Not a bug

HTC Wildfire stutters audio when screen locks.

ChrusG 13 years ago updated by Jona (Lead Developer) 10 years ago 52
My HTC Wildfire slows down the cpu when the screen locks, which causes the audio to stutter. But I still would like to "lock" the screen so as not to accidentally touch it. Also dim or turn off the screen backlight to save battery too if possible?


Not a bug
I'm officially closing this bug. We have tried various ways to make this work and its just a device problem. Also, the latest release of XiiaLive v3.2.0 no longer supports this device. We now support Android 2.3 and greater. Sorry for any inconvenience it might cause some of you.
I know you can prevent screen from sleeping, but not practical if you're "on the move" as you may touch the screen accidentally.
I have the same problem on HTC Wildfire. It's been a while since I have this annoying issue. The mp3 playback is flawless no matter if the screen is on or off, but aacPlus works fine only with the screen on. When I switch it off, the playback is choppy, really annoying most of the time. I can say it's makeing me really angry.
Maybe it would help to know that on AOR app, I didn't have this problem. I like XiiaLive because it gives me the option to backup all my favourite stations. I'm using the latest version of the app (v 2.1.7).

Please put this issue on the high priority list and fix it. I've noticed that there are a lot of developers that don't give priority to low-end devices. Don't fall into that big mistake. A lot of people use low-end devices.

Thanks and keep up the good work. Your app rocks.
Thanks for your feedback! I might have to get one of these devices to debug the issue better...  I would have assumed update 2.1.7 would resolve that issue...  When I get the chance to work on this I'll might have to send you an apk with some debug information to help further investigate the root cause of this issue.

I also thought that 2.1.7 release fixed it. I think it's something in the optimization of the OS for this device because when I turn off the screen, the sound drops for a second, after that it comes back and is choppy at some point. I believe that the CPU is getting in some kind of a low processing state. Even if that is true, how much resources is the aacPlus streaming using? On a aacPlus @ 64 kbps, the playback is choppy, and on a mp3 stream @ 128 kbps, the playback is flawless from start to on demand stop.

I also heard that Android 2.2 has some issues with aacPlus files/streams, since some video files encoded in 3gp (aacPlus audio), can't be played with the built in video player. I have read on the forum that you are working on your own streaming engine. Maybe that will fix it. Also you might check if there is some CPU low use policy, after the screen is turned off.

I will be more than glad to be a beta tester for you with HTC Wildfire, since I listen to online radio for about an hour and a half daily. If you need to know more about this issue, give me a shout.


This is a very interesting issue. We currently acquire a lock for WiFi so that it doesn't turn off. The phone slowing down the CPU processing power while the phone screen locked is something new. I'm gonna explore and see if this can be resolved.

I definitely think you should be able to lock the screen and listen to music without any problems.
The update to v2.1.9 brought the aac+ playback right where it was on v2.1.7, and that is better than 2.1.8, but it still stutters from time to time. The issue explained in detail looks like this:
After I open XiiaLive, I go to favourites, I choose one of my favourite aac+ stations @ 64 kbps (lower than this rate sounds really bad), and I press play. As long as the display remains on, the playback works perfect. When the phone locks and the display is turning off, the playback stops and starts about 3 to 5 times, then it stutters from time to time. This issue occures even more on 48000 Hz streams (like Dance.fm). This issue is really annoying.
I also tryed the internal player aac+, but it's worse than the Android stock one. It's not listenable it all. I'll record a sample of the playback and email it to you to make an idea about how it sounds. The 48000 Hz streams are not decoded right.

Plase let me know if you need more info about this issue and if you need a beta tester for HTC Wildfire. I want this bug fixed ASAP. I believe you can see my email adress. I really want to help.

