Motorola's Droid 3 shipping with locked bootloader

Motorola's Droid 3 shipping with locked bootloader

Summary: Changing very little from its previous smartphone policies, the company will ship the Droid 3 with a locked bootloader. Is anyone surprised?

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TOPICS: Mobility
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HTC may have backtracked on its position on bootloaders, but that doesn't mean Motorola is following suit quite yet.

Changing very little from its previous smartphone policies, the company will ship the Droid 3 with a locked bootloader, preventing ardent android aficionados from doing too much tinkering with the device. The news comes via a manager of the Motorola support forums, who said that the Droid 3's bootloader won't be unlockable like the one on the Xoom.

The confirmation is a bit of a strange one in light of Motorola's previous announcement that it would unlock its smartphone portfolio starting in late 2011. That move, of couse, hinges on whether carriers will allow it. So Android fans shouldn't hold their breath for too long.

[DroidLife]

Topic: Mobility

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14 comments
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  • More tug-of-war about whether the vendor or consumer...

    ...controls the device. At bottom, it would appear that most tablet vendors and carriers are trying to walk a tightrope over maximizing the adware revenue stream while minimizing potential support costs, versus customer satisfaction.<br><br>Regrettably, it appears that consumers are increasingly willing to eat whatever slop the vendors and carriers toss over the fence.
    FeralUrchin
    • So long as the customer for these devices is NOT the end user...

      @FeralUrchin

      Expect this to continue.
      Bruizer
      • RE: Motorola's Droid 3 shipping with locked bootloader

        @Bruizer I agree with your comment; however, this seems worse to me. If I were to buy a Droid 3 unlocked at retail price, do I *still* have a locked bootloader? That's a non-starter for me.
        bmgoodman
      • RE: Motorola's Droid 3 shipping with locked bootloader

        @Bruizer

        I think you've hit the nail on the head. To Google, the OEMs and carriers are the "customer". To the OEMs, the carriers are the customer. Nobody views the end-user as their customer, unfortunately.

        Although I don't expect the effect to be large, some backlash against this cozy arrangement may result from second-time tablet purchasers' improved ability to ask questions, and their newly-acquired general wariness, based on the nasty surprises in their first round of purchases.
        FeralUrchin
  • RE: Motorola's Droid 3 shipping with locked bootloader

    I don't have an Android phone, and I'm quickly losing interest in them as the promised "open" systems seem to be not happening.
    wkulecz
    • RE: Motorola's Droid 3 shipping with locked bootloader

      @wkulecz

      I totally agree, although it turns out that Android seems to be an OK platform for running the apps I like, and I don't have to pay for a development toolkit (yet).

      I don't understand how Google can comply with the GPL and withhold source code for 3.0 and 3.1.

      Also, like bmgoodman, I don't really understand "locked bootloader" versus "unrooted". If one can "root" (i.e. gain superuser access to) the device, can one unlock a locked bootloader?
      FeralUrchin
      • RE: Motorola's Droid 3 shipping with locked bootloader

        @FeralUrchin
        Rooting an android phone gives one the ability to load up a custom ROM. However, the locked bootloader keeps that change from being permanent.
        Once you restart the phone, you're back to the original ROM.
        tmsbrdrs
    • RE: Motorola's Droid 3 shipping with locked bootloader

      @wkulecz As soon as they stop being open, interest in them will die - even for me and until now I was a diehard Android fan.
      blueskip
  • RE: Motorola's Droid 3 shipping with locked bootloader

    I guess I will have to add another device to the <i>do not purchase</i> list.
    fatman65535
  • RE: &quot;locked bootloader&quot; versus &quot;unrooted&quot;

    @FeralUrchin,

    If I <b>assume correctly</b> (and we all know what the first three letters of <i>assume</i> are); a "locked bootloader" will prevent you from changing the o/s installed on the device.

    Kind of like what Sony (company known for "rootkit" baloney - sorry, but I had to get in a dig there!); did when it removed the "Other O/S" option on the PS3 (IIRC?).

    This is how I look at this, if I paid <b>full retail price</b>, or the contracted "subscription period" has run out; that device is <b>mine to do with as I please</b>. If some bunch of schmucks insist differently, then I will not waste my hard earned $$$ on them. F--- them if they can not take a joke! Now, you know why i do not use devices made by the "fruity" company.
    fatman65535
    • RE: Motorola's Droid 3 shipping with locked bootloader

      @fatman65535 I couldn't agree more.
      blueskip
  • It appears to me...

    Motorola has just made their profit go from Zoom Xoom to Zero.
    blueskip
  • RE: Motorola's Droid 3 shipping with locked bootloader

    It'll take all of a month for someone to unlock it. Why is everyone so worried?
    neca_florida@...
    • RE: Motorola's Droid 3 shipping with locked bootloader

      @neca_florida@...
      Nobodys worried, we're all pissed off. There's a difference.
      tmsbrdrs