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Protect Your Android Phone By Killing All Its Crapware

timothy posted about 5 months ago | from the easier-said-than-done dept.

Cellphones 201

jfruh writes "Like Windows, Android has built a dominant market share because any hardware manufacturer can license it — and as they did with Windows, those manufacturers are loading up Android devices with their own proprietary crapware. Although the process is a bit convoluted, you can get this crapware off your phone — and in doing so you'll actually make the device more secure."

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O'rly? No wai! (0, Offtopic)

stressclq (881842) | about 5 months ago | (#45355941)

And this is news how?

Re:O'rly? No wai! (4, Insightful)

Mr D from 63 (3395377) | about 5 months ago | (#45355975)

Title should have read: "Disabled apps are disabled."

Android vs IOS debate in 3.....2.......

Re:O'rly? No wai! (5, Informative)

gstoddart (321705) | about 5 months ago | (#45356063)

Title should have read: "Disabled apps are disabled."

But there's still likely several you can't actually uninstall.

On my HTC phone, I can't uninstall Facebook, but I can disable it. On my Google Nexus, I've had Google re-enable some apps I've specifically disabled because I don't want them.

They all try to put their crapware on the devices, and can make it awfully difficult to remove or disable them. Because they like to pretend they still own the devices, and they figure their desire to monetize your device outweighs your desire to lock it down.

I specifically went with the Google branded Nexus so I wouldn't have to worry about the crap from a 3rd party, but that doesn't mean Google has made it any easier to strip out the shit you don't want -- I disabled the YouTube app altogether when the first time I launched it to look at it Google automatically signed me up for an account without asking.

Welcome to the exciting future, where you don't own the stuff you buy, and the company who made it has embedded everything possible to give them access to your information.

Re: O'rly? No wai! (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356225)

My Android phone is a pay-as-you-go Virgin Mobile phone. No contract and I pick up a $35 card at the drugstore each month for unlimited data and 200 min voice. I had to give google one of my gmail addresses and some payment info to get set up with their app store, but little else. I specifically browse the web only with Firefox and never sign into any google property with it. Google keeps trying to encourage more Google+ connectivity, and lately every time I acquire something at the Play Store a dialogue pops up with them wanting my cell number for some form of SMS password recovery. The popup has my number all entered in it and it's an OK button click away from them having it. So their software already has the number, and I'm presumably just acknowledging that fact if I click OK.

The privacy issues with Android, since we've all dialed into the googleplex to have a Play Store account, deserve some thought.

Re: O'rly? No wai! (5, Insightful)

spire3661 (1038968) | about 5 months ago | (#45356245)

I am so sick of Google being annoying as fuck. NO i dont want to sign new terms of service, i dont give a fuck about having an SMS emergency contact, no i will NOT provide my real name to youtube and SHUT THE FUCK UP ABOUT GOOGLE+. In the last year google has gotten incredibly annoying with notifications.

Re: O'rly? No wai! (4, Interesting)

ciderbrew (1860166) | about 5 months ago | (#45356301)

I agree. I've twice deleted the google+ accounts i didn't want,

getting rid of an adwords account is even harder.

1. Get a throwaway email address from gmail (or anywhere).
2. Log into your personal account.
3. Send invitation to the new email address.
4. Log out completely from all Google properties.
5. Click on the link in the email (the new address)
6. Select "I already have an account" and continue.
7. This adds the new address to your account.
8. Log out
9. Log back in with the old address.
10. Confirm the addition and promote new user to admin
11. Log out completely.
12. Log in with the new address.
13. Remove your old address from the account
14. Log out completely
15. Proceed to accept invitation to the new account. (Select "I already have an account")


Re: O'rly? No wai! (5, Interesting)

TractorBarry (788340) | about 5 months ago | (#45356467)

+10 agree. Google are the NSA in disguise. The internet was built on anonymity and we're going to have to fight to keep it that way.

Maybe we should all start using "Luther Blisset" [lutherblissett.net] as our "Real Name" on anything that ask for one ?

