Android Q has lots of exciting features, such as a system-wide dark mode and new permissions settings. But there’s also a downside – it will make it easier for mobile operators to lock Android handsets to their networks via the SIM card.
That’s according to leaked system code, showing more fine-grained control over which networks the handset will and won’t work with.
It gives networks the power to designate a list of allowed and excluded carriers which will allow them to blacklist rival mobile networks.
This would even extend to mobile virtual networks that use the same aerials as your main network (such as O2 and giffgaff, for example).
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Dual-SIM devices won’t be spared either.
At the moment, networks can set individual restrictions for each SIM card, but Android Q will let them lock the second SIM slot unless it contains an approved SIM card.
Even a factory reset won’t solve the problem.
If this features makes it to the final version of Android Q, it will limit choice for consumers and only serve to drive business away from mobile networks selling phones.