Saturday, 10/1/2011 9:44 PM
by Peter Kuhn
Update 2011-11-17: A recent update for HTC phones is confirmed to fix the issue for the Trophy (firmware 2250.21.51002.161), Mozart (firmware 2250.21.51007.401) and HD7. The last remaining phone model affected (that I know of) is the Dell Venue Pro.
When I connected the Samsung Omnia 7 I mainly use for development and testing to Zune today, I received a notification that (yet another) Samsung update was available. I had updated the device to Mango very early already, and received a firmware update back then, so this was kind of unexpected. After installing the update, the newly reported firmware version on the phone is 2418.104.22.168. Curious about what has changed with this update, I ran a few tests, and the most satisfying finding was that this update has fixed the UDP bug I have posted about a few days ago. But wait, there's more!
Fixed UDP Bug
As you may recall, sending UDP packets from the phone looked something like this, even after updating to Mango RTW:
Instead of sending messages at the desired interval of one second, the phone sent at ~1.2 second intervals, and inserted multiple messages at once to keep up with the desired rate. Things stayed as bad when you lowered the rate: the phones kept sending at that ~1.2 second interval, which means you received 12 datagrams simultaneously at that rate, instead of a continuous "flow" of messages:
After applying the update, the new data with the very same setup looks like this (for 1,000 milliseconds):
And like this for 100 milliseconds:
Ahhh, ohhh… now that is something we can work with! This really made my day, and you should keep an eye on more information about why and how I needed this to work surface here in my blog in the next weeks ;).
Tap Focusing for the Camera
After I tweeted about the update, Rene Schulte asked me to check whether the camera now supports tapping to focus a certain spot on the viewfinder – and it sure does! Apparently this is another newly supported feature by the update. Rene uses this feature in his Pictures Lab app, and now Omnia 7 users can benefit from that too :).
I also found that now the Compass and combined Motion API are supported by the device. I cannot tell if this is a result from the recent firmware update or the one that was installed when I updated the device to the final version of Mango a few days ago. Fact is that these APIs did not work with the developer beta of Mango on the device before (Motion.IsSupported always returned false).
Apparently, some of the new features of Mango need to be backed by the hardware vendors and the device firmware, with updated or improved drivers. Updating the operating system to Mango alone wasn't enough for some of these features to work correctly. I'm glad the Omnia 7 received that needed update in such a timely manner, and I'm confident HTC will release similar updates for the Mozart (that showed the same UDP behavior) soon.