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Asus Makes Statement on Transformer Prime Bootloader and ICS Update

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Mark Dearlove

Mark Dearlove

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There has been some fairly negative Asus coverage going on across the Android world for the last few days following the discovery that the bootloader of the Transformer Prime was not just locked but also encypted to prevent the community from unlocking.

It turns out that after all the tweets, Facebook messages, and petitions that Asus WILL allow the the device to be unlocked using a tool they will release shortly. The bad news, they have decided that unlocking, even using their tool, will void your warranty. DRM is the reasoning behind their decision as anyone unlocking the tablet will not be able to use the Google Movie Rental service. We will probably never know whether the campaign convinced Asus to change their mind or they intended to go down this route anyway. The statement was made on the Asus Facebook group

Asus said:

Regarding the bootloader, the reason we chose to lock it is due to content providers' requirement for DRM client devices to be as secure as possible. ASUS supports Google DRM in order to provide users with a high quality video rental experience. Also, based on our experience, users who choose to root their devices risk breaking the system completely. However, we know there is demand in the modding community to have an unlocked bootloader. Therefore, ASUS is developing an unlock tool for that community. Please do note that if you choose to unlock your device, the ASUS warranty will be void, and Google video rental will also be unavailable because the device will be no longer protected by security mechanism.

Thank you for all the understanding and support for the ASUS Transformer Prime. Happy New Year!

Asus also commented on their reason for ditching the GPS specification from all the Prime documentation. They blame the aluminium unibody for the GPS connection issues being reported by some users. This seems a bit strange when there are other devices with a similar unibody out there that don't suffer from the same issue.

Finally, some great news - Ice Cream Sandwich OTA updates will kick off on 12th January so hopefully you will all get notifications soon after. Let us know in the comments when you get your update.

Source: Asus Facebook

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