After yesterday’s announcement there was some confusion with regards to whether the new Moto X smartphone will have an unlocked or locked bootloader.
An unlocked bootloader allows developers to go into the phone software and to flash custom ROMs and modify it. Both Motorola and Verizon are renowned for locking their devices tight, and it appears that nothing has changed much.
Apparently Moto X will have a locked bootloader, but as is the case with HTC, they will allow easy access to unlock it with their unlock my device site. Moto’s own VP of product management Punit Soni simply states it will be ‘unlockable’ but doesn’t go into details exactly as to how. Hopefully, it won’t be locked too tight, but then Verizon said this on Google+: “Moto X on the Sprint, US Cellular, Rogers and T-Mobile networks will have an unlockable bootloader, and in addition, we will be offering a Verizon Wireless Developer Edition and a general North American Developer Edition”.
Strangely he doesn’t mention AT&T, which like Verizon, prefers that the manufacturer locks the boatloader so as to prevent interference with the phones. It appears that the AT& T model won’t be unlockable but that “North American Developer edition”, will assist T-Mobile and AT&T GSM to solve the issue. They will then have a developer flavor with Verizon 4G LTE and CDMA radios built-in.
The phone is not any less expensive, and certainly did not get a quad-core, but at least there is some clarity with regards to what can be expected as far as hacking and tweaking of the new smartphone is concerned.