Windows Phone 7 NoDo roll out still underway: Samsung Focus and Omnia 7 users still waiting

Some Samsung Omnia 7 and Samsung Focus owners are unfortunately still waiting for their Windows Phone 7 Nodo (v. 7392) update notification nearly three months after the the beginning of the update roll-out. Samsung devices have been plagued with update issues ever since the first minor update was pushed in February but this time the delay is caused by the silly carrier scheduling and testing (the update have successfully been resumed for the unbranded Samsung devices nearly a month ago):

Continue reading Windows Phone 7 NoDo roll out still underway: Samsung Focus and Omnia 7 users still waiting →

New Samsung Omnia 7 Firmware available: I8700XXKC1 XXKB2

A new Samsung Omnia 7 firmware has just been leaked a few minutes ago and is available for everybody to download. The I8700XXKC1 XXKB2 is said to include NoDo but not much else is known about it yet. I’ll will try to flash my Omnia 7 device with it in a few minutes a report back to you.
The only downside to this is that the phone will be hard reset so all the personal info (SMS,MMS, installed apps, pictures etc) will have to be re-installed after the rom is flashed.

Update 1: The Firmware is dated March 24th so it’s safe to assume that it probably includes the 7390 version of the OS.

Continue reading New Samsung Omnia 7 Firmware available: I8700XXKC1 XXKB2 →

Samsung Windows Phone 7 update roll out resumed

Microsoft has just resumed the roll out of the Windows Phone 7 Nodo and 7392 security updates for the Samsung devices just a couple of hours after the release of Samsung’s patch for the Omnia 7. As you can see the screenshot above I just received the 7392 update notification. Any Samsung Focus Owner getting the update notification or are the Omnia 7 device’s only affected right now? Please post a comment below to let everybody know.

Continue reading Samsung Windows Phone 7 update roll out resumed →

Samsung Omnia 7 patch released to allow 7392 update

Samsung has just released a patch that is meant to allow the Omnia 7 handsets to correctly install the 7392 security update. We’ve know for a while that Microsoft halted all Samsung Windows Phone 7 updates because of an unknown issue that had to be fixed but this new development most probably means that the roll out will re-start now and that the solution will be provided in the form of this Samsung patch instead of an “updated” package as announced by Microsoft a couple of days ago.

Continue reading Samsung Omnia 7 patch released to allow 7392 update →

WP BENCH Windows Phone7 benchmark released: hands on video

The WP BENCH Windows phone 7 benchmark application that was unveiled on YouTube more than a month ago is now finally available on the Marketplace. The application runs will let you test the following functionalities of your device:

- CPU Single-threaded and Multi-threaded performance
- Memory read/write speed
- Storage read/write speed
- GPU Performance
- Display color reproduction
- Battery Life

Check out the video of the app in action on the Samsung Omnia 7:

Continue reading WP BENCH Windows Phone7 benchmark released: hands on video →

Samsung eBook reader for Windows Phone 7: Hands on video review

As promised by Samsung back in October their Windows Phone7 eBook reader is now available for free to all Omnia 7 and Focus owners in the Samsung Zone section of the Marketplace. The application is relatively similar to the Android version which comes pre-loaded on Most Galaxy S devices and also nearly identical to the Windows Phone 7 Amazon Kindle app released earlier this year. You get access to the Kobo Ebook library so the first thing you’ll have to do is to setup up an account with them (it’s free and can be done directly within the application) and also with Adobe because the app uses their Reader Mobile technology. This wouldn’t be a problem if the app actually saved your password (it has the option to do so but as of right now it doesn’t and you’ll have to re-enter it ever time you download an eBook). Anyway, Samsung did a pretty good job here and has brought up the best alternative to Amazon’s Kindle on Windows Phone 7. Check out my hands on video after the break:

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Microsoft’s update on the Windows Phone 7 update issue

Microsoft has just posted some more information on the infamous Windows Phone 7 update issue affecting the Samsung Omnia 7 and Focus devices. Unfortunately you won’t learn anything new as this whole blog post seems to be a PR damage control statement more than anything else. The company is still claiming that the update has been suspended for Samsung devices even though this isn’t true (yes, my Omnia7 is still getting prompted to update every time I plug it into a PC) UPDATE: My Omnia 7 is finally no loner promted to update.

•90 percent of people who’ve received an update notification have installed the new software patch successfully. (So when your turn to download it arrives, chances are good this will be a non-event.)
•Of the 10 percent who did experience a problem, nearly half failed for two basic reasons—a bad Internet connection or insufficient computer storage space. Luckily, both are easy to fix.

