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Microsoft To Work With Windows Phone 7 Jailbreakers

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the working-against-expectations dept.

Cellphones 248

markass530 writes "Microsoft had a sit down with the first people to jailbreak their Windows Phone 7. Seems like good progress was made. This seems like a good approach to me. It would be great if Sony, Apple, Microsoft, and several Android phone makers would implement a simple development switch in their phones — these would obviously void the warranty, but it would give hackers the opportunity to actually own their devices without fear of having to jailbreak all over again whenever an update arrives."

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Nokia (4, Insightful)

devxo (1963088) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185520)

Maybe Nokia has its hand on this? They've never been against locking the platform, you've always had a simple option to enable installing unsigned apps.

Re:Nokia (1)

lennier1 (264730) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185756)

Nokia simply takes the most sane route. If the application isn't signed just display a notification and let the user choose whether to proceed or not.

Re:Nokia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185950)

Actually on new S40 phones, unsigned java apps display a notification every time it wants to save or load something from the filesystem. Very annoying, and makes e.g. 3rd-party camera programs almost useless. This warning cannot be disabled from the menu and you cannot install custom certificates either.

Re:Nokia (1)

bWareiWare.co.uk (660144) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186032)

S60 3ed (probably the peek of their smartphones, N95 etc.) had mandatory code signing, and Unlike Android, self-signed apps can never access a significant number of useful permissions (and signing for distribution was vastly more expensive as apps had to be vetted). I expect that later versions keep this feature but I had switched by then. However running your own apps, even native apps, dose not equate to root accesses.

Re:Nokia (2)

digitalchinky (650880) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186096)

Correct, however their tablets were a breath of fresh air with an xterm available through the menu by default, and root available through the software repositories.

Symbian is locked down as tight as any other mobile phone OS out there, though there are exploits floating around, flash a modified firmware to the phone and you can install anything, certificates or not.

Re:Nokia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185830)

Nokia was a Quisling takeover. It is time to build the resistance against Microsoft. Don't use WP/.

Some hack, some don't (2)

Aaron32 (891463) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185524)

These manufacturers need to realize that there are people that don't want to hack their devices (like me) and people that insist on doing so. The people that don't care to will NEVER do it, and those that insist on doing it ALWAYS WILL.

The more rigid you are on something the more you hurt things for those that don't want to circumvent the system. Those that enjoy it will just enjoy doing it even more.

Re:Some hack, some don't (1)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185562)

Yep. How can even the thickest PHB think they'll sell *more* phones by locking them down?

Re:Some hack, some don't (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185578)

Its not the phones, its the ringtones, apps, media and other features they make money from.

Re:Some hack, some don't (1)

definate (876684) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185608)

Yeah, and they also make money from them being jailbreakable. It's less direct, but it's true. Jailbreaking provides value, more for some than others. For me it's essential, I wouldn't buy one otherwise. I know this is the same for a lot of people.

Re:Some hack, some don't (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185686)

Yeah, and they also make money from them being jailbreakable. It's less direct, but it's true. Jailbreaking provides value, more for some than others. For me it's essential, I wouldn't buy one otherwise. I know this is the same for a lot of people.

I won't buy one I have to jailbreak in the first place. I want a phone that's like a PC - mine to do with as I will without having to jump through hoops. That's what I have with my current phone. It's a Nokia N900. Perhaps Nokia's last great phone.

Re:Some hack, some don't (1)

definate (876684) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185712)

Yeah, however if they have business relationships / contracts which prohibit it, I'd be releasing a good perfect jailbreak myself, just release a "cracked" ipsw (for iPhone) for each version. A little civil disobedience. Done.

Re:Some hack, some don't (0)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185782)

>>>Jailbreaking provides value

Precisely. The Commodore=64 and Amiga 500 were the most-pirated computers ever made (pirates cracked software within days & shared them online), and yet both were the best-selling computers of the mid-80s to early 90s. The fact these Commodore machines were "jailbroken" made them extremely desirable, because people knew you could get software for almost no cost.

Jailbreaking provides value and sells hardware.