Hell let's all actually change our names to Luther Blisset :)

Re: O'rly? No wai! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45357273)

Thanks Luther. Yours Sincerely, Luther Blisset

Re: O'rly? No wai! (2)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 5 months ago | (#45357037)

Just to be clear, I think that's a function of online services, not google specifically, and not android. Facebook is worse. It keeps asking me where I work, where I went to high school etc. It clearly has enough information to guess, as it makes suggestions which are pretty spot on based on my friends' data.

My android phone, I never get nuisances like that. My ipad is actually worse. It keeps asking me to sign in with gamecenter.

Not to say that google is superior, just that online services you use for "free" will always pester you like virtual paparazzi.

Re: O'rly? No wai! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356607)

Firefox for Android wants even more invasive permissions than Facebook and LinkedIn. Ditch that shit ASAP.

Re: O'rly? No wai! (1)

freeze128 (544774) | about 5 months ago | (#45357093)

This would be a really good opportunity to write an app that would present a false phone number to certain other apps. I bet they would stop sending unwanted texts if you told them your phone number was 911.

Re:O'rly? No wai! (1)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | about 5 months ago | (#45356313)

I bought a Nexus 4 so I could immediately root it and install an Android OS without the Google tie-in (Cyanogenmod, for example). I only booted it once into stock Android to make sure it wasn't DoA.

Re:O'rly? No wai! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356389)

And yet you went Google so that you could be a walking, talking advertisement for them.

Re:O'rly? No wai! (1)

denis-The-menace (471988) | about 5 months ago | (#45356555)

Too bad only iPhones and Android phones exists.

If only there was other smart phones available...

PS: I heard that Blackberry phones let you remove almost anything you don't want and you can run android apps.

Re:O'rly? No wai! (3, Insightful)

P-niiice (1703362) | about 5 months ago | (#45356629)

yeah but its a blackberry

Re:O'rly? No wai! (1)

denis-The-menace (471988) | about 5 months ago | (#45357019)

I know. It's not "Kewl".
Your friends might laugh at you.

If you don't like the options then your current situation isn't that bad if you are not willing to vote with your wallet or feet.

Re:O'rly? No wai! (2)

freeze128 (544774) | about 5 months ago | (#45357063)

Wishful thinking. I had a blackberry and Verizon FORCED an app on it.... BING search of all things. You can't uninstall it. It set the default search engine to BING in the web browser, and plastered the icon everywhere. Sure, you can HIDE the icon, but the program is still installed.

Re:O'rly? No wai! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356587)

Havn't figured out how to get rid of the lag yet.

Re:O'rly? No wai! (1)

poetmatt (793785) | about 5 months ago | (#45357079)

Yep, you have to root for this.

The fault is not android or HTC, this is exclusively and explicitly the fault of the carriers.

Re:O'rly? No wai! (2)

eudaemon (320983) | about 5 months ago | (#45357181)

Even my venerable Nexus One had to be rooted to remove the twitter and facebook apks and that was a stock phone straight from google play. No crapware that I noticed on the Nexus 4, so at least that's alright. But it's nearly impossible to exit the Google ecosystem entirely and use an android phone.

Re:O'rly? No wai! (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356339)

This really is one of the better reasons to get an iphone. Apple fought the carriers HARD to get their nickle-and-dime shitware off the iphone, and as a result only ATT was willing to pick up the iphone at first.

Who do none of you fandroids remember the bad old days of carrier phones where built-in features were turned off, replaced by carrier specific crapware and sold back to you at a subscription-only premium? Want music? Maps? Ringtones? Games? Share photos? That will cost you. Each time. And you have to pay a monthly fee just for the privilege of giving us more money each time.

I just got the 5c and it was effortless. (Previously had a 4)Turn on phone, choose restore, punch in icloud credentials Done. All apps, music, photos, settings, accounts all migrate back over. Easy. Done. Nothing I didn't want. (The fingerprint unlock isn't a gimmick by the way. Its fucking amazing. It's literally faster to unlock the phone than punching in a code, and you can easily and consitantly unlock the phone without looking at it)

My co-worker got a galaxy S4 at the same time. Nice looking, huge screen, great display. Loaded to the brim with throw-away features that half work, samsung's really awful attempt at copying icloud, and a full page of ATT shitware that actually makes the phone objectively and subjectively worse. She's still trying to get all of her stuff moved over. - The google services, though, migrated perfectly. Google has their shit down, but they lack the clout to tell carriers to go fuck themselves like apple can.

