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Motorola fans start campaign to push for bootloader unlocking

Posted: , by Scott H.

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Motorola fans start campaign to push for bootloader unlocking
For most smartphone users, whether or not the bootloader on your phone is unlocked isn’t important – and in many cases consumer probably don’t even know. But for the power-user crowd that likes to take complete control of their devices, including the ability to load custom kernels onto their phones, it’s a huge deal. Public pressure has already lead HTC to reverse its decision to start locking bootloaders, and Sony likewise offers and unlock tool online for GSM Sony-Ericsson handsets.

Facing mounting public pressure last year, Motorola announced that they too would start to offer an unlocked bootloader “solution” sometime in the second half of 2011. While the international version of the RAZR did indeed ship with an unlocked bootloader solution, the Verizon version continues to be locked down tight. Motorola indicated this was due to “carrier preference” – i.e. Verizon didn’t want you to be able to unlock your bootloader.

Not satisfied with this explanation, a group of consumers led by the XDA-Developers forum have started a campaign to put pressure on Motorola and the carriers to implement a solution that is friendlier for developers and enthusiasts. They urge action on social networks, direct contact with Motorola, and pleading to the FCC for intervention. In particular they urge users to raise the possibility of a Block C device violation with the FCC - devices that run on Block C spectrum must meet certain legal requirements, including "Consumers should be able to download and utilize any software applications, content, or services they desire".

If you’re interested in participating hit up the source link, and let us know what you think about Motorola’s policy in the comments section below.

source: XDA-Developers via BGR

27 Comments
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posted on 05 Jan 2012, 13:14 3

1. The_Miz (Posts: 1496; Member since: 06 Apr 2011)


First. Lol, people actually fell for that PR stunt pulled by Motorola.

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 20:48 1

20. networkdood (Posts: 6274; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)


Mommy and Daddy must be proud of you.

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 13:42

2. c.hack (Posts: 514; Member since: 09 Dec 2009)


Wait, I thought Android was so great because it was "open". You mean in fact it is open only to Verizon, Sprint and AT&T. Then they lock it down and install crapware we can't remove? So much for open. BTW, I own a Verizon Droid X2 (aka POS) that's locked down so still has no Cyanogen.

For all the knocks the iPhone takes for being locked down, I would rather have a phone that is locked down by someone who cares about the iphone than locked down by buffoons at Verizon.

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 13:52 3

3. Sniggly (Posts: 7113; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


You have to jailbreak an iPhone to do what you can do with a stock Android device.

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 14:01 1

4. drahmad (Posts: 478; Member since: 20 Aug 2011)


except jailbreaking is a job of 5 min.

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 14:06 1

5. johnfranckiv (Posts: 17; Member since: 05 Oct 2011)


yeah, but I could spend that 5 min rooting and flashing a ROM on my android... yet again trumping anything an iPhone can do.

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 16:37

13. c.hack (Posts: 514; Member since: 09 Dec 2009)


Not if it's bootloader is locked.

posted on 13 Jan 2012, 08:11

27. johnfranckiv (Posts: 17; Member since: 05 Oct 2011)


droid x here... 2nd init says my phone will forever trump the iphone :)

locked bootloader... psshh/ :)

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 14:12 3

7. Sniggly (Posts: 7113; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


And jailbreaking also voids your warranty. And Apple doesn't like it at all. Remember when they tried to get the government to declare that jailbreaking was a felony offense under the DMCA? Yeah, felony. As in "there goes half your rights and possibly 10 years of your life."

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 14:52

9. troybuilt (Posts: 155; Member since: 16 Dec 2011)


LOL! I remember that. Apple is too proud of their phones and want control of their phones even after the customer walks out the door with their phone. It's sad really. I also have a conspiracy theory in regards to Apple and their products, but that's just me. I'm sure I'm not the only one though.

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 16:40

15. c.hack (Posts: 514; Member since: 09 Dec 2009)


So when you walk out of Verizon with a Moto phone that's locked and controlled by Google, Motorola and Verizon's crapware - that's ok? But buying a phone from Apple knowing Apple control's the experience is bad? Seriously?

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 16:38

14. c.hack (Posts: 514; Member since: 09 Dec 2009)


BS. Jailbreaking doesn't void your warranty any more than rooting or ROMing a Droid.

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 16:51 1

16. EclipseGSX (Posts: 1610; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)


lol ROMing? did you just make that up

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 17:07 1

17. Sniggly (Posts: 7113; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


http://i.tuaw.com/2010/07/27/will-jailbreaking-your-iphone-void-your-warranty/

Really? Sure, you can restore your phone before taking it in if there's an issue, but yes, it will probably void your warranty.

Original point still stands, btw: you don't have to jailbreak an Android phone to get it to do things only a jailbroken iPhone does.