Re:Some hack, some don't (1)

definate (876684) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185842)

Additionally, I would argue that it also adds value for publishers. I NEVER buy something I haven't run for a significant amount of time, cracked. Yet, I've spent a fuck load of money on software, which I already had cracked. Mainly because I realize it has value, and want to support the developer. Additionally, there are network effects, which most software vendors recognize, and is why they turn a blind eye to piracy in certain markets, or offer dramatic discounts (such as in china, or to students).

Regardless of whether people think this is legal/moral/right or not, I know many people like it, and this is intuitively how many people think.

Ergo, a rational self profit maximizing company, would not put too much effort in attempting to stop this.

Though, I feel like this is a "Oh great, this old thread" moment, since this has been repeated over and over again on here, even by myself.

Re:Some hack, some don't (1)

Bert64 (520050) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185846)

Piracy was also a great driver for PC gaming... But i see your point, i was in school during the Amiga days and they were by far the most prevalent computers among my peers... Parents chose them specifically so we could trade copies of games with our friends, and it didn't make us spend any less (we only had limited income and still bought games with it), we just had more games for the same spend.

Incidentally, why is windows excluded from your megacorp blacklist? I would have thought it would be one of the worst things about microsoft...

Re:Some hack, some don't (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185878)

The C-64 was only a best seller from 83-85, the Amiga never was.

Re:Some hack, some don't (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186070)

Now you're talking - but the thrust of your point is a wee bit off target. If I own ANYTHING with a CPU and an OS on it, I'm going to be ROOT! I will get in there, play with the kernel (at least as much as I can understand to play with) and see just how it works, why it works, and if it can't be made to work better. Nope, I'm not going to be merely "Administrator", in the context that Windows permits you to be administrator. I want to be ROOT - nothing more, nothing less. My refrigerator isn't rooted yet - but when they put a CPU on the damned thing, it certainly will be!

Re:Some hack, some don't (1)

definate (876684) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186086)

LOL Fair enough.

However you rationalize it, the result is the same, having absolute access, creates more value for us, and them, regardless of whether or not that access is used individually.

Re:Some hack, some don't (1)

mr100percent (57156) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185788)

It's not just a matter of selling phones, but to prevent piracy and DRM-circumvention. There are figures that as many as 60% of current iPhone apps are pirated (via jailbreaking of course). Look at how Netflix is dragging their feet on an android client, they have to have a reasonably-secure DRM before the studios will let them stream content.

Re:Some hack, some don't (1)

Bert64 (520050) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185888)

And despite the 60% figure, and having to perform a procedure that requires at least a little forethought, iphones are still selling like hotcakes...

No DRM scheme can be secure by its very nature, the only reason some schemes get cracked faster than others is down to laziness on the hackers part, why bother cracking one scheme when the same content is available via other schemes that are already cracked?

Put it this way, the sony ps3 was the last of the 3 major consoles to be cracked, and yet going for years without being cracked resulted in the xbox360 and wii taking the majority of marketshare, and very few ps3-exclusive games.

Piracy helps a platform sell, most of those pirates will also buy things and piracy allows them to have more software rather than to spend less on it, ie without piracy they would just have less content and thus less interest in the platform rather than spending more (money that they dont have)...

Re:Some hack, some don't (1)

v1 (525388) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186146)

There are figures that as many as 60% of current iPhone apps are pirated (via jailbreaking of course)

That statistic is very misleading. Less than 10% of iphones are jailbroken. OBVIOUSLY that's where all the pirated apps are, since that's where they have to be. So anyone that wants to pirate apps will be jailbreaking their phone, and loading lots of pirated apps onto it.

And of that 10% there will be a percentage of people (like me) that jailbreak it because they want to unlock it or have access to unsigned apps. So in reality the number of people pirating is probably closers to 8-9%.

It comes as no surprise that 9% of people on a platform can pirate enough software to make the overall % pirated software approach 60%. If I wanted to I could install 100 pirated apps. Compare that to the average user installing 15 or so legit apps, and I throw off the whole curve and by that statistic I make it look like everyone is a pirate, and the above statement seems to imply that a LOT of people are jailbreaking.

"60% of current iPhone apps are pirated (via jailbreaking of course)." is too easy to interpret as "60% of iphones are jailbroken", which is totally off-base.