Re:O'rly? No wai! (2)

ciderbrew (1860166) | about 5 months ago | (#45355985)

It's the link bait update report. V important if you want to stay up-to-date with the latest link bait.

Re:O'rly? No wai! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356193)

It's almost if submitter "jfruh" is just some ITWorld.com wonk trying to get hits from Slashdot submissions!

The news is that the MSM realizes it (4, Informative)

tepples (727027) | about 5 months ago | (#45356029)

Not every article published with a date has to be news. Sometimes the news is just that the mainstream media have come to realize something that the geeks have known for months or years. In this case, the news is that the mainstream media has realized that 1. Android has preinstalled crapware, 2. this crapware has vulnerabilities, 3. this crapware can be disabled since 4.0 so as not to cause any damage, and 4. it's enough of a problem that the ad impressions are worth writing and editing a story about it.

Re:O'rly? No wai! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356053)

It's always news when timothy discovers a new button.

I wonder what happened if someone replaced all his programs with clickdummies.

Hooray (5, Insightful)

egr (932620) | about 5 months ago | (#45355967)

Some guy found new button in application management settings... good for him! However the summary is misleading, it does not get the crapware off, it just disables the applications.

Re:Hooray (1)

advocate_one (662832) | about 5 months ago | (#45356333)

he did give information on how to completely remove them, specifically stating that you needed to "root" your phone (giving a link to how to do it) and then gave a link to an app which allows you to really remove the crapware after having rooted your phone...

Re:Hooray (1)

egr (932620) | about 5 months ago | (#45356597)

True that, I guess I missed it because it was just one paragraph at the end. However app disabling still seems to be the main focus of the article.

This article needs to die! right now!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45355987)

The article is meaningless for a slashdot crowd. Don't bother wasting your time.

All the crapware? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45355997)

Yeah but...Android needs Java and if you took all the crapware off, Java would be gone and your Android device wouldn't work! Although, it would be much more secure without Java.

Master Yoda, what wrong?!

have begun the language flame war has

Disable is disabled (5, Informative)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about 5 months ago | (#45356005)

On my Galaxy S3, which is loaded only with genuine Samsung crapware, disable is disabled on those apps.

Re:Disable is disabled (3, Informative)

Vaakku (698260) | about 5 months ago | (#45356167)

Uninstall updates on those apps first. Then it will let you disable them.

Re:Disable is disabled (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356207)

Just like the article says, which supposedly nobody on slashdot needs to read.

Re:Disable is disabled (1)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about 5 months ago | (#45356211)

Nope. Disable is disabled. It will not let you uninstall them without rooting the phone.

Re:Disable is disabled (4, Informative)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about 5 months ago | (#45356247)

Correction. A few will let you disable them. Many will not, whether you uninstall updates or not.

Re:Disable is disabled (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356441)

Add to that Samsung "apps" will still nag you about updates being available, even when they're disabled.

Re:Disable is disabled (2)

martinmarv (920771) | about 5 months ago | (#45356319)

Uninstalling updates enables "Disable" on some apps, but not others, unfortunately (on non-rooted devices). I have a Samsung Galaxy Note 3, and can't disable the Samsung Music app

Re:Disable is disabled (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356279)

That's what they made root for. If Samsung starts locking bootloaders they'll learn the hard way like HTC.

Samsung does lock bootloaders, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356423)

...now there's Hashcode's SafeStrap [hash-of-codes.com] and it's available for those locked Verizon and ATT Samsung Galaxy S4s. SafeStrap is very cool in that it allows you to have multiple roms on your phone and choose which one to boot at startup time. Search the XDA Developers forums for more info on SafeStrap.

Re:Disable is disabled (3, Informative)

Timothy Hartman (2905293) | about 5 months ago | (#45356371)

Root it and put CyanogenMod [cyanogenmod.org] on it.
That was the first thing I did with my phone. Also, the Verizon S3 is fully loaded with Verizon Crapware, not just the Samsung crapware.

