back to article Nokia Lumia update spreads Black death

Nokia has been rolling out its latest Windows Phone update across multiple territories over this last week, to much fanfare. The update, simply called Nokia Black, offers interface and camera enhancements to a range of existing Lumia handsets, further differentiating its Windows phones portfolio from the rest of the pack. There …


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  1. bigtimehustler

    It looks like Microsoft are keen to continue their desktop software update experience on mobile...

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge

      You complain too much. It's easy to fix, just roll back the .Net update, run the .Net cleaner, then re-install.

    2. JDX Gold badge

      It's not like Apple and Android updates ever introduce problems.

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        No, but we've had to endure morons like you bleating about their favourite brands. Karma and schadenfreude are a bitch.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "It's not like Apple and Android updates ever introduce problems."

        WOW, I didn't think commentards had rational opinions! You only ever read bile in here.

    3. Bob Vistakin

      Loonier software on Loonier handsets

      Do these problems apply to them all or just the bright yellow ones?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Loonier software on Loonier handsets

        I that the best you can do? Complain about the colour of a phone we all know that you don't like already?

        No libellous comments about how MS copied Google, as per your usual?

        1. Bob Vistakin

          Re: Loonier software on Loonier handsets

          Brite yellow grate color for phone.

          Brite yello make me stand out.

          People in pub see me wiv brite yello phone and point at me.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Loonier software on Loonier handsets

            No, that's not why they point at you.

    4. jmfiji

      Black update is not Microsoft

      The Lumia Black update is by Nokia and not Microsoft

    5. N13L5

      anyone who buys a windphone has only themselves to blame for getting abused and lead around by a noose with a lot less padding than Apple's...

  2. Paul Leigh

    Worked 1st time for me

    Per title, no problems. A happy lumia 1020 owner here, the app folders are very useful as is the glance screen improvement. The camera updates make a brilliant camera option, even better.

    Would be nice to see an update that helped it not die a death midway through the day due to exhausting a fully charged battery in about 12 hours though :)

    1. Vince

      Re: Worked 1st time for me

      My update worked first time on my 1020 - agree on app points bar battery - mine seems pretty good - even better when I'm using the camera grip since I get another 1000mah+ to use :-)

      1. sabroni Silver badge

        Re: Worked 1st time for me

        Right. We've got two succesful updates right here. This article is obviously full of shit when it claims that every update is bricking phones.

        What? It didn't say that? You sure? Why else would people think it was worthwhile posting a "my phone updated ok" message if we already know that a lot of phones are updating ok?

        Oh, it's to give smartarses like me something to bitch about? Tidy!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Worked 1st time for me

          > Right. We've got two succesful updates right here.

          Four. They both forgot to mention they bought their daughters Lumias for Christmas (and they think they're great).

  3. Tom 35 Silver badge

    Motion Focus

    Wow, not only is the bike going so fast that the background is smeared but the people walking are too, one seems to be running backwards.

    I hope they include something that's actually useful with the camera update.

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: Motion Focus

      Sir would like a phone which acts as a phone instead of an Instagram photo prettifier (which is all Nokia is contractually allowed to add while MS struggles to add features from the last decade that everyone else takes for granted)? Can't say there's much demand for one, but Sir could always try a Nokia Asha, over that way...

      1. LDS Silver badge

        Re: Motion Focus

        Check the "Office Remote" app... and you'll sew what's for the next decade... something everyone else hasn't...

    2. Vince

      Re: Motion Focus

      That picture isn't actually what happens - the functionality and results in real life are very good - it's a terrible screenshot whoever supplied it.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Haven't seen this one, but I'm running the GDR3 developer preview..

    Anyone else have issue with audio crackling then going to one channel only until a restart? Happens on my Lumia 920...weird. (not as weird my Nexus 7 2013 losing apps and the last two hours I spent failing to install AMD drivers on a friends new PC (Linux mint).

    I'm not a fanboy but nothing ****ing works for me. All modern tech sucks as regards UX.

    Do I have a strange unnatural EM field?

    1. Aaronage

      Don't bother with FGLRX, the radeon driver is so good these days there's no point.

