Motorola Razr I and global Razr HD join the unlocked bootloader club

October 6, 2012
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US-based readers with an interest in Android modding, please don’t read this post. It will only make you sour, because the two phones in question are not selling in the United States. And even if the Razr HD would get an unlocked “developer edition” at some point, you would have to pay full retail price for it.

Now that we got that out of our way, what’s the news? The Intel-powered Razr i and the international version of the Razr HD will have their bootloaders unlocked, according to Motorola’s website. This includes the Canadian version of the device, carried by Rogers.

The Motorola Razr i will be available in select countries in Europe, Latin America and Australia. It has already launched in the UK, and it’s launching as we speak in Brazil. The Razr HD, the Kevlar-backed successor to last year’s Razr, will be available this month in Germany and other European markets.

So, why is it important that these two phones will get their bootloaders unlocked? Well, it’s mostly important if you are an Android modder or if you like to run custom versions of Android, like CyanogenMod or AOKP. Developers have a much easier time working with a device that has an unlocked bootloader, which means these devices get ports and updates faster than locked ones. Even if some skilled dev manages to bypass the bootloader somehow, the custom software on it is usually less stable and polished.

It’s good to see Motorola actually doing something to appease the modder community (unlike it’s been doing in this case). We just wish the program would be extended to more devices and to more carriers. But to be honest, it’s not always Moto’s fault. Hear that Verizon?

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