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[INFO] OMAP3630 and OMAP3 - All that you need to know

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By dhiru1602, Inactive Recognized Developer on 12th September 2014, 03:12 AM
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Hello Everyone,

I have created this topic as a guide for everyone who are willing to purchase / purchased the new Moto 360. There has been a lot of criticism lately about the choice of processor for Moto 360 specifically when it comes to the 45nm fabrication and the processor being "old" when compared to today's standards. I personally feel that it was an exaggeration to say that the processor was incompetant. Furthermore, "being old" is very vague term when electronics is concerned, considering the fact that technology is advancing at a rapid pace and today's innovation is tommorrow's history.

However, I am not sure about why Motorola would choose to go with OMAP3 and I wouldn't speak for or against their decision. They have made their choice and it's not a bad one at all considering the fact that OMAP is a very popular platform especially with embedded systems. I had started my development hobby working with OMAP3 based device Samsung Galaxy SL I9003 and I am quite well versed with the technical aspects of the platform. I am sure many of you might not have heard about OMAP3 at all or even knew that it exists. Hence, I would like to dedicate this thread specially for OMAP3, and focus on several aspects like the development scope, contributions from TI, current kernel version, compatibility with latest versions of android, other OMAP3 devices which have substantial development, etc.

A little history
OMAP3 was first popular among Nokia devices, with Nokia N900 featuring OMAP3430. There has been sustantial development with Meego and Linux on N900 and there was great support for the device in upstream linux. The developer community for the device is still strong and the 3.16 linux kernel release includes support for N900 modem. Apart from that Nokia N9 was the first device to feature OMAP3630 and it had a functional Android port even when it ran Symbian by default. Althought it is an old platform, the openness of OMAP encouraged a lot of developers to keep developing for the devices.

Development Resources [Android]
Latest Kernel Version: 3.0.8
Kernel Source by Texas Instruments: http://omapzoom.org/?p=kernel/omap.g...roid-omap3-3.0
Userspace Libraries [CM11 Kitkat]: https://github.com/CyanogenMod/andro...dware_ti_omap3
Userspace Libraries include HWComposer, Camera, ION userspace, OMX (Audio and Video Decoders / Encoders)
Framework Support for OMAP3 [CM11 Kitkat]: https://github.com/cyanogenMod/andro...thor=dhiru1602
Most of the above patches are for OMAP3 support and they enable proper usage of the Audio and Video encoders and decoders.
Proprietary Stuff: The PVR-SGX530 driver is currently proprietary with binaries available which are fully compatible with 3.0.8 kernel. These binaries have proper support for asynchornous v-sync (Project Butter).

CM11, NamlessROM, Omni and all the other android distributions offically have support for OMAP3 on Kitkat. With several vendors refusing to release the source codes and not being developer friendly, it's often the biggest concern for an advanced user when choosing a device with a specific SOC. In case of OMAP3, you need not worry.
Moto 360 Development Scope

From the above information, it's quite clear that OMAP3 doesn't lack development scope. However, the development ability on Moto 360 would be questionable. There are few questions that would need to look for the answers.
  • Kernel Version: At this point of time, it's unclear if Moto 360 uses an outdated 2.6 kernel or latest 3.0 kernel. Android on OMAP3 would require 3.0 kernel for proper compatibility between the GPU, Display Subsystem (DSS) and DSSCOMP (Composition Pipeline). However, Moto could have used a custom 3.4 kernel just like Google did for Google Glass that runs on OMAP4. Most of the OMAP3 code for 3.0 kernel is based on OMAP4. Probably someone could use ADB over Bluetooth and confirm the kernel version for us.
  • Serial / USB Connection: Lack of Serial / USB connection would make it hard for development since a brick would prove costly. It's hard to comment on this right now since we need to explore more.
  • Android Wear: As of now it's unclear as to what Android Wear has to offer for OMAP3. The support for OMAP3 was being shed off more and more from upstream android with each release.
  • Locked Bootloader: There are probable chances that Moto 360 would come with a locked bootloader making it harder to run unsigned images. All of the Motorola OMAP3 devices are bootloader locked with no full unlock solution so far.
  • CPCAP: Motorola OMAP3 devices are known to use CPCAP Power Management Chip, which is a modified version of the generic TWL5030 present in all the other OMAP3 devices. This CPCAP chip has proved hard to work with and could be a problem for kernel hacking. Althought the iFixit Teardown Guide doesn't likely indicate the presence of CPCAP PMIC, but I might be wrong. Probably Motorola developers at XDA could give us some insights.
  • Contributions from Motorola: I have no idea how developer friendly would Motorola be when it comes to providing proper sources for the kernel and important userspace components if they decide to use a newer kernel which is not supported by any other OMAP3 device.

