I bricked my Android Phone

2011-11-07 22:31:46′, ‘2011-11-08 02:31:46’, ‘

I have a Samsung android Captivate phone which I have had for about a year. I upgraded my iPhone 3G to get it. AT&T have been VEERRRYYY slow in updating the phones operating system and my phone is now 3 versions behind. I really need my latest Bios fix. The new Bios is supposed to add many special features an make my battery last longer. So I decided to use one of the available internet solutions that a very active group of people have created to update their Bios’s. After much reading and research, I downloaded various installation files and development kits. I had backed up my phone so that I could put all my apps back with their data after I “Flashed” my phone (It means to put a new Bios on the phone). The first step was to Flash my phone back to its stock configuration as it came from the factory. That went well. I had to push buttons on the phone in a special way while powering up to put it in Download mode, hooked it up to the laptop and started the program. When it was done, all my apps were gone and its screen looked like it had just come new out of the box. I tested my backup program and put back most of my apps. So that worked. I decided to go for it and Flash to a newer Bios called Gingerbread. I put the phone in download mode, hooked it to my laptop and started the Gingerbread Bios update program. Everything looked good for the first couple of minutes. But then nothing happened. I waited. Nothing continued to happen. I waited some more. Nothing happening seemed to be all my phone wanted to do. After about 20 minutes of nothing happening, I gave up. I unhooked the phone. The screen went blank. I pushed buttons. My phone would lock up with a new set of Icons I had not seen before. This required more research. The research said to push buttons in various different ways. The phone would only show the new Icon and ignore my button pushes. My phone was in a state referred to as being “Bricked”. Meaning the phone was now only useful as a brick. After lots more research it seems that Samsung phones can be in 2 forms of Brickie-ness. There is a “Hard Brick” which means the phone is a total loss. And there is a “Soft Brick” which might be a total loss. My phone was in a Soft Brick state but could change to a Hard Brick. To replace my phone would cost a lot. After more research, there is a potential cure for Soft Bricked phones, but it requires that I create a special USB connector with a 300k OHM Resistor wired in a special way. So I grabbed a spare USB cable, took it down in my basement and attacked it with my Dremel to expose the pins on the USB connector. After much grinding and cutting I determined that my USB connector did not have the proper connection for me to attach the resistor. All my other USB cables looked to be the same style. Bummer. It seems I could buy one of the connectors from Ebay for about $9, but that would take a week or more. I might be able to get the parts from Radio Shack, but it is not normally stocked. This is where I stand on Monday November 7. I went to work today without a phone. I was sad. I missed my phone. Then I realized that I could pull my Android Sim card and go back to the dark side and put it in my iPhone 3G. When I tested it, I now had an iPhone that worked as a phone on the AT&T network again. Once I get my USB thingie, I will try to fix my android. More information to follow.

Nov 14, 2011My research sent me to a web site which sent me to an electronics parts site which had a mini USB test thingie.  I ordered it and should have my test thing tomorrow.  I found in my basement electronics stash an 300k Ohm resistor.  So once it arrives i hope to wrap the resistor thru the holes and plug it into my phone.  If I am lucky, it will go into download mode and i can unbrick it.    Wish me luck.