So after months and months of waiting, kicking, and screaming from the user base, Sprint has finally decided to provide their EVO 3D customers with a brand spanking new base to play around with. The new official Sprint ROM (base number 2.89.651.2) has been fitted with ICS 4.0.3, Sense 3.6 (as promised), a new radio, HBOOT 1.58, and some new bits and pieces of firmware. As always, this is loaded (and I do mean loaded) with Sprint’s usual bloatware such as Sprint Zone, Nascar, and a few other unremovable (by regular means anyways) bits of Sprint love on the device. After all, nothing screams “we care about our customers” than the bundled Blockbuster app, embedded into the framework with an additional .jar. This rom is an OTA, which means that Sprint is distributing this wirelessly to roms that are capable of receiving the update.
Enough with the formalities about the ROM itself, and lets just go to the core of this article. This is a well known topic as we have covered it before in similar instances. You know, the usual dance where Google announces a new OS, everyone gets excited about promises and ideas and starts looking forward to a reason to hold off on dropping $500-$800 for a new phone (off contract) or for begging the carriers for an early upgrade. Here at XDA, we strive against the inability of the carriers to completely satisfy their customers (us). And because of that, we have had ICS with Sense 3.6 builds for a few months now. Which makes me wonder quite a bit about the entire update. Is it worth having your bootloader relocked just to have to flash buggy software? Yes, buggy software. As it turns out, this new ROM does not have the amount of quality control it should have had for having taken such a monumental amount of time to be released. One such somewhat major bug is Bluetooth, which was either not working or doing so very poorly. Thanks to XDA Forum Member mikeyxda, we now have a fix for this bug. You would think that something like this would have been caught after such a long wait. Lets face it, it was a rather big “opps” considering that Bluetooth is so widely used.
So, what exactly took HTC and Sprint so long? Why did they keep people waiting for this? In previous articles, we had stipulated that perhaps they hold off on upgrades for long enough to not have to explain themselves to the customers as to why they are purposely going against Google’s recommendation about the 18 month promised upgrade. This is not exactly rocket science, albeit you need a good set of skills to whip up a decent ROM. Having said that, developers on XDA probably have far fewer resources than HTC and Sprint, and certainly they don’t have access to most of their “private stuff.” That said, why is it that our site’s devs have the capability to put out better stuff in shorter amounts of time? Oh! I know! HTC has to spend monumental amounts of time and resources because the likes of Sprint and Verizon want them to “protect” the devices and as such, they put in new locked bootloaders so that people cannot fully utilize their devices. How did we arrive at this conclusion? Quite simple actually, we have had Sprint’s ICS with Sense 3.6 leaks on XDA for a few months already. The stock RUU was actually not half bad, and certainly something par to what we see in other stock roms. But aside from the official vs leak factor, there is a major difference between the leak and what we just received from Sprint: a new locked bootloader, which unlike previous bootloader versions, will make your device go on a bootloop if you try to flash the ROM without updating it. In other words, if you want to run Sprint’s latest and greatest, you must update your hboot. Is there any reason to believe that this is necessary for ICS or even for Sense 3.6 to run on the EVO3D? Considering that the leaked build runs perfectly well on ENG HBOOT, I am going to dare say no, there is not.
So, what conclusion do we arrive to from all this? EVO 3D owners just waited for well over a year not for ICS and a somewhat outdated version Sense, but for Sprint’s latest attempt to prevent users from using their devices. So, thank you Sprint for making HTC give us a brand new headache version number 1.58 as opposed to a bug free ICS rom with Sense 4.0. Oh, and just an FYI, Sense 4.0 works fantastically well on our EVO 3D.
Thanks for reading.
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