Vodafone capitulates over HTC Desire "upgrades"

Network promises to remove unwanted Vodafone apps from customers' handsets

Barry Collins
11 Aug 2010

Vodafone has backed down in its bid to foist the network's own software on HTC Desire owners.

Vodafone angered many HTC Desire owners last week, when it sent out an over-the-air update that installed a set of irremovable Vodafone 360 apps on customers' devices.

The update also included a Vodafone-branded start-up screen and added various web bookmarks to the device, including links to dating sites. Customers complained of being tricked into installing the software, with many believing the update was the latest version of the Android OS.

Initially the company remained unrepentant, telling PC Pro that customers wouldn't be able to uninstall the 360 software and insisting that "customers have a choice to use those services if they want to."

Now, in an message posted on the Vodafone forums, the company has backed down.

"We’ve listened to feedback from customers on a number of points around the recent 360 Android 2.1 update and made some changes to the rollout plan," the message states.

"The Android 2.2 update for Vodafone HTC Desire users will be based on the HTC open market version of the software and we will customise it to ensure our network settings are installed.

For customers who have downloaded the recent 360 update for Android 2.1, we can confirm that the Android 2.2 update will remove the 360 applications and will leave the homepage and bookmarks on your current settings."

Vodafone says it will make the 360 apps available as separate downloads for customers who wish to use them. The company says the Android 2.2 "Froyo" update should be released to HTC Desire customers within the next seven to ten days.

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