Excited about that New HTC EVO 4G Update? Be Careful, It’s Bricking Some Phones


This is why we can’t have nice things! It would seem that a small group of those receiving the brand-spanking new HTC EVO 4G over-the-air update are getting the exact opposite result of a phone tweaked and improved. Instead, their phones are coming out of the update process as paperweights, bricked beyond any usefulness, and with hard resets not doing the trick.


Now, to be fair, many of those reporting back with dead phones also happened to have rooted their handsets, but there are also a number of EVO users running stock that aren’t pulling through the update. The story goes that after the update is over, they are prompted for a second update. Assuming it is a second part or an even better version they go ahead with the update only to result in a broken phone.

MobileCrunch got in touch with Sprint customer support, and they confirm that they have received a number of similar complaints throughout the day. They are suggesting that if you come up with the short end of the EVO stick you might just have to truck on down to a Sprint store and get an exchange. If you haven’t updated yet and don’t want to be a risk taker, you may want to hold off until the issue gets cleared up.

[via MobileCrunch]

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  1. Bricked mine also went to sprint and they didn’t have any replacements in stock.

  2. My update went through OK. If my EVO bricked I think I’d cry.

  3. It only happens when you apply the update twice. Don’t update twice and there’s no issue…

  4. Fred. Did u have a rooted phone? Mine went through smoothly and is not rooted… yet. Bad thing is if anyone’s phone bricks in az, there is a 30 person waiting list at EVERY store here.

  5. I didnt have that problem, my update went fine this morning. Also, i did not root my phone, i am happy with my phone as is.

  6. I downloaded the update, but nothing happened. I checked again, then I was asked if I wanted to install it (it wasn’t a second “upgrade found” notice), then I had no problems.

    I wasn’t prompted at all though, I just searched for it myself through the settings.

  7. I feel really bad for anyone with a bricked phone. A very hard lesson to learn that you should always wait to see how anupdate goes for others before updating. Same with custom ROMs. On the other hand, if you decide that the Galaxy S looks better, you can always get one of those.

  8. updated my EVO with with the only problem being i had to remove some apps from my screens and add it back.

  9. Just ran the update on my phone. Took about a minute to download over 4G, and 10 to install. No problems that I’m aware of yet.

  10. It took several tries for my phone to acknowledge that there was an update, but finally did it, and with 4G, it downloaded in less tan 5 min.

  11. Same here about widgets needing to be removed and re-added…. But so far, not bricked.

  12. man i was really hoping for this update but i have a rooted evo and dont want to take the risk well guess will be not updating…

  13. This is the exact reason that people shouldn’t root thier phones if they don’t know what they are doing. I can guarantee that noone who had this happen to them is someone who had been with android for a while and knows all about flashing ROMs.

  14. I performed the updated as prompted. Then I was unable to create new calendar on mu exchange server from my evo (but I could see and edit existing exchange calendar items). So I did a soft reboot (turned off via the menu and powered back on). still the same issue. So I then checked for any updates and the phone prompted me for an update (could have sworn it said 1.47.651.13). It downloaded the update, rebooted into started the install, then just died. Just got off the phone with Sprint support: They are unaware of this issue, but advised I bring it back to the place of purchase and exchange it. The phone was not rooted.

  15. After reading the forums, it looks like pople that are havinmg the problem applied the update twice or were rooted. I’m guessing a lot of the issue have been user error.

  16. No bricking, I wasn’t connected to a PC though. I don’t know about people who say scrolling is better I think it’s more jerky. WiFi shows one more bar than usual.

  17. BRICKED!!… in done

  18. errrr… IM DONE… went from Iphone to this.. i dont need this from crap from HTC or Apple. Im done with cell phones… this is a bull

  19. i understand the rooted phones having issues, but, and please correct me if i am wrong, it seems every week there is some other issue with htc’s phones. weird touch screen, random signal degradation/loss/incorrect reporting of, etc etc. while i am impressed about near every design htc has brought out, their hardware seems, i don’t know, sketchy? but i know people happy with their htc too. oh well

  20. I wish it would brick my phone..Would make returning it easier on me.

  21. I’m not a huge fan of htc but the developer community support and willingness to release cutting edge sweet phones gives them a leg up in my book. Personally I do prefer other manufacturers quality wise but they just don’t support the phones for eternity or have a following that will.

  22. worked perfect on mine. took about 10mins total downloaded on 4g 2-3 mins install 5-6. BAM DONE!

  23. re: Patrick (Peter?) Griffin

    lol at your cell phone rage quit

  24. Just performed my update at approx 2pm Mountain time (in Phx. AZ). No second update was offered and the update went through without an issue.

