Android 4.2 for the HP TouchPad (with HD video decoding)

Almost two years after the HP TouchPad tablet was released (and promptly canceled), the aging 9.7 inch tablet continues to learn new tricks. The latest? You can now run Android 4.2 Jelly Bean on HP’s discontinued tablet.

Developer SGA has started releasing test builds of CyanogenMod 10.1 for the HP TouchPad.

Update: Now there are other builds of Android 4.2.2 such as Schizoid 2.0 and SlimROM as well, bringing support for the camera and other features.

HP TouchPad with Android 4.2

SGA also offers builds of CM10 based on Android 4.1.2, but it’s the new CyanogenMod 10.1 builds that offer Android 4.2 Jelly Bean.

That means you get support for lock screen widgets, Google’s new notification system, and other improvements.

As of April 5th (when I’m writing this post), there are still a few bugs to deal with. Bluetooth doesn’t work. The front-facing camera doesn’t work (but support should be on the way), and hardware-accelerated video decoding doesn’t work out of the box.

But it’s actually not that tough to enable support for accelerated video playback yourself. It’ll probably be available in future builds, but you can find instructions for enabling it below. This’ll let you stream video from Netflix, watch HD video from YouTube, and use hardware decoding in video players such as MX Player or Dice Player.

I’d still only recommend installing SGA’s builds if you’re willing to risk breaking your tablet. Users have reported that the battery can run down while the tablet is sleeping… and if reaches zero you may have trouble getting the TouchPad to turn back on again, even after you plug it in.

So proceed with caution… and with a charging cable handy. You can also just completely power down your tablet when you’re not using it instead of letting it sleep.

RootzWiki forum member RolandDeschain79 has put together a good guide of what’s working, what’s not working, and steps you might want to take to improve the experience of running SGA’s test builds on your tablet.

Installing CyanogenMod 10.1

If you’ve already installed Android on your HP TouchPad you should already have ClockworkMod or TWRP recovery on your device.

In that case all you need to do is download the latest build of CM10.1 and the latest gApps package for Android 4.2. Currently that’s gapps-jb-20130301-signed.zip.

You can then reboot into recovery and install the updates. You don’t have to perform a factory reset first, but it probably wouldn’t hurt. It’s also a very good idea to perform a complete backup in recovery in case anything goes wrong and you want to restore from your backup.

If this is your first time installing Android on an HP TouchPad that’s only been running webOS up until now, follow our guide for installing Android on the TouchPad. Just use the new builds of CyanogenMod and gApps instead of any older versions.

tp42_03

Enabling hardware-accelerated video

Theoretically all you need to do to get Netflix and YouTube HD videos to play is swap out a single file on your tablet. But the process for doing that is actually a little tricky.

Update: Don’t want to struggle with the steps listed below? There’s an easier way. RootzWiki forum member Gradular created a flashable zip file with the HD video fix. Just download it and flash it using ClockworkMod or TWRP custom recovery. Thanks Roland!

As xda-developers forum member webdroidmt discovered, what you want to do is replace the vidc_1080p.fw file in the /etc/firmware directory on the HP TouchPad with one from an Android 4.1 ROM where hardware-accelerated video works.

Here’s how I did that:

1. Download the 20130304 experimental build of CyanogenMod 10 for the TouchPad from developer jcsullins to my PC.

2. Open the .zip file on my PC and navigate to the \system\etc\firmware directory.

3. Extract the file called vidc_1080p.fw to my desktop.

4. On the HP TouchPad I installed Root Explorer from the Play Store (other file browsers with root access may work, but Root Explorer is easy to work with when changing file permissions).

5. Navigate to the /system/etc/firmware directory on the TouchPad using Root Explorer.

6. Tap the button at the top of the screen that says “Mount R/W” to allow read/write access to the directory.

7. Move the vidc_1080p.fw file from this directory to another directory. (You could delete it, but I wanted to keep a copy in case anything went wrong. So I copied it to the root directory of my SD card. I also renamed it so I wouldn’t confuse it with the new file).

7a. You may be tempted to just rename the file. Don’t do that. You have to move it out of this directory in order to make room for the new file you’re about to move in.

8. Copy the vidc_1080p.fw file from step 3 to the /system/etc/firmware directory on the HP TouchPad (you can do this by connecting your tablet to your PC with a USB cable, emailing yourself the file, or whatever your preferred method for transferring files to your tablet is).

9. Long-press on the vidc_1080p.fw file and change the permissions so that they match the image below. When you’re done, Root Explorer should show the permissions as rw-r-r–.

vidc

10. Reboot your tablet.

Once the TouchPad finishes rebooting, you should have support for hardware-accelerated video playback.

If you don’t feel like going through all these steps, you might just want to wait until developers offer a pre-built version of CM10.1 with support for video acceleration. Since all that’s missing is a single file, it shouldn’t take long for that to happen.

thanks RolandDeschain79!

  • http://soltesza.wordpress.com/ sola

    The Cyanogen9 on my Touchpad works really well, I will have to see some really appealing stuff to replace it.

