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Thread: [SH7218U] How to/Q&A-Custom ROM-modifications-etc.

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    [SH7218U] How to/Q&A-Custom ROM-modifications-etc.

    The SH7218U is one of the very first Android smartphones with a flip/clamshell form factor, the design gets even more unique having most of the physical characteristics of a very popular Japanese mobile phone (keitai) known as the SH-01B; complete with illumination and rotatable display.

    This specific phone is designed for the Chinese mainland market and is such made by Sharp China. Main specifications are below;

    OS: Android 2.2.1 (also known as Tapas/Dim Sum OS which is a vanilla android ROM with added applications/features for Chinese market)
    Processor: Qualcomm MSM7227 clocked @ 600Mhz
    RAM: 512MB
    ROM: 512MB w/ 151MB user accessible
    GSM: 900Mhz/1800Mhz/1900Mhz
    WCDMA: 2100Mhz
    Display: 3.4 in. Mobile ASV, 480x854 w/ multitouch
    Camera: 8megapixel CMOS sensor w/ LED flash
    Battery: Removable 960mAh

    This thread will be dedicated to modding/tweaks, custom ROM flashing, and other enhancements concerning the SH7218U, coming from a compilation of information provided from groups of very helpful owners of this phone posting from Howardforums and Mobile01. Any questions concerning the phone other than technical tweaks/inquires please post in the original SH7218U thread. http://www.howardforums.com/showthre...696728-Sh7218u

    To perform almost every tweak listed here, it is strongly advised to root your device and have a micro SD(HC) card for your phone.

    ROOT:

    If you do not know what rooting is, it is strongly advisable to understand its advantages and disadvantages. Rooting is basically gaining total control of your devices software, with this kind of access, users are able to load custom software, change the look and feel of the OS, install root-only apps, delete stock applications and essentially do whatever you would like with your phone. This can be very risky, as having this “superuser” access means that it is very easy to kill your phone, just be smart about what your doing and you will be glad to choose the path of root.

    A surefire way of rooting this device is to download and install an application called Z4Root. This application can be downloaded from many sources on the web so a quick Google search can yield the desired results.

    Another source for Z4Root and a few Google apps are on this blog; http://modiako.blogspot.com/2011/05/...u-android.html

    If you decide to download the package from the blog make note that it includes a Chinese version of Root Explorer, which is a file manager for users with or without root. It is advisable to get the English version to make this process much easier. Again, root explorer can be obtained in a multitude of ways so there is no need to post links here.

    *Disclaimer*
    This process is going to be explained with the user having a basic grasp on how to operate Android in mind. I will also be referencing the above link and its contents repeatedly.

    Install Root Explorer and have z4root placed on your sdcard by your own desired means. Install z4root, proceed to launch the application and you should be greeted with two options; Temporary Root and Permanent Root. Permanent Root is recommended per obviously.
    After selecting one of the aforementioned options, z4root will do its thing and reboot your phone. After a fresh reboot you will see a new application installed on your phone by the name of “Superuser”, which is a mandatory app that controls your root privileges. At this point z4root is not needed and can be uninstalled if permanent root was chosen. With root now on your device the possibilities are endless, if the package from modiako was downloaded and extracted; you will see it contains multiple Google apps. These specific apps are not mandatory for you to place on your phone as Google apps can be obtained elsewhere, the apps chosen are just a few mainstream Google apps with things like Gmail and Calendar excluded, so if the need arises to get other Gapps, just download from a source of your pick. I personally do not use many Google apps and as such only have the Android Market downloaded along with Google framework (needed for Gapps to work properly).

    Having your selected Gapps loaded onto your sdcard, proceed to open root explorer and find these applications. When found select all of the applications with either the “move” or “copy” option, while in the copy/move mode navigate to the directory of /system/app on your phone in root explorer. This directory is where all of your application are stored and are listed as .apk files. Move or copy the Gapps into the system/app folder. DO NOT install any of these applications; instead the permission for each app will have to be changed. Holding down on an app will produce a multitude of options, choosing “permissions” being the relevant option. You will then be greeted with nine check mark boxes. There is a picture of what boxes to pick exactly on the modiako link, the necessary checks are to be rw-r-r, which is basically the first 3 boxes going down and the first of the second row going down. Changing these permissions for EVERY Gapp moved is mandatory. After checking the appropriate permissions, simply reboot the phone. After rebooting, your selected Google apps will now be on your phone. Having access to system/app is a simple way to uninstall/install .apk files to your phone and will prove to be the method on deleting stock applications on the phone that are not used/needed.

