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25/07/2013

GravityBox brings hoards of tweaks and fixes to Mediatek MT6589 powered Android Devices

One of the very few reasons I dislike cheaper Mediatek powered Android devices is the lack of development efforts that happen for such devices. With heavyweight retailers such as Sony deciding to compete with the cheaper Asian and Chinese brands and using Mediatek processor in their device, this chipset is surely set to gain a lot of developers’ attention. A Slovakian XDA member spent lots of time coding to create a Xposed Module intended to work on all Mediatek MT6589 android devices that run on Android version 4.2.1 or above. Two such devices that quickly came to my mind are the Micromax A116 Canvas HD and Micromax Canvas 4, along with lots of other local popular devices.

If you own one such device and are continuously bugged by the typical MT6589 bugs, then you would have been unconsciously waiting for such thing to happen. Let us discuss about what the app packs.
Image credits: C3C076 on xda

Bug Fixes:

There are some known bugs that are usually encountered by MTK MT6589 device users. GravityBox promises to fix the following such bugs (along with a few others):
  • Date & Time Settings crashes are fixed
  • Caller ID Mismatch is fixed
  • Brings the extended developer options that are generally missing on MT6589 devices

Mods and Tweaks:

These are some additional features that can be optionally installed on a MT6589 device.
  • Manage the Quick Settings Tile present in status bar
  • Control your Status bar’s color and transparency
  • Network signals for empty SIM slots can be hid automatically
  • Long press volume keys to change your current track
  • Clear all recent apps at once (as in Touchwiz)
  • Disable LED while charging or the flashing of LED when the battery is low
  • Full Screen Caller ID
  • Advanced options in Power-off menu (that appears on long press of Power button)
If the list of things above that you can have on your device is driving you crazy, here are the things you must do to get it.

How to Install GravityBox on a Mediatek MT6589 Android Device:

  • You must have rooted your phone and have a custom recovery like clockworkmod, else you won’t be able to use this mod. Such system level changes can be brought about only if you are rooted.
  • Boot in to your custom recovery and take a backup. Skip this step only if you have a recent nandroid backup already with you. (Read more about nandroid backup and clockworkmod recovery)
  • Download the latest Xposed installer from the official xda thread. Install it like you would normally sideload an app.
  • Open Xposed Installer and click Install/Update. Reboot your phone and you are done with installation of the Xposed framework.
    Note: If your phone doesn’t reboot after this, that indicates that your phone isn’t compatible with the Xposed framework and you, sadly, won’t be able to use GravityBox. Restore your nandroid backup and get back to normal life.
  • Download the latest version of GravityBox apk file from this xda thread. Rename this file to GravityBox.apk
  • Install GravityBox.apk and then launch Xposed Installer. In Xposed Installer, jump to Modules tab and tick the GravityBox checkbox to activate it.
  • Reboot your phone, again.
  • Now, you can launch GravityBox as a normal app, from the app drawer.
  • Use the features/mods that you want to!
And hey, don’t forget to share this story with your friends and your views with us. These are the driving force behind every author.
P.S. GravityBox is an open source project. View the github sources here.
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