  25. My evo didn’t brick. It’s working faster and better.

  26. @Patrick Griffin: So…planning to use messenger pigeons then?

    In all seriousness, no system is 100% perfect. Errors happen here or there; the thing to really keep in mind is which companies patch their errors up in a timely manner.

    Otherwise, don’t be an early adopter. Wait for a significant amount of users to have tested the products out first before you start whining and acting like a kindergardner.

  27. No problems upgrading mine.

  28. I love all the comment blaming this on user error. The reason people updated second time was that the evo still indicated there was an update available (even after the upgrade already completed successfully) So, they updated again and bricked the phone.

    how is any of that user error ? first off the phone gave an incorrect indication that there was still an update available. second, any install program that bricks a phone after installing a second time is a poorly written install program.

    HTC dropped the ball on this one plain and simple. don’t blame users for reacting to a prompt on their phone.

  29. The second update bricked my phone…I have to wait for the local BB to get more in before I can replace it though. I still love the EVO and I’m gonna miss it for a couple of days.

    Hoping the replacement doesn’t have the washed out screen…hey, wait a minute….conspiracy theory warning: maybe this was intentional to get back all the first batch phones with illegal (good) screens…

  30. My EVO is NOT rooted. Bought it from Best Buy June 7th. Installed the update, OTA, June 28. Phone rebooted several times over the next 10 mins. Final reboot showed the 4G logo and then screen when black. Would not turn on again. Tried plugging in the wall, no help. Took it back to Best Buy and they said it’s defective. I’m now on a waiting list for a replacement. Other than that…I love this phone! Can’t wait to start using my NEXT EVO. By the way..I will NEVER get an iPhone. Prefer the “open source” architecture, even with this problem.

  31. This is why I am never in line to be the first to get a new phone or the first to install a new update. Errors can and will be made. I’m not blaming any manufacturer or user, it just happens. Competition in the marketplace puts everyone under pressure to get their new hardware or software out as quickly as possible, so they don’t get to work out all of the bugs. Eventually they get fixed. Then, I will buy the phone and get the upgrade. Some of those who ran out to be the first on their block to have an EVO are now the first on their block to have a bricked EVO. You will get your replacement phone about the same time I get my first EVO.

  32. NEWSFLASH!!!!!!! There is only 1 update. If you update your phone and when its done you see another update. IGNORE IT!!!

    And for those who have root and want to keep it. DO NOT UPDATE YOUR PHONE. Whatever custom ROM, or stock

  33. Mine was bricked. I installed the update, but was expiriencing minor bugs, so I checked for any other updates and it prompted me to install the one I just did. I installed it because I figured it may have installed incorrectly and next thing I know I’m using my brand new EVO as a paper weight.

  34. Yep, same situation here. Got the update, foolishly believed there was a second update after checking for updates and well, my phone is in the process of supposedly being “fixed”. I’m kind of scared to see what they’re gonna tell me when I go to pick it up tonight. :-/

  35. I did the update to mine and its now bricked. My Evo is STOCK (because I’m trying to decide if I keep the Incredible or Evo). I went to the 2 Best Buy stores in the area, neither have phones. I also went to Sprint- 1 has phones, but won’t give me one, because I bought the phone at Best Buy. Sprint told me that I should return the Evo to Best Buy, come out there and then go to their store and purchase one of their devices for $299.00 and wait 14 weeks for the MIR.

  36. I updated my EVO today at about 8am. My wife also has an EVO and she uses the Exchange Activesync for company email and is having problems with calendar sync.I heard the new software may fix this. I was going to update her EVO this evening (7pm) and it said the phone is up to date. What happened to the update from this morning? hers still has 1.32.651.6. mine 1.47.651.1 HELP!!!!!
    I guess Sprint took it down cuz of the problems you listed above. P.S. My phone works fine.

  37. I’m scared. I really want the facebook photo contacts fixed. I have very spotty 3G out here where I’m at. Is there an actual DL or the only way is OTT? Either way….I’mma do it it unless I get an email from sprint saying DON’t do the upgrade.

    Wish me luck.

  38. hmm i didnt accept the update this morning as i didnt have the time to do it… how do i navigate thru the menus to bring the update up again?

  39. The update worked for me no problems. I had the unrevoked root. It’s not rooted now however, but I can live with that for now.

  40. Jesus Christ, this update is gonna make it even harder to find an Evo in stock.

  41. all 5 of ours had 0 issue and all 5 are rooted

  42. Well so much for Sprint and their customer service.


  43. I just talked to Sprint and the tech rep told me that HTC is instructing Evo holders to hold onto the phone, wait a couple of days and wait for an OTA fix. I asked the tech rep at Sprint how I’m supposed to get along without a phone for “a couple of days” (she didn’t need to know that I still have my VZW phone), and she said to activate my old phone. Told her I don’t have one from Sprint and she told me to go to Sprint and have all of my calls forwarded to a friend’s number and have them take my calls for “a couple of days”.

