T-Mobile blocks third party apps

This is just so sad. T-Mobile’s branded phones now block any third party Java app from accessing their network! You might have to buy a more expensive data plan to unlock your phone’s third party capability, or another phone+plan. This is just terrible. The world is going towards mobile devices and T-Mobile is trying to shrink their usability. How shortsighted. Now apps like Opera Mini and Google Maps/Gmail don’t work anymore!

One more reason to buy unlocked phones. Never agree to use the “free phone” that comes with a plan. Toss it out of the window after you receive it. Carriers are disabling features in these locked phones, they try to screw the consumers. Value your integrity & freedom and start saving money to buy an unlocked GSM phone (unfortunately the CDMA users can’t do anything about their disabled features, e.g. Verizon’s policy on Bluetooth PAN).

If you would like a full-featured smartphone, I would recommend the Nokia E50. It sells for less than $260 online and being a smartphone it will allow you to run native apps — not just the J2ME crap. If you don’t have that kind of money, you can get a Motorola L7 for $140 (my review). These two models I consider the best GSM phones for their price range.

5 Comments »

Stefan Constantinescu wrote on February 27th, 2007 at 3:50 AM PST:

I can’t read. You said locked phones!
We’re having a meme today it seems.


This is the admin speaking...
Eugenia wrote on February 27th, 2007 at 3:54 AM PST:

AFAIK, T-Mobile does not offer a Nokia E61. If that’s the case, you didn’t read my post correctly. The phones that are blocked out are the locked ones, not the ones purchased unlocked. What’s your E61? T-Mobile branded or unlocked? If unlocked, it explains why you can still use the apps. That’s the point of my blog post.
Update: I was still writing the above when you posted your second comment. BTW, please use HTML for links.


l3v1 wrote on February 27th, 2007 at 7:28 AM PST:

“This is just so sad. T-Mobile’s branded phones now block any third party Java app from accessing their network!”

In the US, you might add. What I might add is that I’m not really surprised by the move, knowing how weird cell phone use can be in the US (mostly in pricing and locking phones, features and apps), and seeing how cell phone companies usually handle their customers/users over there. I don’t give much about our (or my) cell provider either, but at least the pricing policies and the locking (if ever) habits are really much more friendlier around here (EU, mind you).
[offtopic]
That is, until you happen to get on US soil with your european phone, then multi-ton large price-bricks start dropping on your head. Like up to $1 for an sms and $3 for a minute of talk in my case. Geez.
[/offtopic]


Stefan Constantinescu wrote on February 27th, 2007 at 3:49 AM PST:

T-Mobile USA here. Everything is working A OK!
Using the gmail app, opera mini, and opera for s all on my Nokia E61.


Tom Dison wrote on February 27th, 2007 at 7:34 AM PST:

You are so right on about not getting the “free” phones. I hate being locked into whatever they want to give me, and not being able to switch. The things is, I waited two years to be able to cut myself free from this and get my own phone. A few weeks before my “sentence” was up, a salesperson called up my wife and offered another free phone (total is now three) if she would sign up for another 2 years. AAAAARGH!
We now have the date on our calendar for the next expiration and we will be cutting ourselves free.

Unfortunately it’s August 2008!!


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