Archive for the ‘Cellphone Hacks’ Category

[Jared] often needs to be on conference calls for work during his motorcycle commute. He’s got a bluetooth headset that cancels noise but it didn’t have a mute feature. He cracked open the speaker and microphone portion of the apparatus but there wasn’t enough room for a switch. The base unit which houses the noise cancelling hardware had plenty of room. He added a single pole double throw (SPDT) switch to the positive wire from the microphone, allowing him to disconnect it as a mute function would. He mentions the need to seal the unit with silicone after the hack in order to keep out the elements. We might have opted for a weather-proof switch as well.

This simple hack makes a nice addition to any Bluetooth projects you’re working on.

 

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[Derek Hughes] wanted to use inductive charging on his cellphone without voiding the warranty. He picked up a Pixi charging backplate meant for a Palm Pre and scavenged the coil and regulator circuitry from it. To make the electrical connection with his HTC HD2 he removed the mini-USB plug from a charging cable and connected it with 30 gauge wire. The whole package will fit beneath the back plate for use with a Touchstone charger (as we’ve seen with the HTC Evo) but there was one problem. The metal backplate from the HD2 interferes with the inductive charging. For now he’s using tape to hold everything together while searching for a plastic case replacement.

He walks you through the hack in the video after the break. We’re usually not worried about voiding warranties, but a phone like this takes a lot of abuse and having warranty protection or even a service agreement isn’t a bad idea. Read the rest of this entry »

 

WiFi on a Sprint Pixi

Posted: October 30, 2010 in Cellphone Hacks

The Sprint version of the Palm Pixi doesn’t have a WiFi option but the Verizon version (called the Palm Pixi Plus) does. The hardware is almost the same and [Gitit20] figured out how to do some hardware swapping to add WiFi. The radio board inside the phone is fairly easy to remove. Close inspection of the Sprint radio board shows some solder pads where a WiFi chip would go. The Verizon version has this chip, and moving that radio board into the Sprint phone will enable WiFi. This is strictly a hardware hack as the device identification (IMEA) is paired with the motherboard and not the radio board.

Now we want to see someone source that WiFi chip, solder onto the board, and enable it within the OS so that we don’t need a donor phone to make this work.

[Thanks Juan]


If you’ve got an iPhone or Android device that you use with a Wii remote when gaming, this quick hack will give you the third hand you need to manage all of that hardware. [Syanni85] mounted his Android phone to a Wii wheel for just a few dollars in parts. He ran across the wheel itself at the dollar store, and the phone is held in place using a universal mounting bracket. A small square pad sticks onto the back of any device and mates with a base. He cut off the unnecessary parts of the base and glued it to the back of the wheel.

If you haven’t tried using a Wii remote with your phone yet, find out how to do it with iPhone or with Android.

 

If you’ve got a Samsung Vibrant and want to take advantage of that unlimted 3G account you can tether without rooting the phone. This method uses a USB cable to provide internet access to Windows XP and Windows 7 computers. Samsung’s own Kies software handles the tethering, as long as you have the magic number to get connected on T-Mobile USA networks; ‘epc.tmobile.com’ for the APN name and ‘*99#’ as the phone number. [Zedomax] made the video after the break which takes you through the tethering ritual.

Read the rest of this entry »

 

This is a custom back plate with induction charging circuitry that [Derek Hughes] build for his HTC HD2 cellphone. When we checked in with him last week he showed ushow to add an inductive charger without voiding the warranty but it wasn’t very pretty because the stock back plate blocked the inductive field and couldn’t be used. The solution he came up with will work with any device if you want to put some time into the build.

He took two different aftermarket cases; one fits his cellphone and the other is a BlackBerry case meant for housing a credit card. After cutting a hole in the back of the cellphone case he epoxied the credit card holder in place, smoothed the seam with Bondo, and repainted. Not only does the charger fit in the credit card case, but there’s still room for a credit card. [Derek] also measured the magnetic fields around the circuitry and found they will not damage the magnetic strip on that American Express Black you’ve been keeping on you. In the video after the break he mentions the last step in finishing this case will be to locate a 90-degree USB plug as the current connector is a bit of an eyesore.

 

Macro lens for a Nexus One

Posted: October 30, 2010 in Cellphone Hacks

[Thomas] tipped us off about a macro lens attachment for his Nexus One. As you’d expect, adding the lens helps the phone’s camera bring tiny details into focus. He re-purposed a lens from a pair of mini binoculars, using epoxy putty to make a mounting bracket. Now the last time we saw this putty used with a phone it was for a snap-in bracket that cradled the phone and included a lens adapter. Rather than go that route [Thomas] made use of the headphone jack just above the camera lens. An old headphone plug has been epoxied to the macro lens ring, holding it in place securely while remaining easily removable.