Re:Disable is disabled (0)

Luckyo (1726890) | about 5 months ago | (#45356439)

Doesn't it comes with serious caveats, like losing some of the phone's functionality?
I remember last time I researched it, you'd lose camera completely or camera quality would degrade massively and some other functionality of the phone got lost upon installing cyanogenmod.

Re:Disable is disabled (1)

neminem (561346) | about 5 months ago | (#45357011)

Having only just recently (a few days ago) flashed my phone with Cyanogenmod - it probably depends on the phone, but in the case of my Samsung Epic 4g, flashing Cyanogenmod didn't break any functionality. Or I should say, it did break autorotate out of the box, but there was a fix for it (temporarily boot into stock, run a calibration tool, reboot). I haven't seen anything else working worse; this includes the camera, which seems the same.

Re:Disable is disabled (1)

Archangel Michael (180766) | about 5 months ago | (#45357133)

My Samsung GS3 (d2tmo) works fine with Cyanogen, and I have had fewer issues than with the stock. The stock d2tmo wasn't bad, but it had all the T-Mo crap I will never use, since I am not on T-Mo service.

Camera, especially with Focal (app/beta) works great. No issues. I'm currently running CM 10.2 M1 and have a couple "odd" issues, and two random reboots, but generally am happy. I ran CM 10.1 for several months without ANY issues, and I'm sure that once CM 10.2 goes stable, it will be "stable". But it is a good daily driver right now. AND the bonus is, my battery life is way better than the stock ROM. Easily 3 hours more every day (I use my phone a lot)

Re:Disable is disabled (2)

Monsuco (998964) | about 5 months ago | (#45357163)

Doesn't it comes with serious caveats, like losing some of the phone's functionality? I remember last time I researched it, you'd lose camera completely or camera quality would degrade massively and some other functionality of the phone got lost upon installing cyanogenmod.

Sometimes nightly builds have this issue. Usually by the time you get to release candidates this issue is solved. My Droid 4 has been happily running Cyanogenmod for several months.

Re:Disable is disabled (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356617)

Buying your phone from a mobile network company is a stupid idea anyway. It is almost always more expensive and they get to put crap on your phone.

Re:Disable is disabled (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 5 months ago | (#45357157)

Actually, for most people it's cheaper, since the big networks don't give you a discount for buying your own phone. If you're talking about switching from AT&T or verizon, then sure it would be cheaper, but staying within those two as most people do, no, it's cheaper to subsidize a phone, since you pay the same price anyway.

Re:Disable is disabled (2)

Greyfox (87712) | about 5 months ago | (#45356905)

You don't even have to root it. Just put the cyanogenmod image on your flash disk, use Odin to install the appropriate recovery image, boot to that recovery image and install the CM image.

Buy a copy of mybackup pro or something and you can back up all your apps and data to your flash drive in advance. It doesn't seem to need root to do this.

It's a bit of a convoluted process if you allow the original image to boot before you boot to the recovery -- it'll reinstall the stock recovery without so much as asking. But if you just follow the steps I outlined, you'll end up with CM on your phone, the CM recovery and never having to root the thing.

I lost the T-Mobile wifi calling by doing this, but the only place it ever worked for me was at home anyway. My signal is pretty good at the house anyway. Everything else works as well as or better than the stock S3 image, and you can delete all that crap the carrier installs on your phone by default. The visual voice mail still even works.

Re:Disable is disabled (1)

Hatta (162192) | about 5 months ago | (#45356639)

Can't you compile Android from scratch and install it on your phone?

Re:Disable is disabled (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356823)

Yes and no. The hardware drivers and chipset stuff are often proprietary and not included in AOSP. So if you just go the open source route, your phone probably won't work. The folks who do all the work bringing you custom roms have to extract this stuff from factory recovery images or from working phones, then do the integration to get them into a build based off of AOSP. Even with them doing this work, some phones (for example) will have non-functional camera when using one of the roms.

Re:Disable is disabled (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356649)

On my Galaxy S3, which is loaded only with genuine Samsung crapware, disable is disabled on those apps.

Just disable Samsung's disabling of the disable option.

