Most manufacturers are offering official tools to unlock the bootloaders of their devices your devices. The process still isn’t that easy, finding the tool is anything but convenient, and it’s probably only the really high-end users that will go through the unlocking process. What’s more, there are still many devices that don’t have “official” unlocking mechanisms and have to be unlocked by methods developed by the “community”.
The reasons to unlock your phone or tablet really boil down to just a few: you want to add something, you want to remove something, or you want to change something.
Adding could be a system file, custom ROM, or just an app that requires root permissions to operate correctly — backups, for example. Changing could be swapping out a system app or modifying a system configuration. Removing? Yes, you might have apps, configurations, or something else that you just want off your device — but you can’t because it’s cooked into the system.
What if users don’t want to replace their ROM, but want to remove the bloatware that comes pre-installed on so many devices these days? What if users want to replace OEM-specific apps (launcher, calendar, mail, etc.) with stock -Android equivalents? What if users just want to install an app that lets them backup their stuff?
It’s an interesting prospect, one that could help us make our devices more our own (something that users want), yet still keep the bootloaders locked (something the carriers seem to be clinging to).
Have you unlocked your device? Why or why not?
Would you accept a de-bloating app over an unlocking app? What would this app need to allow you to remove and/or change?
It’s your turn to join in the conversation! Please let us know your answers in the comments below.
Image credit: Wikipedia