    SH-01B Clock:

    If you are familiar with the SH-01B and its outer display, one option is to have the outer display show as a large stylish clock that covers the entire display. Now is the chance to have this on your SH7218U as well, I will attach the specific file to this post for download. The file for the SH-01B clock is known as “subsystemserver.apk”. This process is very simple but must be done carefully and precisely. Throw subsystemserver onto your sdcard, and as per the method of Gapps installation, move the file to system/app, you will then be notified that placing this application in system/app will overwrite an already existing application with the same name, select overwrite. DO NOT be alarmed with what happens next, many force closes will appear and will not go away, so pulling the battery is the next step. After restarting your phone, you will notice that the outer display will not show up when the phone is closed, this is completely normal. Navigate to system/app and find subsystemserver.apk, begin to change its permissions to ALL nine check boxes. After selecting all of the permission boxes, reboot your phone and you will have the SH-01B clock! It comes with three options; small clock, big clock, and clock & date, with the interchangeable options to choose one as standard in settings>display>external display. As an added bonus the kanji symbol for “OUT” will display on the clock and date option.
    http://www.mediafire.com/?84q923wvccczokc

    Stock app removal:

    I will not be providing a list of applications that are safe to remove as this will take up too much time/space. As an alternative I will provide two links;

    sh7218u_originalsystemapps.rar (69.92 MB)
    http://www.multiupload.com/LEU89J8OFZ
    ^^^^^ This is a package of all system/stock applications used in case of backup or accidental removal.

    sh7218u_edited_system_apps_and_media_files.rar (35 MB)
    http://www.multiupload.com/6FQCGRN6NU
    ^^^^^ This is a package of the system portion of your phone including app and media directories. The system/app folder is edited in a way that it only contains stock applications that are needed for your phone to function properly. Looking at this list and deleting the applications not listed is the easiest way to get rid of most unnecessary stock applications.

    Alternative virtual android buttons:


    If you want to change the color of the virtual android buttons on the bottom of your screen, you’re in a pile of luck! Editing these buttons are easy and fun, of course making custom buttons requires efficient knowledge in picture editing. The virtual button files are located in /system/media/pics.

    I will provide a link to an alternative of these buttons; they are simply black instead of grey/silver.

    blackbutton_and_editedcamera + focus_button.rar (75.55 KB)
    http://www.multiupload.com/ZSH62NI40L

    This package also comes with a few files (when originals are overwritten) that make the phone launch the camera application when you have your SH7218Us screen turned on the keyboard and pushing the silver camera/lock button. This disables your lock screen so I do not advise changing these files, but if so, MAKE A BACKUP of the original files first.

    When replacing the virtual buttons in a root explorer or through adb, remember to change permissions to rw-r-r and after replacement, a reboot will make these new files take effect.

    Framework replacement:

    sh7218u_originalframework_and_fixedframework.rar (12.73 MB)
    http://www.multiupload.com/U46HGUYOOH

    These files are meant as a replacement for your status bar on your SH7218U, there are two noticeable changes, which is having the task killer option on the original notification bar taken off, as well as having a percentage number for battery instead of icon. DO NOT attempt to replace these through a root explorer as this will cause many force closes and eventually reboot your phone into a boot loop. Changes are to be made through adb and remember to change appropriate permissions.

    This concludes the most basic and necessary options to make your SH7218U experience a better one, I will be posting more in-depth mods further down after discussing a few things first.

