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back to article HTC says smartphone bootloader unlock software out next month

HTC will begin releasing unlocked version of its Android smartphones' bootloader code next month. The first phone to get the update will be the dual-core HTC Sensation, which will get a "software update to support bootloader unlocking... in August", HTC said. "We’re in the testing phase for the unlocking capability now, and we …

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Good news for me

I just got one of these yesterday so thats one less thing I have to do. Got to say so far im not unhappy with my move away from Apple. Flash on a mobile with Java is more then a little nice. Forgot how much I missed it.

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Looks like...

HTC have realised they are not capable of producing reliable updates to their handsets' firmwares and thus are paving the way towards a D.I.Y updates system. Roll on cyanogen!

At least this way HTC can continue to concentrate on flooding the market with a new handset per month.

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DIY

It does seem a bit like a "go fix it yourself" sort of move.

But we've always known that the phones are good for a lot longer than the makers point out. They can say the phones don't have enough RAM, but it's probably because the OS system has lots of things running that don't need to be.

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Don't mind the "fix it yourself"....

As long they provide enough documentation and drivers/source if necessary. Hahaha.

I wonder myself if this means we may see meego/maemo/whatever on an android phone. Or perhaps, even a boot loader that will dual boot. Ah well, time will tell.

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Meh

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I wish they'd be a little less vague about what devices are getting unlocked... I have the Wildfire S and despite it getting proper flash support the other day (iPlayer etc. now works on it) I'd love to completely cut out all the HTC crap.

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Suspicious?

Nokia providing actual end-user support and updates to old handsets, HTC and SE actually doing what they said they would with updates.

It's almost too good to be true, this was almost unheard of 12 months ago. I'm suspicious.

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Hello Moto

So how do I forward this to Motorola et al. with a not so subtle hint that this puts HTC towards the top of my list for any future phone purchases? :)

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Paris Hilton

Just thinking out loud here

But has there ever been a phone maker - or anyone else for that matter - to consider something along the lines of virtualization layer for phone OSs? Seems like we're well to the point where our smartphones could handle the overhead without too much loss in performance, and I think it would greatly improve the challenge for the OS makers.

Again, just thinking out loud, but what if the hardware and carrier specific functions were all a part of that lower level - with just the apps and UI running inside an abstracted container. Maybe, even, this would allow the OS makers to update their piece in a more timely fashion since they wouldn't be relying on the hardware makers and carriers to modify their pieces before the updates can actually get to the users.

/Paris, because I have no idea what I'm talking about here or if it even remotely makes sense.

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Who for?

I don't think it's impossible to do that, but who would you sell it too?

Yes, there are probably a huge number of geeks (myself included) who would like to be able to try out different phone OS flavours before picking one, but beyond us who would care?

I think any manufacturer would struggle to sell more than a couple of hundred thousand of such handsets, so it really isn't worth the development time.

Plus, of course, you'd need a patent and royalty free standard for the HAL API before the third-party OS writers (Google, MS, Nokia?) would even consider adapting their OS to work with it anyway and suddenly you're talking several lorry loads of work for no return.

Feel free to try and persuade someone to do the hard work, though. I'd like this capability :-)

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Happy

Was just thinking that the model might be better for all parties involved

For an OS update today it has to go from the OS developer, to the Hardware mfr (who tweaks and certifies it) to the carrier (who further tweaks and certifies it) before it's even available to the users. Because it's all one big ball of wax, that takes months to do for an existing phone (assuming the hardware mfr's and carriers even bother to pursue it) and, at least in my reading, is a big part of the reason why we have so many phones running around unpatched and back-revved.

Thinking also, given the volume of devices rolling out, there must be thousands of different mobile OS distributions floating around. That must be insanely expensive to manage, so it's really no wonder why carriers rarely provide OS updates.

I wasn't thinking so much for the geeks as I was for the average users. If the OS could be abstracted from the core functionality of the hardware and carrier radio pieces, I think it might make OS updates quicker to get to the user and cut the software development and management costs.

Maybe...

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Nice

I just got a sensation last week and was disappointed when i found out the bootloader was locked.

Good to see HTC supports those of us that like to mod our phones.

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