  44. No root, updated in about 1 minute over wifi, no problems.

  45. Had update available this morning went home to download over wifi and no longer available any suggestions?

  46. I’m in San Francisco & I got my update today and it works good for me.

  47. My phone is hardware version 0003 and was never rooted. I received the update and installed it only once. Wi-Fi and 4G have not worked since. Made a few tech support calls, eventually took the phone to a Sprint service center, tech performed hard reset, it did nothing. Luckily voice and EVDO still work, so hopefully I’ll be able to get by until Sprint can find a replacement or resolve the problem. Until then, I guess I have the world’s biggest 3G phone with dual cameras and kickstand…

  48. Darn, was about to update after I ate dinner. Sprint & HTC stopped the OTA push till further notice.


  49. Dang it! My EVO is totally bricked. None of the Sprint have new ones to replace it with.

    I never rooted my EVO. Add all of the apps on it came from the Android Market accept the app for Audible.com.

  50. I thought mine was because when the update was installing it stayed on the 4g sign for like ten minutes I had to turn it off like 5 times by taking the battery out and it finally worked I was scared though!

  51. (corrected – please ignore previous post)
    Dang it!!! My EVO is totally bricked. None of the Sprint stores in my area have new ones to replace it with. I was offered a refurbed EVO but I refused it.

    I am quite disappointed. Actually, almost to the point of straight up returning my EVO. I never rooted my EVO. Add all of the apps on it came from the Android Market accept the app for Audible.com. Maybe the Audible.com app was the problem since was not in the Android Market.

    I called Sprint customer care. They were helpful as they could be by finding a store with EVOs being shipped in almost daily; but I had hoped that they could ship me one over night or within a few days.

    Fortunately, I kept my Palm Pre as backup and the I have a Google Voice number that I usually give out instead of my regular number.

    Hopefully, Sprint will come through for those of us that have not rooted or done something funky to their EVOs.

  52. Phone re-started after install, then immediately re-booted, and then shutdown. all without me touching it. now dead. reported to Sprint and HTC, not pleased… I thing I want my Pre back…..

  53. this is why i have since left HTC alone.
    this is bad for those who are experiencing it

  54. My phone updated to 1.47.651.1 then a few hours later asked if i wanted to update to 1.47.651.6. Stupidly I updated. Bricked phone. Then I find this. Most of Sprint has no idea. Their repair center said I have to go to Best Buy (where I bought it). I won’t be able to reach a Best Buy until AFTER my 30 day warranty is up. GREAT.

  55. “go to Sprint and have all of my calls forwarded to a friend’s number and have them take my calls for “a couple of days”.”

    Seriously!?!?! How about fork over a phone to use for a couple of days and I’ll bring it back. That would seriously piss me off and I would be talking to a supervisor immediately and then their supervisor,and then their supervisor too until I got a phone to use temporarily until Sprint/HTC figures out the problem and either fixes my phone or supplies me with a new one; that works, as advertised p-e-r-i-o-d

  56. After reading all the comments, i was on edge the whole time my Evo Was updating. but it went threw. Rebooted several times during Update and now is running great. Pheww.

  57. I attempted to update my phone, went through the first update and it completed (many of the Widgets were not working). Then I went to the Update Screen to just validate the phone was update, and attempted both the Update Firmware (which said no update available) and the HTC Update (this is where I was prompted for a second update, I noticed it was the same number, but assumed this was for HTC Sense software that needed to be update together with Firmware). Well of course, this second update ends badly (and since I had gone through the first update successfully, it was familiar watching it go through the same steps a second time until it stopped and went blank screen). Left it along for about 15 minutes and nothing happened (this had not happened during first reset). Then attempted to turn on and nothing. Could not do Hard Reset, Phone bricked.

    So I always check updates to see if updates are complete when done (have you updated Adobe products? They will complete one update, only to often need another update)

    Very disappointed.. my first experience with Android, not pleasant.

  58. Bricked my phone when it prompted me to update twice. Got the phone two days ago. Sprint refuses to deal with it since I bought it at RadioShack. RadioShack refuses to replace it since it’s clearly not a hardware problem (and they are right).

    I still like how the paperweight looks like but it seems the only option is to return the phone and cancel the contract … Very sad.

