Android 5.0 Lollipop to make bloatware removal possible?

Android 5.0 Lollipop to make bloatware removal possible?
In an Ars Technica interview, VP of Android engineering Dave Burke and Android group product manager Gabe Cohen revealed a new Lollipop feature that could finally let users deal with the bloatware found on locked smartphones. It's called "Play Auto Installs", and it's based on a simple approach that, in theory, should leave both carriers and customers satisfied. 

When an Android 5.0 device detects a SIM card by a carrier, say Verizon, it automatically installs a number of branded apps as part of the initial setup process. The key difference is these apps are treated as any other Android app, which means they are not installed on the restricted system partition and can be removed by the user at will. They become part of the Play infrastructure, which means they can also be easily updated through the Google Play Store.

Additionally, Google has left open the ability to push "emergency updates" during the setup process. Although it is still up to carriers to test and approve major software updates, Google will be "trying to have updates be frequent", pushing small patches and app updates on a whim.

In another interesting bit, Burke explained that Google decided to go on "the more premium end" with its devices to "show the way forward and [...] make the platform real". They are also working closer with different carriers, making the Nexus 6 available on contract price.

The full interview is available in the source link below.

source: Ars Technica



1. draconic1991

Posts: 200; Member since: Apr 27, 2012

nice thumbnail

2. o0Exia0o

Posts: 903; Member since: Feb 01, 2013

This is GREAT news if true for all customers, like myself, that are on Verizon! I long for the day that I can clear some of the bolat that VZW sees fit to install on my handsets.

5. Awalker

Posts: 1981; Member since: Aug 15, 2013

Don't celebrate yet. They were specifically asked about updates for the carrier versions of the Nexus 6 so I'm not sure it applies to all devices.

7. Finalflash

Posts: 4063; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

I assume since it is a nexus device the carriers will be cut off from it completely like the other nexus phones.

3. scarface21173

Posts: 700; Member since: Aug 17, 2014

It still won't get rid ov Samsung's bloatware already installed on devices.

9. willard12 unregistered

T Mobile Galaxy Note 4 Apps that can't be uninstalled: calculator, calendar, camera, clock, contacts, email, flipboard, galaxy apps, gallery, google settings, internet, messages, music, mobile hotspot, myfiles, phone, settings, scrapbook, s note, video, voice recorder. Of all the apps on the list, only flipboard and scrapbook are true bloatware. And flipboard is used for the magazine UI option. Maybe, the bloatware issue is as made-up as the "lag" issue.

10. VZWuser76

Posts: 4974; Member since: Mar 04, 2010

I think he was referring to Touchwiz.

12. blazee

Posts: 414; Member since: Jan 02, 2012

Lag issue is not made up

18. 0xFFFF

Posts: 3806; Member since: Apr 16, 2014

Does the Note 4 come will all that Samsung crap for the IR blaster, WatchOn, TV, etc? How about all the crap for Samsung wireless printing? I am not buying another Samsung product unless it is KNOXturbation free and can be easily rooted (i.e. Towelroot). When I bought my ATT Note 3, I was in shock for days at how crappy it was with all the ATT/Samsung crapware. There was no root for almost a year. Never going down that road again.

4. DeDex

Posts: 121; Member since: Sep 01, 2014

This is good news, but as scarface21173 said, it will just free us from carrier bloatware. Manufacturer bloatware will persist and will still ruin the Android experience with duplicate apps and ugly skins :'(

15. CoryMeetsWorld

Posts: 170; Member since: Oct 17, 2014

Not all skins are ugly. Sense for example is better looking than what Google puts out.

20. DeDex

Posts: 121; Member since: Sep 01, 2014

Not all are, I have to agree, and none is objectively ugly. Although I don't really like Sense either (I heard more about it than I saw with my own eyes), I was more aiming at Samsung's TouchWiz and Sony's terrible (in my opinion) Android skin.

6. shuaibhere

Posts: 1986; Member since: Jul 07, 2012

Well done google!!! A step forward!!!

19. HildyJ

Posts: 338; Member since: Aug 11, 2012

Yes, a step forward, but I suspect that Google's apps will still get protected status.

8. AfterShock

Posts: 4147; Member since: Nov 02, 2012

Way to go Google! Also a small typo last paragraph, working.

11. c.hack

Posts: 614; Member since: Dec 09, 2009

The carriers always find a way around it. If you want to get rid of bloatware you buy a Nexus.

13. quakan

Posts: 1418; Member since: Mar 02, 2011

Bloatware and carrier branding needs to be gotten rid of asap.

14. mike2959

Posts: 696; Member since: Oct 08, 2011

Not going to happen. If the carriers will keep subsidizing the cost of the phones, they will continue to fill the phone's up with the"bloatware" as we call it. No way in hell. All 4 major carriers have there stuff loaded up on it. The average consumer (not us by the way) use it. The argument of international phones don't have bloat is also false. I have 2 , and it's loaded up and cannot be moved.

16. CoryMeetsWorld

Posts: 170; Member since: Oct 17, 2014

Unlocked phones don't have carrier bloat you idiot.

17. mike2959

Posts: 696; Member since: Oct 08, 2011

You might wanna look up the term "unlocked phone" slapnuts. Let me spoon feed you. Unlocked phone's is Unlocked to use on other carriers networks, and it had absolutely nothing to do with bloatware. Jackwagon.

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit for samples and additional information.