HTC 10 review, poll and giveaway

Hi everybody!

It’s a sunny Sunday evening here, the new week is about to begin and the past week about to close. Big week for me, us at Team Venom as a whole and all those Android FanGirls/Boys. The Hashtag #PowerOf10  (HTC 10) has certainly dominated the minds of quite a few people besides the political satire going on in Germany and the melting polar caps and whatnot. So, I am finishing my day with the things that sum up my week best and share those with you:

First things first, the big “Gimme Gimme”  – go HERE to enter a giveaway for the HTC 10  The give-away is from Androidauthority.com (this is a clean link for those not wanting me getting entries). Or click HERE if you want to help me collect some entries (cheaper than donating to my HTC 10 anyway :p). There’s a really nice review video where you can have a very good look at the actual phone in that link too. (the actual reason I am sharing it besides the givcaway). It has indeed helped me get a good visual impression of a phone I am intending to buy which I wasn’t yet able to check out myself. Enjoy.

There also is a nice little poll on Androidpolice.comLG G5 vs Samsung Galaxy S7 vs. HTC 10 – make sure to head over and bomb that place with your HTC 10 votes 😉 little reminder: have you actually seen our little Google Doc survey on the HTC 10 and Viper? Please do fill it out. Thanks!

Last but not least, I thought I share this Camera shootout Androidheadlines.com has done on the HTC 10 vs. SGS7 vs. Nexus 6P vs. LG G5 – there are two, one for daytime conditions and one for nighttime conditions. Pretty neat comparison images. Thanks for the work I’d say. I liked both very much, particularly because those show how the HTC 10 is catching up with the competition this year – a main point of criticism the past 3 years at least.

Daylight Shootout Nighttime shootout

Have a fantastic new week!

[UPDATE]

Here is another very nice piece by @Verge: Modern phone with familiar design

Will you get the M10?

Multiple Images Leak Of The Unannounced ‘HTC 10’ HTC One M10 Fundraising
Are you gonna get HTC next flagship aka M10

 

Marshmallow Sense 7 ROM released for HTC One M8 – stable

So, after much back-and-forth, it’s finally done. ViperOneM8 has a custom Marshmallow base now. A marshmallow snake is about to bite!

Go check out the download page. ViperOneM8_5.0.0 (anything before 5.0.0 is not Marshmallow!) is what you are looking for.

Requirements:

  • 6.xx based firmware recommended. 6.12.1540.4 US Developer Edition and 6.14.707.1 Asia-TW (no direct RUU link but you could run this and then get official OTA). If you want these firmwares, your phone needs to be GSM, S-OFF.
  • 4.xx Lollipop-firmwares (for example 4.16.401.13) apparently work too, according to Artur’s tests  – however, we have had quite a few issues with older firmwares on the M9 and it will be a very good idea if you actually do the update on the M8  too, just to avoid potential problems. We were not able to observe long-term effects (wakelocks, drain, etc) yet, so, better safe than sorry.

Thank Artur from XDA for this fantastic port job! The Release-Post is here on XDA.

Warnings:

  • No carrier support. We might be adding Sprint, VZW, TMUS, ATT once they receive their own Marshmallow updates. Until then, please have patience, my young padawans! Trying to flash the ROM on those can lead to a device unable to boot further than bootloader or recovery!
  • Firmware: most GSM phones can try to work with HTC’s Developer Edition firmware. It works well for most international users too. This requires S-OFF first. CDMA (Sprint and Verizon in the US) can absolutely NOT flash the Developer Edition firmware, not even with S-OFF! This would possibly break your phone so you have to send it in! Be warned!

 

[EDIT Notes]
  • Had to re-word a few things to try and make things clearer.

HTC Sense Home Update – About ads – what do you mean? And why there is no changelog?

On the 28th October HTC pushed a new update for Sense Home to the playstore.
That most of the times means that some people in our threads panic and want that update, merged with our Mods we add.

I placed several rants on xda already, when that happens. Because most of the times, those people don’t even know what is new in that update.
Is it good or bad, got bugs introduced…or whatever.
As developer I can tell you: Newer doesn’t always mean better!

So lets get back to the Sense Home Update. You may have noticed that there is no new changelog added on the playstore, right its the same as for the last BIG Update.
There we got ugly page indicator and some changes in the theme engine *yaaaawn*.
Well better than nothing?

Let’s check out the new Sense Home Update in detail:

AndroidManifest.xml:

AndroidManifest

The two changes above are just the change of the version numbers and some new htc internal permission.

