Remember that I mentioned Sony Ericsson was hosting a webinar on the 29th? Well, I attended. And though better than the last/first webinar, i am sad to report that there was no mention of the updated ROMs that have recently surfaced, nor was there any mention of any new panels to-be-released in the near future. It was surprisingly just another walk-through of Panels on Xperia going into a little detail on setting up the Sony Ericsson Panel and using the SPB Panel.
Despite increasing reports of cracks in its case and color fading off of the back cover – thankfully I’m only a victim of the later – i believe Xpeia to be the best Windows Mobile device out there. With the functionality of Panels, it can become much more. But lack of panel development has left the xperiance a little dry. C’mon SE! Release some new panels that will do us proud.
So. You updated using a ROM that locks settings for a network other than yours? Like for me, when i updated to the latest ROM on my Xperia using the Vodafone UK ROM since there was no existing Generic UK ROM ROM available, I noticed pretty quickly that though I was able to make and receive calls without problems, but when connecting to GPRS, it failed to connect. Turned out, it was locked to Vodafone.
Here is what you need to do to get your network up and running again. Open IE or any application that connects to the Internet. When it notifies you that it failed to connect and to check your settings, click on the Settings link. Then follow the procedure as detailed below:
First seen on Blue Angel platform, then ported to HTC Touch Pro/Fuze. And now it comes to Xperia!
Thanks to itje at XDA Forums, you can now run Windows 6.5 Pre-Beta on your Xperia using a cooked ROM. No information is yet available on any issues with this ROM and the performance of the Pre-Beta on Xperia, but if you want to give it a try, then go here.
I will post screenshots and more information if i do install this custom ROM onto my Xperia. Keep a lookout.
With Xperia ROM updates surfacing, I just found out that Sony Ericsson is hosting a Live Webinar on January 29th. Though the description of the webinar only detailed it to showcase the power of Xperia and the Panels interface, i wonder if this webinar will be more than just that? Can we expect news on the update, an in-depth review on the changes, and new panels? What do you think?
Update: Generic UK ROM has been updated.
What? ‘Software Update’? Did you read it right?
The answer is YES! After much debate against Sony Ericsson for not releasing any patches or updates since the release of Xperia, we finally have an update coming our way. PavelX1 at XDA Forums is uploading all the new ROMs onto Rapidshare for us to download.
What changes, enhancements, and fixes does this R2 version of the software update include? That is a thing of mystery at the moment. But let’s hope that it is everything everyone hoped for and more!
To download or for more info, go here.
FYI – In case someone is wondering where PavelX1 is getting these updated files from; he reports that he is using EMMA which is an official SE service software for service centers.
Note: The update is also reported to be available via Sony Ericsson Update Service (SEUS).
Update List (Updated Feb 1): Here are some things that i have noticed so far with this update.
Note: Are you satisfied with the ROM update? Do you agree with all the points/improvements i have listed below? Head over here to cast your vote.
Here is the device information before and after the update:
After (Updated to Vodafone UK R2 ROM)
After (Updated to Generic UK R2 ROM)
Xperiancers… want to make a quick and small audio note? Then you are in luck. Thanks you gtrab at XDA Forums for this neat tip.
After you have assigned it to a key, pressing the key will open ‘Notes’ with the Record bar at the bottom. Hit the record button to record your audio note. Or, a better alternative, simply hold the button assigned which will record any audio while the button is pressed and will stop recording when released.
You will notice that “Rec” or “Record” appears in the Programs list. Clicking it won’t do anything. If you find that annoying, simply set the file that you copied into the Programs folder as hidden, which will remove this icon.
One major flaw in this though – the recording is time limited. Ah well, had there be no time limit, that would have been just too perfect! :)
CNetX’s Face Contacts is a really cool-looking contact management utility which integrates directly into the device’s Today screen. Featuring an intuitive 3D interface with kinetic scrolling (iPhone-like), Face Contact allows you to add, remove, or edit contacts without having to switch between different apps and lets you sort by different fields as well as define a custom order in which the contacts appear. You can adjust, replace or remove contact’s pictures, with photo cropping and rotation. Furthermore, you have full control on display settings and 3D rendering options including photo shape, transparency, and reflection effects.
Works perfectly on Xperia! And best of all, regardless of the number of favorite/quick-access numbers you want, the application uses as little screen height as possible! To try it out, go here.