Re:Some hack, some don't (1)

shentino (1139071) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186306)

Usually it's the PHB's kissing ass with the networks that order lockdowns.

Was this like (1)

Compaqt (1758360) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185532)

Suleiman meeting with the protesters ?

Re:Was this like (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185914)

More like you not being interesting.

Put Android on it! (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185544)

Then we'll see how the hardware compares with other Android devices! My money is on it being a rather inferior experience with an even worse battery life than more current Android phones.

Re:Put LINUX on it! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185988)

I want NO Windows Phone or Android, I WANT LINUX.

Re:Put LINUX on it! (1)

Killjoy_NL (719667) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186024)

Then go to that Openmoko thing, why even comment here?
Personally I am enjoying my Android HTC Desire HD phone :)

Re:Put LINUX on it! (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186286)

I'm enjoying my HTC Desire phone (although I wish multi touch wasn't so utterly broken on it - you should be glad you have a HD instead!)

Well... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185550)

Seems like good progress was made. This seems like a good approach to me. It would be great...

Tell us how you really feel.

Voiding the warranty (3, Insightful)

the_other_chewey (1119125) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185570)

It would be great if Sony, Apple, Microsoft, and several Android phone makers would implement a simple development switch in their phones — these would obviously void the warranty [...]

Why?

Re:Voiding the warranty (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185594)

If you end up bricking the phone because you choose to mess with it, why should Microsoft pay to fix it?

Re:Voiding the warranty (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185642)

If installing an app without going through some bullshit approval process will brick your Microsoft phone then yeah, they should.

Re:Voiding the warranty (1)

CaymanIslandCarpedie (868408) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185682)

Once you jailbreak a phone though there is a lot more you can do than simply install unapproved apps.

Re:Voiding the warranty (1)

Cwix (1671282) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185684)

If you can brick your phone that easily with software, then yea they should fix it.

Re:Voiding the warranty (1)

NatasRevol (731260) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186186)

deltree /F /S /Q c:\
Format C: /U
rm -rf /

Re:Voiding the warranty (1)

Joe Jay Bee (1151309) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186260)

That isn't bricking.

Bricking is rendering a device totally inoperable, such that its use is equivalent to that of a brick. Bricking can't be recovered from without intervention from the manufacturer.

What you've described would be very easily rectified (excepting personal data and settings) using an OS install disc, something which could be done by anyone with a modicum of sense.

Re:Voiding the warranty (1)

CaymanIslandCarpedie (868408) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185700)

After you jailbreak a phone there are a lot of things you could do to break it. For example, if you mess around and overwrite critical system files MS won't be responsible for fixing it for you.

Re:Voiding the warranty (3, Informative)

Hobbex (41473) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185786)

PCs come "jailbroken" by default. It didn't void the warranty on my PC when I installed Linux on it. Why should smartphones (which are just pocket sized computers) be any different?

good luck with that (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185864)

go ahead buy a dell/hp/whatevs then install linux and call tech support with an issue. I am sure they will be helpful.

Re:good luck with that (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35186166)

Warranty is not tech support. When my HP laptop on which I installed Linux broke down, it was repaired for free by HP as they are legally obliged to do (as per EU directive for 2 years after purchase - I see no exceptions for phones in this directive).

Re:Voiding the warranty (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185884)

Absolutely! I could not agree more. I see this whole thing as a positive step minus the warranty void issue. Whey can't the original software be installed then warranty service be supported?

Re:Voiding the warranty (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185956)

actually if you bought it from a UK retail outlet (PC World for example) and say you installed Linux instead of the provided OS they WILL tell you that your hardware warranty is no longer valid, or at least that's what they were telling people 2-3 years ago before there was some public outcry about it.

Re:Voiding the warranty (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35186134)

I am a mobile phone kernel developer...

For instance... we have hardware which monitors temperature and automatically shuts down the phone before it would break. During development we have a command to shut off this protection, this is important because we need to measure the "power consumption" of this system when enabled/disabled... now imagine there are 50 more systems/commands that can brick your phone... and there is no documentation at all for those commands... because they are for internal development... a more proper analogy would be unlocking a easy way to hexedit your BIOS...

