Telstra and HTC late on Friday made a bug fix available for the GPS problems which had been plaguing owners of the handset manufacturer’s Android-based Desire mobile phone, which went on sale for the first time in Australia late last month.
“HTC and Telstra have been working together to develop a software update that will correct the issue. This update will be available to customers this evening, Friday 30th April (AEST),” HTC said in a statement. The problem was purely one of software — there was no issue with the phone’s GPS hardware chip.
The software update was to be made available in two forms. Firstly, a notification would appear on the Telstra HTC Desire handsets advising customers a firmware update was available. The fix could be downloaded over Telstra’s mobile network or through a Wi-Fi hotspot.
The pair recommended customers travelling outside Australia use a hotspot to download the patch. It would not count towards customers’ mobile data allowance if downloaded over Telstra’s Next G network. Step by step instructions would then guide customers through the update process.
Alternatively, customers can download the software from HTC’s Australian website. This version of the update consists of the device’s entire ROM and is around 150MB in size. Customers can install this version of the patch with a USB cable after downloading the software to a PC, although this method will erase any data on the handset, and the data can’t be reclaimed once the new software is installed.
“Customers are strongly advised to back up all data on the device’s removable memory cards before installing new software as files stored on the device’s removable memory card will not be affected,” HTC said in a statement.
The software update will also introduce an additional feature to the handset — voice search. “Voice search allows customers to use voice commands to find information on the internet more quickly. The voice search feature is integrated within the search functions on the device and can be activated by pressing the microphone button next to the search box,” said HTC.
However, customers running Mac OS X or Linux operating systems on their PCs may find themselves out in the cold when it comes to the update — according to HTC’s website, the only operating systems supported by its software are those from Microsoft — various versions of Windows XP and Vista.
Anecdotal evidence suggests the patch works, with several users on an extensive thread on the matter on broadband forum Whirlpool as well as others on Twitter having noted they have successfully applied the patch.
Image credit: HTC