Rating: Includes code for ZTE Androids like Racer and Blade
It’s very difficult to predict the implications but GoMo News made the totally unexpected discovery that Chinese handset giant, ZTE, has been quietly releasing the Éclair source code for a number of its Android handsets. The list includes several handsets which are readily available in Europe including the ZTE Racer and Blade models. These are highly competitively priced handsets which should now be upgradeable from Android 1.6 (Donut) to 2.1 (Éclair). It’s now just a question of tracking down the instructions.
GoMo News stumbled upon this revelation whilst searching ZTE’s (English language) web site. ZTE’s highly efficient UK public relations operation told us that this was the first they’d heard of it so we may have stumbled on some kind of scoop.
The whole situation arose while we were experimenting with transferring apps from one Android handset to another. The models in question were a Motorola Dext running version 1.5 to a ZTE Racer (kindly loaned to us for use on the 3 UK network).
The app used to perform this transfer is My Backup Pro from RerWare. Incidentally, why is it still only possible to purchase apps on Android Market in the UK via a credit card?
Talk about artificially restricting the client base. And don’t mention Paypal because it isn’t a bank and therefore isn’t covered by government financial regulations in the UK. So it can do whatever it likes with your money.
Anyway, the outcome of transferring absolutely all the apps from the Dext to the Racer was that the Racer got stuck in an infinite loop.
When started, all the poor thing can now do is display the message, “The process android.process.acore has stopped unexpectedly. Please try again.” Forcing a close doesn’t work.
The obvious solution is to force some kind of factory reset. Searching through the user manual didn’t produce any solutions, so the next logical step was to trawl the ZTE handset support site.
Some of the other handsets for which ZTE has released Éclair code include the Link (which appears to be sold in France); the N600 which appears to be sold in Mainland China; the T2 from Taiwan Mobile and the X850 and X876 models.
Incidentally, if you download the Éclair source code you end up with a .tar file from the zipped file. So now all we need is for some nice reader to explain how to load that file onto the Racer and perform the upgrade.