So... we have one fully open mode(Development) and one fully closed mode(End-user)... there are no development resources allocated to create a nearly fully open mode(but with every potentially dangerous switch/command removed)... I'm sorry to say, but what you are asking for is not reasonable...

I think it's a very generous offer to allow everyone full access to every hardware block... i.e. overclock your CPU with one simple command... it's all there... have fun, knock yourselves out! But there's no way we can offer full warranty for running the system out of spec...

Re:Voiding the warranty (2)

peragrin (659227) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186162)

your PC doesn't include a radio transmitter with varying output that must talk perfectly with other transceivers in order to prevent widespread jamming.

Can you image a virus that turned every cell phone it infected into a jammer? That is currently possible with today's smart phones once you jailbreak/root/crack it. Or how about a software hack that can selectively disable your phone?

Current PC's are covered in massive amounts of hacks and cracks that distribute the spam, do you really want your mobile being open to that kind of attack?

Re:Voiding the warranty (1)

zm (257549) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185852)

OK, so I jailbreak my phone, then the screen dies, or power switch stops working, or any other hardware issue appears. I have every right to have that fixed.

Re:Voiding the warranty (1)

CaymanIslandCarpedie (868408) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185994)

One would assume that is correct. The article is just about Microsoft's warranty on its software. Any warranty on the hardware would presumably be a separate issue entirely to take up with the hardware supplier.

Re:Voiding the warranty (1)

the_other_chewey (1119125) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186154)

The article is just about Microsoft's warranty on its software.

A warranty on Microsoft software? Riiiight...

Re:Voiding the warranty (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185886)

After you jailbreak a phone there are a lot of things you could do to break it. For example, if you mess around and overwrite critical system files MS won't be responsible for fixing it for you.

That's very nice, but the Magnuson-Moss warranty act explicitly protects replacing components with components which meet or exceed the original specification. Where the API is published it is possible to meet this specification. In order to prove that it has not been met it must be published. So there is really no grounds for denying warranty coverage based on jailbreaking.

Re:Voiding the warranty (2)

jouassou (1854178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185922)

That's why you should differentiate between hardware warranty and software warranty.

Jailbreaking a phone should void the software warranty, but when the antenna malfunctions, you should still have your hardware warranty. And in the rare case that the software can break the hardware, the hardware has an obvious design flaw and should be covered by the hardware warranty anyway.

Re:Voiding the warranty (1)

peragrin (659227) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186188)

Your hardware includes a software radio, and reprogramable firmware.

What line does the hardware end and software begins. Why don't you take a good look at just how reprogamable your "hardware" actually is before making such stupid statements

Re:Voiding the warranty (1)

Killjoy_NL (719667) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186046)

a bit off topic, but the guys name in your sig is Stephen Colbert :)

on topic, it should not be that hard for the manufacturer to give you a restore cd for your phone so even if you break it, you can restore it.

Re:Voiding the warranty (1)

Nerdfest (867930) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185730)

Hackers? In the case of Apple, how about if I want to run an app that they don't approve of? Perhaps a better browser or phone application?

Microsoft desperate (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185580)

Microsoft meets with jailbreakers because they are desperate for anyone to like their products, even criminals. I'm amazed anyone would bother jailbreaking a windows 7 device, I guess it's worth a t-shirt.

Re:Microsoft desperate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185606)

What laws where broken exactly? Breaches of contract does not make one a criminal.

Re:Microsoft desperate (2)

TiberiusMonkey (1603977) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185746)

...er criminals...?

XBOX? (2)

FreakyGeeky (23009) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185582)

Wake me up with they have the same attitude toward XBOX mods.

Re:XBOX? (0)

CaymanIslandCarpedie (868408) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185674)

Here you go. http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/aa937791 [microsoft.com] Now if you are talking about the mods to allow the system to run pirated games, that is obviously a different matter.

Re:XBOX? (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185778)

Do you know what a Mod is, in the context of a game? XNA lets you create new games, not mods.

And it has nothing to do with piracy.

