[Samsung Captivate] How-To Remove AT&T Market Restrictions
Unfortunately, for those of you that got the Samsung Captivate through AT&T, you won’t be able to see all applications listed on the Android Market, as the US carrier put up some restrictions over some of them.
I’m not sure how legal it is or if this is clearly specified in the contract, but usually Android smartphones shouldn’t be restricted in any way, as this is in an open-source operating system.
It seems that it has become common for carriers like AT&T, but others too, to “miss” some Android-related apps (Google Talk, Android Market, Google Search), or to put restrictions over some of these apps, from the Android smartphones they are retailing.
Fortunately, Android is an easy-to-work with OS and has a solid scene community behind it, thus anything that these carriers are trying to restrict to their subscribers will be more or less easily overcome.
One particular restriction that AT&T is embedding into its Android smartphones is the censorship of the Android Market, thus consumers won’t be able to see all the applications.
This restriction can be easily overcome by emulating the T-Mobile market using a third-party application developed by Andrea Baccega.
The application is called “Market Enabler” and can be downloaded here, but before doing it you will have to install “Astro File Manager”, which can be easily found on the Android Market.
After the file manager is installed you can download the .apk file of “Market Enabler” and put it on your phone’s memory of memory card.
You will be able to install the .apk file by using the file manager. After the installation process is over restart your smartphone, so you won’t have the Android Market apps resident in the task manger, or you can use a task killer if you have one, so you won’t need to reboot.
After the device restarted, open the Market Access application and click on the “Backup value” in case you need to get back to the AT&T market, then click “Providers” and click and hold “T-Mobile [US]“ option until you get “Emulate “T-Mobile” SIM?”message. Click “Yes” and then click back to “Settings” click the checkbox next to “Emulate on boot.”
This should be everything, as you will not have access to the Android Market without any restrictions. The same method can be applied for other Android devices besides Samsung Captivate.