  59. Bricked phone :(

  60. I was not able to get the update at all I got it but i did not update at all and know it wont let me.



  62. yeah a Droid is alot better

  63. i downloaded the first update with no problem earlyer today and then a few minutes ago i check for updates again and the utility was scanning seemingly infinitly but in the notifications section there was an update downloading. i wanted to copy the distribution number but i didn’t have any time, so i canceled it and now it will not come back…

  64. shit! my evo just bricked as well! what should i do? I was told to bring it back for a new phone but of course there out of stock for a while now… When i plug the phone into the wall , the light wont even turn on now after the update.If they release a software update, how will if fix my phone if it will not turn on? Help please….

  65. I just rooted this past weekend, and am really happy with the results, but I think I will wait until there is Froyo update, before I run any updates.

  66. My phone was not rooted,i prefer to leave it stock for now.i’m new to android and am just learning the intricases 0f the operating system.

  67. i agree hope this doesn’thave an effect on my place in the long line of replacement devices. not to mention i dropped my EVO the day after i got on the waiting list for a replacement. sprint better not try any funny business, i do have a minor scuff on the right bottom corner now…

  68. Well so much for my earlier comment. Not rooted, and now after a single update (not double updated) my Wifi and Wimax radios no longer work/cannot be turned on.

  69. Did the upgrade no problems to report……I love my HTC EVO. People have to format there computers because of problems why are they suprised if this happens once in while with these phones and they nothing more then a computer with linux as the OS? No if you rooted it it is your own fault don’t blame HTC.

  70. Mine was BRICKED from update! NOT rooted. Very disappointing.

  71. My Evo update went well. The only thing I’m curious about is what was the update for exactly? Any way to see what was updated from the Evo? Help appreciated thanks!

  72. I found out through Sprints customer service. For those of you whose Sprint Evo 4G updates went well. I was told it helps increase the battery life while your using the Facebook application, updated the WiFi so it gets even better reception and debugged whatever if any bugs the Evo had. Pretty AWESOME if you ask me!

    1. give it time it will break, I thought I was in the clear then it happened.

  73. Did the upgrade. What happened to the Android home wallpaper category? It’s gone. I want it back.

    What is the upgrade suppose to do?

  74. ok so i got the new update from htc and i had no issues except now my phone wont root ive tried about 4 different sights including unrevoked which is what worked fine before this latest update, does anyone have any suggestions? keeps saying ur phone is not rooted on applications that ran fine before

  75. Got the new update not one issue and rooted..

  76. Well I did the update it look good but my phone died when I start it again its acting strange it freezes I haven’t done nothing to the phone its still stock and I only updated once should I restart to factory ?

  77. Did anyone with a rooted EVO do the update? Is this update unrooting your phone? My EVO is rooted and I’m holding off on the new update until I hear that it doesn’t Un-Root my EVO.

    Does anyone know if the new update un-roots the phone if its rooted?


  78. Guy… root your phone, go for custom ROM. I am running on Froyo. Having fun!

  79. I updated it with a rooted evo worked just fine…. wish I hadn’t though no more teether

  80. Here is an important news flash for those of you who have rooted phones. NEVER INSTALL AN UPDATE DIRECTLY FROM HTC/SPRINT. Wait for the devs to root the update and apply what they release. Applying an update directly from the mfg will likely cost you root access, that could be a for life loss as this ota release has yet to be cracked, and might even brick your phone. be smart. be patient. wait for the debate to release a safe version of the patch.

  81. I have root access with unrevoked,and I don’t plan to apply any updates over the air cause I like my free tethering .

  82. It killed 4G for me. I can not connect to 4G. Sprint tech support has no idea what is the problem. May be getting a replacement phone. There are a number of people this has happened to.

  83. Look… if you had problems i am very sorry. I updated with no problem. At least I don’t have to hold my phone a certain way to allow my phone to make calls. The EVO is the most amazing phone out there right now. I know because I have had both the new Iphon and EVO. EVO all the way. However, I would like the chance to try video calling so if any of you would like to call me that would be cool. My number is 832 458 5975. Don’t give up on the EVO.

    P.S. Buy an EVO or a midget will eat all of your peanut butter.

    Michael Mitchell

  84. Few things I know from rooting a phone to a sony psp is that you want to flash or update clean. Clear cache, hard reset and then update. I’ve un “bricked” with a fresh SD card and update on it after a storage and cache clear. Another issue I have is with how some folks talk to about their phone. Take a breath. If you rooted your phone off a youtube video, your not a heavy user. So that being said, take off anything task related before you tell your update to fail. Same goes for antivirus. If you download an app, and it keeps running…it’s a poor app. Not a phone issue. Take some personal accountability. When I fix a phone and I have to remove task killer set to kill voicemail and UPDATE SERVICE!?! and then remove ten porn apps, do I really need to explain?

    Be glad you didn’t have to deal with the intercepts 2.2 OTA

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