Re:Disable is disabled (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 5 months ago | (#45357137)

That's samsungs very annoying way of telling you to root it, I suppose. Or buy another phone. You can get titaniumbackup and freeze those programs once you do. I was annoyed by this too on my S2.

Re:Disable is disabled (1)

JoshRosenbaum (841551) | about 5 months ago | (#45357347)

On my Verizon Galaxy S3 I rooted and installed BoneStock ROM. I chose this over Cyanogenmod, because it is mostly the stock ROM with lots of tweaks. Since it is basically the stock ROM, you don't lose any features and have less chance of bugs. (For example: No losing your camera.) However, it allows you to pick pretty much everything you want to install on the device and re-enables base features disabled by Verizon. (Wifi tethering for example.) I unselected most of the Verizon bloat along with many Samsung features I did not need. Makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside not having all that bloatware. The features list is huge too. Check out the link below to find all you can do with the ROM.

The BoneStock ROM can be found here: http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2275376 [xda-developers.com]

The xda-developers forum has all sorts of ROMs and root methods, so be sure to navigate to your correct subforum and see all the different ROMs and root methods you can use.

Overprivilaged Apps Security Risk... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356007)

But root your phone to remove them. Yeah, because rooting doesn't make the phone inherently more vulnerable.

Oh and it's nice that he's recommending basic Android 101 stuff (i.e. disable the app) which is presumably meant for a novice. He then recommends rooting to this same group knowing full well that these people shouldn't ever root their phone because it will cause more harm than good. Nice.

Re:Overprivilaged Apps Security Risk... (4, Informative)

egr (932620) | about 5 months ago | (#45356039)

It is possible to root the phone, remove the crapware and then remove the root. No need to keep it.

Or buy an iPhone (5, Insightful)

Ukab the Great (87152) | about 5 months ago | (#45356009)

As reviled as Apple might be by gearheads about issues like flexibility and not letting samsung et all reap all the rewards for taking none of the risks, Apple stands up to telcos and don't let them put crapware on the phone, and the stuff Apple themselves makes and puts on the phone they actually attempt to make decently. The walled garden keeps the bad people out as much as it keeps the good people in. Stuff like this generates loyalty, folks. It's not just fanboyism.

Re:Or buy an iPhone (4, Funny)

Tukz (664339) | about 5 months ago | (#45356085)

If I remove the crapware on an Apple iPhone (iOS), it won't work at all.

Let's see how many Apple fans got a sense of humour.

Re:Or buy an iPhone (2)

swb (14022) | about 5 months ago | (#45356109)

And although you can't remove the stock Apple apps, some are optional like Remote (for AppleTV) and they don't do something dumb like locking the apps to a specific screen or location. I have an app folder with a bunch of seldom used Apple apps on the last app screen.

Re:Or buy an iPhone (0)

tonywestonuk (261622) | about 5 months ago | (#45356267)

Why is this flamebate?.... The guy makes a valid point. One thing worse than an apple fanboi is a rabid apple hater.

Re:Or buy an iPhone (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356377)

You must be new around here (and the internet in general).

Saying anything positive about Apple is like a red rag to a bull. Guaranteed to be downvoted.


Re:Or buy an iPhone (2)

Nerdfest (867930) | about 5 months ago | (#45356575)

It's not flamebait, but it's quite inaccurate. You can't remove pretty much any of the Apple apps, and you can't automatically have replacement emails apps, browsers, etc work. The only difference is most of the apps you're forced to leave installed are at least decent, although almost never the best of breed.

Re:Or buy an iPhone (1)

smash (1351) | about 5 months ago | (#45357033)

Yeah, but the supplied apple apps generally aren't what one would class as "crapware". They actually work well.

Does not disable device management software (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356051)

We can still get on your phone and install whatever whoever whenever would like us to install ;-) Sure it's your phone..
but what you do with it IS BELONG TO US.

IT==Moron (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356065)

So disable or root. Except that the rooting is a bad idea for average person. And this was published in IT world! This is why anytime someone says IT (as opposed to CS or engineering), I think moron.

Re:IT==Moron (3, Interesting)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 5 months ago | (#45356115)

This is why anytime someone says IT (as opposed to CS or engineering), I think moron.