Things are starting to roll and i have to say, i am just lovin’ it! QuadWord released today his second skin for Sony Ericsson Xperia X1’s SPB Panel – one of our most favorite panel on Xperia. QuadWord was the first one ever to release a skin (Arcane) for SPB Panel. If you missed out on that then go here.
With the availability of Smoke, we now have a total of 3 skins to choose from for our SPB Panel and hopefully this count will increase rapidly with more sizzling choices. To download this skin, go here.
Below are a few screenshots of the new sleek lookin’ skin. Best of all – it shows background images in the landscape-submenus! Thank you QuadWord!
And out comes another skin for our most favorite panel, the SPB Mobile Shell Panel. Thanks to Cheekbone at XDA forums for this one, the skin is simple and looks beautiful on the panel. Nice Work Cheekbone!. For more info and to download go here.
Some screenshots of the panel with the skin applied:
Updated on Jan 17! (For those who have TF3D Installed, skip to the end of the post for a TF3D lanscape workaround)
Installing Touch Flo 3D on Xperia
When Sony Ericsson Xperia X1 hit the market, one of the XDA Members released his work on porting the TouchFlo 3D user interface to Xperia X1. Though what was then a lengthy process, now installation of TouchFlo 3D onto Xperia has become as easy as executing a single .CAB file.
In case you are wondering what TouchFlo 3D is, in which case i am wondering where you have been the last couple of months… HTC TouchFlo 3D was introduced with Touch Diamond that gives you touch control over the phone. Use finger gestures to navigate programs, browse the web and flick through the contacts, photos and albums. The most widely-used functions such as e-mail, music and the Internet are only a flick away. Functionality apart, TouchFlo 3D is one of the most beautiful interfaces to hit Windows Mobile since long. You just have to love the weather app!
Anyways… If you want to install TouchFlo 3D onto Xperia then follow the simple steps as detailed below. All credit goes to itje at XDA Forums.
Want it as a Panel instead of the default Today item? Then follow the procedure as detailed here.
That is it! It is really that simple. If you want additional stuff from HTC Touch HD on your Xperia including the HTC Volume Control, Comm Manager, Dialer, and Keyboard then visit the XDA Forum thread here for links and downloads.
TF3D Landscape Workaround
Update: This fix works for the TF3D Panel too. However, it is a tad bit slower for the Panel.
TF3D works wonderfully on Xperia. That is until you switch to landscape mode. Thanks to chalid at XDA Forums, a fix is now available for Touch Flo 3D in landscape mode. And the procedure is simple.
Though not extremely smooth, but works reasonably well. A step in the right direction.
Xperiancers… In my quest to find more applications and games useable with our Xperia, I came across a pretty cool and useful desktop application. Granted that this is not specifically Xperia related, but after having used it a little i felt the need to share and thus this post.
Have you ever wanted to control your phone directly from your PC? Drag files to it, install applications, move pictures, send SMS and even make calls? Then this is the application for you.
Motion Apps’s mDesktop puts your Pocket PC or Smart Phone onto your desktop lets you control it completely. Integrate your phone with your PC and make calls, send SMS messages, and use your phone’s data and applications from your PC’s big screen and keyboard in a comfortable, practical, fun and user friendly way.
The Screen Mirror lets you control your mobile using your Mouse as the phone’s stylus as well as allows you to take screenshots of your screen with ease. The File Browser lets you browse any folder on the device including the Windows folder on the main memory. And the SMS module lets you not only make SMS but print and copy your SMS from the device with ease.
Check out the screenshots below. For more information go here.
Finally! Xperiancers, time to change that SPB Panel’s look’n’feel. QuadWord at XDA Forums has released the first-ever SPB Mobile Shell Panel’s Skin. And it looks good! Hopefully this opens the door to many more skins yet to come. To download go here.
Well Xperiancers… to take my mind off of programming issues and to give myself a break, i decided to change the template of the blog. Alas! I didn’t like most of the templates i came across and the ones i did like didn’t make much sense to be applied to a blog about Xperia. So i ended up designing this new template.
The theme is inspired by an iPhone template that i saw and is my first ever BlogSpot template. Tested on Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Chrome – left menu is a bit off in IE.
Let me know your opinions.
Let’s face it. One minute you have a perfectly working device, the next you don’t. All thanks to an un-trusted software or an application that others said would work with your device even though the compatibility list said otherwise and you just had to try it out.
