Upgrading to Android 2.1

I recently upgraded my phone from Android 1.5 to 2.1.  From a user standpoint, there isn’t a huge difference in terms of functionality, at least considering what I use and what my phone supports.  It looks different, especially the lock screen.  Voice input can now be used in several places, just about anywhere the on-screen keyboard can be used.  Apps seem to run faster, although I didn’t think to run an objective test before upgrading.

The upgrade process itself, however, was a pain.  I would like to point out that this is a Sprint issue, not an Android issue.

  • First of all, a program must be installed to flash the firmware, and it only runs on Windows.  As a Linux user, this is a very annoying but common problem.  Thankfully, I kept the manufacturer-installed version of Windows on my laptop available under dual-boot for just such an occasion.
  • Reboot, reboot…  I had to uninstall the USB driver and the previous upgrade installer.  Then I had to reboot, install the new upgrade installer, reboot again, then run the upgrade installer.  I actually had to find this out through experimentation because after following their instructions, the software wouldn’t connect to my phone.  Come on Sprint, this is 2010!  I shouldn’t have to uninstall old software and reboot multiple times.  Again, annoying, but common.  Reboots are a fact of life in Windows.  (In fact, my laptop often automatically installs updates and reboots when I boot into Windows, causing it to load Linux, my default in GRUB, if I’m not at the keyboard to catch it.  A few versions back, Windows got better about not rebooting so much for updates, but now it’s bad again in Windows 7.  But I digress…)  It was very telling that the software is listed in Add/Remove Programs under “Your Company Here”.
  • The upgrade erases everything.  All installed apps, all settings, completely wiped out.  Even if they’re not savvy enough to upgrade the OS without nuking everything, the least they could do is record which apps are installed, then afterward search the market and reinstall them automatically.  This is by far my biggest problem with the upgrade process.  The last time I upgraded, I lost one of my favorite apps because it disappeared from the market.  Re-entering all my settings is a pain, too.

In summary, Android 2.1 is good, and Sprint upgrade software is abysmal.

Post a Comment

Your email is never shared. Required fields are marked *