Kindle Fire HD bootloader remains in lockdown

Posted by Shane McGlaun

Few things anger technophiles as much as devices that are locked down and don't allow users to customize or mod their hardware.

Such is the case with the new family of Kindle Fire HD devices that Amazon launched just a few weeks ago. While modders have been successful in rooting the Fire HD family, the bootloader remains securely locked.

Essentially, a locked bootloader means custom ROMs are virtually impossible to install on the new line of Amazon tablets. According to some statements attributed to Amazon engineers, not only is the bootloader locked down, but the system is supposedly "impossible" to crack.

From Amazon's perspective, the locked bootloader makes perfect sense, as it prevents certain services or functions from being used in an "unintended" manner, such as tethering. The Seattle-based corporation even claims the locked bootloader will help stop piracy by preventing content from being transferred to other devices. Oh yes, and then there is the tired overused cliche: "modding your device voids the warranty."

However, one thing working against Amazon for the Kindle Fire HD line is that the device targets the same audience as the Google Nexus 7 tablet - at least in terms of price. Of course, the Nexus 7 tablet embraces developers and hackers who want to customize their OS and apps, whereas Amazon seems intent on blocking any real modding.

As such, the talented crew over at the XDA-Developers Forum is calling for help in crafting a bootloader unlock for the Kindle Fire HD family. Personally, I believe the odds are quite good that the Kindle Fire HD will be unlocked - eventually. Remember, Apple once thought the same as Amazon.