How funny - I get the same impression from people who think IT, CS, and engineering are interchangeable terms.

It's why I stick with Nexus devices (5, Informative)

metrix007 (200091) | about 5 months ago | (#45356079)

Stock Android. Nothing disabled, I can tether my phone at no charge, no crapware...

Other phones may be faster, but not enough to justify the headache of crapware.

It's the same reason I stick with Asus for laptops. Well built machines with minimal crapwear that are pretty easy to open up if you need to.

Re:It's why I stick with Nexus devices (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356275)

That depends on your definition of "crapware". In my opinion, Google's own apps are crapware, and those can't be removed without rooting the phone.

Re:It's why I stick with Nexus devices (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356425)

Good Idea... Until you start to realize that pretty wel everything you do is sent directly to the Chocolate Factory 'to improve their advertising outlet' i.e. your device.

Re:It's why I stick with Nexus devices (2)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 5 months ago | (#45357193)

Personally, I get a sort of satisfaction out of rooting my phone when samsung or whoever clearly doesn't want me to. Same with jailbreaking. After installing cyanogenmod on my samsung, and after jailbreaking, I really didn't do much with either. If I wasn't flipping the bird to someone telling me how to use my stuff, it became a lot more boring.

It's nerdy and ineffective, I know.

smartphone hard disk space? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356081)

I know RTFA will get me banned from /. but to quote:"Disabling the app, won't actually remove it from your system, which means it will take up hard disk space"

Re:smartphone hard disk space? (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about 5 months ago | (#45356287)

I know it is unpopular 'round these parts, but SSDs are still referred to as "hard disks" among the unwashed masses. I don't even mind, because it's preferable to the days where you had to teach people that there were different kinds of memory.

A better point might be: how the heck did this article get posted to Slashdot? Aren't we more of a custom ROM (also a misnomer) crowd than a "disable apps" crowd?

But... but... but... it's teh 0p3n S00rze!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356117)

Just rewrite the OS, bitches. Come on, show us the power of Open Source.

Re:But... but... but... it's teh 0p3n S00rze!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356557)

Just rewrite the OS, bitches. Come on, show us the power of Open Source.

We have rewritten the OS. It's now called Cyanogenmod. :-D

Summary Is Broken (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356163)

Should have just posted a link to Cyanogenmod.

Re:Summary Is Broken (1)

gmuslera (3436) | about 5 months ago | (#45356345)

This. Cyanogenmod and derivatives are probably the best way to get rid of crapware and get really in control of what is in your phone. And you can even install F-Droid [f-droid.org] on it as market replacement to have a fully open source android OS and apps.

I appreciate this 'non-news' (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356179)

Some of us just got our new Android phone and don't know everything about it. Certainly was not expecting crapware on it. So we come to news sites like these for a heads-up. Thanks from a newbi for the occasional article like these, we're not all techeads (yet).

Crappy Android (1)

tonywestonuk (261622) | about 5 months ago | (#45356289)

"Like Windows, Android has built a dominant market share because any hardware manufacturer can license it."

If that is the only reason that Android has for having a dominant market share, any old phone manufacturer can load it with crapware and sell it to the gullible?

Nothing like competing on merit is there.

A story about rooting a phone? On Sashdot? (4, Funny)

rodrigoandrade (713371) | about 5 months ago | (#45356309)


What's next? A story about the great wonders of alternate current?

(including Edison vs Tesla flame wars, to boot)

License like Windows? (1)

devent (1627873) | about 5 months ago | (#45356325)

Android is licensed under the Apache Software License, Version 2.0* and GNU GPL Version 2.0 (the Kernel), for everyone and for free. The license is telling you: here is the code, do what ever you like. To compare that with the restricted Windows EULA or license that you have to buy for at least 3$ per phone** is very deceptive.

* Android Open Source Project License [android.com]
** Windows Phone licensing cost revealed by ZTE: $23 – $30 [geek.com]

Re:License like Windows? (1)

Sockatume (732728) | about 5 months ago | (#45356565)

Google Experience - which is now the only way to get the current releases of things like the messages app - does have a licencing fee.

