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Phone won't start. Bricked?

asked 2015-05-25 18:06:50 +0200

cjannack gravatar image

Good day everyone!

I have a huge problem with my phone! It went dark and is not able to boot again.

In fact it is not doing anything when I push the power key. Trying recovery mode doesn't work either. It only does one very peculiar thing when I plug in a USB cable. It will not show the usual white indicator light for "charging" but a blinking yellow light accompanied by a vibration when the yellow light flashes. It does not matter if it is just a power cable or a PC connection! When in that state I can push the power key and the display comes to life for about 1 second showing the big symbol of the cable with the flash symbol ("power symbol"). Then its back to the yellow flashing... When I press the volume down key and NO OTHER key, the phone goes into fastboot mode (Jolla logo and "FastBoot" with some manufacturer data in the upper left corner). The phone will stay in this state until I unplug it.

Other than that it does absolutely nothing. My PC also won't recognize it in fastboot mode. Its just identifying a Sailfish device and can't find a driver...

Btw.: My phone does the same thing when no battery is attached. Maybe someone can try plugging their phone in with no battery and report what is happening by pressing the various hardware keys!

Can anyone help me otherwise? I can't even figure out what that yellow light means... Could it only be the battery?

For whom it may concern, here is the story of what happened right before the crash:

It was Friday, and I drove with some friends via Poland into the Czech Republic using an Android app for navigation ("NavFree"). It worked like a charm and when we arrived after 4 hours I closed the app and put the phone, which was connected to a Nokia USB car charger, into my pocket. When I wanted to check the time a little later, I noticed that I had to enter my PIN again, which usually meant it rebooted. It happened maybe twice every week so I wasn't too worried... A little later it wouldn't wake and actually was totally turned off so I booted it as usual by pressing the power key. This rebooting / turning off continued for the next 3 hours. This was a very new behavior! At some point I noticed that I could work with the phone as long as I wanted, but putting it to sleep would risk rebooting or shutting down. Occasionally I unplugged the battery just to make sure no bad bytes stay in the memory or something. Then it happened. Or better: It didn't happen anymore... The phone died and I couldn't revive it to this day. The battery still showed 72% a few minutes earlier.

I ran a CSD-Test in February in which the battery did not pass because of internal resistance i think. I'm not sure anymore why it didn't pass but in my memory I think it was because of internal resistance... It also drained very fast since about April. But not consistently. Sometimes I would go to bed in the evening with still 60 or 70% and other days I had to recharge it in the afternoon to get through the evening... This was some strange behavior I thought was a Software issue. Or could it have been the battery?

If you also think that just my battery died, is there anyway to find a replacement battery? I couldn't find one but didn't spent much time yet on looking...

Anyway, thank you for your help and sorry for the long post!

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hi @cjannack - I can tell you, after removing my battery from Jolla and plugging it into the mains adapter, the the LED does indeed blink yellow and also vibrates with each flash. (It's also worth noting that a yellow flashing LED is also a notification for an unread email - but I don't think this applies in your case).

Sounds like you possibly have a dodgy battery. If you can't get the phone into recovery mode ( and rescue the device, then the best route may be to contact Jolla Zendesk and see what they say - if it is the battery, then it should be replaced under warranty, especially as the battery can still not be freely purchased from Jolla Shop or any where else, yet.

There are suggestions on this forum to use a pencil eraser to clean the battery contacts, some have even resorted to putting a small piece of card to make the battery fit tighter/connect with the terminals better, but in my personal opinion, this is not a fix, it's a bodge/workaround - but, if it works, it works; speak as you find.

Here's some observations from kimmoli about Jolla battery/shut downs/etc...


Edz ( 2015-05-26 00:10:29 +0200 )edit

Hello there! Thanks for your answer!

Its great to hear, that a working phone may show a similar behavior when the battery is removed. I experienced many of the sudden reboots kimmoli describes as well. And I do indeed have a piece of paper under my battery. It really helped in the past, but since some update last spring its probably useless I think... I will contact Zendesk and see if they are willing to help and what that may cost, since the "one year limitted warranty" expired in February :(

cjannack ( 2015-05-26 01:07:21 +0200 )edit

hmmmm, @cjannack - did you ever get your device working again?

Edz ( 2017-03-22 12:21:31 +0200 )edit

1 Answer

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answered 2019-11-26 00:24:16 +0200

paolomi gravatar image

updated 2019-11-26 07:32:26 +0200

Me too: here the solution! Download SailfishOS-sbj-btrfs-, unpack it and then

fastboot flash boot boot.img
fastboot flash aboot emmc_appsboot.mbn
fastboot flash recovery recovery.img
fastboot flash sailfish sailfish.img001
fastboot flash sailfish sailfish.img002
fastboot flash sailfish sailfish.img003
fastboot flash sailfish sailfish.img004
fastboot flash rpm rpm.mbn
fastboot flash sbl1 sbl1.mbn
fastboot flash sbl2 sbl2.mbn
fastboot flash sbl3 sbl3.mbn
fastboot flash tz tz.mbn

it works: try it!

Credits to sailfishlover

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;-) great - thx

reakolia ( 2019-11-27 00:53:04 +0200 )edit

Note: the yellow dot also happens when the battrey doesn't work.

(It used to be mostly problems with broken battery pins. By now, by 2019, it's very likely to be dead batteries)

JuBaTec sells compatible replacements.

DrYak ( 2019-11-27 11:24:02 +0200 )edit
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Asked: 2015-05-25 18:06:50 +0200

Seen: 1,182 times

Last updated: Nov 26