When it comes to Windows Mobile, Hard-Reset saves you a lot of trouble by simply restoring your device to its factory settings – kind of like re-installing Windows XP or Vista onto your Desktop machine or restoring a Laptop using a Recovery Disk. However nothing comes without a price tag – and in this case though you don’t have to worry about loosing some dough, it is all your data that is lost. From contacts to SMS to emails.
Even if one has their Contacts syncing over the air with Microsoft Exchange along with their email, like me… though they won’t have to worry about backing up contacts or email, not only does one loose all their SMS and photos, as well as files on the internal storage… but doing a hard-reset means re-installing everything (applications and games) that had been installed before. Furthermore, just think of the last level of that surprisingly addictive game that you had finally reached but will now have to start from the beginning…
When it comes to my laptop, i use Acronis True Image to create an image of my hard-disk so that whenever the time comes for a refresh of the OS, i can not only have my OS refreshed but all software installed and ready to be used in one go. So naturally, when i had to reset my Xperia (after a bad case of HTC Home), i began looking at backup programs.
Although i tested a couple of applications including Sprite Backup, Resco Backup, and SPB Backup… the following are the best two choices, in my completely un-professional opinion:
FYI - SPB Backup took approx. 4-5 minutes + a soft reset of the device to complete a full backup of my device – compression level set to ‘Normal’.
If you want to look at alternatives, then other popular backup applications include:
While we wait for the first SPB Mobile Shell Panel Skin to hit the internet, one way to quench the thirst is to get started with changing the background on the SPB Panel.
Thanks to QuadWord at XDA Forums, it is now possible to change the background of your SPB Mobile Shell Panel to your liking.
For more info: click here.
Well Xperiancers, I am sure that you are aware of HTC’s Touch Flo 3D interface that was first introduced with the launch of their HTC Touch Diamond. Though initially buggy and quite lagging in performance, it is no hidden fact that with the release of HTC Touch HD the interface has not only been made compatible with WVGA resolution but also has been improved in terms of stability as well as performance.
I was impressed by the look and feel of HTC Diamond when i first saw it, but for reasons i won’t detail here, i preferred panels over Touch Flo 3D. But to be honest, Touch Flo 3D is more of an eye-candy than Panels – well at least till we get some really awesome looking panels. (COME ON SONY ERICSSON!!!)
Most of you would also know that Touch Flo 3D was ported to Xperia from Touch HD a while back and not only that but is also possible to set it up as a Panel instead of the default Today screen – which is the best combination. If by any chance you were not aware of this, then let me say ‘WAKE UP!!!’ and strongly advice you to visit the XDA Forums thread here.
That said… let me come to the point. A new cool skin for TF3D is now available at the XDA Forums. Though a simple skin that makes the tabs blue and changes the default background, but rather refreshing and more eye-catching than the original look’n’feel of TF3D.
Check out the screenshots below and if you want, then grab the file from here. Best thing is that you just have to execute a CAB file to install this theme. It is as simple as that. :)
You will also find a dialer skin and a communication manager skin. I haven’t tested these two out so if you do and want to share what you think about them, then leave a comment.
The only thing i don’t understand is why he has a white clock while i have a black one… :(
Now if only someone can port the landscape TF3D interface from Touch Pro for use in Xperia in landscape…
Update: WVGA version now released.
Yippee! It is here finally! Unfortunately, not for Xperia, yet. Read on…
ShapeWriter, the award winning keyboard solution for iPhone is now available for Windows Mobile devices (and several other platforms) as well. It’s award winning technology elevates touch screen devices to new levels of usability. Instead of “hunting and pecking” letters, single gestures on a touch keyboard produce an entire word. For example: a stroke that roughly connects the w, o, r and d keys is recognized by ShapeWriter’s intelligent algorithms as the word “word”. Experienced users can write much faster on ShapeWriter than on a conventional keyboard.
ShapeWriter products run in real time on mobile devices and feature advanced editing, automatic formatting and capitalization, error tolerance, misspelling correction, and gesture commands.
ShapeWriter 1.0 on Windows Mobile is a system-wide input method supporting all standard software applications on Windows Mobile and Pocket PC 2003.
