We’ve covered in-depth the fact that Sprint, Verizon, and UTStarcom have abandoned the PPC-6700 series. They have refused to issue AKU 3, the latest revision of Windows Mobile 5, for the device. Sprint has even refused to issue AKU 2.2, a performance-fix release declared by Microsoft as critical. Without AKU 2.2, performance of the PPC-6700 is slower than Window Mobile 2003SE.
Hackers however have broken through this limitation. Well-known Windows Mobile hacker Helmi (known for similar Windows Mobile hacking endeavors on the GSM platform) has managed to release Windows Mobile 5 AKU 3.3 for both the PPC-6700 and XV6700. In addition, both AKU 3.5 and Crossbow are expected to be leaked shortly for the device.
With the PPC-6700 still the most powerful device on Sprint and Verizon, owners can finally have a software installation that compliments their hardware’s performance, even if Sprint, Verizon, and UTStarcom want to force users to upgrade via new hardware (that hasn’t been released yet).
We are currently hosting the AKU 3.3 upgrade for download on the Knowledge Base pages for the PPC-6700 and XV6700, though we caution users that this is unsupported, and could possibly void the device’s warranty. It has however been tested by several users, and we encourage you to show the carriers you care about your phone’s software.
Update: Some users are having difficulty installing the update. We cannot stress enough that this is unsupported software (as we caution on the download pages). If the update does not install properly, simply download the latest firmware update (on the download page, next to the AKU 3.3 installer) and run that updater.
Update 2: We’ve received tips from multiple readers that the unit must be placed in Bootloader mode before running the update. To do this, you must hold Power and Record buttons, as well as hitting the Soft Reset button. Continue to hold Power and Record until the white screen appears. Then, connect the device to your computer and install the update normally (the screen should read USB once connected).