Ethical dilemma with not allowing root access?General


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  1. coalesce

    coalesce Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    This may have been discussed before, and I haven't found anything on it.

    I bought my phone and in-therefore own my phone. Should I not be allowed to have full access to the piece of equipment if I so want? I'm not renting it, such as in the case of a cable box, nor am I leasing, rent-to-own, etc...I understand the need to block users out from certain areas of the phone for the general public to ensure uniform reliability and technical support, but as the owner of the individual piece of equipment, should HTC be ethically bound to release information on how to give me full root access to the equipment that I paid for? Am I missing something? Thoughts please.
     

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  2. WizeGuyDezignz

    WizeGuyDezignz Well-Known Member

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    Yeah you're missing something. How do you expect Verizon or HTC to help you if something goes wrong with your phone? If you root it, they have no idea what the state of your phone is in or how to troubleshoot it at that point. And no, HTC is not obligated to give you full root access. They built the phone with certain restrictions for a reason. It's their product.

    If you feel confident enough and think you can do all of the technical support yourself, then nobody is stopping you from rooting your phone. I don't think ethics has much to do with this honestly.
     
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  3. CatsTide

    CatsTide Well-Known Member

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    you are still using YOUR piece of equipment on VERIZONS network therefore they do have some say so in what your equipment can and cannot do.

    side note: can't wait till this thing gets rooted :D
     
  4. TzuDohNihm

    TzuDohNihm Well-Known Member

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    How much did you pay for your Incredible?
     
  5. JeeperDon

    JeeperDon Well-Known Member

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    You're eluding to the idea of VZW giving a low price with a contract, so they own it. Not true. No matter what happens at this point, VZW is never going to ask for the phone back, just money.

    The argument about support is no different than cars. Swapping cams and hopping the motor up the day after you buy it is fine, totally ok, but you may have warranty issues down the line.

    In the case of the phone, you always have the option to reload it back to VZW stock if you need to prove there is a hdw problem.
     
  6. benjamin7062

    benjamin7062 Well-Known Member

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    Verizon 'can' restrict your usage of a rooted phone on their network. They can also decide not to serve customers who root devices indefinitely.

    HTC does not owe you any additional information about the phone. The product is sold "as-is" and in the state in which they intended for the device to be used.

    Using the car analogy above a car company sells you a car. They aren't _required_ to sell you a manual on how to disassemble the engine (outside of standard maintenance). They can choose to sell you that manual but it isn't required.

    As a consumer you have no edge or right to information that helps you root your phone. You and the developers who work on this do so at their own risk. You can do whatever you want with the device you purchased. You simply have to accept full responsibility for your actions. However, it is your device once it is purchased.
     
  7. marcelob

    marcelob Well-Known Member

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    The way it works with these gadgets is that they advertise/sell a product with specific capabilities. If you want to try and alter software or hardware to make the phone perform differently (be it better or worse), it's at your own discretion.

    Neither VZW or HTC is required to give out information on how to alter the phone's capabilities, much like computer CPU/video card manufacturers are not required on providing "safe" overclocking numbers.

    Rooting your phone is not illegal. It is not wrong. It is just not what the phone was advertised to do, so it ultimately becomes your responsibility beyond that point.
     
  8. TzuDohNihm

    TzuDohNihm Well-Known Member

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    I'm actually alluding to the fact the OP stated he wasn't renting his phone. If he did indeed take a subsidized price then he is in fact partially renting his phone.

    A big percentage of the rooting subset of phone owners seem to be hiding behind "I own the phone, I should be able to do what I want with it" in order to get a service for free that they ought to pay for, i.e tethering.

    Utilizing so much bandwidth costs the company you are with and when that bandwidth goes unpaid for they will keep contract prices at a level to mitigate the financial losses from "rooters."

    Notice that the last word there resembles quite a bit another word for thieves, looters.
     
  9. coalesce

    coalesce Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    Nice input guys. As for wiseguy, I stated in my original post that I do understand the fact for limiting phones in general because if such actions weren't taken Verizon, HTC, etc. would not be able to provide adequate technical support. However, that does not mean I shouldn't have the right (or even dumb people for that matter) to do with my equipment as I wish insofar as knowing it would void all technical support and/or warranty that comes with the phone. I personally did receive the rebate for the phone, and purchased it for the price of $199. However, I DO own the equipment, the rebate is offered for agreeing to a 2 year contract with Verizon. If I break this agreement, I don't give the phone back. I do retain ownership of the phone, however I owe Verizon ECT fees for doing so. So, whether I bought the phone outright or with the 2 year agreement, I still own the phone, so that is a moot point. And as for services such as tethering, that is completely unrelated to my thoughts - of course, that is an ongoing service provided by Verizon, and should be paid for accordingly (you signed the contract, you can bitch all you want, but it's not going to get you anywhere). However, just because this is a side effect of rooting does not mean I should not be allowed to modify my phone as I wish.