Other OMAP3 Devices on XDA

Motorola Defy, Motorola Defy+, Motorola Milestone 2
Stock Android Version: 2.3
Stock Kernel Version: 2.6.32
Community built Android Version: 4.4.4
Community built Kernel Version: 3.0.x
These devices are probably the most similar devices when it comes to Moto 360. Thanks to the contributions and hard work of @Quarx and others, who have managed to do wonders on CPCAP Bootloader locked Motorola devices. Their outstanding work had been showcased in the XDA Portal.
Samsung Galaxy SL I9003
Stock Android Version: 2.3
Stock Kernel Version: 2.6.35
Community built Android Version: 4.4.4
Community built Kernel Version: 3.0.101
This was the first OMAP device which was launched by Samsung. This device was subsequently replaced by the Galaxy Nexus. The latest version of Kitkat is available for this device and has also been featured in XDA Portal.
LG Optimus Black P970
Stock Android Version: 4.0.4
Stock Kernel Version: 3.0.8
Community built Android Version: 4.4.4
Community built Kernel Version: 3.0.101
This was the first device to receive official ICS build making use of the latest 3.0.8 kernel from OMAP. Thanks to the efforts of @Evisceration for his excellent work on this device which was very helpful for other devices as well.
B&N Nook Color
Stock Android Version: Ebook Reader.
Stock Kernel Version: 2.6.32
Community built Android Version: 4.4.4
Community built Kernel Version: 3.0.101
Nook Color is technically a Ebook Reader which was hacked and made to run Android. It's a WiFI only tablet running on OMAP3. It's officially supported by Cyanogenmod and CM11 Nightly builds are currently available. Thanks to the efforts of @fattire and @steven676 who maintain the CM11 builds for Nook.
Most of the device have 90% opensource binaries on the userspace and they don't have any major bugs. Thanks to the openness of OMAP3 which enabled us to make seamless kernel ports which worked flawlessly.

Since OMAP3 was the first platform that I worked with, it was a good learning experience for me provided most of the stuff was opensource and developer friendly. I am willing to extend my help for all the upcoming projects for the Moto 360. There are other developers who have contributed towards OMAP3 @Quarx, @fattire, @steven676, @Evisceration and many more who I am sure would surely be willing to contribute towards the development of this device.

Welcome to the OMAP World!
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12th September 2014, 08:58 AM |#2  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dhiru1602

[LIST]
[*]Locked Bootloader: There are probable chances that Moto 360 would come with a locked bootloader making it harder to run unsigned images. All of the Motorola OMAP3 devices are bootloader locked with no full unlock solution so far.

Thanks for taking the time to write this. Interesting and useful.

Actually, the MotoACTV has an unlocked bootloader by default and it runs on the same OMAP 3630 as the Moto360.

The MotoACTV also uses the same MSP430 dsp as a "sensor hub".

Here's plenty of tech info about the MotoACTV: http://wiki.opticaldelusion.org/wiki/Motoactv
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12th April 2015, 12:37 PM |#3  
Quote:
Originally Posted by dhiru1602

Apart from that Nokia N9 was the first device to feature OMAP3630 and it had a functional Android port even when it ran Symbian by default.

Nokia N9 has got MeeGo operating system, not Symbian.
These are completely different OS-es.
12th April 2015, 10:09 PM |#4  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mp107

Nokia N9 has got MeeGo operating system, not Symbian.
These are completely different OS-es.

Also worth noting, MeeGo was Linux, that means it had an ARM Kernel, so not that hard to port Android for it aside from the upstream patches. Symbian was pretty much dead when the N9 came around.
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