I personally know three other people using Mobilicity’s cheap and cheerful Android handset, so for today’s post I’m basically adding screen grabs to something I found on the HowardForums. Thank you AllanVS, wherever you are…
Following these steps won’t do anything to help that crappy camera; they will, however, make your Spice run significantly faster and put you firmly in control of your device.
Step one: Unlock it.
I’m fortunate to have a friendly neighbourhood phone unlocker not too far from me. Even better, they have a page on their site where you can check on your order from home. Despite being very busy, the typical wait time is about an hour or two. And the damage is a mere twenty bones (Canadian).
Step two: Root it.
This is kind of a scary thing in that rooting your phone can brick it, or at the very least void your warranty. But with the older 2.1 version of Android and z4root it was honestly a piece of cake — just download the file, sideload it to your Spice’s microSD card, then launch.
If you’re hesitant you can opt for the temporary root, but at this point your phone is already unlocked, so why not go for broke?
Once you’ve got root access any app for rooted phones will ask for the necessary permissions before running, so you’re still protected. Two such apps I can recommend right off the bat are (1) Barnacle Wifi Tether, which makes sharing your data connection possible on Android 2.1 and (2) Titanium Backup, which we’ll need for step three…
Step three: De-crapify it.
You can use Titanium backup to archive all your apps & system data on your onboard microSD card; once that’s done you’re free and clear to uninstall anything you don’t like — like the Spice’s pokey launcher, for example.
But if there’s something you’re not entirely sure about it’s probably best to Google it and make sure it’s not a critical part of your OS.
As per the suggestion on HoFo I installed Launcher Pro. Despite having way more features — like the preview of multiple home screens seen above — it’s actually much snappier than the default Moto launcher.
Oh, and if screen #6 looks a little sparse it’s because I haven’t installed so many games… yet.
These fairly simple tweaks make an already affordable Android handset even more of a bargain. I’m already a huge fan of vertical sliders, but the Spice’s qwerty keypad makes it even better — good enough to make it the phone I take with me while my Nexus One stays at home. I’ll probably root that next. 😎
If there’s anything I can make more clear please leave a comment below!