      If you're on linux kernel 3.11 or higher you're hood to go (just pass radeon.dpm=1 to the kernel on boot so power management works)

  5. Wheaty73

    Worked for me...

    Day (well evening) of the update I checked, it told me there was one, and ten minutes later I had Black. Beamer was installed and works fine for me, and as I have a 925 I already had the photo apps.

    It is annoying Nokia couldn't pre-flag those for download though.

    Sorry it was a trauma for you, I have been there on other updates, but not this one. The Amber update was a PITA taking four reboots to install.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Worked for me...

      No excuse, MS control the software _and the hardware_, it should work for eveyone first time.

      Don't base the level of what you should expect on the crap you have received for the last 3 decades via MS' desktop platform!

      1. websey

        Re: Worked for me...

        Actually microsoft dont control the hardware yet

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Worked for me... @websey

          You don't understand this - if Kitkat 4.4 update fails on Google Nexus or Apple updates bricks iGadgets it's just not the same even if they do control both their hw and sw. AC bashing MS is just the norm in here.

          1. websey

            Re: Worked for me... @websey

            Ive been lurking here for long enough to know, I just find it funny that you can probably guarantee that a major update will brick a percentage of devices.

            But due to fanboism some people like that AC just seem to shit in their brain and then allow that to be transferred on to the screen as they type.....

            Shit for brains just doesnt even cut it

      2. Wheaty73

        Re: Worked for me...

        "MS control the hardware and the software" except this wasn't MS. Yes, the MS GDR3 update was included, but Lumia Black is a Nokia software update for Nokia devices... er... OK.

        1. Andrew Hodgkinson

          Re: Worked for me...

          ""MS control the hardware and the software" except this wasn't MS. Yes, the MS GDR3 update was included, but Lumia Black is a Nokia software update for Nokia devices... er... OK."

          Given how closely MS and Nokia have been working together from the get-go with WinPho devices and given the ex-Microsoft man at the Nokia helm back then, it'd be pretty daft to think that they were genuinely separate or that MS didn't have stranglehold control of what Nokia were doing from the get-go. That's now irrelevant though, since Microsoft purchased Nokia's mobile phone business in September 2013. When it comes to phones, MS and Nokia are now one and the same.

    2. websey

      Re: Worked for me...

      Have to agree was running the GDR3 developer preview updated to black, was all fine no problems with the beamer app etc

      Shame it seems to be any lumia ending in 0 that is being effected

  6. Big_Boomer

    The grass is no greener anywhere else

    I have mostly Samsung Android devices and when they release a big update about 1 in 3 gets it's knickers in a twist and the result is several hours with the screen showing "Updating" or "Installing" with nothing happening. I finally figured on my Note 10.1 that it had failed at the final reboot and did a hardboot on it which worked. A friend had a similar problem with a Tab2 10.1 and a reboot got around that too. Looks like the mobile world has the same problems as the mainstream software world. They let marketing people decide when to release software but under-fund development and QA, presumably so they can pay the sales/marketing types their nice fat bonuses. My one experience with an Apple update went without a hitch but it's a company phone and our IT doods blocked the update until they were certain it wouldn't tank the phones.

    1. Arctic fox

      @Big_Boomer. Re: "The grass is no greener anywhere else"

      Indeed. However, you have to understand that the gold card members of the Anti Microsoft Choral Howling Society have to get their dibs in whether it is justified or not.

  7. Andrew Hall

    It all went OK on my 925, I too was running the developer preview of GDR3 beforehand.

    App folders are useful, Beamer is interesting, but a little flaky i.e. stops updating the screen after approx 1 minute, though this may not be the handset causing this.

    Even if Microsoft did control the hardware, they still have many handsets to support. Apple release so few handsets and still screw it up, so Nokia not as bad as some may think.

  8. ToggleMaudlin

    Worked OK for me

    The missus and I have Lumia 920's and they've updated just fine. I'm grateful for the improved glance screen and App Folders are encouraging me to be even more lazy-fingered.

    I did have problems with updating my 800 to 7.8 a year or so ago, though. Having to have it plugged into Zune (horrible, horrible, horrible application) didn't help.

    Has anyone had a chance to play with the Beamer app? Any good?

