Verizon blames Samsung for locked bootloader, Samsung unveils Galaxy S3 Developer Edition in response

by: LucianJuly 11, 2012

verizon logo

As the Internet backlash started building against Verizon for locking the bootloader of its Galaxy S3 model, Big Red tried to get out of it by suggesting it’s actually all Samsung’s fault. The allegation seems suspicious to anyone who’s followed Verizon’s history with locked bootloaders, and to anyone who knows that the Galaxy S3 bootloader is unlocked on every carrier in the world – except for Verizon. That’s kind of a strange coincidence, isn’t it?

Later, when they realized nobody’s buying it, Verizon came up with their same old excuse (which also nobody buys) that an unlocked device could hurt their network. That’s just code for “why would we let you tether to your phone, when we could charge you twice for the same data?”:

Verizon Wireless has established a standard of excellence in customer experience with our branded devices and customer service. There is an expectation that if a customer has a question, they can call Verizon Wireless for answers that help them maximize their enjoyment and use of their wireless phone. Depending on the device, an open bootloader could prevent Verizon Wireless from providing the same level of customer experience and support because it would allow users to change the phone or otherwise modify the software and, potentially, negatively impact how the phone connects with the network. The addition of unapproved software could also negatively impact the wireless experience for other customers. It is always a delicate balance for any company to manage the technology choices we make for our branded devices and the requests of a few who may want a different device experience. We always review our technology choices to ensure that we provide the best solution for as many customers as possible.

Now, Samsung unveils a Galaxy S3 Developer Edition, which comes with an unlocked bootloader, but unfortunately won’t be subsidized by Verizon, so you’ll have to buy it contract-free for $600. The availability of the device hasn’t been announced yet, and you will only be able to buy it from Samsung’s developer site. This seems like a clear move against Verizon’s initial accusations, that somehow Samsung  just doesn’t want to offer them an unlocked phone. But now that Samsung publicly provided a solution, it seems that Verizon doesn’t want to subsidize it. I wonder why?

  • TommyNYC

    Got my phone last monday, first thing I did was root it (TY XDA :)) and install CW on it.
    Locked bootlo….what ?

    • Chris Harpner

      You got an S3 from Verizon and it wasn’t locked?

      • Rick

        It was locked. The genius over at XDA have found a workaround. Nobody can stop forward progress when great minds are involved!

        • zackb07

          You will still be unable to do multiple things.

          • Cory Kielion

            That’s a pretty damned ominous statement.

            Care to elaborate?

          • zackb07

            Sure. Even though you can root your phone and get to the core of it, you cannot physically change any of the low level OS settings. This is prevalent when you want to put a let’s say ICS Rom on a phone with GB, well the Rom will certainly look like it is ICS, but the kernel and the whole underlying system is still GB because there are checks and signs that are done at boot on a locked bootloader, so it inhibits the ability of a Rom greatly. You cannot get the hardware acceleration, overclocking, changing voltage, upgraded scripts, etc.

          • brandon

            Sorry i call bs i have already flashed the latest invisiblek kernel and overclocked to 1.89 ghz idk What your talking about.

      • TommyNYC

        Ugh.. sorry, my bad.
        My sleep deprived brain swapped bootloader with root..
        Lesson learned: no more commenting when awake more then 32 hours.

        • Cory Kielion

          Well… The bootloader is supposed to be locked against rooting, etc.

          So you basically overcame/bypassed the bootloader when you rooted. (OF COURSE it was thanks to the guys over at XDA! LOL!)

          It’s all good. I’m actually just glad to see clear testimony from someone else that they’ve rooted and CWM’ed their S3. Helps me get motivated to just go buy it in the morning when I get off of work. Thanks! :)

  • not buying it either. all other carriers selling units with
    unlocked bootloaders. VZN lack of business sense, not knowing it’s customers is to blame not samsung. just another stupid statement and business decision that makes me think something is seriously amiss at the top.

    • Cory Kielion

      Actually… I believe quite the opposite. They have PERFECT business sense. From a logistical point of view, they’re doing EXACTLY what will be more profitable for their company.

      ‘Big business’ doesn’t actually give a crap about what the customer wants. Only what they can give you less of and charge you MORE for.

      This usually means they’ll chafe their customers on a regular basis. But if you look at the wireless industry… They’re ALL equally guilty of trying to get one over on their customer base so… It doesn’t really matter WHO you’re with.

      Well… That’s not true, either. What makes the difference in this case is simply: “Who has the largest, fastest network in the biz?”

      This is why Verizon is destroying all the others – like’em or not. *shrugs*

      As long as my phone runs and I have a way to root/CWM/ROM my phone, I really couldn’t give a crap less. :P

      Not that it pisses me off any less on principle alone, mind you… *nods*

  • BlaineMagee

    Well played Samsung well played.

    • Cory Kielion

      Bet Verizon didn’t see THAT shit comin’. LOL!

      Definitely glad Sammy did that. Let’s see how Verizon responds now.

  • nightscout13

    Verizon PR guys are lame for this move.

  • Both are lame. #Verizon (1) for lying about #gs3 bootloader. #samsung for not just GIVING us a way to unlock it (not charge extra.)