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Those Wishing To Unlock The HTC One’s Bootloader May Face Problems

March 15, 2013 - Written By Chance Miller

While many companies seem to think that people wishing to unlock their phone’s are evil in every way possible, that is (usually) not the case, as we are just people looking to explore the true capabilities of our devices. HTC has been one of the strictest companies, aside from Apple, when it comes to locking down their devices. Some people even believe that them essentially shunning the developer community has been one of the biggest factors contributing to their recent struggles. While HTC has started offering users the ability to unlock their device’s bootloader via an official developer tool, the process often doesn’t become available for phones until several months after launch, if ever.

Popular developer website MoDaCo posted a warning to those of you hoping to unlock your shiny new HTC One’s bootloader. The blog explains that the way HTC has distributed apps across partitions will spell trouble for people unlocking their device’s bootloader. When you perform a factory reset on a phone, via the settings app, the process simply whips the main system partition. Unlocking the bootloader, however, affects the data partition of a device, which as long as you’re aware of it, is never a problem. Four pre-loaded apps, in the HTC One’s case, are actually installed from a directory in the data partition, though. What does this mean? Well, if you unlock your bootloader, then the data partition will be wiped, deleting those four apps, Calculator, Flashlight, Ringtone Trimmer and Sound Recorder, permanently.

While this may not seem like a big deal to you right now, it could cause even more trouble down the line when HTC starts rolling out updates to the One. Over-the-air files often check for the existence of the apps that came pre-loaded on your device, and if it can’t find a certain app, then the update won’t be applied. The only way to restore those apps is via an RUU, which is not currently available for HTC’s latest flagship.

What do you think of this? Is a bug that HTC will quickly fix? Something leads me to believe that this is not currently at the top of the company’s to-do list, though. Tell us your thoughts in the comments!