Continue reading Microsoft’s update on the Windows Phone 7 update issue →

Microsoft didn’t pull the February Windows Phone 7 update for the Samsung devices

Just saw a report claiming that Microsoft has apparently pulled the February 21 update for the Samsung devices (Omnia 7 and Focus) because of the issue encountered by many users since the initial release nearly 2 days ago. Ironically I was attempting to update my Omnia 7 again when I came across the story so it kind of seemed strange to me that a Microsoft spokesperson would claim that the update is no longer pushed to Samsung phones when it is in fact not true (as seen in the screenshot above). Microsoft may have stopped the OTA notification push to the handsets that weren’t notified yet but nothing seems to have been pulled at all given that I still get prompted to update to the 7008 rom every time I plug in my device.

Continue reading Microsoft didn’t pull the February Windows Phone 7 update for the Samsung devices →

Samsung Omnia 7 update issue: Don’t try to update your phone and wait for the fix

As you probably already know by now, yesterday’s Windows Phone 7 test update can’t be applied to all Samsung Omnia 7 devices (and Focus too it seems) but there’s nothing to worry about. I’ve tested every possible combination to try to get it to work on my device and so far everything has failed:

1) Freed as much space as possible on the phone.

2) Used several Micro-USB cables

3) Uninstalled and re-installed the Zune Desktop software

4) Connected trough a proxy to grab the update file from another MS server

5) Used another PC

Continue reading Samsung Omnia 7 update issue: Don’t try to update your phone and wait for the fix →

New Samsung Omnia 7 Firmware Rom available and Samsung I7850 Omnia 8 coming soon ?

A new Samsung Omnia 7 ROM has just emerged a few minutes ago for all you brave souls who wish start the new year by doing something risky. There’s apparently two versions of it which are dated November 2010: I8700XENJK1: CS,DE,EN,FR,HU,IT,PL,SL and I8700BSEJK1 : EN,ET,LT,LV,RU,UK (AZ,BG,DE,FR,KA,KK,MK,RO,SR). No word yet on what is new in there or even if it is safe to flash them. But if you are in the mood just head over here to grab the files and the tools need to flash your device. BTW, according to the same website (which has a pretty good track record) there’s a Samsung I7850 (Omnia 8 ) Windows Phone 7 in the making and based on the model number I’m guessing that it will sport a hardware keyboard.

Continue reading New Samsung Omnia 7 Firmware Rom available and Samsung I7850 Omnia 8 coming soon ? →

Samsung Omnia 7 leading the Windows Phone 7 pack in France ?

According to french website monsmartphone.net who allows its users to customize its web page to better fit their smartphone preferences the Samsung Omnia 7 is clearly the win french hearts in front of the HTC Mozart and LG Optimus 7. This obviously doesn’t mean much given that the sample was fairly small (only 1268 readers) and the fact that this obviously doesn’t reflect sales but probably only peoples interest in a particular device. But given that Microsoft and its OEMs don’t seem to be bothered to detail any sales numbers we are probably going to see similar stats popping up everywhere (other stats recently showed that HTC’s WP7 devices where the most popular because of the number of models).

Continue reading Samsung Omnia 7 leading the Windows Phone 7 pack in France ? →

Samsung Focus teardown

TechRepublic cracked the Samsung Focus open to check out its guts and see if there was anything of interest in there. As it was expected the device feature the famous Qualcomm QSD8250 SnapDragon Chipset and the following components (not that the Omnia 7 probably has exactly the same components):

- NEC MC-10170 imaging chip for the 5mpix camera (same as on the Samsung Galaxy S)
- Qualcomm PM7540 power management IC
- Micron OUA98 JW500 TQND
- SiliconBlue Technologies iCE65L04 Ultra Low-Power FPGA
- Avago Technolgies ACPM-5251, 4×5 UMTS Band I & Band V Dual-Band Power Amplifier Module with Integrated Coupler
- Skyworks SKY77336 Power Amplifier Module
- Fairchild Semiconductor FSA9280A USB 2.0 Accessory Detection Switch w/ 28V FET
- SanDisk SDIN4C2-8G 8GB NAND flash RAM
- Qualcomm RTR6285 UMTS/GSM/EDGE cellular transceiver
- This Samsung SWB-B23 Bluetooth IC (same ason the Galaxy S)
- Texas Instruments TPS65023B 6-channel Power Management IC
- Avago AFI037 1512BB
- Atmel MaXtouch mXT224 224-node touchscreen microcontroller (same as on the Galaxy S and the latest HTC smartphones like the EVO 4G, HD7, Incredible, Desire HD etc..)

