A while back, we were getting questions about mods to the phone, and we made a blog post to give you answers. We've seen a flurry of questions and comments recently, and we wanted to provide some answers and a bit of context. The burning question these days is whether or not it's ok to root your phone. The short answer is no. You agreed to the Terms of Service when you joined republic, and if you don't follow the Terms, we can terminate your service at any time. But there are a few other things we should unpack for context to make sure you understand where we're coming from.

 

There are quite a few reasons it isn't practical for us to allow you to root your phone. The first of these relates to where we are with the product. We're still in Beta, and our main goal is service refinement. We're grateful for the feedback you've provided to help us find bugs, understand flaws in customer experience and sharpen the service we provide to you and others. We're honing in on the features and focusing specifically on one phone. The feedback you give us is most helpful when we know you’re having the experience we designed. We're excited about where we're going together (the forthcoming January 2013 over-the-air software update, for example), and we hope you are, too.

 

Secondly, user modifications are problematic because we can't help you if you encounter problems. We work to make sure our online resources are up-to-date and that our team is trained to offer help to you in a variety of channels for every documented problem you might encounter. But we can't troubleshoot problems you experience if you root your phone or modify the way you experience service. If you make alterations to your phone, you're on your own. You also may not receive any operating system updates, which generally are designed to work with the original software.

 

This also goes for your 30-day money back guarantee and any other warranty that we may provide. If you root your phone, neither your 30-day money back guarantee nor any other warranty that might otherwise be applicable. You won’t have any satisfaction guarantees, warranties or rights to a refund.

 

Lastly, when you modify your phone or service, you're missing the point of what we're trying to do. We’ve worked hard to protect the idea that we all work together and that we can share responsibility here. It means doing the right thing for everyone involved--not just what you want to do. We’ve developed this model carefully to make sure it works correctly to provide service for hundreds of thousands of customers. We built Hybrid Calling because we believed you should be getting more and paying less. But if it were cost effective and easy to bring $19 unlimited wireless via cellular only, someone would have done that already. Although we value freedom as much as you do, we can’t offer you freedoms that put the health of the republic in jeopardy.

 

We want this to be a place of great ideas and free expression. That's why we don't lock or remove discussions that express ideas contrary to ours. We understand that you'll do whatever you want with your phone whether we say it's ok or not. But we also want you to be aware of the dangers at hand if you do. If you decide to go outside the bounds of service we provide, do so with full knowledge of the consequences. Please also keep in mind that community discussions are public, and that others may be influenced or misled based on information you provide.

 

We hope that you understand the reasons we can't support some things you've asked to do. Above all, we want you to understand that we value you and your ideas. It's the diversity of the republic that makes this such an interesting place to be. Let's take the opportunities we've been afforded to create something together that benefits all members of the republic.

 

As always, if you have thoughts or comments, feel free to post them here.