I've purchased two phones out of China. Both had to be returned for repair. Wait time was two months for one and six months for the other to be repaired. I must be very unlucky. :-( I will suggest avoid being an early adopter of any phone. My first phone was ordered immediately upon release, and it turned out to have a fault with the screen that resulted in a manufacture's hardware update within a few weeks of the original release. I could have avoided a two month wait on the return of my phone if I had just waited long enough initially to see if the device was actually going to turn out to be a good one. And I'd also suggest always having a backup phone just for these possibilities. That said, I'm still using the second phone (ZTE V5 Max), after it finally came back after six months. Good performance for the price, and I'm happy with it now.
So I'm sitting on the sofa, looking at my dead U8220, thinking it's time to toss it out. But, then I think, hey, why not take it apart and have a look at what's inside? One tiny screwdriver and six tiny screws later, I've got it "open". Nothing too interesting there. I pull off a couple of ribbon cable connectors and reattach them without much thought. Decide not to do any more dissection, and just put it back together. And on a whim, I hit the power button one more time to have one more look at that old familiar screen, and... IT WORKS! :D
So the moral of this story is if you've dropped your phone and something no longer works, go ahead and take it apart and at least wiggle stuff to see if it just might start working again. You never know.
BTW, my wife is using the Huawei G300 and really liking it as a phone. (She's got a Kindle Fire HD, so she doesn't really want to do more than make calls with the phone; that's a shame.) I'm using my replacement Jiayu G2S, which is working flawlessly (finally). So my faithful U8220 is not being "buried", but is instead going into "retirement" just in case I need to bring it back some day when one of the other phones gets dropped.
Maybe stop installing so many different browsers? ;)
Slim v11 is completely stable for me. I did a full wipe and reinstalled most of my apps from the Market, vs. restoring them from backups. YMMV, but I really like this rom.
In case anyone is interested, here is a collection of blue/grey toggle icons for doing modifications yourself. I tried to compress each PNG so that the overall size of the resultant app would be minimal. These graphic files go into the /res/drawable-hdpi folder of the SystemUI.apk file. Enjoy.
The problem is not that they don't have a following or won't see any development. Both are happening significantly for many of these phones. The problem is that most of the following and development are happening in China, the home market for these phones. For example, the Jiayu G2S had mod roms being released almost immediately after the phone went on the market. Because of the sheer size of the Chinese market, many of these cheap but high spec phones have a large following almost immediately.
But, the critical issue is that you need to be able to interact in Chinese, or, yes, your options will be limited.
I further modified the SystemUI.apk I'm using to reduce its size under 1mb. So this file is flashable, and contains a modified version of the Power Toggles icons. The icons are grey when off and blue when on. The battery icons are stock ICS. I flashed after the first boot, so I don't know if it can be put into the rom before flashing that. YMMV, but it works well for me.
Edit: I was doing some testing. I wiped the phone, flashed the rom, and then immediately flashed this blue PowerToggles file prior to the first boot. After that it booted just fine and worked correctly after the boot. So apparently it can be done.
Well, for what it's worth... Opera Mobile renders my agency's website correctly in overview mode. Stock browser does not.
Opening the page in overview mode is a matter of taste, but I find it helpful, so I prefer it.
Thanks for the tips.
If anyone else is interested, here's a replacement SystemUI.apk in flashable format that has stock battery icons and blue toggle icons. I don't know if it can be installed before the first boot of the rom. I flashed it later, and it seems to work fine for me. Disclaimer: no guarantees, might brick your phone, etc., etc.
Edit: I did further modifications. See this post: http://www.modaco.com/topic/360832-romics-b952slim-rom/page__st__240#entry2102967