HTC to Unlock Bootloaders, Sony Ericsson says no FOTA if you unlock yours

There’s been a huge outcry recently about HTC’s decision to lock the bootloaders of all the new HTC Android devices, including it’s superphones such as the Sensation and the EVO 3D (much like Motorola has been doing for a while). Sony Ericsson came out a while ago saying that you could unlock your bootloaders AND they provided a tutorial to build custom Kernels too, so why couldn’t HTC do that. Locking the bootloader means more than just not being able to root your device, it also means to ClockworkMod Recovery and therefore, no Custom ROMs (in my opinion, most stock ROMs suck). This defeats the purpose of Android’s “Openess”.


Well, HTC’s CEO Mr. Peter Chou, just posted this message on Facebook:

“There has been overwhelmingly customer feedback that people want access to open bootloaders on HTC phones. I want you to know that we’ve listened. Today, I’m confirming we will no longer be locking the bootloaders on our devices. Thanks for your passion, support and patience,” Peter Chou, CEO of HTC”

Well played Mr. Chou. There are no details yet as to how this will be done (future update, unlock online like SE does, or something else).


And then, Sony Ericsson had to come out and say this:

I am aware that we don’t have a recovery ROM in place. There are some reasons why that is the case. One reason for not supporting FOTA updates after the phone has been unlocked is that FOTA is a delta between two know SW releases and as the phone has been unlocked we can’t be sure of the SW release currently on the phone. I will bring this question back to see if we could allow phones that has been unlocked to be updated via “SW update service” which would be a way to get a Sony Ericsson ROM back on the phone, but please note the warranty may still have been voided as the phone.

Currently we don’t support SEUS for phones that has been unlocked. I have initiated discussions if we can support that going forward, but there are several things that needs to be investigated before I can give you an answer (e.g. will it affect customer call centers, repair centers, which SW should be used for unlocked phones, how to identify phone model if other things has been modified, are there security concerns for unlocked phones etc). Will get back to you as soon as I have more information. Sorry that I can’t give a better answer at this time.

While it does make sense, I do hope that SE is aware of their update track record (their Xperia X10 update fried quite a few phones, inspite of being months late), and the fact is, I don’t believe SE can keep up with the pace at which android is moving forward.

Eitherways, there’s always good news in the Droid World!


Source: Facebook, Xperia Blog

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Raghu Kannan

Drummer, Car enthusiast and wanna be rally driver, between jobs and loving it! @raghukannan

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