T-Mo Galaxy Note 4 customers complaining of DT Ignite software installing apps without permission

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A couple of disturbing and growing threads on Reddit and XDA allege that – after the latest software update – Galaxy Note 4 users on T-Mobile have some unwanted and potentially invasive software. Software dubbed DT_Ignite has purportedly been installed on the Note 4 along with the update, but – according to user responses – isn’t a regular piece of wanted software. Instead, it’s been installing apps on to customer phones without their permission.

Complaints state that apps named Cookie Jam, Drippler and RetailMeNot are being installed. And, although they can be uninstalled, they automatically show up again upon restarting the device. And, to make matters worse, DT_Ignite cannot be uninstalled through the regular means. As noted by Reddit user Real666_: The app is found in /system/priv-app. The file is Ignite_TMO.apk. Package name is com.LogiaGroup.LogiaDeck.” 

Possible reasons for the apps showing up again after being uninstalled can be seen in DT_Ignite’s app permissions which include (among many others):

  • Download files without notification
  • Full network access
  • Run at startup

DT_Ignite, or to give it the full title “Digital Turbine Ignite” is a program developed specifically for carrier handsets. And, from the words of the company itself:

Digital Turbine Ignite lets mobile operators regain a competitive edge, maximizing the efficiency of pre and post loading applications on smartphones for more advertising revenue. Carriers can cut down the long process of authorizing and implementing apps by the OEM, and instead lead the market with the most up-to-date app packages and customized CPI deals, right from initial device activation.

Now you can see why this would appeal to carriers. It would allow them to sidestep a lot of the waiting for OEM’s to allow their pre-installed apps to be approved. Instead, they have a way to push content directly to users’ phones. And many carriers including Verizon, Cricket and Boost have signed up, and are using the software. As is T-Mobile.

For the sake of not turning this in to another “U2 is forcing its free album on us!” first world moan, I’d like to try and apply some balance here. For the reasons mentioned in the above paragraph, this could be a good thing. T-Mobile could – for instance – receive its device shipments, and get them to customers quicker without needing to get the nod from OEMs to install carrier-specific software. Instead, just having the apps pushed to the devices when they’re booted up for the first time.

At the same time, it’s not okay for apps that aren’t even carrier specific to be be pushed to devices without customers requesting them. I mean, if I was going to be “gifted” a Candy Crush ripoff (like Cookie Jam) I’d like to be able to delete it, and to have it stay deleted. Permanently.

It’d be naïve for us to think that T-Mobile isn’t in the money-making business. At the same time, I’m also idealistic and optimistic enough to assume that it isn’t the kind of company which wants to provide a poor experience for its customers just to make a few more bucks. And given its recent comments about other carriers loading bloatware on to their Nexus 6’s, you’d think the Un-carrier would have the same values regarding its entire handset portfolio.

Nobody’s being charged for any of these and – as far as we’re away – none of these apps are being “forced” on to any other devices. That said, it’s fair to say there’s a lot of frustration making its way to the forums.

Are you bothered by this free stuff landing on your phone? Have you experienced it? Let us know in the comments. It’ll be interesting to see how many people have noticed.

UPDATE: You can disable DT_Ignite by heading into Settings>Apps>All Apps, then finding it in the list.

For more information read these sources:

Thanks for the tip, Byron.

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  • Thanks for reporting this, this is crazy. Hope T-Mo doesn’t continue this trend.

    • Cam Bunton

      I don’t see it as being sinister. I just think it could be managed better.

      • CJ Jacobs

        This is sinister and there’s no other way to logically look at it. T-Mobile is installing applications onto people’s phone without notification and without their consent.

        • confusgrow

          Switch to Tracfone then or STFU. It’s not sinister you arse, look up the definition and learn the word. It’s free you dumb monkey.

        • mmunson

          its people’s storage and data that also makes it an issue.

        • confusgrowis coolio

          Mama:s proud :)
          The little train that could!

        • Steve Hester

          My guess is that the T-Mobile ST&C addresses it and they are within their “rights” according to it. That said, I don’t like anything being added to my phone without my knowledge. If they had been there when the phone came out of the box (I might not like it), but I would tolerate it (and turn off the app and uninstall the others), but to push a mandatory update that states adding chinese language and to add this, upsets me.

          There is no doubt that at least some of these apps have a revenue stream and probably a share back to the carrier. My issue is the security of the device and the ability to add apps (including using MY storage MY- as in I paid for it). What if a bad operator at DT_ignite puts malicious software on my phone? Who is accountable?

