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Treo 700p patch problems - bad to worse

This is beyond bad. I've heard from a number of people through various channels about the post I put up a few days back concerning the ongoing delays in getting a patch out for Treo 700p users and the ham-handedness with which they're being handled by Palm. Some are concerned it is a sign of the imminent demise of the company's remaining good name. In the latest tragic chapter in this affair, the company has now pulled the lone patch made available to date for Sprint customers.
Written by Marc Orchant, Contributor on

This is beyond bad. I've heard from a number of people through various channels about the post I put up a few days back concerning the ongoing delays in getting a patch out for Treo 700p users and the ham-handedness with which they're being handled by Palm. Some are concerned it is a sign of the imminent demise of the company's remaining good name. In the latest tragic chapter in this affair, the company has now pulled the lone patch made available to date for Sprint customers.

Turns out, some users experienced an infinite reset loop after applying the patch – in some cases rendering the device completely unusable. Other have reported that performing a hard reset (which wipes the phone clean of any personal data) gets things working properly. The hard reset thing has been pretty common with Treo patches in the past so no big deal there, as long as you know in advance you need to do that and have backed up your phone to a SD card or your PC (which only became clear after people started posting about this in the comments on the Palm blog).

But this latest post, from beleaguered Palm spokesperson Paul Loeffler is clearly a sign that things have gone pretty much completely off the rails at Palm.

700p MR Temporarily Unavailable

We're sorry, but the Sprint Treo 700p maintenance release (MR) is temporarily unavailable. We have received isolated reports of an installation issue that causes the device to continuously reset when applying the software update, so we've removed the update from our site. We're investigating the issue and will make the Sprint Treo 700p update available again as soon as possible. We know this has been a frustrating process for customers and apologize for the inconvenience it may have caused.

If you have experienced difficulty with the maintenance release installation, please contact us so we can work with you to resolve the issue: 866-750-7256.

We don't have a target date for when we can make the Treo 700p MR available for Verizon Wireless users.

Also, we currently don't have plans to issue a MR for other carriers because the ROM software already contains many of the features that are included in the Sprint and Verizon Wireless updates (e.g. many of the Bluetooth improvements and MP3 playback).

Paul Loeffler - Palm, Inc.

Parsing that out causes my poor little head to throb. If I'm reading this right, these are the facts (and, as Kevin Bacon once said in "A Few Good Men", they are not in dispute):

  1. The patch, which has been promised for nearly a year, is still not available.
  2. The Sprint patch is profoundly broken and Palm has no idea why or how soon a new patch will be re-posted.
  3. If you are a Sprint customer, did download and apply the patch, and now have an unusable Treo, you should call them. Good argument for having a land line or VoIP I guess. Sadly, this kind of reminds me of the old tech support joke that has a user unable to connect to the internet being told by a tech that the solution is to download a patch to fix the problem.
  4. Verizon users (including moi) are still SOL. No idea at all when we'll see a patch. None.
  5. Other carrier customers like Alltel won't get a patch because some unspecified subset of the unspecified issues this patch is designed to someday resolve have already been addressed in more the recent, partially patched firmware used in their locked-to-a-carrier devices.

Oh... the humanity.

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