Re:License like Windows? (1)

Bill_the_Engineer (772575) | about 5 months ago | (#45356635)

I assume you are talking about this in the summary:

Like Windows, Android has built a dominant market share because any hardware manufacturer can license it — and as they did with Windows, those manufacturers are loading up Android devices with their own proprietary crapware.

I don't think the cost of the license is relative in this instance. The point the author was trying to make is that the handset manufacturers are allowed to make changes to the OS that makes their crapware uninstallable just like they can on Windows phone.

S4 (1)

inkrypted (1579407) | about 5 months ago | (#45356539)

This is what annoyed me about the Samsung Galaxy S4 all the cool features only seem to work with their crapware like the Air View in browser (very original name Samsung) but not in Dolphin. I am so glad I root my phones and run custom roms and kernels on them. If a company had a my phone my way plan I would so be a customer.

Re:S4 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45357289)

Same here, I came from a Galaxy phone, so I had no idea they installed so much shit. I had less than 4GB free on my phone until I rooted it and installed Cyanogenmod which left me with over 10GG free.

Even had to root and flash my girlfriend's Note 2. Aside from all the crap, Samsung's e-mail client is buggy as shit and you can't uninstall that either. Fuck you Samsung for making it impossible to run the stock rom because all your apps are installed a system applications.

It's sad that they do this because it just makes their devices look like shit. It's the same with new PCs, people complain about how slow they are because they have so much crap installed and running on boot. The manufacturers don't seem to give a shit though, why sell someone something that actually runs well? It's clearly far better to install hundred of apps no one will ever use.

Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45356547)

Is it really this bad? I recently got a Q10. Turned it on. Used it. All the built in apps were just fine and I don't know of any major security holes. I didn't realize Android had gone the windows PC route. Sad, really. I guess it comes with there being so many more apps in the Android app market, phone manufacturers feel compelled to put extra crap on just to prove the major feature Android has over competitors.

Re:Really? (1)

neminem (561346) | about 5 months ago | (#45356771)

"Android" hasn't, any more than "Windows" has. It's up to the individual retailer (of the phone or of the PC). My first phone had hardly any crapware; my second phone was chock full of it. Oddly enough, both phones were from Samsung, just different phones.

And it's not to prove anything in either case - it's completely to make them money by bundling crap you don't want. The only difference is, you can remove it off your PC generally just by uninstalling it the normal way - while you probably need to root your phone to get rid of most of the crapware from it.

CyanogenMod and Custom Firmware (2)

WoodburyMan (1288090) | about 5 months ago | (#45356777)

For this reason and this reason alone is why I will never use a stock-carrier and manufactorer bloated ROM on a Android phone. My Galaxy S4 from AT&T had SO MUCH junk bundled. Even the default Dialer/Contacts app was replaced with this AT&T junk that forced and bugged you to make a account to backup your contacts to AT&T that would cause a 15-20 second lag whenever I opened the contacts app. Add to it the number of bundled AT&T apps and Google Apps that are bundled that I could not remove (Only Disable, and even then they would magically reenable themselves). Even rooting and removing them in some cases were impossible. So that's when I got into Custom Roms. I absolutely love CyanogenMod. I have had it on my phone since a little over a week after owning it with CyanogenMod 10.1 (Android 4.2) and currently running a custom build of CM10.2 (Android 4.3.1) nightly builds. Phone is SO MUCH faster without bloatware running in the background. And I can pick and choose every app I want. The only downfall is the stock Camera app doesn't work as well as the stock Samsung camera. For which I dual boot my phone with a stock-Samsung based ROM that has all carrier and Samsung crap removed and use it just for taking photos. And I will be running Android 4.4 (CM11) nightly builds as soon as they are released. The current holdup is a updated camera binary blob thats compatible with Android 4.4 as well as 4.4 Compatible releases from Qualcom to make it work. (Which either will will be working fine once the Google Edition Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 firmware image is released, bits can be taken from that to finish it).

How about when it's not in that list? (1)

rebelwarlock (1319465) | about 5 months ago | (#45357009)

I got my phone from my provider (Sony Xperia something or other, if it matters), and it has garbage in my apps that doesn't even show up in the setup list.
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