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[International] Soft-Bricked S4 by Flashing Different Version Rom

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by misfiringsystem, Dec 25, 2013.

  1. misfiringsystem

    Thread Starter

    I just received a i9508, a China variant of S4, as a gift. i9508 is basically equivalent of i9505 except for the radio portion.

    Unfortunately, there is no Google Play Edition img, or custom rom for i9508.

    What are the options I'm looking at for flashing a custom rom onto my i9508?

    Can I download a custom rom and delete the radio within the rom?


    Can I extract my radio from i9508 and build it into another rom?

    Any help is greatly appreciated, as information is scarce regarding this phone :(

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  2. ironass

    ironass Extreme Android User

    Hello and welcome to Android Forums misfiringsystem! :)

    If there appears to be a certain tardiness or reluctance to reply to your post it can be put down to the fact that the GT-i9508, is specifically manufactured for China Mobile only and is not available outside of China or that carrier.

    The phone is geared to work on the Chinese networks 2G and 3G wavebands and is missing some of the International ones. There is no 4G/LTE capability on this phone. There is also, I believe, no gapps, (Google apps), package installed on the phone to allow, among other things, access to the Play Store.

    Also, it should be borne in mind, crucially, that it will have its own unique kernel for phone operation. Therefore, any ROMs that you flash must be amended to include the China Mobile modem and kernel.

    You may do better looking for custom ROMs on Chinese web sites since very few people outside of China will even heard of or own an i9508.

    For more information, see #1.2 of 18 Galaxy S4 models - know yours?

    Other references...

    China - Galaxy S4 GT-I9508

    Replacing GT-I9508 with other official firmwares via ODIN?

    Possible to change a GT-I9508 to a GT-I9505 ?
    Mikestony likes this.
  3. misfiringsystem

    Thread Starter

    Hi everyone,

    Before blasting away with comments as to why I would do this, here's my story,

    I live in Canada and just brought home a i9508, a China variant of the S4. It belonged to my dad and he didn't want it so I just took it. The i9508 doesn't have Play Store, and it doesn't work on Canadian 3G network.

    So to me, the phone is useless right off the start (don't intend on selling it either, who wants it?) So I had 2 options:
    1) Leave the phone as it is, and probably use it once every 1-2 years when I visit HK
    2) Flash custom roms on it fully aware of the risk it will have so that there's a possibility I can make it more usable

    So in the end I went with option 2.

    I followed a guide and flashed TWRP for i9505 using Odin onto the phone, and used TWRP to install chainfire SU, and it actually worked (but SU wouldn't open because some sort of security on the phone is blocking it)

    Next step, I downloaded the CM version for i9505 and flashed onto the phone, and that worked too. Only problem I've encountered was that the phone would only boot after a fresh install. If I installed CM, turned the phone off after the initial start up, the phone wouldn't boot pass the Samsung logo.

    Up until this point, I didn't make a backup, because of my arrogance, cause I have available a copy of the official firmware, in case anything happens.

    So I figured at this point, maybe if I restore the original firmware, and try the whole process again, the custom rom would work. So I went into Odin, flash the firmware with PDA, and failed. It just wouldn't work. After retrying it a couple of times, and downloading different updates of the firmware, nothing worked. Only thing working right now is, I can get into Download mode, and I can get into TWRP recovery (but for some reason, I can't flash the zips that I've adb pushed onto the phone, zip can't open)

    For me, if it can't be fixed, then it's really SOL. But if there's a way to fix it, I'm open to testing anything people have in mind, cause afterall, this phone is paper weight either way. I'm interested in seeing if I could enable 3G by flashing a i9505 radio, despite warnings, although, I've never actually came across a thread where someone had actually tried it before.

    Either way, if someone has any idea on how to fix the phone, and wouldn't mind sharing it, that'll be greatly appreciated.

    I can get into Download mode, but Odin is failing (if you need the error please let me know and I'll post it)
    I can get into TWRP recovery, but can't flash files
    I can get into adb
  4. Podivin

    Podivin Android Expert

    Welcome to the Android Forums.
    I moved this to the root forum for better visibility from other rooters.
    ironass and Mikestony like this.
  5. Mikestony

    Mikestony ~30% Carbon Black ±
    VIP Member

    Also merged misfirings threads for clarity.:)
    ironass likes this.
  6. ironass

    ironass Extreme Android User

    So, in spite of my warnings in post #2, you have discovered for yourself that flashing recoveries and ROMs not intended for your model of phone, GT-i9508, will, and have, cause problems. ;)

    You will need to flash the precise stock Samsung firmware for your model of phone via Odin, as described in #1.5 of 18 Galaxy S4 models - know yours?. Failing that, you will need to take it to a Samsung Service Point as I can see no other way of restoring your phone.
  7. blue room

    blue room Lurker

    howdy... if you are still checking your OP then i came to let you know that :D:D:D

    device: S4 GT-I9508 running on 4.3 stock ZMUEMK6 + K 3.4.0-2106452

    successfully run google play store (credit: Marrk Daviid) but flashed with CMW (credit: Trueandroid ents) and device is now running swiftly... also credit to galaxys4root Max Lee for awesome illustrated instructions...
  8. iT0mm0

    iT0mm0 Android Enthusiast

    and the prize for dumb arse of the day..................

    thats like running a petrol engine on diesel

    yes my post has been edited, you fkn rtrd
  9. blue room

    blue room Lurker

    watch out... :smokingsomb::driver:

    we've got a "bad ass" over here... :stickyman:

Samsung Galaxy S4 Forum

The Samsung Galaxy S4 release date was April 2013. Features and Specs include a 5.0" inch screen, 13MP camera, 2GB RAM, Exynos 5410 Octa processor, and 2600mAh battery.

April 2013
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