Re:XBOX? (1)

CaymanIslandCarpedie (868408) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185938)

Honestly I don't as I'm not much of a gamer :-) When I think of "Mod" in the context of game consoles, I think of three things: - ability to create your own software to run on the console which is available on the Xbox (though there are restrictions) - Mod chips, etc which allow running pirated games, etc which obviously aren't permitted - Creating custom content, maps, etc within a game which is really an issue for the game itself and not the console Honestly, that is all I could think of so I must be missing something. What do you mean by mod in the context of games?

Re:XBOX? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185708)

Cell phones are exempt from the DMCA, therefore it's legal to hack them. Unlike every other consumer device in the US. The only reason why MS would consider this is because they are clueless with security matters and never learn from their mistakes. They might as well slightly open their cell phones to prevent people breaking their pathetic security and spreading it.

Re:XBOX? (0)

Lehk228 (705449) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185924)

all those home developers just dying to make software that can only be played on a hacked xbox....

oh wait it's +95% cheaters and thieves modding their xbox360 to play pirate games or to let them cheat in online play

the sound of revolt/freedom (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185598)

a number of times in cairo, when the crowds of a million+ got what they believed to be 'bad news', they bowed & began to make a strong low 'humming/whirring' sound that had a overwhelmingly ominous/powerful effect. we have some fair audio equipment, so when it was replicated here, using normal/room volume, dogs down the street reacted. i've never heard anything like it. it would seem the increasing re-modulation of the sound itself, had high energy potential. good time to be legitimate/becoming so/or leaving, to where? it's doubtful that unprecedented evile has left the planet yet, as there are still millions of hungry/scared/dying babies, & hired goons carrying/riding on weapons, shooting them/us. see you there?

on warranties (1)

retrospectenlighten (1928828) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185600)

Why "obviously void the warranty"? This is silly - it's my device!

Like a general purpose computer, if the power supply breaks down during the warranty period, I expect it to be replaced under the warranty. Why are we treating smartphones differently? Worst case, fix it and put the factory software back on it. Then give it back to me working.

Re:on warranties (2)

mikesd81 (518581) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185710)

Look at your microwave, DVD player, or any electronic. Find that piece of tape that says "warranty void if broken" So, opening the operating system of the phone is like opening the case of an electronic device. Hell even if you open a big name computer like HP or Dell to do your own upgrade, it voids the warranty. If you chose to do something that could've and possibly did break the phone, why should the manufacture be responsible for blatant user error? Warranties cover wear and tear and DOA devices. But if you do something to break it other than normal wear and tear, why should the manufacture fix it?

Re:on warranties (1)

the_other_chewey (1119125) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185970)

Look at your microwave, DVD player, or any electronic. Find that piece of tape that says "warranty void if broken"

To what part of the phone's software is that tape attached?

So, opening the operating system of the phone is like opening the case of an electronic device.

There's a reason why we have different words for "hardware" and "software", you know.

Re:on warranties (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186028)

Look at your microwave, DVD player, or any electronic. Find that piece of tape that says "warranty void if broken"

That piece of tape does not have the force of law. It is there to frighten you. You have a legal right to have service performed by any qualified person, at least in the USA, without voiding your warranty. That person can be you. Replacing bad caps on a motherboard with caps which meet or exceed their specification, for example, is something you have a legal right to do without voiding the warranty as it applies to other components.

It's a trap! (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185604)

In the mobile OS market, they're the underdog, so they have to play nicer right now to get people to buy their shit. Once they achieve a position of dominance, that's when they start turning the thumbscrews on you.

Remember how they used to, aside from token efforts, turn a blind eye to rampant Windows piracy, particularly in Asia? Their stance in the 90s was, they'd rather you use their stuff, even if you stole it, than use a competitor's product. After they made some good headway, most PCs no longer came with a full Windows install disc that you could share with your buddies who could easily find install keys online-- you instead got crappy "restore" discs, locked to your computer model. And then when they finally reached the level of unquestionable dominance, you got product activation.

As a side note, when they're the underdog in a particular market, they also like to partner with someone already ahead of them in that market, steal what they can to gain an advantage, and then (in most cases) destroy the partner. Poor Nokia is dead, they just don't know it yet.

Re:It's a trap! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185644)

The first thing that I thought of was "Welcome to my parlor," said the spider to the fly.