  • http://www.youtube.com/user/RolandDeschain79?feature=mhee RolandDeschain79

    Great article Brad!) I wanted to let you know that Rootzwiki member Gradular has posted a flashable zip that contains the H/W video decoding fix. You can flash this .zip file through CWM or TWRP to apply the fix.

    Download update-cm10.1-HDvideo_fix.zip
    http://www27.zippyshare.com/v/49710161/file.html

    How to flash your gapps packages video:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pwK8Q63fRG8

    [ROM][04/02] CM10.1 Test Builds with Sound on the HP TouchPad, Android 4.2.2
    http://rootzwiki.com/topic/40107-rom0402-cm101-test-builds-with-sound-on-the-hp-touchpad-android-422/

    • http://www.liliputing.com/ Brad Linder

      Awesome. If I were a little better at this sort of thing, maybe I would have created one myself instead of writing out the complicated instructions. :)

      I’ve updated the post with a link.

      • Sasi

        I followed all the steps specified above to do a clean install of cynogen mod 9. Everything went well and thanks for the article.
        However I am not able install any app from marketplace or anywhere…i get a message Error: cannot install the app. I dont have anyother message to post here. Do you know how to fix this? I want to install some wonderful android apps.

        Thanks

  • newbie

    I tried to install cyanogenMod10.1 but it got stuck at “reclaiming unconnected clusters”. What should I do?

    • hollykick

      buy iPad

      • Kellic

        Burn in hell iTard.

      • Camilo Mejia

        Don’t be an iDiot

  • ravi

    My 2 year old son totally using touch pad (running cyanogen 9). Works perfect. I don’t want to take risk or else he will be behind my nexus or my wife iPhone.
    Touch pad has survived drops , banging on the floor and o n the glass with his toy. No problem so far. I have the the original sleeve cover from HP. Its rubber case protects the tablet from damage when dropped.

  • Sasi

    followed all the steps specified above to do a clean install of cynogen mod 9. Everything went well and thanks for the article.
    However I am not able install any app from marketplace or anywhere…i get a message Error: cannot install the app. I dont have anyother message to post here. Do you know how to fix this? I want to install some wonderful android apps.

    Thanks

    • Tim Ring

      Did you install the Google apps update? See RolandDeschain79’s post.

      • Sasi

        I replaced the Gapps ICS 4.0.3 11.12.22.zip with gapps-jb-20121011-signed.zip and did the gapps install from sd..the install completed successfully. Now adroid wont come up.
        I am thinking to uninstall everything and to do a clean install of android 4.2 jelly bean. Can you please let me know where i can find all the required files for this?

      • Tim Ring

        Sasi,

        All I can tell you is that I followed the directions on the page and used the files they have posted. Sorry I am not a developer so I don’t know anything better.

  • David Gray

    People…the author ain’t kidding about to your HP Touchpad going into an “endless sleep” so be very careful and make sure to buy yourself a Touchstone charger. There’s something with these Touchpad batteries thatt if you let them drain all the way down to zero they just will not take a charge and your tablet will be no more.

    • Mike Andrews

      David,

      I’ve got one Touchpad that got the “eternal sleep,” even though I’ve let it and others run fully down the battery and have had no problem getting them back to life with the OEM charger.

      I have several Touchstone chargers but I use the USB chargers more. Is there soemthing special about the Touchstone charger?

      What is the word on that problem? Nobody has found a way to fix it?

      I might try to open the dead one but I’d like to know there is a way to fix or replace the battery.

      • Justin Lauer

        My grandma’s Touchpad went into eternal sleep mode. I had to open and disassemble and disconnect the battery. I left it in unhooked for a day. Reassembled and threw on the Touchstone. It took some time to even on the charger to get the low battery symbol. Works perfect since.

  • Tim Ring

    Ok, I updated to 4.2.2 last night along with the apps and video file update and I am running into an issue that I hope is an easy fix. It says Unfortunately, (YouTube/Gmail) have stopped. Has anyone else run into this and is thee a way to fix this?

    • Jackie Le Chang

      I experienced these issues. I uninstalled the apps that were stopping and reinstalled them from the Play Store.

  • Tim Ring

    Has OTA RootKeeper been tested? I would like to get Flixster to work and it recommends this application to get past the whole no movie streaming or downloading supported on rooted android devices.

    • Tim Ring

      FYI, I tried this and it seems to work, Flixster is working now. I can only tell you from my experience so far, don’t take this as I validated it.

  • jazzyjoesig

    Followed all steps. Tried several times to reinstall but moboot 0.3.2 continues to come up with no options for clockwork or cyanogen. I have used ACMEUninstaller to remove android after my repeated attemts to install android. I have tried different moboots or clockworkmods but screen remains without options for them. It continues to remain moboot 0.3.2. I have used the “update” in front of the various installs of different tenderloin files. I’m stuck. Please help!

  • Hunter

    My sound isnt working on android but fine on hpOS and help?

  • ash

    I managed to install jelly bean on my touchpad but camera does not work. managed to get video accletator working though. please advice

  • Mike

    Followed the instructions and got 10.1 installed but don’t see google play or store, am I missing something?