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Modder’s Column, formerly known as Modder’s Monday, is a column dedicated to rooting, hacking, and other forms of modifying Android and is written by Jaroslav Stekl, a man who spends his days coding, hacking, hiking, and of course, writing for Android Police.

A few editions back, I described several ways to customize your Android device. As you may recall, one of my main points was changing up the status bar using apps such as Date Status Bar, Memory Status, Status Toggle, and Battery Percentage. The last of those four apps in particular has one big issue: it places another icon in your status bar. Thing is, you've already a got a battery icon in your status bar:

batteryorg

Unfortunately, Google doesn't allow developers to modify the default battery icon within a regular app, so a more substantial change was required. And guess what? jercik, a Senior Member of XDA-developers, has stepped up to the plate by developing a mod that not only places the battery percentage right within the default battery icon, but also pretties up several other status bar icons, such as the synchronization icon and the download icon. Let's dig in.

Getting It All Set Up

Since a lot of people seem to be having problems with this, we highly recommend you do a Nandroid backup first so that you have a recovery image to restore to later if something goes wrong.

Before we get started, it's important to note that this mod is currently supported on only two devices: the HTC EVO 4G and the HTC Desire. If you're on an EVO and you're using a ROM based off of HTC's Sense UI, you'll need to download Smooth-Sense. Likewise, if you're running CyanogenMod, download Smooth-REVOlution. After you've downloaded the file that's right for you, place it on the root (or the main folder) of your SD card and flash it like you would do for a regular ROM.

If you're on a Desire, you may find yourself in a slightly different scenario - rather than flashing it over any ROM you like, you'll need to already be on one of the following ROMs:

Once you've downloaded the version appropriate to your ROM, proceed as EVO users should - just flash it like any other ROM.

What It Does

Although there is a version of the mod for the EVO that doesn't do anything other than display the battery percentage within the default battery icon, most other versions change up your status bar quite a bit:

2KJ02

To clarify, here's what's been changed:

  • the battery icon (default: batteryorg modified: OcD6n)
  • the battery charging icon (default: chargeorg modified: charge33)
  • the synchronization icon (default:  yYGjX modified: cGhur)
  • the GPS icon (default: gpsorg modified: gps
  • the download icon (default: downloadorg modified: downloadi)
  • the upload icon (default: uploadorg modified: upload)
  • the USB Debugging icon (default: statsysadb modified: statsysadb2)
  • the no SIM card icon (default: DMdQB modified: EM55F)
  • the notify SD card icon (default: l1qBr modified: ywMPC)

Personally, I find most of the modifications appealing, though your mileage may differ, obviously.

You can also download a version of the mod with a white sync icon as well as a version of the battery-only mod that has a "wrong icon" (who knows what that means). If you go with Smooth-REVOlution, you can also download a version of the mod without battery percentage.

The Underlying Message

The point of this mod is simple: we need better status bar icons. Maybe they'll come with Gingerbread, but in the meantime, I wouldn't think twice about flashing this mod.

Full credit goes to jercik for creating this mod. faster3200 also deserves some recognition for porting it over to the EVO 4G. Finally, I'd like to thank Jenn K. Lee of Good and EVO for bringing this to our attention.

Jaroslav Stekl
Jaroslav Stekl is a tech enthusiast whose favorite gadgets almost always happen to be the latest Android devices. When he's not writing for Android Police, he's probably hiking, camping, or canoeing. He is also an aspiring coffee aficionado and an avid moviegoer.

  • Aaron Gingrich

    This is awesome. Very nicely done, Jaro.

  • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

    Warning: DO a nandroid backup before flashing these, in case your phone gets mesed up.

    Warning #2: do NOT do this if you are on a stock rooted ROM. You will brick and will have to nandroid restore from what I'd read in the comments at xda.

    • CanyonLand23

      If you are on a stock rooted ROM for HTC desire (CDMA), then how do you go about installing this ROM with these cool icons?

  • M. Verro

    I need a one-click root app for my Samsung Fascinate. I have no access to a PC please any suggestions?

  • Frank

    All these mods are in Virtuous for the Incredible fyi

  • Scooter

    Help! I followed the directions, now my EVO won't boot! It appears the mod worked, as the battery now shows percentage, but when I try to unlock the phone, Google Services and HTC Sense get force stops and the phone goes into a reboot loop! I tried, using clockworkmod recovery, to load my latest backup, but I can't apply it. Can anyone help me?

    • Scooter

      Damn. and just now, I see the brick warning.

    • Scooter

      Nevermind the recovery problem. Nandroid restore is working. Heed the warning of stock rooted ROM, folks.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/jaroslav-stekl/ Jaroslav Stekl

      Try turning the phone off (pull the battery out if nothing else works) before booting into recovery mode (hold the volume down button and the power button simultaneously, wait for the bootloader to load, and then select "Recovery"). Then wipe the data and cache partitions before selecting "Nandroid" from the list and restoring to your last backup (if you've got one). If you don't, just wipe the data/cache and see how it goes.

      • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/jaroslav-stekl/ Jaroslav Stekl

        Ah, I see you've figured it out on your own. Congrats.

        • Scooter

          Thanks. That's almost exactly what I did. Had to pull the battery, but didn't wipe data or cache before going to nandroid. For future reference, should I always do the wipes before (heaven forbid I need to again) nandroid restore?

  • http://techsolutionsbymichael.com spyngamerman

    Evo cyanogenmod rc 6.1 boot loop like idea but fuckEd me I had to reflash and start over lucky I backed up right before

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/jaroslav-stekl/ Jaroslav Stekl

      I think it's just CM6 and not 6.1 so far.

  • TareX

    They all look significantly better, except for the Sim Card one.