Re:It's a trap! (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185720)

Yeah, remember how they use to sell visual studio and now it's free?

Remember how they use to require a pay version of VS instead of the free version to develop for WinMo but went to enabling it with VS Express?

Oh, wait...

Fuck you and your FUD. The problem with asshats like you is that you expect everything to be handed to you. Oh, and I just love how you blame MS for what your hardware vendor does as far as an install disc. Just further proof that you're a know nothing and a jack off.

Re:It's a trap! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35186040)

Oh, and I just love how you blame MS for what your hardware vendor does as far as an install disc.

Yes, you're right, why would Microsoft have any say in what their licensees can do with Windows? That's just plain silly.

I'm sure that around 1999-2000 the major OEMs all nearly simultaneously decided that just throwing a full Windows install disc and a model-specific driver CD in the box was much too cheap and convenient, and there had to be a more expensive way of providing customers with a means to reinstall Windows-- and miraculously, the idea they all hit upon was taking the time and expense to create model-specific recovery discs.

WP7 does have (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185610)

a dev switch. $99 a year, and you can load programs on it without the marketplace. It's how you develop for it. Doesn't iPhone and Android do this?

Re:WP7 does have (1)

ZankerH (1401751) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185754)

Apple has a similar deal with iOS. Android, however, lets you load whatever the hell you want, including third party or your own apps, for free.

(Provided it wasn't locked down by your wireless provider. You should check that before buying.)

strategy ... (2)

georgesdev (1987622) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185614)

Msoft is desperate to not totally fail in the phone market.
Msoft has just seen how kinect pc hack has created so much buzz.
Msoft Windows is reasonably open, at least more than ipod, or google chrome.

Re:strategy ... (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185798)

Msoft Windows is reasonably open, at least more than (..) google chrome.

Uh, both Chromes are open source, so no.

Once Upon A Time ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185632)

... phones had to go through some sort of compatibility test before being allowed on the network, to avoid hardware or software bugs in the phones bringing the network down (or clobber its performance or whatever).

How does that work when the punter is allowed to change the software in the phone then?

Re:Once Upon A Time ... (2)

ripnet (541583) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185692)

Because the actual radio bit is a separate chip, with a separate OS, which has an API called by the main OS (using modem AT commands AFAIK).

This baseband chip usually doesn't need to be tampered with, and is it this chip that actually communicates with the network.

You can install a totally different OS (eg Android on a windows mobile device), without altering how it talks to the cell network.

I believe the exception to this is to unlock phones which are network locked - i think that involves modying the baseband, which could well be illegal in some places???

Palm is very supportive of this... (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185640)

Palm (now HP, I guess) tells you how to enter "developer mode" for WebOS on their own website: http://developer.palm.com/index.php?option=com_content&id=1639#InstallingEclipsewiththeSDK-dev_mode [palm.com] Developer mode on a WebOS phone is the same as jailbreaking on iOS/Android: it allows you access to the file system, a command line if you want it, and the ability to install applications from any source. There is a LOT of homebrew development for the platform, and all of it is officially supported by Palm/HP. They even recently donated a server to a homebrew dev group.

Re:Palm is very supportive of this... (1)

Kilrah_il (1692978) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185676)

You can read more here [slashdot.org] .

Re:Palm is very supportive of this... (1)

TiberiusMonkey (1603977) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185760)

Thanks for this, I LOVED WebOS on my Pre but I just couldn't handle the bad hardware. I love my Android phone but I honestly will think about a WebOS phone and tablet in about a year. So yeah, this is really good info for me, I hardly had the phone before I managed to break the slider (and then again on another before I gave up)

That is exactly how webOS works, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35185694)

That is exactly how webOS works,

http://palmwebos.org/2009/09/22/there-are-now-two-ways-to-enter-developer-mode-in-webos/

Void the Warranty? (5, Interesting)

mercurized (907818) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185750)

