Augmenting A Cheap Android MID

We’ve been on the prowl for a low-cost Android MID that, you know, works well. We were originally excited by the Eken M001 but early reports about poor battery life, coupled with the fact that it only runs Android 1.6 soured our interest. [Carnivore] didn’t let those things turn him away, instead he modified the M001 to meet his needs. He added a USB hub and flash drive inside as well as a few additional connectors for external devices. He’s also inserted a front-facing camera and improved battery life from a 1600 mAh capacity up to 5200 mAh. This means he can now depend on 7-12 hours of use depending on the power saving features he chooses. This does come at a cost, he had to add room inside the case so he annexed a project box for the back cover. As you can see above, he did a beautiful job of making it look right, but it’s lost that thin-sexiness it once had. See [Carnivore’s] feature walk through after the break.


20 thoughts on “Augmenting A Cheap Android MID

  1. That tablet has a following at slatedroid, and the manufacturers want to ship with android 2.2, but they have to wait for their CPU manu, Rockchip, to make some drivers. DealExtreme has these in stock, the newer rockchip ones. The one in this mod is an old generation.

  2. I know nothing about android, but it’s linux based and it seems to me that he should be able to add a software automount for devices in config so he doesn’t have to rely on the button, and I think it works if you plug them in since then adroid is running some utility to detect devices then runs a mount script basically.
    As for those driverless cameras, I think they mean driverless for windows since it seems windows now have some setup as part of its core for webcams that manufacturers can elect to use, but that doesn’t mean other OS’s do that (yet) for the same device ID’s.

    I’m just guessing though.

  3. I’ve got the SmartQ V7, from, it got android 2.1 (preview, but works).
    Also able to boot win CE and linux, but it is a pretty basic MID otherwise. No camera, no tilt sensor and no GPS.


    Firmware android/linux:

    Firmware win CE (for some reason this site is behind, but has the newest windows update):

  4. this is actually perfect since I was planning on making these same upgrades to my M001 that just came in the mail yesterday, so now I’m not going to be TAD inside my new toy! :D

  5. Awesome =). I have a sub $100 7″ Android netbook that runs basically the exact same hardware. The netbook used to run Windows CE, but the second Android installers leaked for it, I upgraded. Unfortunately, only Android 1.6, and no touch screen, but it works great for a cheap netbook.

  6. hum… I’ve ordered one of this, so i can fidle withit. I need to connect a usb fingerprind reader to it. I hard will it be to port a driver for it?
    Also, here is the working link for this article?

  7. Hi Mike,
    I enjoyed your video above. I also have a M001 that I would like to hack for a project. I have some questions, you seem to have moved the WiFi board to access a USB port that you wired to a hub I also want to do this type of conversion and I’m shortly getting a seven port mini hub which should provide a suitable board complete with the female connectors. Could you provide some more detail concerning the possible sites for connecting the hub. For instance there is a USB port provided by the Apple type port, it is wired to a male connector, does this mean that the port is all but useless as its main purpose is to sync to a PC?
    The problem that you are having with the Camera is probably due to the fact that the drivers are as far as i can make out “compiled” using options when the source is ported to run on a WM805 processor (ha ha or MW8505 according to which specification one reads). Anyway if one has to recompile the code to add extra USB and Camera functionality why not use 2.1 or 2.2 source?
    If there is an obvious reason could you let me know as I’m just starting to try and get a handle on this so any help I can get I will willingly take of give.
    Peter G.

  8. I just need the extra power- Is it possible to just put stronger batteries on it and replace the original pack? And if so- would a store like Batteries Plus be a good place to look?

    As for modifying the case- I’m game for that….

  9. Odutola, The MID M001(at least mine) has the ribbon cable for the screen pushed in and hot-melt-glued in place (no lock). Maybe check that connection first, as white screen=power to screen but 0 input.

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