Generally speaking, firmware is at the heart of almost all popular digital devices. It is safe to say that everywhere we can see digital device that uses the firmware, for example, portable audio players, cell phones, personal digital assistants, digital cameras and gaming consoles. In electronic systems and computing, firmware is the combination of persistent memory and program code and data stored in it. The firmware contained in the above-mentioned devices provides the control program for the device.
On the other hand, it may be very difficult for users to change the firmware of a device during its economic lifetime. There are some problems people have to deal with when upgrading the firmware. There is some firmware memory devices permanently installed, which means that people are not able to change them after manufacture. However, users always have to fix bugs or add features to the device, which demands them to upgrade the firmware. As a result, users have no choice but to replace the ROM integrated circuit or reprogram the flash memory through a specially designed procedure.
Therefore, users should buy the electronic items that can be upgradable. Keep in mind that the product is usually advertised as being “upgradable” when shopping for electronic items. With such device, users are capable of upgrading the firmware online by connecting the device to the manufacturer’s website or a universal serial bus or FireWire port on a computer system and following the instructions given by the manufacturer.
The firmware being upgradable can extend the life of the electronic device as well as add new functionality. However, what can not be ignored is that flashing the chips can be risky at the same time as the device will not boot when the flashing process is interrupted or become corrupted. Therefore, users cannot be more careful when upgrading the firmware when following the instructions given by the manufacturer. Besides, it is advisable to back up the important data in advance.