    I think Jeeper and benjamin made this more clear for me with the car analogy. Although you are certainly within your rights to modify the device as you see fit, it is not the manufacturer's obligation to provide details on how to do just that.

    However, car manufacturers aren't installing addtional "security" measures after assembling the car to specifically keep one from modifying the internals. HTC is blatently putting in place additional preventative measures to keep users from accessing the true potential of their phone. To me, it's as if Microsoft Windows prevented a user from upgrading hardware, or only allowing users to access half (half being arbitrary) of the features of a desktop/laptop computer. The line is slowly blurring between PC and phone - is a company within its right to restrict users from being in complete control of hardware that is sold to consumers? Sure, you a company isn't required to provide instructions on everything you can possibly do with a rooted phone -- but why should they not be obligated to at least provide you with the ability to do so? This isn't modifying a car -- this is getting a car ready to be modified. The difference in rooting and car modifying is rooting shouldn't have to be modifying. You don't need to "hack" a car to perform modifications to the components. You shouldn't have to with pc and phone devices either. The need to "hack" or modify components to do the ACTUAL modding is ridiculous. I am in full knowledge that I do all of this at my own risk and void my support/warranty. I should have to hack a phone in order to take full advantage of the phone.

    Just my thinking at the moment.
     
  10. sta7ic

    sta7ic Well-Known Member

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    This is where you're completely wrong. Open any hood of a modern car and most likely the first thing you'll see is a gigantic plate over the engine screwed in with special screws that the average joe doesn't have the tool to take out. Just about the only thing the average person can do to their car now is change the oil. Car companies don't want you fixing things yourself or making modifications, because when the car has something go wrong 9 times out of 10 the person sues the car company. Every company protects what its products from being used differently than they were designed.
     
  11. coalesce

    coalesce Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    Alright, I think we're stretching the car-phone analogy a little too far now. Of course, there are no safety issues with modifying a phone. No one is going to be suing HTC because they modified their phone and it spewed radiation all over them and gave them balls big enough to carry around in a grocery cart (well, maybe that's why!...? :)). Your point about the special tools needed to modify the car is valid though. However, these are the same tools that trained professionals use to modify and fix the cars for the company. These same tools are available to "average joes" if they would like to give it a shot, albiet at possibly the expense of the car itself. They might not know how to use them, but they can try if they'd like. The tools are there for cars - they aren't for the phone. Hence the need to "hack" in order to gain root. HTC should, IMHO, and maybe even more-so with Android being an open source operating system, make these tools available to the normal user as well. We need to stop thinking along the lines of average people and phone-literate people. That point has nothing to do with the matter anymore. I UNDERSTAND the need to dumb things down for the majority of the public -- but, as I've said about 5 times, even THEY should have the tools necessary to do what they want with the equipment as they see fit.
     
  12. najaboy

    najaboy Well-Known Member

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    You may own the equipment, but not the software. Like most other software, you are merely licensed to use it under prespecified terms and conditions.
     
  13. kmoore11

    kmoore11 Well-Known Member

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    I'm sure a lot of it is to protect the service provider too. Allowing root also allows it to function on the network in ways it's not supposed to (i.e. tethering).

    Also, HTC has the right to make their products however they want to. If they don't want you to get access to that stuff, then that's how they'll sell it. If you don't like that, as a consumer, you have the right to buy a different product. It's just the simple free market.
     
  14. douger

    douger Well-Known Member

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    All true.

    But do ya think someone...probably Verizon, since they're the end contact with the consumer, could let people sign a waiver indemnifying Verizon, HTC or whoever from any warranty service or technical assistance?

    They could then safely give the consumer the keys and tell them to have fun...
     
  15. kmoore11

    kmoore11 Well-Known Member

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    Yes, they COULD. But from their standpoint, why would they? They don't want to give you the option to do that. Companies (especially Verizon) LOVE to have control over the things you can and can't do, and they are very reluctant to give that up.
     
  16. colnago

    colnago Well-Known Member

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    If you want a "rooted phone", the Nokia N900 offers root acces right out of the box.
     

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