          OK, off my soapbox, I have other first world issues to deal with, like the TV remote is too far a reach right now.

      • Illuminated

        Cumon guys he works for TMobile! They sign his checks. How else would he get “inside information” repeatedly without TMobile pursuing the source. This site has turned into an employee portal for TMo.

        • Cam Bunton

          T-Mobile definitely do not sign my checks, and if they did, you can be sure they’d stop me from sharing inside information. Not actively encouraging it… Side note: I’m pretty sure they’d rather I hadn’t written anything about DT_Ignite too.

  • Awt

    You can turn off dt_ignite and then uninstall the 3 apps you spoke of. You’ll find it in the all apps section of the application Mgr.

    • Cam Bunton

      I’m guessing this is done by “disabling” the app using the usual app manager part of the settings in Android?

      • Awt

        Yes, and the 3 apps will stay uninstalled.

  • SEBA

    Yes, I tweeted this article and tagged you, John and tmobile. Nobody reply to my tweet and you had enough time to write this article. I noticed that those apps were installed to my phone after the last update. Thanks to lookout security app that informed me that those 3 apps were safe to use. If not lookout you have no idea that those apps were installed until you see shortcut on your screen.

    • Cam Bunton

      Ha. I didn’t see that tweet until just now, someone emailed me the link to the Reddit forum.

      • SEBA

        Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate the article and thanks you for taking action.

    • Darwinski

      Yes, because “Lookout” automatically knows if something is safe or not. LOL

      • SEBA

        Yeah, just because I got the notification that lookout just finished scanning 3 applications I downloaded got my attention since I didn’t download anything. I thought I have a virus installing apps on my phone.

        • Darwinski

          I got you, I got you. Good point.

      • Charles

        Darwinism wasn’t nice to you, he clearly stated in op that he was alerted by Lookout. He didn’t state he was automatically protected or protected at all.

  • stark

    I had the apps as well. I am not happy about this. Way to go past CARRIER and start installing apps we don’t want, need, or authorize on our phones.

  • Hereld Besren

    This also occurs on my Galaxy Note 3 as well. T-Mobile apps were updated automatically when it was disabled on my phone.

    • tirtawn

      Weird.

      Our Note 3 and 4 do not have these junk.
      Note 3 -> original
      Note 4 -> rooted

      I do not see this DT_IGNITE on my note 4 either. I have rebooted “twice” and could not find this DT_IGNITE.

      • Lol

        Update your Note 3 OTA, and update your Note 4 with the latest Rom. You will get the malicious app after your phone has the latest carrier update.

      • skittle

        I do did see the DT_IGNITE folder on my note 4 using a file explorer tool. Also Cookie Jam was on my desktop. Anyone who get this and uses Twitter can Tweet John Legere if you can resolve this with customer service.

        • skittle

          Deutsche Telekom. Is that where the DT in DT_IGNITE. comes from?

        • superg05

          that’s what i thought but i guess not

  • jeffy

    Shoulda gotten an iPhone. lmao

    • Deadeye37

      Or a Nexus. Or root & install a custom rom. Or Windows Phone.

    • Toasted_Cracker

      Calm down, let’s try to think rationally.

  • taron19119

    I don’t have none of those apps my phone is up to date

    • derp hurr-durr

      “I don’t have none”

      So…you do?

      • taron19119

        What

    • ZxyLady

      You don’t have ANY?

  • Toasted_Cracker

    Thanks for the heads up! I had those apps pop up on my note 4 a couple days ago. I didn’t know what was causing them. Pretty dirty move in tmobile.

  • Deadeye37

    My experience, at least with RetailMeNot, is that its a battery hog. Those other apps most likely are also. Knockoff freemium games are notorious for running the background and waking the phone.

  • rsohne

    Un-Carrier my ass. This move was as carrier as it gets. I am seriously angry about this last move!

    • Prof Peaboday

      Just dont blow anything up umm kayyy

  • MadJoe

    I’ve reported T-Mobile the FTC before, if I owned the Note 4 this would get me to do it again. They want to ration my data and then use some of it without my permission? Nope.

    • Android_God

      You go girl!

      • MadJoe

        Try harder. I expect better from a self-proclaimed “god”.

    • That’s unfounded speculation. We don’t know that the data is counted.