I just recorded a few streams in order to hear exactly when and how this problem occurs.
Give me your e-mail adress and I'll send it to you.
Thanks for your help in regards to this issue.  email is support@xiialive.com
Nice! Are you a radio host? lol that recording sounded very good... :)  So I did hear the issue and thought that was going to happen.  I was previously contacted by another phone by a company and they told me that the issue was something to do with the phone turning down their CPU power.  I believe this is happening to this particular phone.  I have tried adding a lock to not allow the CPU to loose power but it seems to not have any effects on this phone...   Did you have this issue before?
Well, I work as a station manager at a local radio :) BTW, sorry for my bad english at some points :)
The recording was made in one of our studios.

About the issue, I had it on AOR app wich stopped working with aac+ streams on Wildfire since the last update in december. It didn't occur very often though.
The interesting thing is that mp3 streams work flawless whatever I do on my phone (even when I lock the screen), no matter if they are @ 192 kbps or 44 - 48 kHz. Don't they use the CPU power policy on mp3 files?
Maybe you should know that I get the same issue if I navigate through the phone menus or apps. It sounds exactly like when I lock the screen. It's a strange bug.
Is it any chance for me and other Wildfire users to see this issue fixed?

I'm definitely going to continue trying to figure out how to resolve this issue... I think I"ll have to go buy one of these phone to get this working...   What is the exact model of the phone you are using?

It's a HTC Wildfire. The first model. You can see it here http://www.gsmarena.com/htc_wildfire-3337.php
There's also the new Wildfire S (this is the new one), but you should buy the first version that you see in the link and update it to Android 2.2.1.

Keep me posted about the progress :)
And thanks.
Yes. That's the one I'm talking about. That's what I have and gives the problems :)
I can hardly wait for the good news.
I just bought it... let's hope first I can reproduce it and second and more importantly resolve this bug...
You should test it both with Wireless and 3G connection.
Post an update with the first test results.
Good news got the phone and I'm able to reproduce the issue... Seems like the AAC 64kbps are the ones with the most noticeable issues.
I also got them with lower bitrates, but anyway... is that problem fixable or not? :)
Well, I'm trying a few things but it seems like this phone has a very low powered CPU that seems to be causing this issue.  Even if you have the screen ON and you go to the home and swipe your finger back and forth the shuttering starts.  I have started a bug on Android in regards to this issue.  I'm afraid this might be an issue internally... But I'm not 100% sure. Did this always happen on your phone? Do you recall a particular version where this wasn't an issue?  By the way thanks for taking the time to try to help us resolve this issue.

Here is the bug post:
This issue occured also on Android 2.1, but not so often like in 2.2.
Let me get this straight... mp3 playback is lower on resources than aac+? Because with mp3 streams I never had one problem, ever.
Well internally there is a different way we stream MPEG vs AAC formats.  The Android implementation of RTSP seems to be bad or broken on this Android update 2.2.1.

So, what options do I have to make XiiaLive to work like it should? Except changing the phone... :)
BTW... Fixing your internal AAC support can be an option?
Well, I'm still investigating if I can somehow manage to make it work...  Our internal engine should most like be the solution in the end...

About the phone... I got to say it's fast when you aren't multi-tasking, but once you start multi-tasking the phones is very slow...
What the phone offers, is enough for my needs :)
It depends on how much programs you have in the background. I use a task manager to kill apps that I don't need after I use them. It's a kind of a must have on this model.

I don't understand why Google is releasing Android with this kind of bugs. AAC+ has alwas been a problem in the latest releases. Android is a good OS, but these issues are really annoying. I'm not hoping for a fix, at least for this model, because HTC is focusing now on the new Wildfire S with Android 2.3. I like this firs model because it's much better than the new one (excepting the processor and RAM).