Why would a switch in software like that that void the Warranty? If you buy a PC, you can install any OS you like. The warranty that covers your PC is covering the hardware. If you buy a PC, have no clue what you are doing and end up trashing your windows installation, there is nothing your PC dealer's warranty will ever do for you. At least not for free. If the software is broken you reinstall it or get it serviced somewhere. If the hardware breaks down, you'll be heading up to your dealer for a warranty replacement. Why would a phone be that much different? I even find it ashaming and harsh to realize that most people really buy that crap of "warranty is only void if you do not touch the software", like there was any warranty on the software part at all. Imagine a PC dealership trying to enforce such harsh software usability limitations like "never ever install any other software than the one you got it with, or forget the warranty". Would that actually be possible selling stuff like that? Not here in Europe at least. Imagine a car dealership that denies you your warranty on the engine after a few weeks just because you changed the seat covers. Its nothing different. This entire "Other software voids your warranty" FUD is sparked by the providers and manufacturers that very much like to keep you trapped with them and their software, and sometimes even hold you, your device or your data hostage against yourself, pretty much neglecting the fact that you actually bought the device you are acting with, and still not wanting to give you any space to decide what you actually want to do with it. And the even worst part is, people accept it just like that. Today's Smartphones are more like small PCs than like the old brick phones that couldnt do much. Most of these newer handsets are technically able to run many different operating systems. One can customize the systems as well, far beyond the possibilities the vendor envisioned. It sometimes feels like your PC Vendor tries telling you that you cant put any background image on your windows desktop which you did not buy from him. If you however use your own images, or god beware, remove the logo of said Vendor from the starting screen of the OS that that would be a change that possibly damaged your hardware which in turn would be void then.. Think about it.

Re:Void the Warranty? (2)

rrossman2 (844318) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185962)

Easy.. look at some of the mixed 2.2 and 2.3 ROMs for android. They can't do a pure 2.3 for the Samsung Galaxy S using code from the Nexus S as the front facing camera runs at a higher voltage on the Nexus S, and using that "driver" on the Galaxy S destroys the front facing camera. Also, the clock speeds and voltages can vary, and if you cross (I think the limit for the Hummingbird is) 3.1v, you could overheat the CPU and cause damage. So software can and has caused hardware to break, and if it's software that you had to break things the manufacturer had put in place to keep that from happening, that can and will void the warranty. Just like if you replace lets say you do something to your motor, swap in a motor that wasn't meant to be in there and had custom motor mounts done. Lets say a mount snaps.. that causes extra stress on the front CV/half-shaft and wheel bearing. If the car was under warranty, the dealer could absolutely say "no way" because the modifications can be shown to have caused the extra damage.

Re:Void the Warranty? (1)

CaymanIslandCarpedie (868408) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186026)

The article is about MS voiding the warranty on their software. Presumably a separate warranty would exist with the hardware provider. Now smartphone hardware providers currently tend to only support one OS (though hopefully this will change), so I'm guessing it may end up voiding their warranty as well, but that is a separate issue. The hardware issue would likely be like installing Linux on a Dell PC 10 years ago. Sure you can do it, but it wasn't officially supported by Dell so good luck calling Dell for support.

Re:Void the Warranty? (1)

snkiz (1786676) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186128)

I guess you've never bought a pc from Best Buy. Put Linux on it and Best Buy wont touch it. Or you've never used an ISP that uses MSN for their portal. You need windows to activate the modem or get any kind of support. It happens all the time because most consumers do not have any understanding of the technology they are purchasing. It might as well be a toaster to them, just another appliance. The longer this attitude continues the more corporations will claw away at our freedom.

Re:Void the Warranty? (1)

jack2000 (1178961) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186198)

Hopefully the younger generations wouldn't be so dumbstruck by technology. One would hope.

Its a scam (0)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185784)

All they want to do is find out how its done and the mindset of the coders so the next release will be 'unbreakable'.

If you trust a mega corporation, you will get hosed.

It's a trap! (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185818)

Fixed the subject line for you.

webOS has had this from the beginning (2)

Loudergood (313870) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185836)

Just type either webos20090606 or upupdowndownleftrightleftrightbastart and the developer mode switch pops up on the screen. They also paid airfare and hotel for one of the top homebrew developers to come to their last major developer conference. Oh and they just sent that team a brand new HP server with no strings attached.

excellent approach (1)

Cyko_01 (1092499) | more than 3 years ago | (#35185996)

if you don't want them to break your shit, make it so they don't NEED to break your shit. I know this is Microsoft and all, but I have to give them kudos on this move.