    Many of the stock applications can be replaced by alternative applications; here is a list of a few recommendations:

    Notes>>>>>ColorNote
    SMS>>>>>>GOSMS
    Browser>>>>>Dolphin Mini/Opera Mini
    Gallery>>>>>>Quickpic
    Calculator>>>>>>RealCalc
    MusicPlayer>>>>>>UberMusic

    To improve your phone’s performance or different performance options, here is a list as well:

    App2SD (can put certain apps on your sd card to save memory)
    Font Changer (changes your font, just download a ttf file of a font for it)
    Wallpaper Wizardrii (to make a wallpaper that fits your screen instead of scrolling)
    SetCPU (moniter CPU performance, raise and lower CPU clock speed, make and set profiles to switch between different clock speeds to save battery, I am having much better battery performance with “conservative” mode)
    Link2SD (able to put ANY 3rd party application on your sdcard, not recommended for widgets and launchers, note that some applications may perform differently simply because they were not meant to be on sdcard, like Wallpaper Wizardii which disables its noscrollservice if on sdcard. Link2SD also has the option to store entire applications on a second partition on your sdcard meaning NO internal memory will be used, there are many walkthroughs for creating a second partition on the web and it can be done on CWM which will be discussed later)

    Alternative Launcher suggestions for SH7218U:

    DXhome
    QQ launcher Pro
    Launcher Pro
    ADW Launcher (EX)
    ^^ All work with physical buttons!

    Any more app suggestions to make the experience better are more than welcome to shout out here.

    I will now begin to delve into the more risky and deeper mods on the SH7218U.

    *Disclaimer*
    Have the Android adb installed on your computer beforehand as well as drivers for your phone. The guides below are shown in a way that the user (YOU) knows how to operate adb well enough to perform certain commands. If you have initial problems setting up adb or problems with commands or the recognition of your phone feel free to PM me and I will do my best to help.

    First of all, I will provide multiple links with descriptions:

    sh7218_fastboot_restoretooriginal.rar (146.54 MB)
    http://www.multiupload.com/NHYKQE3U16

    The file contains many crucial parts of your SH7218U like;
    adb
    adbwinapi.dll
    adbwinusbapi.all
    fastboot.exe
    boot.img
    recovery.img
    system.img
    userdata.img

    Be sure to place fastboot, adb, adbwinapi.dll, etc. in the appropriate directories for these files to work in adb and fastboot.

    As for drivers, here are two links for drivers that need to be installed on your computer for your SH7218U to be recognized properly.

    SH7218uADBdriver.rar (6.19 MB)
    http://www.multiupload.com/70CJ364X7N
    AndroidFastbootdriver.rar (1.81 MB)
    http://www.multiupload.com/AFTKWBG6YB

    The title of each link should say it all. Install these drivers if they are not already installed and you should have everything you need to get adb/fastboot working correctly.

    If you ever find yourself in a bootloop on your device or any kind of unrecoverable problem whatsoever, reflashing your system.img file will correct this and save your device. Below are a few fastboot commands and their effects when used in a command prompt (remember to path your directory)

    To get into fastboot mode; power off your phone, then hold down the #2 on the keypad and then press and hold the power button, the phone will vibrate but the screen will stay blank. You are now in fastboot mode. (a battery pull and reboot will bring you back) Connecting the phone to your computer is obviously the next step.

    If you have the right drivers, you shouldn't get any pop ups on windows about driver issues. To make sure that you are in the right mode, if you go to device manager and click under ADB INTERFACE you should see something like FASTBOOT GOOGLE USB ID or SHARP FASTBOOT INTERFACE; usually as long as you see fastboot in the name, you are good.
    Remember that if you want to flash a certain partition, it is imperative you place the .img file in an easy to remember location such as the base of your C:\ drive.
    Upon opening a command window, you will need to change your directory, this is done easily. By opening a command prompt you will most likely be greeted with a directory such as C:\Users\Dillon>
    To change your directory to use fastboot/adb, begin by typing cd after the directory you are using, which is meant to change your directory path. It will most likely look like this;

    C:\Users\Dillon>cd C:\Program Files\Android\android-sdk-windows\platform tools
    Or wherever you have adb/fastboot located.

    Now that you have your correct directory, here a few fastboot commands to see if your phone is working properly with the last command actually being a command to flash a partition so DO NOT issue that command unless you want to flash an .img file!!!

    fastboot devices

    *This is a command to list all the fastboot devices connected to your computer.

    *You will most likely get a “?”, this seems to be normal and should be understood as an indication that your device is connected.

