Samsung Galaxy S III Developer Edition for Verizon to feature unlockable bootloader, $599 price tagAlex Wagner - Editorial Director of News and Content
Bummed about the protected bootloader on Verizon's version of the Samsung Galaxy S III? Then you might be interested in the Samsung Galaxy S III Developer Edition for Verizon. The device features a user-unlockable bootloader, which will allow owners to easily tinker with their handset and load up custom ROMs. This special Galaxy S III Developer Edition will be available directly from Samsung via the company's developer portal. There's no mention of when the device will become available, but when it does, it'll be priced at $599. Samsung has put together a brief Q&A about the Galaxy S III Developer Edition, which can be found at the bottom of this post.
Obviously it's kind of a bummer that Verizon's regular version of the Galaxy S III doesn't ship with a user-unlockable bootloader, especially since the models on other carriers all come with that feature. Since it doesn't seem likely that Verizon's regular Galaxy S III will magically gain an unlockable bootloader (at least not any time soon), this special Galaxy S III Developer Edition seems like a decent compromise. Interested customers will just need to spend a little extra time saving their pennies for one since it's only being offered with a contract-free $600 price tag. Keep it locked to PhoneDog for more information on the availability of the Galaxy S III Developer Edition for Verizon as we get it. How many of you are considering opening your wallet for this special handset?
- Who is this for?
Samsung and Verizon Wireless recognize that there are many enthusiasts and professional developers that are interested in customizing their device with third-party ROM software. Unlocking the bootloader can put the stability of the phone in jeopardy; therefore, only experienced developers should attempt to unlock the bootloader.
- What about the other carriers?
Other versions of the Galaxy S III are sold with a user-unlockable bootloader as a standard feature. Those models are available directly from the respective carriers.
- Where can I buy the Galaxy S III Developer Edition?
The Developer Edition will be sold online directly from Samsung. When the device is available for purchase, it will be sold through the Samsung developer portal at developer.samsung.com for $599.
- Why is Verizon Wireless’ version locked?
Depending on the device, an open boot loader could prevent Verizon Wireless from providing the same level of customer experience and support because it would allow users to change the phone or otherwise modify the software and, potentially, negatively impact how the phone connects with the network. The addition of unapproved software could also negatively impact the wireless experience for other customers. Unlocking the device also voids the warranty.
- Has Samsung always unlocked the bootloader on its phones?
While not all previous Samsung Android devices have had an easily unlockable bootloader, all of our other current Galaxy S III flagship lineup, and all Nexus-branded devices, support the standard bootloader unlocking procedure.
- What happens if I load custom software and damage (“brick”) my phone?
Problems caused by unlocking the bootloader and installing custom software will not be covered by the warranty. Problems with third-party and customized bootloader software can cause irreparable harm to the Galaxy S III. Users interested in performing these actions should proceed with caution and at their own risk. Out of warranty Galaxy S III Developer Edition devices will be serviced directly through Samsung, and service charges will apply.