    1. websey

      Re: Worked OK for me

      Its not to bad, just dont try and stream video etc but images and websites are pretty good.

      It was pretty fun turning the phone into a cctv camera to watch things

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Worked OK for me

      We have four winphones in the house, and I haven't tried updating them yet, but I saw Beamer working at a workshop a few months ago - I didn't know it was heading for winphone at the time, but since I was in Finland, not very surprising. I thought it was extremely awesome at the time. Very excited to see try it out now.

    3. Getriebe

      Re: Worked OK for me

      "Has anyone had a chance to play with the Beamer app? Any good?"

      I have been using Beamer for a few months - just static pics - it does what its says and never a problem

      Just point phone at target pc and read barcode.

      Now it reads Powerpoint from my SkyDrive I can see me not walking around with laptop for presentations. Just rely on some other dork bringing theirs

      All rather spiffing.

  9. A Butler

    No issues on my Lumia 925

    My Lumia 925 on Three network updated without issue. Did notice the beamer update not available though...

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Just before I sold my 920 I decided to do a factory reset (pretty obvious thing to do). When the phone restarted I got the "gears of death" screen. Had to use their service tool (something only dealers are supposed to have access to) to rescue it.

    Nokia serious need better QA, they've always been a bit buggy and nothing seems to have changed.

  11. NotInventedHere

    Easy upgrade on my Lumia 820

    Upgrade went straight through with no problems for me, but Beamer is sadly MIA here too. Shame, I was rather looking forward to that. Hopefully it'll make an appearance soon!

    1. Getriebe

      Re: Easy upgrade on my Lumia 820

      "but Beamer is sadly MIA here too."

      Look in the store its been there since Nov, IIRC

      1. freddyonestar

        Re: Easy upgrade on my Lumia 820

        Change us to gb then at bottom left download the xap and install manually.

  12. Alexander Hanff 1

    Interesting to note that many places are reporting this update as for ALL Lumia devices - that doesn't appear to the be case. My Lumia 900 cannot see any updates. I am guessing that means yet again that this is only for WP 8+ devices...

    1. therealmav


      I am guessing that means yet again that this is only for WP 8+ devices...

      well of course it is. This time last year MS were telling anyone with the ability to use an interest search tool that phones with WP7 weren't going to get WP8. WP7.8 was the end of the line. Hell even my gran knew that and she knows shut about mobile phones and stuff.

  13. Chris 171

    1020 Success

    OK on the update & arrived about an hour after the announcement.

    One turn off turn back on again before the update would actually download.

    I too had the extras app update at the same time but had to go looking in store for the additional updates for the Camera update, Beamer, the app folders are a slight waste of time however, as you cant pin everything into them to make a genuine hub for each type service. Train times at specific stations as an example.

    The ability to kill background apps from a single screen is probably the most useful part of the update, allied to the camera improvements.

    Still, cant knock the phone itself, its a great converged device & getting better it seems.

  14. Dr_N Silver badge

    Nokia Beemer

    Hmm... flagship feature?

    Looks exactly like Sony(Ericsson)'s app for android.

    Right down the the on-screen QR code "pairing".

  15. TechnicalBen Silver badge

    "Nokia Black introduces App Folders"

    Just wait till this is added to metro, and we get "folders" in the "tiles" and it'll be just like... I don't know, a desktop or a start menu in functionality?

    I thought the whole reason for touch/phone OS is it avoids the clunky parts of a desktop OS? Perhaps the few of us who like desktop OS, or a phones simplified one, were actually right? It's when you try to mix the two things get messy.

    I think I'm loosing the will to live.

  16. What What?

    925 Success

    Updated to Black on 10th January with no issues. Just downloaded Beamer, again with no problems (I'm in RoI).

    Never had a problem upgrading my old 800 either.

  17. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

    "differentiating its Windows phones portfolio from the rest of the pack"?

    Nokia's market 3.9%

    Windows phone share 3.6%

    Other OS market share 0.4% (not Android, iOS, Windows or Blackberry)

    If we pretend that 0.4% is 100% Symbian, that means 3.5% of the market is Windows phone on Nokia. That leaves 0.1% for Windows phone on Samsung, ZTE and HTC. (up to 0.25% if you are generous with the rounding errors). Even assigning all 0.25% to HTC would mean Windows phone was only 10% of their business.