Anyway... when can I hope for a decent playback of aac+ streams on Wildfire with XiiaLive? Any idea? :)
Well, I hope to have the new internal stream engine being the default one soon. More likely 1-2 months until release.  The good thing is that I got the Wildfire phone an that will be the base for testing the internal stream engine :)
That's good to hear. I hope to see the day that I can listen to aac+ streams without any issues :)
Good luck with the internal streaming engine. Thanks for everything and keep us updated through this topic with the progress you're making.
I've noticed that since the last update, XiiaLive is no longer available in the Market for HTC Wildfire. Is there any particular reason for that?
The app was out for a few minutes since I was working on update v2.2.1 cause v2.2.0 was not good...  You should be able to find it now on the Market.  FYI, I continue to explore this particular issue on the Wildfire.  I discovered couple improvements for the app, but still these improvements don't fix the issue with this phone :(
I found the app on the market and updated it. Maybe you'll be surprised to find out that for the first time the playback of aac+ is better than ever. I never experienced such a good playback with this app. There are some times when this issue occurs, but it's not so annoying anymore.
How about the internal streaming engine? Any hope to make it work flawless on this phone in order to fix this issue for good?
yes the internal engine must be optimized to work on this phone.  I'm waiting on a friend who is working on the internal engine... Hope he can tackle that soon! :)
I have HTC wildfire S with v2.3 gingerbread. I have exactly same problem. Music player freezes at screen lock. After that i need to restart my phone, it didn't came back and freezes. I am unable to unlock the screen after that.
Is there any workaround for that. 
I've got this issue sorted out a bit. It's the best solution for now.

The best way to avoid this issue is to keep the player minimised before turning off the display. Another thing I have done is to install AND SET UP PROPERLY Advanced Task Killer Free. I ignored all the important software needed by android and placed a widget of the program on the main screen. The steps I take are the following:
1. I start XiiaLive, go to favourites and play a station.
2. I touch the screen for preventing it to turn off untill the stream plays for about 10 secs after the buffer.
3. I minimise the app and press the Advanced Task Killer widget to kill everything else that runs in the background. This does not affect the playback of XiiaLive.
4. After all these steps, I turn off the screen and the playback is 99% flawless.

If I don't minimise the app, this issue occurs as described in this topic. I believe it has something to do with retrieving the metadata. I've noticed it especially when a song ends and another one starts playing... that's when it stutters more often. It seems that even if the display is off, when the app is maximised, it uses lot of CPU. Even the battery life is better since I run XiiaLive minimised before turning off the screen.
Very interesting...  I'll give it a try.  I'm wondering why the app would do a lot of work when the screen is off?  I don't think it does but there might be something and I'll take a look.  In regards to CPU usage the peaks I see with the screen on and everything is around 20-30% usage which is really not a whole lot... Lowest usually around 7-15%.
My Wildfire's CPU also runs at about 7 - 11% when the screen is on. I checked with OSmonitor. Something happens when the screen is turned off. I believe that decoding of aacPlus streams needs more CPU, and since when turning off the screen something happens, xiialive stutters audio if it's not minimised before turning off the screen.

I just remembered that the playback of aacPlus streams with xiialive minimised, is similar to the old AOR software (before the last update it used to work on Wildfire.. the development has been discontinued). When AOR was used maximized, it never had this issue. It also displayed metadata (if that helps).

In conclusion, I believe something is happening with Xiialive right after turning off the screen when the app is maximized.

So I tried AOR, and first I couldn't help to notice how slow it runs on the HTC Wildfire.  I was unable to connect to any AAC stations unfortunately... I have no idea why?  After doing that and closing it down I can see that AOR even closed spikes the CPU to 30%! I definitively see a huge bug on their side with that! :/

About your idea on the CPU. Well when you shutdown the screen it looks like the phone turns down the amount of current/power going into the CPU.  Meaning now it's got to work harder to keep up with the work given to it.

I really want to get AOR working to see if it's true that streaming works without any hiccups with AAC streams.


AOR stopped working with aacPlus streams on HTC Wildfire since the last update (2010). I believe they dropped the support for it. The version before the one in Android Market worked really fine with Wildfire. I will try to find a apk with that version and email it to you. I deleted it from my SD card some while ago when I discovered XiiaLive :)

I just updated our Beta version available on the Android Market.  I have improved few things on the AAC streaming side of things and the stuttering seems to have improved a lot.  Let me know if you notice it running better... 

Well, I can hear the improvement. The playback is at about 99% of what it should be. It's flawless, very few glitches at some points but almost not noticeable. The only moment it stutters is when I turn off the screen for about one second, but I can live with that :) I've been running XiiaLive minimised for some while now. I haven't tryed to turn off the screen with XiiaLive maximized, but since I get good performance when minimized I will only use it that way. 

