Home > hardware > Motorola Milestone light sensor problems

Motorola Milestone light sensor problems

So I got my Motorola Milestone yesterday. It just became available in Russia a few days ago, and I really wanted to get it fast because of two reasons:

– First, I had some reports of my software not working correctly on the Droid (the Milestone is the European version of the same phone), so I wanted to release updates with fixes.

– Second, it really seems like a nice phone. I was going to switch SIM cards, keep my HTC Hero around for compatibility testing, and use the Milestone as my day-to-day phone as well as for further development work.

I had read that the Droid had a somewhat buggy firmware, but that most problems were fixed in the update to Android 2.1.

Well, I was really excited when the phone was delivered, but later that same day it turned into a major disappoinment. My Milestone has a problem with the proximity sensor, which pretty much renders the phone useless for making phone calls.

When a call goes through, the screen turns black and can only be turned back on by sliding out the keyboard. The power button, as well as the sensor buttons do nothing. Apparently, the proximity sensor is faulty, and blanks the screen even though the phone is not held next to the ear.

The weirdest thing is that this happens in bright light. When using the phone inside, or outside on a cloudy day, it all works fine.

Apparently, a lot of people are having this problem with the Droid in the US, and there is no way to fix it short of getting the phone replaced. I am going to try to get an exchange or get my money back and buy it elsewhere.

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Categories: hardware
  1. July 19, 2012 at 6:32 pm

    This may be two years late, but the problem lies in a small rubber grommet that covers the infrared diode which is used to detect proximity (when phone is held close to your cheek during calls). The faulty grommet does not fully prevent infrared light leaking to the sides and some of that light still hits the detector, so the phone thinks that the phone is still held to the cheek even after the call is finished. It may be a case for warranty, but if the warranty period is over, you may still fix it yourself. See comment by scholbert in the attached website for instructions 🙂

    • July 19, 2012 at 6:50 pm

      Yes, it’s a bit late, I actually threw the phone away a couple of months ago, as it started showing write errors on its internal data partition.

      But hey, thanks for the response anyway, for some reason it put a wide smile on my face!

  2. July 5, 2010 at 4:04 pm

    Did you apply a protective display cover to your Milestone? If so, remove it 🙂

    • July 5, 2010 at 4:18 pm

      I didn’t, and in fact, I peeled off the factoy-installed one.

      So it’s a manufacturing defect. The replacement phone has been working just fine for over a month.

  1. May 19, 2010 at 6:41 pm
  2. May 17, 2010 at 5:24 am

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