Continue reading Samsung Focus teardown →

Updated Samsung Omnia 7 and Focus Network Profile application fixes MMS configuration issue

Samsung has just released an update to the Network Profile Windows Phone 7 application for the Samsung Omnia 7 and Focus device that will finally allow owners of unlocked handset to correctly setup up the MMS settings. The tool is now at version 1.9 and available in the Samsung Zone section of the Marketplace.
Continue reading Updated Samsung Omnia 7 and Focus Network Profile application fixes MMS configuration issue →

Samsung Photogram Windows Phone 7 application: Hands-on video

Samsung has just released (or re-released depending on where you are located because the application was apparently up for a few days then it suddenly disappeared from the Samsung Zone) a photo editing application for its Windows Phone 7 devices (the Omnia 7 and Focus). Similar to the LG Stylist app and HTC’s Photo Editor this application lets user tweak the pictures and then either share them on Facebook, Picassa, MySpace, PhotoBucket etcor save the edited photo to the phone. As you will see in the video below the UI is pretty nice looking and perfectly functional. It was developed by TecAce who has already developed many of the Samsung application you found their previous WinMo device and current Android smartphones.Video after the break:

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HTC Desire HD vs Samsung Galaxy S vs Samsung Omnia 7 camera comparison

Time for another camera comparison! This time I’m comparing the video capture quality of the HTC Desire HD versus the Galaxy S and Omnia 7. So how does it look like? Well just take a look at the video embedded after the break. The Desire HD image quality is really muddy and has that trademarked HTC purple tint to it. Framerate is consistent in board daylight (30fps in this video, but it can go as low as 5fps indoors!). HTC just can’t seem to get cameras right. My guess is that they are using relatively low end sensors because there’s no reason why the MSM8255 can’t capture great quality videos and it has been shown that with the WP7 devices that with the same chipset (the QSD8250) in all handsets only HTC couldn’t sustain consistent framerates when encoding videos (compared to Samsung and LG who have it locked at 24fps). The only save grace here is that auto-focus which works without much problem: you can focus anywhere you want while shooting a video just by taping on the screen (similar to when you shoot pictures). Anyway, the best one out of the three here is, in my opinion, the Galaxy S (even though its auto-focus is super slow and sometimes doesn’t trigger at all..) followed by the Omnia 7 which still suffers from abnormally high shutter speeds in outdoors situations (this is why the video looks choppy even though the frame rate is locked at 24fps!).

Continue reading HTC Desire HD vs Samsung Galaxy S vs Samsung Omnia 7 camera comparison →

Get a perfect reading of your Samsung Omnia 7 and Samsung Focus battery life

I was playing around with the Samsung Omnia 7 (and Focus) Diagnosis mode this morning to find out some more information about the hardware but apparently missed something really interesting which was pointed out to me a few hours ago (thanks @anaadoul). You can actually get a perfect reading of your device’s battery life by entering the Battery Status sub-menu (*#2*#) and going to the second page (hit the arrow on the top right) and you should have a table full of info (pictured above). So what does all that mean? Well, turns out that everything is explain in the Windows CE 6.0 documentation available here. This can also be taken as a confirmation that Windows Phone 7 is CE 6 based I guess…

Continue reading Get a perfect reading of your Samsung Omnia 7 and Samsung Focus battery life →

Super AMOLED color banding issue: Microsoft could partially fix it

I just did some more testing and am fairly sure now that everything is rendered at 16bit throughout the OS in Windows Phone 7 (similar to WM5/6). The picture you see above shows the image found in this news posted rendered in the Android browser on the Galaxy S (left) and IE Mobile on the Samsung Omnia 7 (right). Keep in mind that both devices have exactly the same Super AMOLED panel. What is evident here is that dithering is applied to the pictures on Android. All you have to do is move the page around on the Galaxy S to see that it’s activated (the color dithering) when the page is standing still but when you scroll or pan the images will look identical to the ones rendered on the Omnia 7 in IE Mobile. So what I did next is save this particular image and then open it in the picture’s browser where I know that dithering is applied once you start zooming in:

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Samsung Galaxy S vs Samsung Omnia 7 vs HTC 7 Trophy Camera comparison

Here’s a three-way comparison of the Samsung Galaxy S, Samsung Omnia 7 and HTC 7 Trophy cameras. It’s snowing outside so I thought that this would be a really great opportunity to test the camera’s video quality (falling snow = more details to encode = worst outdoors situation possible for a digital sensor = awesome benchmark). Anyway hit the break to first check out a video comparing the Omnia 7 vs the Trophy:

Continue reading Samsung Galaxy S vs Samsung Omnia 7 vs HTC 7 Trophy Camera comparison →

Windows Phone 7 vs Android Browser comparison on the Samsung Omnia 7 and Galaxy S

I’ve just shot a video comparing the browsing experience on Windows Phone 7 and Android with the Samsung Omnia 7 and Samsung Galaxy S running Android 2.2. I’m not really going to go into technical details here (I’ll leave this for my upcoming Windows Phone 7 review) but you will basically see how both OS’s perform when doing simple web browsing tasks. For my part I personally find Windows Phone 7 to be more user friendly and easier to use (I never really liked the fact that you always have to use the hardware menu button to access all the options on Android) but it still lacks some polish and complete landscape support (the UI is totally gone when you rotate your device..) Video after the break:

Continue reading Windows Phone 7 vs Android Browser comparison on the Samsung Omnia 7 and Galaxy S →