Also, I've noticed some improvement when the network fails and XiiaLive tryes to reconnect. It reconnects faster than v2.2.2.

Good work. Keep it up. If there's room for more improvements for the aac+ streams, make them.

I'm looking forward to purchase the PRO version when the final release is ready.

I'm back with something new on this issue. It seems that Android's CPU clocking is the main reason for this issue. I managed to turn S-OFF on HBOOT and root my phone. I installed a custom Froyo ROM. You can find it HERE . The kernel supports underclocking (i'm not a fan of overclocking). I installed OS Monitor and through that app I always set the conservative CPU mode on the phone. This allows Android to scale through 3 frequencies: 245760 - 48000 - 528000 (never from the minimum to the maximum). The phone rarely needs to run on 528 MHz. On non rooted phones, Android forces the scale (ondemand) from 48000 to 528000, even though in most cases 528 MHz is more than needed and that makes the aacPlus playback to stutter.

After rooting and using conservative mode on CPU, when I play aacPlus streams with XiiaLive minimized and the screen off, the playback is flawless with ZERO issues. I believe the issue is fixed. The only thing left for Wildfire users is to root and install a custom ROM, or live with it :)

Thanks for everything guys.
P.S. On CyanogenMod 7.03 aacPlus streams don't work, but I believe it's an issue regarding Android 2.3.3 media framework.

I just flashed Cyanogen 217 nightly based on Android 2.3.7 and then Cyanogen 207 nightly based on Android 2.3.5 (wich I use now). I believe that the app needs to be optimised for this Android versions, because on aacPlus streams sometimes the sound clicks. It's not a matter of CPU because I overclocked @ 700 MHz and the issue still persists. The sound quality is incredible, nothing compared to Android 2.2 wich really sucked, but this issue needs attention. It also may be useful to know that on Cyanogen 7.1 RC1 based on Android 2.3.4 there are no issues with aacPlus streams even if the CPU is overcloked or not.

Are you using the Internal stream engine? If not try it out...  Also, if u aren't using the internal stream engine generally clicks and such is likely it's an issue with Androids internal code since we don't control the actual decoding and playback...  Now with the internal stream engine we do control everything...
The internal streaming engine stutters aacPlus streams. It never worked like it should. Android's streaming engine is fluid but has some continous clicks from time to time. It's more odd since on Android 2.3.4 aacPlus worked flawless and from 2.3.5 the sound randomly clicks...
I don't want to roll back to Android 2.3.4 because it's battery hungry.

Well, it looks like I'll have to live with it :)
Well, its a custom ROM so sometimes optimisations are missed or new bugs introduced... You can probably post a bug to the developers of that ROM...?
I am having similar issues with the motorola atrix, very annoying.
Would love to know a way around it without having to root device.
This issue is Android related. If you are running on a Android version lower than 2.3.4, you should know that there are internal problems with the aacPlus engine of the OS. This has been fixed on Android 2.3.4 and higher. Tested by me on a rooted HTC Wildfire with Cyanogen 7 based on Android 2.3.4 and on a Dell Streak 7 tablet with Honeycomb 3.2.

BTW Jona, you should do something with the interface of the app. On my tablet the interface is really buggy and messed up.
Hi MOraless, 
I am on 2.3.4 and I still have the issues.  I am just downloading and installing the latest OTA update, so I will see what happens and update soon.
OTA update appears to have fixed it.
Still on 2.3.4 but an Update from Motorola/ Telstra here in Australia appears to have fixed it :)
Thanks for your help! :)  We are working on version 3.0.0 to be release hopefully after the holidays.  This new version will have a lot of improvements and should make the app run a bit faster on tablets.
Not a bug
I'm officially closing this bug. We have tried various ways to make this work and its just a device problem. Also, the latest release of XiiaLive v3.2.0 no longer supports this device. We now support Android 2.3 and greater. Sorry for any inconvenience it might cause some of you.