CM Nexus Gingerbread for MyTouch 4G

If you’re a regular reader, you may have noticed that my blog posts have become less frequent lately and more about my smartphone than anything of importance. Basically, I’m of the opinion that people shouldn’t write unless they have something to say. You’ll see I have some 500+ blog posts, many of substance, with perspectives not often expressed by others. Generally, though, if I feel a certain way about an issue, and I see that plenty of others have already blogged the same perspective (or if even I have in the past), I just don’t see the point in saying “Yeah, me, too” or “Let me repeat what I said before.”

So this is for the ten MyTouch 4G users out there who are reading. Maybe there are only three of you, actually.

For two years, I’ve been using Cyanogen roms. They’re solid. They’re good. I’ve even donated a very small amount to the project. I used Cyanogen on my old MyTouch 3G, and I used it for my currenty MyTouch 4G.

Just on a whim, I thought I’d try another rom, and I ended up trying [ROM] (v1.3.1) CM Nexus Gingerbread 2.3.5 – Faux123 [Aug-30-2011]. It’s a good rom with some bad defaults.

The good:

  • It’s fast and responsive.
  • It’s very close to vanilla Gingerbread (doesn’t even include ADW Launcher or a custom boot splash screen).
  • Even though the developer says Updates for this ROM will NOT be very FAST or FREQUENT due to my LACK OF TIME…, it actually appears to get updated more often than the official Cyanogen rom. It’s gone through 27 versions since the beginning of April.

The bad:

  • There are multiple download links, but whichever one I picked, the download speed was extremely slow, and the announcing post did not include an MD5 hash to verify the download integrity. In case anyone’s curious, my download appeared to be fine afterwards, and the MD5 hash was cedcfd08aba0b7717f3c9b0237089290.
  • The keyboard default is to make a loud clicking sound (much like a typewriter) with every key press. And before you log in, there’s really no way to turn this off or even adjust the volume. Fortunately, once you do log in, you can turn it off.
  • The keyboard is also an English/Asian keyboard by default, with both Chinese and Japanese input methods. I’m all for accessibility, but this is a bit confusing, since the thread announcing the rom is totally in English on an English-speaking forum, and there’s mention at all in the rom description that it’s a trilingual keyboard. I had to Google how to get rid of it and bring back the standard Gingerbread keyboard (long-press a text input box and then select Input Method).

Another nice thing—and I’m not sure it has anything to do with the rom itself, since I checked the /system/build.prop file, and the phone identifies itself as HTC Glacier, which is the original model name of the MyTouch 4G phone—is that I can natively install Netflix from the Android Market (no need to trick the Market into thinking I have another phone or no need to manually download a copy of the .apk from some random place). So either Netflix finally expanded official support to the MyTouch 4G, or the rom builder included some other workaround that isn’t modifying the build.prop file.

Overall, a nice rom (with a couple of bad defaults), and the 3in1 Angry Birds Backup app was instrumental in making the move over relatively painless.

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