SamsungGear360

Samsung Gear 360 (2017) Hacks – Download the Firmware without a Mobile Device


If you are like me, and purchased a Samsung Gear 360, you might be wondering how you can get your hands on the firmware files without a Samsung device.

First, someone else created an amazing utility for getting the Samsung 360 Manager onto your non-Samsung Android phone here.

However, I was having some issues downloading the firmware, so I peeked a bit under the hood.  I quickly realized, its pretty easy for all of us to get our hands on the firmware with very little effort.

First, find your camera type

Now, my Camera is the 2017 version (in the image above).  Also known as the Samsung SM-R210.

You can find this from on-device system information, the box and packaging or the Samsung 360 Manager.

With this, you can now query for your firmware (without an app installed!)

Finding the Latest Firmware & Hash

The important part, is this URL:

Most importantly, notice the bold part.  That is your phone model.  So, if you had the older 360 camera, you could use this URL:

Now, paste that URL into a browser and you’ll see something like this:

<FirmwareInfo>

<FWVersion>0.81</FWVersion>

<DownloadURL>https://www.samsungimaging.com/file/download?XmlIdx=303&file=R210GLU0ARB2_180201_1739_REV00_user.bin</DownloadURL>

<Description>

<ENG/Start>
 · Google Street View mode has been added.
(Availability and feature may differ depending on region.) 

※ This upgrade will reset your device to its factory default settings.
<ENG/End>

</FirmwareInfo>

So, what is this telling us?  Well, it tells us the latest firmware version, a link to download that firmware, and then a bunch of info about what was added.  Cool!

Hash Files

I’ve been rushing, so I didn’t have time to check if these files are only validated in the Samsung Manager, or if they are validated on-device.

But, just in case, lets grab the hash file.  This, basically tells the program / OS if the BIN file for the firmware has been tampered with.  Ironically, that assumes that this file also was not tampered with.  However, it is most likely being used to validate a correctly downloaded firmmware file from an incorrectly downloaded one, probably not for anti-tampering.

So, lets see those URLs again and add a hash line.  This is for the 2017 edition.

The other, less cool, but somehow more useful version.

<FirmwareInfo>
<FWVersion>0.99</FWVersion>
<DownloadURL>https://www.samsungimaging.com/file/download?XmlIdx=306&file=sha256_hash_R210GLU0ARB2https://www.samsungimaging.com/file/download?XmlIdx=306&file=sha256_hash_R210GLU0ARB2</DownloadURL>
<Description></Description>
</FirmwareInfo>

Downloading Stuff

Now, to download the firmware file, just copy/paste the link from the DownloadURL (link for the SM-R210).

I’m not certain, but to go with it, the OS is probably going to also want a hash file.  So grab that DownloadURL (link for the SM-R210) just in case as well.

Next Steps

So, now you have the firmware files.  How do you actually upload them?  Well, I can’t help much there, but I can line up the next steps!

Well, by default there are only 3 supported modes.

  • Connect to Android, which uses a strange version of WiFi Direct to push data to the device.  Pretty much, the only way to use this method is through the Samsung Manager 360 app – unless of course, someone creates a specific firmware updater app.
  • Connect to Remote.  That connects to an actual physical remote you have to purchase – not much help there.
  • Connect to iOS (this is really the only solution at this time).

So, remember how I said I can’t fix that last problem today?  Well, it is fixable, but someone needs a bit more time than I have.  If this post gets any attention though, I’ll sit down and trace this out.

Option #1: Connect an iPhone to a proxy (Fiddler) and connect the proxy to your 360 camera

This will show you the paths the app is taking to authenticate, as well as the path to upload the file.  If it is a simple low-auth procedure, the firmware update could be as simple as using a special URL.

Basically myself or another developer needs to do this to get the upload paths and procedure.

Option #2: Reverse out the upload procedure for the Samsung 360 Manager

Right now, it is using another method over WiFi Direct to upload the files to the camera.  If we reverse out that exchange, we could build a standalone firmware updater.

 

Thats it.  I know this post isn’t of the most value, but I thought it *might* help someone down the road.

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