"Froyo" for Telechips devices - is it pointless?

Discussion in 'Telechips TCC8902 Development' started by OffWorld, Feb 2, 2011.

  1. OffWorld

    OffWorld Senior Member

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    I'm sitting here with a Haipad M701-R running Android 2.1 "Eclair." It's functional so I should be happy with what I've got right? Then again who ever is?

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe there are only two Android 2.2 "Froyo" roms available for this tablet, the "Team Telechips" one and the "Official" one. Neither of which is completely functional. This was understandable at first because Telechips had not released source code, but it feels like nothing more has been accomplished since the source code became available either. The "official" 2.2 testing rom was released 8 December 2010 and it sounds like it has a lot in common with the Team Telechips build which is still in development as well - and I've heard nothing yet about either of them being ready for daily use or enabling the missing features.

    It's also a bit hard to ignore that the last official firmware releases from Haipad have all been for the 4 GB tablets, not the 2 GB like I have. This gives me little confidence that if/when a fully functional Froyo rom is released that my tablet will even share in the joy.

    In the meantime we've had an official Android 2.3 "Gingerbread" release from Google and the blogosphere is alive with posts about the Android 3.0 "Honeycomb" preview release already running on a Nook Color with hardware acceleration, sound, wi-fi, g-sensor, sd-card support and there isn't even a full version of that OS available yet!

    It leads me to wonder if a) we'll EVER get a fully functional "Froyo" build for our Telechips tablets or b) if someone will just jump over Froyo to Gingerbread or Honeycomb or c) if we'll be stuck on Eclair and left wanting.

    I'm not sure what all is involved in cooking a custom rom. I know there is a cross-platform "kitchen" program that automates a lot of the tasks of building a custom rom or can be used to modify an existing rom. I'm guessing it doesn't work for making Telechips roms?

    I can't help feeling a bit frustrated that we could STILL be waiting for a functional Froyo rom by the time Google officially releases Honeycomb - and wondering if maybe the developers' sites should be set beyond Froyo anyway.

    Your thoughts?
     
  2. Loonix

    Loonix Member

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    I do not think we can expect much from Haipad.
    They have a Pad that mostly works with android 2.1
    why should they invest on developing a new os if the hardware does not realy suport it (Flash).
    Also the 2GB base is obsolete and out of production since the new 4GB model allows them to integrate bluetooth.
    And as a last straw Telechips does not support Android 2.2 for this processor so the driver development would be 'from the scratch'
    As far as i know the current official 2.2 firmware is still based on the old .29 kernel and drivers and is patched quite dirty.

    For an independent developer it is the same problem.
    There are no complete sources for the chipset, it takes loads of time and concentration and the reward will only be a warm 'thank you' from the community (and maybe some donations).

    I think it is not very probable that we will get a fully working and optimised FroYo, Gingerbread or Honeycomb for these pads.
    Still maybe we can find ways to unpack the newer firmware releases and port them to our 2GB Pads.
    Earlier this year i asked the Haipad support if they where continuing the development for the 2GB Pads but sadly got no answer an that question
    (so i guess that is a no since they only told me that the HY firmware is not for the 2GB model))
     
  3. xaueious

    xaueious Administrator Staff Member

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    I am not a developer myself, but I was under the impression that the developers have not been successful at actually booting a kernel image off the Telechips provided source code.

    What we have in CM6 by naobsd is actually close, but he has not had the time to focus on it and does not necessary plan to finish it.

    Haipad is a marketer/brander company with ties to a factory. They started sometime in Q4 last year as a brand new company. I doubt they even have a real development team. They might have ties to assembly, but they do not make PCBs or software. You can kind of tell with their board switching that they have little control over some things. You are expecting way too much out of these guys.
     
  4. OffWorld

    OffWorld Senior Member

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    You're probably right.

    While Haipad probably isn't to blame it sounds more and more like Telechips IS. First they wouldn't comply with licensing requirements by releasing source code, then under threat of a lawsuit they "released" some code which didn't contain the kernel, when they got called out on that they posted more code - except initially either the links didn't work or the server was down whenever someone tried to actually retrieve that code, and now it sounds like the code people finally did get in their hands coincidentally won't make a bootable rom (almost as if the code was borked for that very purpose).

    I don't know how it works in China, but I used to work for a tech company (who was a manufacturer) and they contracted/outsourced firmware dev to a software development company. That company had to get a software developers license from the chip manufacturer to get their SDK and write the firmware. Eventually some of the devs were hired away and brought in-house to the R&D department because the company wanted more control over the firmware process and the ability to provide support. If that's how things work overseas then Telechips would have a vested interest in not releasing useable code in order to protect their software development licensing fees (I do know they were initially SELLING the kernel as part of the "Telechips Android BSP" developer kit).

    I just went and looked at the Telchips website - is it a bad sign or a good one that they're currently looking to hire a Software Engineer? LOL

    I guess without code that can be used in a bootable rom, though, those of us with Telechips devices are kind of screwed out of getting fully functional future versions of Android OS. I guess I'll use my orphaned tablet until it dies, then I think my next Android tablet will have a Samsung or Nvidia chip in it.
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2011
  5. mala

    mala Member

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    I have read posts by VeNoMouS where he states that he has made a bootable kernel for m701 from the released kernel. Azure have made one for x5 but the lcd does not work. I wonder if he knows that the kernel code has option for two different lcd's (in that case he might have used the wrong one).

    I was not aware that the official Haipad 2.2 beta is based on the .29 kernel (correct?). That sounds bad because it indicates that Telechips is not involved in the 2.2 development, since they make the reference kernel Haipad uses.

    The team telechips site has not been updated for while now, and I understand from other posts that azure is not active in development currently.
    The last twit from VeNoMouS is from the 3/1.
    I can understand if these guys looses interest if they reach a point where progress stalls because of technical issues beyond their control.

    I would be nice with a statement from Team telechips, indicating the status and future of this project (if any).

    Personally I am very interested in the possibility to build my own kernel, even if it is just for 2.1. I have build a kernel (and working modules) from the Telechips source, but I have no idea how to build the boot rom (so it is untested).
    I know a lot about linux in general, and is a sw developer, but I know almost nothing about Android and embedded systems. I would like to participate but have a hard time figuring out where to start. Also I am a family man, which limits my time.

    Any pointers to get started will be appreciated.

    Lets all cross our fingers for this project!

    And thanks to team telechips for their work so far!
     
  6. l_n

    l_n Senior Member

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    I'm still slowly working on hand-applying the changes telechips made to the .29 kernel to the .35 sources. There's interest, but it appears to be waning as telechips is not being supportive of any of these efforts...
     
  7. wintermute

    wintermute Member

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    mala, fun_ is still actively developing the Team Telechips release, I think. He's on here some times but posts on Slatedroid more often. Like you I want to get involved but it's difficult getting started :( Lots of info on xda developers though which I try to go through in my spare time.
     
  8. trimesh

    trimesh Member

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    I can't see them taking much interest, since the TCC890x series are a legacy product now - and their primary target market (media players) has no real interest in constant updates. The 880x Cortex-A8 based chips are getting 2.2, though - so maybe they will backport the changes to the 890x series. I wouldn't like to bet on it, though. This is one of the problems with fabless companies - their only real interest is in selling silicon, and they just regard the software as a sales tool.
     

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