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Motorola’s failed bootloader promise pushes users to the edge

Updated Dec 19th, 2018 7:41PM EST

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Throughout the years, numerous companies have made the decision to lock the bootloader on a smartphone or tablet, making it impossible for savvy users to run custom kernels and have complete control of the device. The Android community is perhaps one of the most vocal user bases in the world when it comes to the practice of locking bootloaders. When HTC and ASUS began to lock their bootloaders, thousands of users took to social networks and had the decisions overturned. Motorola began locking the bootloader with the company’s DROID X and DROID 2 smartphones in the Spring of 2010. Since then, users have bombarded the company with petitions, emails, posts and comments in an attempt to overturn the policy… and it worked, somewhat. Motorola announced that with carrier approval, it would begin to unlock devices in the later part of 2011. However, unlike HTC, Motorola caved to the carriers and devices such as the DROID RAZR were released locked with no unlocking tool having been made available. Users at XDA-Developers are at it again with “OPERATION: Make Ourselves Heard (#OPMOSH),” a movement to have Motorola’s policy reversed. Similar to the methods used towards HTC and ASUS, users are encouraged to email company executives, sign petitions and let their voices be heard through social networks. It remains to be seen if users’ efforts will pay off, however.

Thanks, Dewitt


Dan joins the BGR team as the Android Editor, covering all things relating to Google’s premiere operating system. His work has appeared on Fox News, Fox Business and Yahoo News, among other publications. When he isn’t testing the latest devices or apps, he can be found enjoying the sights and sounds of New York City.