    If you are not sure if your phone is being detected, use the next command.

    fastboot reboot

    *This command tells your phone to reboot, this command reboots the phone in normal mode, NOT in fastboot mode.

    My phone rebooted in normal mode(flashing sharp logo) thus I know its communicating with my computer, so I just went to fastboot mode again on the phone after the reboot.

    So once back to fastboot mode this is the next thing that you type.

    fastboot flash system C:\system.img



    *This is the actual command for flashing a partition. Make sure you are flashing the right partition according to your file. Do not flash an .img file to the wrong partition!!!!!


    After you type this just wait a few minutes, it will display a few lines of messages then return to the command prompt when its done. Then just type the reboot command again and your phone should be back to normal.

    Fastboot is recommended to be used for development purposes and as an option to restore a dead phone.

    Now here comes the fun/beneficial part to fastboot! And that is.. CWM!

    Download this file before you do anything:

    ClockworkmodRecovery_ENG3.0.2.4_FOR_SH72X8U.zip (4.52 MB) English original http://www.multiupload.com/B1SEKRW1WU

    What is included is a custom recovery image with CWM embedded. CWM recovery is pretty beneficial to any android device if you plan on hacking/modding. There is also an option to create a partition on your sdcard (for use with Link2SD) but remember to back up your content beforehand as making another partition will format your sdcard.

    As per the instructions above, you need to put your SH7218U into fastboot mode and flash the new recovery image. It’s as simple as that; after rebooting your phone with the new recovery flashed, to get into CWM you need to go into settings>privacy>factory data reset. Going through this process may seem scary but it won’t actually reset your phone. All that it does is reboot the phone into CWM and it uses the d-pad for navigation in the CWM menu, and if you need to reset your phone for any reason there is an option for that in CWM.

    This concludes most things that you need to know for your shiny SH7218U, and remember all of this information needs to be read and done carefully! Do proper research beforehand and I or any other person WILL NOT be responsible for a dead phone if you mess up.

    Updates are going to be somewhat frequent as there is a custom ROM for the SH7218U in the works that should be released very soon. This ROM will include all Gapps, Flashplayer, overclocked 900Mhz addition, and part of the 007SH interface such as status bar and the enabling of blue highlights instead of orange.

    Hope everyone finds this guide useful and remember to thank the people who have provided information.

    Credit goes to:
    hwfjunkman
    buttermesilly
    ahhdillon

    Other users that have lurked around in the SH7218U thread,

    and most of all to Gigitse, who has posted many important mods/discoveries for the SH7218U and is the cooker for the soon to be released custom ROM. Here is her thread; http://www.mobile01.com/topicdetail....&last=28797761
    (In Chinese)

    Thanks everyone for your posting of information/discoveries.

    P.S. Check out the SH7218T for some 2.3 and 800Mhz goodness, too bad it’s CDMA, but be expecting a port of 2.3 most likely very soon.

  2. #2
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    ask about text input

    what is the best input method for this phone? (not virtual button)

    when i use sogou input:
    i need to press button 3 times to type '.'(dot) symbol
    and when i hold the button to type number, the output is doubled (eg: 11,22,33)
    it's very annoying.

    when i use android keyboard:
    i need to press button 3 times to type ' '(space) symbol
    can't hold button to type number.

    does anyone know a better input method which can type space symbol by pressing '0' button once, and type dot symbol by pressing '1' button once. (just like old phone)
    nb: i'm using abc input not pinyin

  3. #3
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    I honestly think that the Iwinn SH keyboard is the best. Spacing is usually done by pressing the right D-pad button but there is no actual predictive text, suggestions pop up most of the time. It's basically the same if you've ever typed with a Sharp Keitai (from Japan), it's annoying but I've gotten used to it and have gotten to a point where it's as fast as how I used to type on dumbphone keypads, as well as prefer it to Sogoue. The keyboard comes with the phone pre-installed but if you need, I can upload here.

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    Here's my quick tips on using the SH7218U's native camera app.

    First a mini review, the SH7218U's camera takes pretty good photos for a phone. Colors are accurate and pictures come out sharp. AF on the camera is decent when used in daylight and slows down a bit indoors, you're gonna have a bit of a trouble getting moving subjects in focus with this camera. Auto white balance is pretty decent too considering cameras on phones struggle in this area. Shot to shot time is pretty slow, it takes awhile to get back to shooting after you take a picture it's not slow to the point that it would be frustrating but I've seen other phones that do better.

