Feeds

Google bars Android app makers from their own apps

Copy protection unprotected

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

If you join the Android developer program, Google will sell you an unlocked Android phone that works on any mobile network. But it can't download paid applications from Google's very own app market.

The Android Market began offering price-tagged applications late last week - at least in the US - but developers wielding unlocked Googlephones soon discovered they couldn't download them, IDG News Service reports.

As it turns out, Google has prevented these developer phones from downloading any application that's copy protected, including paid apps.

Anyone who forks over $25 to join the official Android developer program can then purchase an unlocked version of the T-Mobile G1, the inaugural Googlephone. Price: $400. These phones give developers unfettered access to their hardware and software, and judging from a brief statement from Google, they can somehow circumvent the company's copy protection.

"Copy protection is a tool that provides basic protection to application developers and prevents casual user-to-user pirating of applications," reads a canned statement Google tossed our way. "The Developer version of the G1 is designed to give developers complete flexibility. These phones give developers of handset software full permissions to all aspects of the device, including the ability to install a modified version of the Android Open Source Project. We aren't distributing copy protected applications to these phones in order to minimize unauthorized copy of the applications."

According to one blogging Android developer, Google copy protects apps simply by downloading them to a restricted folder. But on unlocked phones, he says, the folder isn't protected. In theory, once a paid app is downloaded, a developer could make a copy and return the original for a refund. The Android Market allows refunds within 24 hours of purchase.

So, Google has banned downloads of copy-protected apps on developer phones. The result: Many developers are prevented from downloading their own applications. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
UNIX greybeards threaten Debian fork over systemd plan
'Veteran Unix Admins' fear desktop emphasis is betraying open source
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
Redmond top man Satya Nadella: 'Microsoft LOVES Linux'
Open-source 'love' fairly runneth over at cloud event
Chrome 38's new HTML tag support makes fatties FIT and SKINNIER
First browser to protect networks' bandwith using official spec
Admins! Never mind POODLE, there're NEW OpenSSL bugs to splat
Four new patches for open-source crypto libraries
Torvalds CONFESSES: 'I'm pretty good at alienating devs'
Admits to 'a metric ****load' of mistakes during work with Linux collaborators
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.