[kwlug-disc] How to start with Android?

Khalid Baheyeldin kb at 2bits.com
Tue Sep 25 12:24:56 EDT 2012

On Tue, Sep 25, 2012 at 5:03 AM, unsolicited <unsolicited at swiz.ca> wrote:

> As Khalid has noted in the past, kijiji seems to have a bevy of Android
> capable phones these days.

Yes, that is still valid, I just bought a friend one off Kijiji. Works well.

> I understand, given appropriate hardware, such can be upgraded to ics (Ice
> Cream Sandwich) or jb (Jelly Bean). [Googling on that shows multiple paths:
> stock Android, Samsung updates, other mods - not sure where to start here.]

Not all makes/models commit to upgrades. Policy varies from one maker to
the other. For example, Sony usually upgrades last year's models to the
latest current version. So my Sony Xperia Arc came with Gingerbread, but is
upgradable to Ice Cream Sandwich, which I did. Now, your carrier can delay
things further or decide not to upgrade. The trick is to use firmware that
is "Global" and/or "Generic", or some European firmware. Did that twice on
Sony with 2.3 and 4.0, and works fine.

I've also seen references to cyanogenmod. e.g. on kwlug-disc.
> Simple googling drowns me in material.
> I'm guessing cyanogenmod is what one wants, so go to
> http://wiki.cyanogenmod.com/**index.php<http://wiki.cyanogenmod.com/index.php>and follow the bouncing ball.
> Is this the way to start pulling on this string?

I have not upgraded to CyanogenMod, because Rogers' Sony phones are
bootloader locked, and forbid installing non-Sony firmware. But the phone
is still vastly useful even with Sony's firmware.

[Looking at http://wiki.cyanogenmod.com/wiki/Samsung_Galaxy_S_II:_FAQ,
> looks like some things have a 'Tegra 2 SoC',whatever that is, and so
> cyanogenmod is off the table for these? Where best to go in the
> 'alternative'?]

SoC is System on a Chip.

But that same page lists several model numbers that are supported, so you
can ask the seller what is the model number from Settings -> About Phone.

Or you could stay with the manufacturer/carrier firmware, with a cheaper
handset to begin with, then see if you will change your mind after 6 months
of usage or so. That is what I did, and I am staying with Sony for a while.
Khalid M. Baheyeldin
2bits.com, Inc.
Drupal optimization, development, customization and consulting.
Simplicity is prerequisite for reliability. --  Edsger W.Dijkstra
Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. --   Leonardo da Vinci
For every complex problem, there is an answer that is clear, simple, and
wrong." -- H.L. Mencken
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