    I just want to include in this small review that this phone has the BEST shutter button on a phone ever. The shutter is easy to press and easy to see. The half way press is solid you can actually feel the difference of a half way press and a full press. This has been one of my biggest pet peeves with shutter buttons on phones and SHARP did an awesome job at designing it.

    Now for the tips:

    Zooming IN/OUT

    Swipe up or down on the screen to zoom in and out when taking a picture.

    Exposure adjustment

    Swipe left or right on the screen to adjust exposure.

    Chase focus

    When you have Chase focus enabled(Activated on the focus settings) here's how to use it.

    Use the white box to aim where you want the camera to focus, then press the LEFT VOLUME button(when holding camera in landscape mode), the box will turn yellow. This means that the camera will do its best to focus on that spot you selected, when you move the phone around you will notice that the yellow box will try to follow the spot where you aimed at. Once you have recomposed your picture you can go ahead and half press the shutter button to focus and then full press to take the picture.

    I would recommend to just use the normal focusing mode for everyday use. Chase mode is useful for people who are into photography as it gives you more wiggle room for composing shots.

    Here's a sample of what Chase mode can achieve. This is taken with Chase mode ON with SH7218U



    Here's picture at work, you can see that the connector in front is in focus.



    Now with the help of Chase mode, I can have the second connector in focus while retaining the same composition.

    Burst mode bug

    There is a bug in the camera app, where when you select burst mode and then when you go back to single shot mode it will retain the resolution that is supported by burst mode (640x480). Don't forget to set your resolution back to 8 mpx after using burst mode.

    Battery

    When using the camera, the phone battery gets drained FAST. I haven't done any good tests on how many shots it would take but clearly this phone was not designed to be used as primary camera. Also the camera app would not open when the phone battery is low.

    LED flashlight

    You can use the phone as a flashlight even when it's closed. Just full press and hold the shutter button for a few seconds and the LED light should turn on. Do the same thing when you want it off.

    External LCD

    You can scroll through the different settings on the external lcd by pressing the shutter button quickly.

    Other camera apps

    I haven't found any camera apps that's suitable for the SH7218U, just for the fact that it has a 600MHz cpu on it. Most camera apps on android are pretty demanding on the cpu. I'd recommend sticking to the native camera app.

    SAMPLE PICTURES!! HELL YEAH!!!













    The pictures looks like its having an issue with the forum interface and kinda looks weird. If the mods don't like it I can switch the picture to smaller sizes.

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    nice! Very good guide. I love the SH7218U camera as well, if you've ever read my post on the original thread, the phone has a separate camera processor made by the Taiwanese digital camera company "Altek".

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    altek, interesting, I vaguely remember you mentioning that, altek did make those crazy camera phones in asia, one with android too

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    Yes, the Altek Leo A14 there were three other models with proprietary OSes too. Apparentely they were pretty good as the Leo is compared to the N8 alot, though as far as image quality the N8 still rules. Can't wait until a successor appears.

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    Altek- they made that weird Android cameraphone with optical zoom right?
    iPhone 6s | N-06C

  9. #9
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    Hi ahhdillon,

    Thank you for your time and effort even though I don't have a sh7218u.
    EVERYTHING'S GONE

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    No problem Klanse, I just know how it's a pain for anyone that can't read Chinese to find out virtually anything about this phone, sadly.

    I'll also be posting a link/tutorial to the custom ROM when I get time. Plus, it seems a few bugs are being ironed out on the creator's end too so it'll be all finalised soon.

  11. #11
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    Is it possible to have Japanese input on this phone?

  12. #12
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    I'm guessing any of the Japanese IME apps off the Market would work, given how it's an Android phone.

    Not sure how well it would integrate with the keypad though.

  13. #13
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    it is a pain for non chinese readers/speaker (myself included), thanks for this guide will probably link it to my blog so other keitai users can see it, do you mind if i do that?.

    a little help with your guide, if you really want to know your phone is been detected just use adb, you could just write adb devices and then you should see a serial number from your phone on your cmd/terminal window, no need to reboot the phone.

    perhaps now you could dump an image of the phone and see if we can port the rom to other phones?
    We lose as much as we gain through life, and that includes who we used to be.

