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GPRS upgrade available, officially only for Asia

Mon Sep 2, 2002 - 11:25 AM EDT - By Marcus Adolfsson

PalmInfoCenter this morning broke the story that Handspring's Asia site has posted the long awaited GRPS patch for Treo 180 and Treo 270. The .exe file is available here and is a little over 6.5MB.

Handspring this afternoon released the following statement regarding the availability of the upgrade:

The GPRS Upgrade is being made available to limited audiences in Singapore and New Zealand in conjunction with local mobile operators, in addition to our distributor GrandTech. Very soon we will launch a GPRS Upgrade for all of our customers worldwide and we suggest that you wait for this version if you do not live in the countries mentioned above. We cannot guarantee your experience nor will we support it if you choose to use a version of the upgrade that has not been released in your market with your mobile operator. If you decide to execute the download, please be aware that you will not be able to re-install the original ROM should you encounter difficulties with the software. Handspring will roll out GPRS to broader markets worldwide over the next several months and we urge you to wait until your mobile operator is supported before installing the GPRS Upgrade on your Treo Communicator.

Several users tried to install the upgrade this morning, with little success. The Windows installation program checks an online database to see if your cellphone provider offers GPRS, and it appears that most providers at this point are listed as not offering the service. The installation program than quits.


ShockSLL and myself figured out how to tricking the Treo into thinking we are using an Asian service provider that supports GPRS, and have therefore succesfully installed the upgrade.

Follow these directions on your own risk!

First, sync your Treo and then backup your Treo's HotSync folder.

After this, you may want to perform a hard reset on your Treo to reduce the likelyhood that any installed hacks or applications will interfere with the upgrade. Some users have reported that the upgrade process stalled on them, which leaves the phone radio disabled. However, the majority of upgrade reports have been successful.

Download this file, CurrentCarrier.PDB and put it in your HotSync Backup folder. Then run the GPRS upgrade application. This file makes the program think you are using SingTel-G9, a provider that supports GPRS.

Once the upgrade is installed, the Treo will reflash it self. All data on the Treo is lost, but is restored on the next HotSync. My computer crashed during the final HotSync (common issue for me, unstable XP installation) so it appears that I lost most of my Palm preferences settings.

If your computer keeps sending the Updater everytime you Hot Sync (likely if you exited the installation wizard before it completed), delete the GPRSUpdater* and ROM_Updater* files from your Hot Sync Backup directory.

In addition to the GRPS capability, the Phone Dialer has some new features such as "Mute" and the ability to turn on the speaker phone while dialing. There is also a new menu item labeled "Call Barring".

Both the SMS application and Blazer have recieved minor updates as well.

Under the network preference panel, there are new options for the GPRS connection. Interestingly, a profile for T-Mobile Internet was automatically created during my installation.

Read GRPS is alive and well on Treo for more information on GRPS.

A prerequsites for the GPRS upgrade is that you have 6.5MB of free memory, to temporarily accommodate the Upgrade program.

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