I ve been using Darkys ROM 9.3 on my Galaxy S phone since it was released. This ROM is way better than the stock ROM that came with the phone(based on Eclair) and the Froyo based ROM that Samsung later made available. It is smoother, has fewer lags(though not zero) and feels zippy all around. Also, it makes better use of blacks in the UI which decidedly looks better(and consumes less battery) than the relatively brighter Samsung Touchwiz UI.
But Darky is also deep down Froyo. The Gingerbread like UI is a hack which runs on Froyo – this means the UI doesn’t run on the GPU. The extra smoothness of Gingerbread is missed sorely. And, who doesn’t want the latest OS to run on their phone! Off late, in the last couple of months, a lot of activity has taken place in XDA forums over making ROMs based on Gingerbread – Googles greatest for smartphones. The most talked about amongst these ROMs is CyanogenMod 7, which though extremely popular, had never prepared a ROM for the Galaxy S phones. This is the first time they are coming out with a ROM for the GT-I9000.
Naturally, I got interested and started to look into how to go about installing one of the nightly builds on CM7 on my phone – yes, thats right, CM7 is still beta. I read the appropriate XDA forum to look at the installation procedure and the known issues. The process seemed straightforward enough and the list of issues in Googles code page also didn’t scare me away – I wasn’t going to be losing any badly required functionality. I could live without the compass, TV-out and the 2G/3G toggle(especially in India where 3G is a finicky affair). I even found a wonderful video tutorial of how to go about the entire procedure.
I was about to take a plunge when I did a quick search on twitter for ‘CM7 galaxy’. This gave me a host of issues that people have been facing – basic issues like the internal SD card being unavailable(incorrect mount point), the home button not working, WiFi signals going weak, the volume controls not working(actually the volume level of internal amp resets each time you exit the music player) etc. A quick perusal of a few random pages of the relevant forum at XDA confirmed that there is a lot yet to be finished in CM7 before it can be considered for general use.
If I had a second phone handy, I would probably have jumped in and tried out CM7. Or if the basic functionality of the device was confirmed to be working, I would have taken the plunge. But in its present state, I do not recommend it and plan to continue with my current ROM. Darky has intimated however that he plans on making version 10 a Gingerbread based one. So I ll be keeping an eye on both – the CM7 forum and the Darky forum – awaiting eagerly for a stable Gingerbread ROM to come out for Galaxy S GT-I9000.