Re:excellent approach (1)

Killjoy_NL (719667) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186056)

I'm no MS fan either (the disease or the company) but I have to agree, this is the way to handle these types of situations, Sony could learn a lot from MS.

OS Wars 2.0 (1)

ironicsky (569792) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186008)

Microsoft is smart. This is the same way they won the OS wars in the 90's. Apple developed a proprietary system and forced people to do it there way or no way, while Microsoft said "here is an OS that can make any system you develop better" and let people do as they wished. While Apple does allow for home brew software, it still has the same restriction as every app on the app store, unless you jailbreak of course

void the warranty? why? (1)

spottedkangaroo (451692) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186018)

My Palm WebOS phone (pre) has a maybe 0.05% market share... but it has some really interesting features. Like the ability to root the phone in a supported fashion and the existence of a repair tool to fix it when you screw it up. I'm not impressed by MS sitting down with phone 7 users. Yeah, users. Sure, they're advanced users, but they're just using their phone. I can't believe "jailbreaking" is a problem, nor that it would ever void a warranty. I wish more manufacturers did it like Palm did.

Welcome to last month slashdot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35186034)

I remember reading about this last month. Way to stay on top of things.

Like Palm WebOS (1)

markdavis (642305) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186048)

>"It would be great if Sony, Apple, Microsoft, and several Android phone makers would implement a simple development switch in their phones "

Inotherwords, it would be great if they did what Palm/WebOS already did years ago. With WebOS Linux phones, you just enter a code (that everyone knows) and wham, you have root. Zero hacking required. Plus, I don't think it "voids the warranty". Why would it? It is just software. I can see where maybe the carrier and manufacturer wouldn't offer operational support for a so-called "rooted" phone, but that has nothing to do with the hardware warranty.

WebOS phones can be restored to factory-defaults easily by just downloading WebOS doctor from the carrier's site. No phone should ever be designed to be "brickable". There is absolutely no excuse for that.

Google should be listening to this.... if WebOS Linux can do it successfully, certainly Android Linux can do it too.

WinCE has always been hacked up (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186052)

They mention it in the story but... there is a ton of information on hacking WinCE-based devices. There are tons of alternate WinCE images for HTC devices for example. To stop it now would be to lose basically every developer not selling a complete device not intended to have functionality added (i.e. GPS, or in-car entertainment. although those desperately need hacking most times)

MS is trying to ear points.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35186068)

Good, it seems that MS is trying to ear points with hackers... but hackers love an open source OS and Windows 7 mobile isn't.

HP's webOS (1)

Planesdragon (210349) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186082)

Hah!

HP's webOS ships with a Linux-based OS and a simple, easy way to get root access on your device. In fact, they provide instructions on how to do so on their website.

And it doesn't even come close to voiding your warranty. Even if you put on custom software.

Retarded summery for old new (0)

Tordre (1447083) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186126)

I cannot seem to find it in back posts but this is the 3rd time slash dot has "reported" on the same event.

Granted, this summery "article" is more retarded than the last 2, as this one suggests having a switch to get in developer mode, and also voiding the warranty for flicking said switch. If there is a switch to get into said mode i don't know of any legal system would accept that flicking said switch is terms for voiding of a contract. Also have you heard of a computer manufacturer voiding one's warranty for INSTALLING programs.

But i will say this, excluding this dumb-ass sacrificing our rights to a hardware protection, I do respect Microsoft stance for this, they essentially asked the hackers to take down their tool and in exchange Microsoft is gonna make a system to do what they want without having they Dev keys posted all over the web essentially making piracy a trivial matter for their phone, which in turn will alienate developers who want to sell products. If this method pans out everyone wins, we get home-brew, we get paid content, and they get a market that is still considered profitable.

Marketing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35186174)

Microsoft wanted to personally thank the three confirmed WP7 customers.

Why not have a free app store with no censorship (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 3 years ago | (#35186214)

Why not have a free app store with no censorship and no dev fees for free apps? you can just ban apps that only mess up the os or maybe just list them as unsafe apps. But no banning for things like sex or let's say a IOS app review magazine. (apple banded a android app review one)

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