    I WANT TO BUY A FUJITSU ESPRIMO DH550!!



  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by martindesu View Post
    Is it possible to have Japanese input on this phone?
    Yeh, it comes with the Iwnn SH edition IME that works perfectly with the keypad.

    Quote Originally Posted by NeuroticallyYou View Post
    it is a pain for non chinese readers/speaker (myself included), thanks for this guide will probably link it to my blog so other keitai users can see it, do you mind if i do that?.

    a little help with your guide, if you really want to know your phone is been detected just use adb, you could just write adb devices and then you should see a serial number from your phone on your cmd/terminal window, no need to reboot the phone.

    perhaps now you could dump an image of the phone and see if we can port the rom to other phones?
    Hmm yeh adb would be fine as well, there is a download in the guide entitled "fastboot_restoreoriginal" with all stock boot,recovery,system images.

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    Custom ROM is out!

    The main advantage of this ROM is its lightweight and the new theme.

    Promises of an overclocked kernel seem to have to not come to fruition, from trolling through google translated text, I was able to decipher that overclocking was hazardous to the processor as overheating was a very easy thing to do. Oh well, the phone runs fine with 600Mhz with most tasks.

    http://www.msharp.cn/forum/t390991/page1/

    ^^ Here is the link to the Custom ROM (SimpleMod 1.12)

    Flashing this custom ROM is a little tricky, in that you have to "restore" the phone with the custom ROM files.

    First of all, you NEED to make a backup of your phone through CWM, because if anything goes wrong a backup is mandatory to get your phone back working again. Making a backup also creates the necessary folders/directory in which you will place the custom ROM backup files. (clockworkmod/backup/BlueCustomKernelAndRom)

    There are 4 different flavors of this ROM. A BLUE theme and what seems to be a PINK/PEACH theme. I have only flashed the blue theme and it seems the blue corresponds to the the highlights of the system UI. No clue if wallpapers or any other things are different so if flashing the other theme, please post any significant differences. There is a standard ROM and a second version of the selected theme with App2SD.

    It is recommended to drag your fist backup to your computer. After downloading and extracting the ROM zip file, simply place it in the backup folder on your sdcard, which resides in the clockworkmod folder. Boot into CWM, select "restore" and your phone will restore itself to the new ROM.

    Notable differences of this ROM is that it is rooted, has Gapps, new status bar as well as different UI graphics in certain places, new icons for system apps (based off of 007SH), a few 007SH wallpapers, and a few applications that GigiTse has put on the ROM (MarketAccess, AdFree, etc.)

    I recommend this ROM mainly just for the theme included. Just remember to do a backup of your phone AND sdcard contents.

    A noteable bug I have experienced when restoring into the custom ROM is when restoring I get a md5 mismatch error. This can be easily fixed by executing the following codes in android adb.

    adb shell
    # cd /sdcard/clockworkmod/backup/BlueCustomKernelAndRom
    # rm nandroid.md5
    # md5sum *img > nandroid.md5

    This creates an .md5 file that corresponds to that specific file put into the command line.

    Another bug seems to be that suggestions no longer pop up when typing using Iwnn IME or sogue (any keyboard that supports suggestions when using hardware keys) A replacement put into the ROM is baidu input which is fine for Chinese users but not English. It seems a few files were taken out of system/lib to save space and this may possibly be the reason why keyboards are not functioning properly. If anyone wants to volunteer and ask the ROM creator (Gigitse) how to fix this, it is GREATLY appreciated. I will try to move files from my backup to the ROM to see of I can find a fix and will post here if I do, but any Chinese speaking/writing-capable individual is really needed to figure this out for us.

    Typing is very much possible in English but most keyboards require you to press the "0" key three times to perform a "space" function. I've been using the default android keyboard, which is fine except I have to push 0 three times to space as well.. I was thinking of editing system/usr/keylayout and making the 0 button function as just a space, but I can't get it to work.. why? probably because of this phone's keypad style. Any help is needed.

    Feel free to discuss anything related to this ROM as it is not perfect but better than stock.

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