Digital Turbine's Ignite is here to light the fire of your bloatware-gripe anew

Hate bloatware? We're pretty sure we know the answer to that question. In fact, users have been quite vocal about the large packages of programs that come pre-installed on their carrier-issued devices. These are usually pretty limited apps, as they are, in most cases, trial versions, which quickly show their true colors and ask the phone owners to shell out some cash for the full program. Truth be told, though, lots of people find very little use for them, or just find free apps that cover more or less the same functions. And, of course, there is the fact that these programs can never be truly uninstalled from a device, unless it is rooted, which further adds to the users' dismay. Thus – the rather unflattering name – "bloatware".

And why do carriers do that, you ask? Well, sponsorship is the answer – the best way for a developer to advertise their app is to have it pre-installed on brand new phones, and to have it reinstall itself if a device just so happens to be factory reset and re-sold on the second-hand market. For this, they pay the carriers. Understandable – business is business, but when your customers' user experience is threatened, things start going astray.

One would think that after all the griping from users, mobile providers would look for a solution, a sort of a happy medium. Nope, instead, we now hear about another service being employed by US carriers, which may get you a little bit angry.

It's provided by Digital Turbine and is called Ignite. What it does is, it not only allows carriers to install bloatware on new devices without requiring the help / approval of phone manufacturers, it will also let them install apps post-sale, via over-the-air updates. As opposed to regular bloatware, these post-sale installed apps will be user-removable... but – if you restart your device, DT Ignite will re-install them. Users report that their handsets did not even prompt them on whether they wish to install new apps – which would mean that Ignite bypasses Android's app security.

So far, it is known that this “service” is being employed by T-Mobile and Verizon, with the Ignite app being pushed to devices with an OTA update. If you wish to rid yourself of potentially unwanted app installs – go to Settings → Apps, and look for DT Ignite. If you have it, disable it (you can't uninstall it unless you are rooted – but we can't say we are surprised).

source: Android Authority, Reddit via Android Community



1. g2a5b0e unregistered

I noticed this on my phone this morning. I disabled it & uninstalled the 3 apps it installed. Pretty sh*tty that the carriers would do this.

2. hellbread

Posts: 309; Member since: Nov 21, 2014

I'm just buying carrier free phones. Screw them...

5. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

I am with you on this one. #stopthebloat.

3. RandomUsername

Posts: 808; Member since: Oct 29, 2013

This is why I only buy unlocked phones!

8. tedkord

Posts: 17303; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Unfortunately, Verizon won't let you bring an unlocked phone.

14. sprockkets

Posts: 1612; Member since: Jan 16, 2012

You have to look hard for them. For verizon, that means a Samsung GS5 Dev edition or the new Nexus 6, both unlockable and free to do what you want with it. Last years moto x was also available as a dev edition. In about a year this problem may be gone as all LTE phones use VoLTE, all have sim cards and all support the various bands.

15. Cicero

Posts: 1115; Member since: Jan 22, 2014

Move away from Verizon. Problem solved.

4. fzacek

Posts: 2486; Member since: Jan 26, 2014

This is basically malware...

10. strudelz100

Posts: 646; Member since: Aug 20, 2014

This is malware that backdoor loads other malware onto your device.

6. black02wing

Posts: 34; Member since: Feb 05, 2007

I stopped buying carrier 2 handsets ago. This will make me always buy unlocked/unbranded. No more contract.

7. TournaFlyer

Posts: 27; Member since: Sep 20, 2014

Exactly why DIDN'T install 4.4.4 on my Verizon Note 3 this morning. I'll install it when, and unfortunately, if, they see the error of their ways...

9. strudelz100

Posts: 646; Member since: Aug 20, 2014

Android problems. What do you expect from an OS designed to poach user data? Google uses it to make money by pushing it's own services that collect data for them to sell. Why wouldn't carriers also push their own agendas when they can freely modify the software on all of their Android devices? This is why I use iOS. I saw privacy concerns with Android coming years ago. It's designed to benefit and make money for Google, the OEM's and Carriers: and doesn't prioritize customers over corporate business.

11. sprockkets

Posts: 1612; Member since: Jan 16, 2012

Aside from the bull sht argument that Android is designed to "poach" your data and sell it... Did you know that apple too runs a wifi location service designed to do just that, locate you? Oh but its OK when apple does it huh? I suppose them also getting your location for maps to determine traffic is OK when apple does it but when google does it, it is bad?

16. RebelwithoutaClue unregistered

Just use Google apps for business and none of this collecting data will occur. And ofcourse it's designed to make money for Google, like iPhones are designed to make money for Apple. It's called doing business. Apple doesn't prioritize customers either, nor corporate business, just themselves.


Posts: 261; Member since: May 03, 2013

Do American carriers load their own software /bloatware on their ios devices? Or only on their android devices?

13. sprockkets

Posts: 1612; Member since: Jan 16, 2012

No, only apple is allowed to do that.

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