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 18:34

18. actura (Posts: 8; Member since: 15 Nov 2011)


apple just want their people to become closed and only trust what they say...irony

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 14:50

8. troybuilt (Posts: 155; Member since: 16 Dec 2011)


In terms of "open source" which means a manufacturer like Motorola can take the OS and do with it what they will, but they're indeed breaking FCC regulations to lock the bootloaders. Motorola is blaming Verizon and Verizon is blaming Motorola. No one is accepting responsibility for their actions and just pointing the finger at the other one. I also own the (aka POS) Droid X2 myself and hardly any dev support. It's basically crickets on every forum and that's why I'm getting my new phone tomorrow. I really don't care who's to blame for the locked bootloaders. Just release a tool to unlock them like HTC has. I'm glad there seem to be an uproar of Android devolopers trying to do something about this. Motorola as usual just ignores it's consumers and points the finger again.

posted on 13 Jan 2012, 08:09

26. johnfranckiv (Posts: 17; Member since: 05 Oct 2011)


See I have a droid x 1. Even with the locked bootloader there was a ton of dev work for it. Locking bootloaders does not break FCC regulations. There are options on every carrier to get an unlockable phone. Every phone does not need to be unlocked. The people who want to hack their phones only make up like 10% of the market. And only maybe 4 or 5 % of those people will actually follow the flashing directions. Unlocked bootloaders on all phones just means more people screwing their phones up. I wish for every device to be unlockable... only through adb though. You have people creating one click root, and now for the galaxy nexus, a one click unlock and root tool. That gives the consumer no experience with adb, which is where they will have to be working if something goes wrong, Also, I have seen people complain that the gnexus doesnt come unlocked in the box... because fstboot oem unlock is just too hard for them to do. Phones coming unlocked gives the average consumer, who knows nothing of rooting, and flashing kernals and roms, the abilitly to screw their phone up without knowing, and then taking back to vzw,tmobile,att, sprint service centers to be fixed. All of those man hours cost more money. We will never see every phone be unlockable. but some manufatures are starting to come around and at least allow developmental tools to unlock thier devies ( HTC ).

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 14:11 1

6. LewsTherin006 (Posts: 140; Member since: 18 Nov 2011)


Hmm i remember a website called go daddy who gave the middle finger to the internet community. Seems things arent looking up for them right now. Moto better unlock its bootloaders or they will go under and google will just use them for parts.

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 15:31

10. ngo2dd (Posts: 786; Member since: 08 Jul 2011)


They not go under for have a lock bootloader. The power user make up then 10% of total android user. Go daddy sale domain name so SIPS effect the major of the internets. A lock bootloader not so much. The Razed is doing well with a lock bootloader. Nerd rage some more

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 15:39

11. Jimstar (Posts: 259; Member since: 24 Oct 2011)


Complaints about bootloaders are one thing, thinking the people complaining about are the bulk of the demographic is another. The Go Daddy situation is another animal altogether

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 15:56

12. TreyTreyTaylor (Posts: 309; Member since: 21 Dec 2010)


One of the reasons why i got the Nexus over the Razr. It was a hard choice initially, but in the end, pure ICS, a bigger screen, and a unlocked bootloader was what i needed. After the nightmares from flashing roms on my Droid X with its unchangeable kernel, there was no way i'd go through that again with the Razr. Not that it's a bad phone at all :P

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 20:40 1

19. The_Miz (Posts: 1496; Member since: 06 Apr 2011)


I figured Sniggly would start trying to defend Motorola and bash Apple. It's amazing how locked down Android phones are, but of course Sniggly won't admit that.

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 20:51

21. networkdood (Posts: 6274; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)


Normally, the phones are not locked down - go out and buy a samsung - you can root it and flash a custom rom in 5 minutes or less. Jailbreak your iphone and do what? Download apps off a non-apple approved appstore? I can do that now with my DROID RAZR.
Dude, listen, I get it. You are a little kid. But, please post some facts and not half-truths to give yourself more credibility.

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 22:54

23. Hunt3rj2 (Posts: 396; Member since: 11 Nov 2011)


It's amazing how the dev community can throw around it's weight to get what it wants. No one talks about how some devs threatened to short a huge number of shares in HTC in order to get devices unlocked.

Oh, and AOSP is always unlocked.

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 23:08 1

24. Sniggly (Posts: 7113; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


Tell me, what limits do you have on Android that shouldn't exist?

posted on 06 Jan 2012, 10:18

25. gallitoking (Posts: 4690; Member since: 17 May 2011)


bootloader?... when I had the DX it was packed..out fo the box...

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 20:53

22. networkdood (Posts: 6274; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)


Also, DROID RAZR CDMA/LTE users can download ROMs now - go to XDA's website and check it out. You have to download a safestrap recovery first and you will basically have 2 roms on your phone. Very foolproof way of flashing:
http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1392810

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