally permanent and they may consider implementing only a few of the proposed suggestions from the report. Adding kinetic scrolling was quite a leap, it was never described as a feature on the phone but they decided to add it to enhance the devices functionality. What else is in store for the next couple of months?
Samsung has failed to deliver
Before we go into the updates, it is now apparent that Samsung has failed to deliver the official update on time. They said in their press release that:
“The firmware update will be available from January 2010 in the UK and gradually rolled out to other European markets, Southeast Asia, the Middle East Asia, Africa and rest of the world.”
According to information that I got from i8910 owners around the world, the update has not been released anywhere.Versions of the firmware that have the features described as coming in the ‘big’ update i.e. kinetic scrolling, improved web browser and new graphics engine are available from websites such as http://samsung-firmware.tk/. The owners of this particular website claim to have firmware that comes directly from Samsung. Whether the firmware they have is in beta form or whether it’s the final release remains a mystery.
I get the impression that Samsung produced the press release prematurely in an attempt to calm the storm caused by the petition(which now has almost 3800 signatures), the report, the phone calls and the emails that users sent to Samsung in their respective regions.
The probable reasons for the delay are the bugs and stability issues. I’ve installed the version i8910XXIL5 on my i8910 and I’ve noticed pretty much all the problems I noted in version i8910XXIL3 in my video are still present. An even more recent firmware i8910XEJA1(also available from http://samsung-firmware.tk/), dated January 2010 was also released but no significant differences have been noted in that either.
Update problems: Phone not supported etc..
Many users have resorted to using firmware that was not meant for their devices; firmware from different regions. Each device contains some key that is region specific. When you connect your phone to PC Studio to check for updates, you may get an error saying that “the device connected is not supported”. This may be because the firmware on the device and the region information are conflicting. Custom firmware also has that same result since it’s made up of several components from different builds. This may not always be the case however. To ensure that your device is ready for the update, you should get this message when you select the phone software update option:
If the firmware you’re using does not produce the window above but gives some error, then the firmware and hardware may not be working together in completely harmony. The technical manager at Samsung said you may actually lose some functionality/performance as a result of the mismatch.
Again I must emphasize that Samsung will continue making updates and ironing out bugs for at least the next 12 months. They failed to meet the date they promised but we can rest assured that something will eventually come after they sort the problems out. The phone is stable and it works as it should in its current state no matter which firmware you have, as long as it was officially released.
We likely to see more awesome updates especially since the report is out there with them and they know what we want.