Moto G powering off (rebooting) to TWRP after Over the Air update

A quick post about updating your Moto G, if you apply the Over the Air updates on a rooted phone like I did, it may boot into the Team Win Recovery Project.

The solution is to clear the Cache. simple

Export Android contacts contacts2.db to vCard vcf on Windows

The other day I need to restore some contacts on an Android phone, I had Titanium Backup files, though restoring the contacts through there didn’t seem to work.

I searched for a solution but there wasn’t really anything for Windows to restore the contacts so I developed my own VBA script.

I will assume you already have a backup contacts2.db file, it is found the zip file

Firstly, download SQLite Manager add-on for Firefox, run it, Connect Database contacts2.db. Under Tables, right-click data table and chose Export Table click OK and save as data.csv.

Download convert-contacts2.db data-to-vcard-vcf.xlsm, open, and enable macros if necessary. Run the macro convertDatatoContacts and select the data.csv file.

You should now have a list of contacts, delete any contacts that you don’t want to import by deleting the whole row. When done run the macro and a vCard.vcf file will be created in the same folder as the Excel WorkBook.

Copy vCard.vcf to the root  directory of your Android phone. On the phone enter Contacts, Settings, Import/Export and Import from storage. The contacts will be imported.


Resolve “Battery cannot be charged. You must use a Sony Ericsson battery.” on Sony Ericsson C903

Here is a quick post on how to resolve the “Battery cannot be charged. You must use a Sony Ericsson battery.” message when connecting a Sony Ericsson to the charger.

First you will need the Sony Ericsson DCU-60 data cable, I purchased this from eBay for $2 including worldwide shipping.

Secondly, download the Sony Ericsson Update Service software.

Once the cable arrives, connect it to your phone and run the Update Service software, most likely you will receive a phone is already updated message, ignore that and continue to update the software, after a large download and install follow the prompts to update the software.

That should be all that is needed to resolve Battery cannot be charged issue.

Battery cannot be charged. You must use a Sony Ericsson battery.

The nightmare of unlocking a phone on the Optus network

I spoke how easy it was to unlock a phone on the Vodafone network, now what about the Optus network?

Well turns out it is almost impossible.

Let’s say I acquire a phone locked to the Optus network;

Firstly, I need to know the Optus phone number associated with that phone when it was purchased from Optus.

Secondly, I need to know if it was purchased on a Plan or Pre-paid, yes, there are two different numbers for unlocking a phone on a plan or Pre-paid.

And lastly, only the original purchaser/owner can call the unlocking service.

I am not going to even bother going through these hurdles even though the original owner is my dad, I have the original number, and I could even verify I was the owner with known personal details.

It is a joke.

Now compare this to Vodafone who provided me the unlocking codes through a simple website.


Unlock a Sony Ericsson mobile locked to the 3 (Hutchison) network

I recently acquired a Sonya Ericson C903 handset, which was locked to the now defunct Three network (formerly Hutchison Australia) which was recently acquired by Vodafone.

Vodafone has a free service that provides the relevant unlocking code when given the IMEI number of the phone;

They will also provide the unlocking procedure as per the following document;

Sony Ericsson Unlocking Procedures

Now the problem is you need a working 3 network SIM, where do you get this from?

For free, you can go into any Vodafone store and ask for a ‘blank 3 SIM’, which you can use to allow you to follow the above Unlocking Procedure in store.

It is that easy.

Thanks to Vodafone for their free support helping unlock my phone.

CECT T689 Dual SIM card phone review

Having owned the CECT T689 for over a year now, I thought it was a good time to write a comprehensive review.

The CECT T689 provides dual SIM capability, with no need to ever switch between the two SIM cards. Two individual ‘call’ buttons allow you to choose which number to dial from. Received calls, dialled number and SMSes are marked with ‘SIM B’ if used with the second SIM card.
The T689 has all common phone features, including 1.3MP camera, MP3 player, video player and audio player.

