Hacking the Huawei E587 for custom applications

What device ?

Huawei E587 is a 3G modem with battery appearing as an access point. It enumerates on the USB bus as VID: 12D1, PID: 14FE

The device runs Android (a very minimalist Android system).

Under which conditions ?

No hardware modification to the device.

What to expect ?

I’d like to run any Android based application on this device.

What were the pitfalls ?

The CPU used is very low end (iMX28 from Freescale), Huawei put very low onboard DDR (32MB), the android system is very streamed down, the filesystem contains numerous useless scripts and tools, but lacks required tools.

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Hacking HSDPA’s modem from DealExtreme

What device ?

This one

Under which conditions ?

On Debian Linux wheezy (actually ARMv5, but any flavor would do)

What to expect ?

  1. Use the modem — minimum goal
  2. Send an receive SMS
  3. Place and answer a call
  4. Establish data connection

What were the pitfalls ?

  • The modem comes from China without a IMEI set. This prevents using it in most country in the world.
  • The modem does not appear as a modem to the operating system until it’s forced to do so.
  • The modem uses a non standard, non documented protocol
  • The chinese software is buggy and freeze the computer which make it hard for reverse engineering

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