Don’t Hold Your Breath For Kindle Fire HD Custom ROMs: Bootloader Locked Tight
One of the awesome things about the first Kindle Fire, at a time when it was king of its price point, was that you could forget about the whole Amazon-customized-Android deal and flash it with a custom ROM to bring you some some good old stock action. Sure, we’ve got the Nexus 7 now for your hacking needs, but could we still see a vibrant custom ROM community surround the new Fire HD models? Maybe at some point down the road, sure, but for now some tightly-locked-down bootloaders are stymieing the efforts of developers.
The situation’s being compared to the Nook Tablet, which eventually saw the release of custom ROMs, but required quite the hacky work-around to get them running, involving a custom second bootloader. It’s entirely possible that the Fire HDs will have a bug in the implementation of their signature-verification code that could lead to a similar exploit being developed, but for the moment it’s too early to say just if or when that might be.
The guys over on the XDA-Developers forums are incredibly skilled at working their way into even the most secure smartphones and tablets, so we hold out hope for a solution being found, but it’s clearly going to be an uphill journey.