Missing features:

  • English dictionary. No intelligent word entry, all letters must be entered individually. There is this feature for Pinyin though but not English.
  • Unable to reply to an SMS from a different SIM card easily, must create a new SMS from start.
  • No keypad lock timeout less than 5 seconds (excluding 0)
  • Unable to change the SMS tones, must chose from phone’s built in unpleasing tones

Design flaws:

  • Keypad unlock requires the double press of the “#” key. Any keypad lock that relies on double pressing a key to unlock can be unlocked very easily accidently. This is a constant problem with this phone.
  • The CECT T689 has a problem stating ‘Warning! Bad Contact -Charger!’, this is a serious problem disabling the data and charging capability through the supplied USB cable. The phone is unusable when this message is displayed. To remove the message I squeeze the phone and screen till message goes away. Fortunately, a spare battery is supplied with the phone and can be swapped to allow the other to recharge.

CECT T689 displays USB/charger connected randomly, even when no cables are connected

CECT T689 Bad Contact Charger message

CECT T689 Bad Contact Charger message

I am still using the T689 for both my personal and work numbers and will continue do so as long as the basic dual SIM functionality remains.

Motorola RAZR V3 repair and housing change guide

This guide will step through the process required to repair a Motorola RAZR V3 “the phone”, including the flex cable and then replacing the housing.

The flex cable can be purchased from eBay for $7 US (including shipping), and the housing can be purchased from eBay for around $16 (including shipping). The flex cable is attached to the keypad circuit, which is automatically included in the purchase. When purchasing the housing, you need to make sure it is NOT a slip on case, skin, pouch, fascia, protector, etc, etc. The housing should include as a minimum the front, middle, back and battery cover. Keypad, hinge, pads, grommets, buttons may even be included, as well as TORX screwdrivers, make sure you buy all what you need. The included contents of my purchased housing were as follows.

The included contents housing contents purchased from eBay

To perform repairs on the phone, you require TORX T5 and T4 drivers, a small flat driver will come in handy as well, also at least 2 hours of spare time.

First a look at my broken phone, besides the obvious fact that it is broken into two separate halves, the hinge is broken and there is normal housing wear.

My broken Motorola RAZR V3

First remove the battery cover, battery and SIM card. Remove 2 TORX T5 screws under the battery cover circled in red. Separate the plastic case via two plastic clips as squared in red.

Remove battery case and battery and then TORX T5 screws

The antenna assembly can be removed by disconnection of the keyboard connector, squared in red. Remove the 4 TORX T4 screws, circled in red. These screws will be required for the new housing.

Disconnect the antenna assembly and remove the 4 TORX screws

Now, if you need to preserve the keypad circuit; it is a little bit more involved. First, lift up the tabs of the metal keypad as circled in red and then pry of the metal keypad. Most likely the keypad circuit will be stuck to the plastic so extreme care is required when removing. It may be easier to reuse this whole part, as it seems all colour housing still have this same silver part.

Lift the metal tabs, as circled to remove the keypad

Following is a photo of the new keypad circuit and the plastic keyboard housing.

The new keypad circuit and the plastic keyboard housing

Remove the backing of the keypad circuit and stick the circuit to the plastic housing. You will need to start from the bottom to allow the connectors to be threaded through the holes.

Stick the keyboard circuit to the plastic housing

A photo of the completed keypad assembly.

The completed keypad assembly

Remove the antenna from the antenna assembly by first removing two black grommets and then unclipping the two plastic clips.

The antenna assembly

Once the circuit board is removed, remove all the following from the plastic housing as these are required in the new housing.

Remove all the following

Insert all the old removed parts into the new housing as follows.

Insert all the old removed parts into the new housing

The change the screen housing, first remove the 4 rubber grommets as circled in red, and then the 4 TORX T5 screws behind.

Remove the 4 rubber grommets and then the 4 TORX T5 screws behind

Once the plastic screen housing is removed, the display circuit is visible. Carefully pry away the circuit from the plastic near all buttons and the backup battery as circled in red. The camera can be removed by lifting the brown tab as squared in red. Move the circuitry to the new housing and then connect the camera.

Carefully pry away the circuit from the plastic near all buttons and the backup battery

To connect the two clamshell halves, the hinge can be retracted in, the hinge is circled in red. This allows the two halves to combine; the hinge should then pop into place securing the two halves.

To connect the two clamshell halves, the hinge can be retracted in

Finally, replace all the finishing touches such as labels, hinge caps and grommets. Photos of the new phone are below.

Final image of the Motorola RAZR V3 with the new housing

Final image of the Motorola RAZR V3 with the new housing

The following repair guide may be of further help
Motorola V3-Razr Repair Manual KS-042050-V1.2.pdf