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Google Allows Carriers To Ban Tethering Apps 328

Posted by timothy
from the ultra-customizable dept.
iluvcapra writes "Google, in its continuing struggle to provide phone carriers (if not its end users) with an open platform, is now banning tethering apps from the Android market. These apps haven't disappeared and can still be sideloaded, insofar as your carrier doesn't lock this functionality or snoop on your packets."
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Google Allows Carriers To Ban Tethering Apps

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  • Re:Damn. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by MoonBuggy (611105) on Tuesday May 03, 2011 @08:10PM (#36018540) Journal

    Also, while I'm aware that this could only be considered 'on topic' by the most tenuous of standards, I'm surprised we got a term so positive as 'jailbreak' into mainstream usage. The connotation that the phone as-provided is trapped in a jail, and that the user is freeing it by hacking the OS, seems like a reasonable analogy to me, it's just that I would've expected the carriers to go for a bit of negative PR. Something along the lines of "Sure, you could install that evil communist app that hasn't been authorised by an upstanding corporation's store, but you'd need to terrorist-molest your phone to do so. You don't want to do that, do you?"

  • by SuperKendall (25149) on Tuesday May 03, 2011 @08:18PM (#36018618)

    Android based smart phone users are not prevented from installing tethering apps from elsewhere.

    Nor were iPhone users before official tethering support was released. I had a tethering app I compiled myself, and any Jailbreak user could happily buy tethering apps as well.

    Therefore Apple has never banned an app, since you can simply sideload it by jailbreaking.

  • by u19925 (613350) on Tuesday May 03, 2011 @08:18PM (#36018620)

    Android only uses Linux based kernel. How does it make it open. You can't update anything on your Android phone without the permission from carrier/manufacturer/google. Google hasn't released latest Andrioid source code, not that it would help user in any way. You can't use gps on Android phone without giving google all your location information. The truth is, apart from the fact that you can download uncertified app on google android, you can't do anything more that what you can do on competing platform. I don't think this makes it any more open than other offerings.

  • Re:Damn. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by mspohr (589790) on Tuesday May 03, 2011 @08:59PM (#36018986)
    This is my favorite feature of my Nexus One. Just a few taps and it turns into a WiFi hotspot. This one feature has saved me hundreds of dollars on hotel rip-off WiFi prices. Nice also in the car to have WiFi for your passengers.

    This is a feature of 2.2 (and above) unless your evil phone carrier disables it. (T-Mobile is happy with me using it.)

  • by Aighearach (97333) on Tuesday May 03, 2011 @09:20PM (#36019142) Homepage

    You just have to have the vpn server on port 80 or 443 and you'll look a lot like https :)

    That's what I do to get on my vpn from the library.

  • Re:I don't get it (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Sun (104778) <shachar@shemesh.biz> on Tuesday May 03, 2011 @11:24PM (#36020092) Homepage

    A while back it was not possible to buy non-free (beer) applications from the Android Market from my country. Only when I put in a SIM that belongs to another country was I able to even see for-pay applications.

    Market regularly uses the SIM card to identify which network you belong to and adjust the applications you can see accordingly.

    For the sake of the test, though, I've tried just that. I removed the SIM card and searched for tethering in the market (with the SIM card it resulted in both free and for-pay results).

    Without the SIM card the results seem to be exactly the same. Have not downloaded any of them (no need, as my carrier charges by the MB, and is happy for me to use as much traffic as I possibly can, and my phone has tethering built-in), but the results list seems to include all of them.

    So, yes, at least preliminarily, it seems like you can bypass the restriction by simply removing the SIM card.

    Shachar

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