Friday, 14 November 2008

If you own/have access to a Nokia E71 made for Romania, please contact me

I am trying to contact an owner of a Nokia E71 who is able to input Romanian diacritics on this type of phone. This person shouldn't worry, there is nothing destructive/dangerous involving his/her phone, should he/she contact me.

(Skip up to the "second approach" paragraph, if you don't care for the technical details or my story.)

Some time ago, during my latest blog silence period, I bought a white Nokia E71 phone from a Cosmote dealer.

I am really satisfied with it, except for two or three small issues[0], but the most annoying is that my phone was not made for the Romanian market, so I can't type Romanian diacritics[1].

Why does this matter? Because since I bought this phone I managed to do some translation work on the E71, on the daily commute to work. Still, the lack of diacritics forces me to go through another hop to add diacritics to my .po files when I get home.

So I was thinking on ways to fix this issue. After some google-ing I came up with the following possible fixes:
Since my phone was made for Singapore and I want to change to a Romanian product code, I have to wait for an update to be visible for Romania. Although the firmware update arrived for Singapore products, for phones made for Romania the firmware update is unavailable, so I am stuck on the first front.

Enter the second approach and my request for help.

I have looked into the files of my phone and I think I have found the files which define the keyboard layouts available on my phone. I haven't made out the details of the files, but, as a first step, I thought that I should try to replace one of those layout files I don't need with a Romanian layout file.

The problem is that I don't have a copy of such a file, but on a phone that works this file should be present and should be easily accessible. For short, I would need a copy of the firmware that is running on the phone, so I can try to replace on my phone the relevant files.

If you own a Nokia E71 and you're able to input Romanian diacritics on it, please contact me via a comment on my blog, or an email at Thanks in advance!

[0] the phone is really close to perfection on my scoreboard
[1] the correct "s comma" and "t comma" are not visible in any font present in the phone, but as long as they are correctly encoded I am fine with that. Surely with a proper font and an external editor I can fix that problem.


reldred said...

I've done this product code changing thing before. You don't have to wait for a new firmware version to come out, the windows firmware update tool allows you to just reinstall whatevers availible over the top.

Now get to it! :) It's a pretty simple process, it's just getting your hands on the romanian product codes and the tool to hack the product code on the phone that might be a bit troublesome.

As odd as it sounds, changing the product code (a few bytes hidden in the phones memory) and then reinstalling the firmware is going to be a lot easier and less damaging to the phone than many other hacks to support different languages.

Hope that helps somewhat, I've got an E71 myself, definitely agree with you, damn close as any phone can get to Perfection :).

eddyp said...

Now the new firmware is available for Romania, too. Still, I wonder if the new update is worth it.