I installed the VGA version on my Xperia earlier today, and all i can say is that this keyboard is simply AMAZING! I tried so many words and it barely missed any, and it lets you select from other possible choices in an easy manner if the automatically selected word was not the intended one.
‘But Wait!’, you say? I know i said that this keyboard doesn’t work for Xperia and here is why. It works in Portrait mode, but as soon as you go into Landscape mode and try to open the on-screen keyboard, it goes crazy and Windows reverts back to the original default windows on-screen keyboard instead.
I have already e-mailed the guys as ShapeWriter about this and have also asked if a full WVGA version will soon be available or not. Let us keep our fingers crossed.
To get more info and to try it out yourself, head over to the ShapeWriter Web-site.
Well Xperiancers, the search for additional components and application continues and any chance of getting a new look’n’feel on the device, i jump at it.
And today i came across iFonz.
iFonz is a clone of the iPhone interface with a lot of customizations, a fully graphical design, and animations. Written in .Net, this is by far the best iPhone interface clone i have yet seen on the device.
I have tried out Winterboard but didn’t like it. I also tried the iPhone interface theme for Wizbar Advanced Desktop but that was too buggy and slow at times, plus switching from landscape to portrait or the other way around sometimes required a refresh of the today screen.
Icons can be easily edited/added and can point to any application. Furthermore, you don’t have to find icons for each application as iFonz has the ability to grab the image from the Exe itself.
The only problem i see at the moment is that in landscape mode the carbon bar is not full – finishes before the Music button. But that to me is not at all a let-down.
Some tips though; in iFonz setting disable the Startup Animation as that only takes more time to load the app. Furthermore after you run iFonz, you will notice that the icons are way small. To fix that simply go into the settings and change icon size to 84x84 instead of 42x42. Also turn off the Right-To-Left gesture for loading settings – it is annoying if you slide the screen right-to-left and instead of changing the page it loads the configuration.
Check out the screenshots below and if you want to try it out, then give it a shot. More information here.
Well Xperiancers; I wish you all a prosperous and blissful new year. And on that note, let me warn you: DO NOT install HTC Home on your Xperia.
This weekend while looking for ways to enhance my Xperiance, i was interested in trying out HTC Home after i saw screenshots of a couple of skins for HTC Home over at various sites that claimed them to be compatible with WVGA devices. So i installed HTC Home and HHC (HTC Home Customizer).
But Alas! once the device restarted, it kept on restarting continuously – before the Today screen would load up the device rebooted itself. And this went on without any change.
Fortunately i had SPB Pocket Suite installed which prompted me to boot up in safe mode, but unfortunately i had no idea what key to press to boot in safe made. :)
So… eventually i ended up doing a Hard Reset. Thankfully, for me, all data was backed up to an exchange server over the air so i lost nothing other than a couple of SMSs.
Mind it… after i did do a Hard Reset, i did decide to give HTC Home another shot, thinking that it might have been a problem with installation before. And as expected, the same problem occurred again and i had to hard reset a second time. :)
So if you are thinking of installing HTC Home on your Xperia, make sure to have things backed up just-in-case.
As promised, here is a list of more games that are compatible with Xperia. Enjoy!
VGA Games – But worth checking out!
That is all for now. At-least this time i posted more WVGA games than VGA… :)
Xperiancers! Time to go healthy and get in shape? Then you have to check out the following two applications that’ll help you out to plan and manage your diet and workouts. And best of all, they run perfectly on Xperia!
MyPersonalDiet is the most comprehensive diet and nutrition software for Pocket PC that gives you the tools to reach your weight goal by providing simple means of tracking your food and workouts, monitor your health and get clear assessments of your efforts and results. MyPersonalDiet will not burn calories for you, but it will eliminate any guesswork and help you make the right decisions to reach your objectives. It is also equipped with features to monitor specific nutrients, which is essential for people with food restrictions.
What i like best is that based on your goal, it creates a graph detailing how much calories you need to intake each day and automatically calculates the amount to take or over based on your meal input. It also warns you if your goal in the chosen time-frame is not a recommended plan for one’s health. Check out the screenshots below.
MySportTraining is the premier health & fitness software for Pocket PC designed to track and improve your health & fitness, and to motivate you to exercise to achieve a healthy lifestyle, at a fraction of the cost of some sports equipment or gym membership.
On top of that, it carries the Best Health & Fitness software award for 2008. Check out the screenshots below.