    Nokia does not need to differentiate because 'the rest of the pack' doesn't care, and because Nokia sold their mobile phone business to Microsoft.

  18. Jemma Silver badge

    So let me get this straight...

    You are running a Nokia firmware update - known for years to be as flaky as a lepers crotch at the best of times - and running a screen grabber at the same time?

    Seriously - you are actually putting fingers to keyboard to complain? If you do *anything* while a Nokia update is running - up to and including straightening it on the desk it will crash and burn faster than an Airbus at an Airshow.. this has been common knowledge since they started using Symbian 3rd.

    Sorry - got zero sympathy for this - you were fairly lucky you didn't brick the thing...

    1. sabroni Silver badge

      Re: flaky as a lepers crotch


  19. Rallicat

    Updated OK

    My install of 'Black' completed without a hitch - no error codes at all.

    I haven't been able to get the Nokia Beamer software to install - but I have faith Nokia will resolve this problem.

    So far in the little over 12 months I've had my Lumia 920, I've now received two firmware updates and two 'GDR' software updates. So, I'm rather happy that both Microsoft and Nokia are rolling out updates and keeping things fresh with new features. This is certainly much better than was the case in Windows Phone 7 after the '7.5 update had been released (after that one was pushed out things pretty much fell silent!).

    Most of these updates haven't individually delivered big new features, but added together they have steadly improved the overall experience, and with Microsoft confirming that Windows Phone 8.1 will be available for all current Windows Phone 8 handsets then I think things will keep getting better.

  20. Iceman

    Didn't know all 10 WinPho users posted in el reg.

    1. TheVogon Silver badge

      EE havn't sent out the update yet :-(

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    920 Easy firmware update

    Updated to Black just 15 minutes now, 18:16 on 15 January with no issues.

    Chargin cable on.

  22. SVV Silver badge

    Totally unacceptable

    "error 80188309" on a Nokia (MS) consumer device running an MS OS when updating is totally unacceptable.

    What sort of crappy cheapskate QA process do they have if this experience is possible?

    I mean, a techically experienced person could probably navigate their way through the problems, as the author did, but yer average phone user?

    If operating other apps during the update can cause it to fail, then DON'T LET OTHER APPS RUN DURING THE PROCESS!

    1. LDS Silver badge

      Install all available system updates before updating the OS itself...

      "extras+info is an easy way to ensure you always have the latest features, app updates and current settings. The latest version of this helpful app provides 'under the hood' improvements to fine-tune your Nokia Lumia experience."

  23. Azzy

    It's not just microsoft who has a crap process for firmware updates...

    I recently determined that I can't update firmware for one of my samsung phones (original note) using my desktop computer, because it insisted the battery (at 100%) was low. Some people say you can fix that by unplugging all other USB devices - including the keyboard and mouse - so that was out the window.

    Another laptop was unable to communicate with it at all, leaving me to fall back to an ancient windows xp laptop. That worked.

    A little while before, I was unable to get ADB drivers to install on the desktop in order to flash CM onto my nexus 7, and on the laptop, I needed to boot into safe mode to install drivers after uninstalling fast-charge (which means now my laptop can't quick-charge my devices)...

    My point is, the situation with updating firmware on android devices is an unholy mess too.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    My 925 updated without issue in Australia

    seems that the vast majority of people had no issue. As per other comments, it sounds like the authors problem was perhaps located between the chair and the touchscreen, and related to running screen grabbers during the upgrade......

  25. hypernovasoftware

    Nothing's changed

    Still the nightmare of Windows. Fail.

  26. Bucky O' Hare

    Nokia Beard Trimmer

    Did anyone else glance at the first screenshot and see Nokia Beard Trimmer?

    No? Just me? Ah well...

  27. worldtraveller2

    Didn't work for me

    When you upgrade surely you should be notified of additional standard available features without having to resort to reading on web! Rant over, I was able to download App Folder and Nokia Camera to my 920, but like the originator of this post got the same stupid messages!

  28. Yugguy

    A cold day in hell

    Is what it will be before I ever use a Windows phone.

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