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.”
The Samsung i8910 was announced at the Mobile Wold Congress2009 and officially launched around the world some time in May 2009. At the time it was announced, it was not short of innovation. Being the first mobile phone to boast a 3.7″ AMOLED display, first Symbian phone with a capacitive screen, first mobile phone to support OpenGL ES 2.0 and the first mobile phone with HD video recording. Add to that an ARM Cortex-A8 600 MHz processor with a Hardware Graphics Accelerator, 256MB RAM, an 8 Mega pixel camera and a compass just to mention a few of the highlights. Some of these features are the same as, if not better than the features seen in mobile phones that have been launched lately. Continue reading Can’t Samsung Re-Launch the i8910 Omnia HD?
I recently read this article, on the MOTO labs website, for a DIY touch screen test for capacitive touch screen phones. So, I decided to put the i8910 to the test to see how it compares to the others and this was the result, click on the image for a better view:
I’ve prepared a video to give you a preview of the upcoming update. The firmware is not final, it still has a few issues to be ironed out but it does give you an idea of what’s to be expected. I’ve also included a few apps from Samsung Mobile Innovator and Imagination Technologies PowerVR SDK. All these are freely available for download. So far, these demos are as close as we can get to the full power of the i8910, and that’s a lot of power. I’ve also added an extra video with a preview of Symbian^4 running on the i8910 courtesy of AAS from The Symbian Exchange and Exposition SEE 2009.
Short demo of upcoming update and a bit more
(Updated) You can download qt demos from qt demo website. To get Qt to run on the i8910 you need to install the following files:
Some of these apps take a while to install because they consist of several applications. You will need to accept a bunch of things many times when installing…maybe 20 prompts, I lost count 🙂
Check out some Symbian^4 action on the i8910. As this runs right on top of Symbian, since Qt is a UI framework, we may see it coming later on. The demonstration starts around 40 seconds into the video. Courtesy of AAS.
So, Samsung has announced that they are releasing an update for the i8910. That’s shortly after I released the final report to them and a month after the petition started. The press release says this:
SEOUL, Korea – December 23, 2009 – Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., a leading mobile phone provider, today announced a firmware update to the Samsung I8910 HD (OMNIAHD, GT-I8910) to further improve the speed of multimedia performance and add new functionality to the device.
The I8910 HD is Samsung’s ultimate multimedia powerhouse with high definition, giving users full-touch control of their multimedia lives. The new firmware improves the user experience by delivering faster Web browsing, an improved graphics engine and enhanced full-touch screen experience:
-Webkit update: A faster user-interface when online, for swift navigation of your favourite websites
-Graphic engine: An improved graphic engine, increasing the speed to access the multimedia content
-Kinetic scrolling: The addition of a kinetic scrolling system provides a superior full-touch experience
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.
To a greater extent, this is a good thing. This may be the start of more updates to come and most importantly it shows Samsung is listening. The disappointing thing here is that they didn’t mention anything about the camera which is one of the greatest problem areas. A substantial part of the report covers the camera very extensively and they didn’t bother to look into that. On the other hand, maybe they didn’t feel inclined to mention every detail of what they cover in the upcoming update.
Another big point that was left out is support for the device. Support in the sense of people developing apps tailored for the i8910 and its capabilities. This issue is pretty much out of Samsungs hands. It’s up to developers and companies in the industry to get on board. The only way they can get on board is if there’s a real incentive. With support for Symbian dwindling coupled with the problems the i8910 has, there is no incentive. The i8910 just isn’t exciting or popular enough. At the end of the day, it comes full circle right back to Samsung. From media response though, people are still interested in the i8910 so there’s hope for something better. Follow the links for the official release from Samsung and the articles from the press.
Report on the i8910 v3 Yes the report is up, better than ever before! It took hours so feel free to dive in and enjoy!!! 7421 words, 38 images and countless hours of work! Coinciding with 2000 signatures signed! Here’s a screen cap of a few pages:
A few corrections have been made, some people picked up a few typos and stuff. This is the last report. The journey ends here.. I’ve worked really hard to deliver on this report but now I have to move on to other things. Three weeks in the making and countless hours of work. I really hope this pays off, I put my heart and soul into it. At the end of the day, the situation is out of my hands, its up to Samsung. I will continue to update on the progress the report has made but unless something really big happens, this report is final. Thanks to everyone for the support, it has been a great journey and learning experience for me.
So here’s the press coverage so far for the petition and report:
Yup, the petition and reports are all over the place too, like Twitter, Digg, Facebook etc and the stories from the above have been recycled by several blogs. So for now, that’s what I’ve done with the first 3 weeks of my summer amongst other things.. Gotta keep it moving!
Version3 of my report is almost complete. This time around I’ve made several changes and corrections and I’ve also included a change-log to show all the changes I’ve made. I’ve taken more contributions from the community as well so the report is slightly longer and yet easier to read. The special thing about this report more than any other is that I will be submitting it when the petition signatures reach 2000 AND I will be submitting it directly to a top figure at Samsung who contacted me after my first report came out.
An update to my previous article on my i8910’s white screen of death: I’ve taken it back to the retailer and they said I should expect it back in 3 weeks. That basically means I’m not getting it until after the holidays and that really sucks. Someone else had the exact same problem as me in the forums so we might be seeing more white screens of death soon!
All that glitters…sometimes has bugs
With the recent announcement of the new Gold Edition of the i8910 it is hoped that new firmware will come, but who knows?
I haven’t seen shots of the phone from behind but I’m guessing it is going to have a similar to the back panel to those on early models seen in February when the phone was announced.
In an unfortunate twist of events, my i8910 is dead! Yup, it showed the white screen of death (wsod). I’ve Googled it, searched several forums and stuff but I’ve found nothing – nothing that even closely resembles it. I’m assuming I bought a faulty device but it has worked flawlessly for the past 2 months or so; so sad after my petition and reportL. But never the less I will continue my efforts and return the phone for repairs or whatever tomorrow.
I was in the middle of a phone conversation when the screen just went all white; a stained sort of white. As I touched the screen I could hear the sounds and feel the vibrations, meaning that everything else was and is working. I’ve tried everything, switching the phone off then on, checking for updates, syncing, hard reset, soft reset, taking out the battery, leaving in on, leaving it off and nothing stillL. Leaving it on the charger it starts to heat up like crazy and I don’t want to leave it there for too long to find out what happens. Here are some screen shots:
Really sad for me… I’ve switched back to my trusty innov8, I used it to capture these horrific images and it did a decent job really. Hopefully my i8910 will be back by Christmas, but knowing the retailer, that’s not likely…
Update1: I took it back to the retailer and I’m waiting for repairs to finish. I’m still not sure what the problem was/is I’ll have to wait for an update from them. Hopefully I’ll get it shortly after Christmas.
Update2: According to the retailer its the result of physical damage! I quote:
Change LCD as screen was damaged due to Impact.
Worse still, it’s not covered under warranty and I have to pay $150 to fix it! Ouch. That’s a quarter of the price of this phone! Double ouch.