HTC has finally laid out a timetable for the release of software updates on phones that will allow the unlocking of device bootloaders. It sounds like HTC will be utilizing a system similar to Sony - which uses a web-based tool as part of the unlock process. Why? HTC states that while the OTA software update allowing unlocking will start rolling out in August, the actually ability to unlock phones won't be ready until early September.
EVO 3D owners across the US have been patiently waiting a whole 3 days (I know, it's an eternity) for HTC to make good on its promise to unlock the phone's bootloader. HTC has now issued a statement on the matter in response to a wall post on its Facebook page, which is overrun with complaints from EVO 3D owners (or people who just like to whine) criticizing what they perceive to be the slowness of the company's efforts to issue a bootloader unlock solution.
Ever since the beginning of June, we've been teased by and patiently waiting for the mysterious AlphaRevX unlocker page that promised to completely unlock (S-OFF) the latest HTC Wildfire and even Incredible S, making root, custom ROMs, ClockworkMod recovery all possible.
After a period of private beta testing, the wraps have come off an hour ago, and the first public release of AlphaRevX is now available for download (see instructions below) for the following devices:
- HTC Incredible S (Vivo), which remained completely undefeated until now
- HTC Desire CDMA (BravoC)
- HTC Desire GSM (Bravo)
- HTC Wildfire (Buzz)
- HTC Aria (Liberty)
Incredible 2 and Desire S are not supported at the moment, though I suspect they use a similar protection scheme and will also be cracked shortly.
Conspiracy theorists would have you believe that the ThunderBolt's signed (and locked) bootloader was all Verizon's doing, but it appears that isn't quite the case - the Incredible S, one of HTC's unlocked GSM phones, is shipping with a similar failsafe system. That basically means no custom ROMs for you (at least until a viable workaround is discovered).
Proof? Look no further than the contents of this Incredible S RUU:
From what our friends at AndIRC can tell (note that they don't have a device in hand), the Incredible S includes a signature check much like the one on the ThunderBolt.
If you've been looking to unlock your HTC Thunderbolt but have been putting it off until a one-click solution springs up, you may start rolling up your sleeves - you've got some downloading to do. dbzfanatic from xda released the first one-click easyroot + S-OFF, which uses AndIRC's lengthy, yet effective, instructions, but wraps them up in one easy to use package. The program runs on Windows and weighs in at over 800MB, so fire up your PCs and get ready for some heavy downloading.
That didn't take long. A collaborative effort between numerous Android hackers just managed to crack the Thunderbolt's bootloader wide open, successfully booting a custom recovery image. They also incidentally discovered a new root method in the process. Credit goes to jcase, jamezelle, and scotty2 (and all of andirc) for working out the details, and ProTekk and Trident for putting their shiny new Thunderbolts on the line. Here's the visual proof:
Image credit: Trident, ProTekk
We'll keep you apprised on the situation with instructions on how to go about unlocking your own Thunderbolt as we get more information.
The gang at AndIRC - lead by Jamzelle and TheEndGame7 - has already managed to completely root the HTC Thunderbolt, and with Koush's help, has ClockworkMod Recovery up and running on the device. Apparently, it was a surprisingly easy task in just about every way.
The team started with a pre-production, unbranded Thunderbolt running a January 3rd ROM. What they found was that the phone had a bootloader with S-OFF, although they note that it's not an engineering bootloader, and that it's likely a different one than production models will ship with.
This is seriously impressive stuff - the guys from the unrevoked team did it again, and this version 3.2 is definitely their best release yet. Most of the credit, outside of the core unrevoked team, belongs to Sebastian Krahmer for discovering the exploit that works on all supported phones.