Korean smartphone company Samsung isn’t playing around anymore. While the phone company has been rather lax with modders in the past, that mood has drastically alerted. For owners of the Samsung Galaxy Fold 3, this change in attitude comes with huge ramifications.
Reported by the very-reputable XDA Developers, modders looking to play with the new folding phone are being shafted. Those who attempt to unlock the Samsung Galaxy Fold 3 bootloader have found themselves punished for doing so.
Unlocking Samsung Galaxy Fold 3 bootloader disables camera
The XDA report found that merely attempting to unlock the Fold 3’s bootloader resulted in a terrifying message. Users are warned that “doing so will cause the camera to be disabled”. Not may, “will”.
Freedom to unlock the bootloader has been a long-standing appeal of Android. Those who don't like a device’s preinstalled OS can install a different custom ROM instead. However, Fold 3 users are now stuck with Samsung’s OneUI.
Samsung has gone through with this threat. Those who have unlocked their Samsung Galaxy Fold 3 have found that their cameras do not work. Attempting to open the camera now results in the following message: “Warning! Camera Failed.”
A slippery slope
The open nature of the Android ecosystem has been questioned as of late. As Google attempts to hold onto its vast control of the open-source platform, many are worried its freedoms will disappear. As a court document recently said, Android is becoming “open-source in name only”.
Samsung's punishment of modders on a platform that's designed to be open is pretty gross. As a result, this might end up turning those in the modding scene against the company. On the other hand, this might just make modders hack Samsung devices more.