But what is millennialmedia? See here: The trusted independent leader in mobile advertising

Some millennialmedia code/API was in the old Prism before. Those got added though with the last one:

com\millennialmedia
com\millennialmedia\clientmediation
com\millennialmedia\clientmediation\MediationAdapter.java
com\millennialmedia\internal
com\millennialmedia\internal\adadapters
com\millennialmedia\internal\adadapters\AdAdapter.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\adadapters\InlineAdapter.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\adadapters\InlineLightboxAdapter.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\adadapters\InlineWebAdapter.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\adadapters\InterstitialAdapter.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\adadapters\InterstitialVASTVideoAdapter.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\adadapters\InterstitialWebAdapter.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\adadapters\MediatedAdAdapter.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\adadapters\NativeAdapter.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\adadapters\NativeNativeAdapter.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\adcontrollers
com\millennialmedia\internal\adcontrollers\AdController.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\adcontrollers\LightboxController.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\adcontrollers\NativeController.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\adcontrollers\VASTVideoController.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\adcontrollers\WebController.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\playlistserver
com\millennialmedia\internal\playlistserver\GreenServerAdapter.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\playlistserver\OrangeServerAdapter.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\playlistserver\PlayListServer.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\playlistserver\PlayListServerAdapter.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\utils
com\millennialmedia\internal\utils\CalendarUtils.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\utils\EnvironmentUtils.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\utils\HttpUtils.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\utils\IOUtils.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\utils\JSONUtils.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\utils\MediaUtils.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\utils\ThreadUtils.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\utils\TimedMemoryCache.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\utils\Utils.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\utils\ViewUtils.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\video
com\millennialmedia\internal\video\InlineWebVideoView.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\video\LightboxView.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\video\MMVideoView.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\video\VASTParser.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\video\VASTVideoView.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\ActivityListenerManager.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\AdContainer.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\AdPlacement.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\AdPlacementMetadata.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\AdPlacementReporter.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\ErrorStatus.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\Handshake.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\JSBridge.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\MMActivity.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\MMIntentWrapperActivity.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\MMWebView.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\PlayList.java
com\millennialmedia\internal\SizableStateManager.java
com\millennialmedia\AppInfo.java
com\millennialmedia\BuildConfig.java
com\millennialmedia\InlineAd.java
com\millennialmedia\InterstitialAd.java
com\millennialmedia\MMException.java
com\millennialmedia\MMLog.java
com\millennialmedia\MMSDK.java
com\millennialmedia\NativeAd.java
com\millennialmedia\R.java
com\millennialmedia\TestInfo.java
com\millennialmedia\UserData.java

But hey, that wasn’t it yet. We got more changes:

Changes to facebook ads

fb

Changes to mobpub (MoPub’s ad serving and monetization platform is trusted by thousands of mobile publishers & developers around the world)

mob

Changes to mobile ads:

mobileads

Changes to mraid: (Mobile Rich Media Ad Interface Definitions)

mraid

..and some more changes:

native

WAIT SO MUCH CHANGES AND ADDITIONS TO AD STUFF??

Other changes I catched were that HTC reverted some additions to google wallet and surprise surprise we also got some changes to our homescreen:

launcher

I didn’t dig that hard…but changes to blinkfeed, sense launcher, themeing engine are near to zero.

I really didn’t want to criticize HTC with what they put into that update…just wanted to make clear that just when a new update of Sense Home comes out there’s not always a reason to start bugging us for updating it.

 

[POLL] HTC Aero – Your next HTC Device?

HTC Aero, your next HTC Device?
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HTC One M9 – We are so disapointed! What about you?

So the HTC One M9 is available since about 4 months now.
We are all aware that it got a lot of bad press and reviews even before the official release, and also after.
The camera is behind the expectations, heating and charging issues kept plaguing the device for quite some time… and a bunch of customers received their M9 with broken hardware or it broke soon after.

 

About the hardware issues:

I ordered 4 HTC One M9, one for @m0narx (Russia), one for @shnizlon (Israel), one for @ivicask (Croatia) and one for me (at this point, thanks again for the massive support with these units! Without them, the current development state would have been difficult to achieve or even impossible!)

You can believe it or not: TWO of them where broken on arrival and one just broke a day ago. So 1 of 4 is fine – mine, I wonder for how long!
One of them had a broken power button, luckily I noticed it early enough before I sent it to Ivicask. So I sent it back…received the money back after TEN!!! weeks from @o2de (feel free to tweet them your disgust!).
The micro crack in the screen I unfortunately didn’t notice, so it arrived like that in Russia and we are still trying to get it fixed with the Premium Support of @HTCelevate via @lamiki… 3 months passed here and its finally under review – Pls cross your fingers for @m0narx that it will be fixed (for free).

