Vodafone customers fume over HTC Desire "upgrade"

HTC Desire

Update foists irremovable apps, dating website links and branded home screen on HTC Desire owners

Vodafone has infuriated customers after updating their HTC Desire handsets with the network's own irremovable apps.

UPDATE: Vodafone capitulates over HTC Desire "upgrades"

The update, which many customers believed was the 'Froyo' Android 2.2 upgrade, instead delivered a series of Vodafone 360 apps and a new Vodafone-branded start-up screen, and added various web shortcuts to the home screen.

The Vodafone forums are swelling with complaints from customers who believe they were duped into downloading the "upgrade", with many complaining of impaired performance and crashing apps. What's more, the bundled applications cannot be removed.

Pushing out an unannounced branding update that installs apps that are not optional and messes with your bookmarks etc, is frankly very poor

"Pushing out an unannounced branding update that installs apps that are not optional and messes with your bookmarks etc, is frankly very poor," complains one customer on the Vodafone forums.

"I've cancelled my mobile broadband and have told them I intend to move everything away from Voda[fone] because of this," writes another.

The inclusion of dating sites among the downloaded bookmarks has also angered customers. "I can't believe the sensitive nature of the bookmarks added - what if my girlfriend had seen Match.com and Flirtylicious, or whatever it was?" asks another forum user.

Other customers claim the update is faulty, with SMS messages stored on the phone now appearing in duplicate. "It has rendered certain functions of the phone unuseable," complains one HTC Desire user. "I have set the text message limit to 200 per conversation. Since the update ll messages have been duplicated, taking many conversations over the 200 limit and causing issues with the maximum clear limit."

A Vodafone spokesman told PC Pro that the company "didn't intend to give the impression that it was the Android 2.2 upgrade" and that the company had always stated its intention to update the handsets with the 360 services. "Customers have a choice to use those services if they want to," he added.

The spokesman declined to comment directly on the dating bookmarks. "We've seen the complaints customers are making and we're investigating those," he said.

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