The 3rd device just broke yesterday, @shnizlon’s unit… The vibration motor died, first he was able to temp fix it by shaking the device, but now it’s completely dead. Sounds like a contact got loose, maybe caused by overheating?

Besides those three devices that arrived broken or got broken, I know 4-5 other guys whose hardware died or arrived dead. 3 of them are in our Beta Tester Team.
One device arrived with a dead Gyro Sensor, for two others the vibration motor died too.
If you check the XDA threads you will find a few more with those issues.. I know of 2-3 cases directly from our thread with broken gyro sensors or vibration.
…and I doubt those are the only cases.
You made similar experiences or know friends that did?

Besides those hardware issues, I think it’s no secret, the M9 sales are far behind expectations, compared to the M7 and M8 sales the past 3 years.
That is also noticeable in the M9 XDA threads and in our download counts for ViperOneM9. The community size is like 70% smaller compared to the M7 and M8.

 

The M8 and M9 downloads compared:

On June the 28th on the HTC One M8 we released the 1.8.0 version.
The OTA got downloaded over 5.000 times.

Now on the HTC One M9 with the 3.5.0 Version on July the 19th we got about 1.000 downloads…bummer

Two months later on the M8 we already had over 10.000 downloads…the community continuously increased there, fast.
Doubt we will have such a user base on the M9 after a year…before the M10 drops…actually I’m sure it will never come close the the 10.000 downloads.
On the M8 we currently have nearly 30.000 downloads for the 4.3.0 version..I’m happy when we hit 5.000 downloads after a year on the M9 =/

 

My wishes for the next flagship, the M10:

I really hope HTC will have more success with the M10 next year and won’t get bad press from the very beginning. I think a proper camera, maybe a slight design change compared to the M8/M9 and trying getting the bezel a little smaller or completely getting rid of it would definitely help to get HTC back on track with its next flagship.

 

Why I will always stay with HTC:

In my opinion there’s really no real competitor in terms of design and body material quality. Also HTC Sense is the best UI out there, still, imho always was and hopefully always will be. Before I will move to Samsungs ugly plastic phones and it’s crappy touchwiz UI I rather get back to my Nokia 3210 and port ViperOne to it.

 

What are you thoughts about the M9, what are your wishes for the next flagship and why would you always stay with HTC or why would you consider a different manufacturer?

[POLL] Are you S-OFF?

Are you S-OFF?
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  • - ( 362 votes )
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Sunshine S-OFF 3.0 – No S-Off yet? Hurry before it’s gone

I am sure you all have heard about SunShine S-OFF. No? OK. Here’s the thing: when you unlock your bootloader on HTCDev.com to flash our most awesome custom ROM, you actually only unlock 3 partitions out of 47: Boot (the Kernel), Recovery and System. All others are either writeable by default (like Data) or still locked behind what HTC calls “Security”. That security can be ON or OFF. HTC won’t allow you to set it fully off.

In order to make your life easier and flash firmware without hassle, or cross flash e.g. international firmware to your AT&T device to fix the “no sound in calls” bug, or for fixing those cursed Sprint units which simply refuse to take custom ROM’s properly, you want your device security to be “OFF”. Or short: you want your phone “SunShine S-OFF”. For that, you need that hack.

[EDIT]

Due to the same questions appearing over and over again on Facebook and XDA, here is a quick incomplete list of what you can do with S-OFF:

  • Flash firmware without relocking and returning your device to stock in a quick process.
  • Cross-Flash firmware or “unbrand” devices – like flash WWE to AT&T
  • Set your bootloader back to original “LOCKED” state instead of the official “RELOCKED” state which tells service centers that you unlocked
  • If you use sunshine to do the first-ever unlock on your device, HTC will NEVER know what you did. Use HTCDev ONCE and they record your IMEI and pass it on to their service contractors – so even if you changed to LOCKED state, they would still know.
  • Use ANY RUU to fix your messed up device (exception: no cross-flashing between GSM/CDMA!!)
  • Fully convert your device between variants like to Google Play Edition or from TMUS to ATT or whatever. Just keep in mind: GSM to CDMA and vice versa is NOT possible!
  • Some people like to experiment with different radios to improve their battery life and reception.
  • Some people like to flash different splash screens.
  • Some people enjoy modified hboots so the red text goes away (we DO NOT recommend this though!).
  • I am sure there is more but i think you get the idea…

Now, the most awesome crew around legendary Beaups and jcase has worked hard to fix their hack (which they currently call “SunShine S-OFF”) to achieve this Security OFF thing again, after HTC had worked hard to take it away from us (there was no way to S-OFF a KitKat M8 or M7 for quite a while). Now is the time. They finally succeeded. You can set your device free again!

But be sure to know this: HTC will be right at it and try to identify the exploit those guys use and patch it up if they can. So, if you want it, get it before the next HTC OTA rolls out.

Here is their XDA presence: http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2792487

Here is their official Website: http://theroot.ninja/

SunShine S-OFF is the most basic thing we need in our HTC community. Without it, many many things would be quite impossible and even custom ROM’s like ours would be harder to develop, harder to maintain and harder to flash in some instances. So, if you have any doubts about the pricetag: please trust me when i say its well deserved, well earned and definitely worth it.

VenomHUB: Fix for no sound during calls on HTC One M7

For about two weeks m7 users suffer under a serious bug that was introduced with a google play services update.
That bug causes that you will have no voice during calls. Neither you will hear anything, nor your call partner.
The issue was discussed on several pages the last days in ViperOne M7 thread, but also in several other threads on xda, other forums or blogs
Not just ViperOne was is affected, but all custom roms and also stock none rooted roms…so actually everyone.

The bug was confirmed by HTC a few days ago and started rolling out OTA’s to fix the issue.
For WWE users the fix was included in the 6.09.401.11 base already.

In VenomHub you can find now the fix, pulled from the 6.09.401.11 ota under Addons->Hotfixes.

Or download it here

M8 Harman / Kardon Edition Mod now on HUB

Ever since HTC and Sprint introduced their “Harman / Kardon Edition” phone, the regular HTC One M8 buyers felt a little, well, cheated on.

Didn’t HTC claim the HTC One M8 was the ultimate audio experience when they released the regular M8? Something like that? I don’t exactly remember their phrasing but it was something along those lines. Now they call their Harman / Kardon Edition phone the “unmatched audio” thingy…

Well, anyhow. I DID feel cheated on. I like my music and I like a phone to sound like a good music player and not like a plastic box with speakers that make noise on the table. So. Now HTC released a Harman / Kardon M8 which is better than what i had just paid 600 Euro for. Hmm.

I talked to HTC directly, think on twitter it was. Been a while ago. I asked them this: is the Sprint Harman / Kardon Edition featuring any different hardware, or is it only software that changed?
I was curious because HTC said the Harman / Kardon Edition was capable of 192KHz/24bit high-resolution audio, which the regular M8 was not. They must have put in a better DAC (Digital-Analogue Converter), right? Or so I thought. Turns out, they use the same DSP (Digital Signal Processor) on all variants, because the DSP is part of the SnapDragon 801 SoC. Its called “Hexagon DSP” (another link of what the Hexagon is capable of) by Qualcomm. And guess what: it’s always been capable of high-resolution audio. The Harman / Kardon Edition just has the feature unlocked!

Oh can you imagine my joy. Of course, knowing this, exchanging the DSP firmware should do the trick. Baadnewz and Ivicask began to experiment with that idea when the first Sprint Harman / Kardon Edition Software/Firmware dropped. They together with Lyapota quickly determined a number of ROM files that needed to go along with the ADSP firmware image to make it work on the regular M8.

Guich and me got back into the game a little while later, when I realized that going back to BoomSound was kind of, well, complicated. I realized some people wanted to switch back and forth but had no easy solution except dirty flash their ROM. So I thought we do an Aroma based switcher, after we had to ditch the idea of making it a toggle in tweaks (overly complicated).
Originally, I didn’t pursue my idea of the firmware exchange any further. I hadn’t managed to get my device S-OFF, which is an absolute must. But then I got S-OFF and we started digging into the mod to create the switcher. By now it’s in its third generation and has gotten more complex, due to HTC making it more complex. The main feature, HD Audio playback, now also needs a changed Kernel. The switcher alone will only enable the software functions of the Harman Kardon phone like Clari-Fi and LiveStage, but without the supporting kernel, there will be no LossLess high-resolution audio.

So, the Harman/Kardon phone can now be downloaded from Venom HUB. It comes without the special headphones though. Those didn’t fit through the line. But you can buy them over at www.harmankardon.com, they will ship in a parcel.

I am very glad I can announce this switcher now to support Android 4.4.4 (Yes, it took a long while) and i have to say thanks to all those great helpers and developers over on XDA, where it all started: http://forum.xda-developers.com/htc-one-m8/development/mod-harman-kardon-conversion-htc-one-m8-t2827439

You can download The Switcher here and on our HUB. It is not only ViperOneM8 compliant – it also supports every other GSM and CDMA HTC One M8 out there (theoretically – not sure about the exotic variants – try for yourself) and could even be used to convert the real Sprint Harman / Kardon Edition to HTC BoomSound 😉