      • Yooo

        How would the data not be counted? Any data your phone downloads would count to your cap besides mms

        • Trevnerdio

          And about 30 music streaming services, speedtest.net, among others

      • DKBNYC
      • MadJoe

        That’s the beauty of reporting them, we don’t need to know, they need to explain themselves to someone/something (the FTC) that they can’t just bullshit. And then, after they have explained themselves to the FTC, they have to contact you, explain their fix, and then ask if you feel like it resolves the issue. You can say yes or no, either closing the report, or keeping it open, depending on how you feel about it. I was actually drunk when I first reported them, and I had forgotten I did until a Vice President of something from T-Mobile called me directly to ask how I would like them to fix the issue. I remember them scrambling and basically falling all over themselves to get me to say it was resolved (which they finally did fix it, but it took a few weeks and 2 1/2 months of comp’d service fees).

  • mooch

    Rooted. Problem solved.

  • hapi

    Thats why i use blackberry :)

    • Jerry Rich

      Good for you.

    • Clifford Haight

      Here, here!!!

      • derp hurr-durr

        Hear, hear.

        Sheesh…kids these days.

    • twicetheprice

      So you’re the one!

  • Mike Palomba

    To be honest everyone seems to be overreacting. So a few apps were installed on your device. Even if they’re not used by you what’s the harm? Are they large apps that take up a lot of storage or do they consume large amounts of data in the background or do they consume a lot of battery in the background? Then I’d understand. But a few apps that may help T-Mobile generate some revenue and don’t really effect you device in anyway seems very irrelevant

    • noc007

      The harm? Applications are installed with unknown permissions sending unknown data to unknown destinations without the owner’s consent or knowledge. Battery is consumed so the phone has decreased battery life. Those not on unlimited data have data consumed without their knowledge or consent.

      • You don’t know that the data is counted. I’d be really surprised if it was.

        • Ekkkk

          Um any data sent or received from your phone would count against your cap. Only data that TMobile wouldn’t charge to your cap would be picture messages thru mms or while connected to wifi.
          So just by downloading the update with your mobile data connection your using your data towards your cap.
          With the 3 permissions granted to the app, the app can use data when it wants.
          It’s quite simple unless TMobile is flagging these apps and allowing unlimited data like streaming music but that would be even more scandalous!

        • That’s incorrect, they don’t charge many types of data, for example, streaming music services, against data. And they certainly wouldn’t charge anything pushed to customers such as this.

        • Cumon Man

          They don’t count two things music apps that they’ve approved and speed test apps they approved.
          Did I miss anything else?
          2 is not many I mean maybe vs 1 but seriously how long have you worked for tmobile?
          Did I miss the announcement that adware and spyware games aren’t counted towards data?

        • I believe that music, speed tests, updates/firmware, visual voicemail, and data fom T-Mobile account management apps are not charged.

      • The argument that it was without your consent may be inaccurate, you DID agree to their terms of service. That’s probably “consent”.

    • skittle

      Mike, it has happened to Note 4 owners. Myself included. Without permission Mike. The fire from this is hitting the Internet. Tmobile is way over the line on this move.

    • Mikey Likes It!

      Our phones are rentals or leases? I thought I bought my devices in full. So why does TMobile believe they should generate revenue off my phone that I bought and paid for?

      • brnshuga Gray

        I agrees with you. After paying 700+ on a device, how dare anyone, and especially my carrier place anything on my phone with out permission.

    • derp hurr-durr

      Wow, er…umm…

      None of your considerations matter in the least compared to the one you didn’t bother to mention: Apps were installed on user’s devices, after purchase, without the users knowledge or permission.

      Kinda missed the biggest point, there Mikey.

    • dkbnyc

      Mike please… If you like unwanted apps on your phone, fine. But to say people are overreacting is a bit out of line. YOU may not care but the fact this was done with no word ever mentioned by T-Mobile leads me to believe somethings not right in Denmark. I could are less if it was a .00000KB file. It was a file hidden in an update that allows some other company to download apps on MY phone I don’t want. Sure you can delete but what happens when Digital Turbine Ignite decides they want to push you something that copies your address book or credit card numbers or whatever and you don’t notice it for a couple of days? That can’t happen? Then why hide the fact that this crap was included in the update to begin with?

  • jonathan3579

    You can’t spell uncarrier without carrier. Sad, but true.

  • robert

    You can disable it but i don’t know if that will solve the problem

  • FILA

    It amazes me how and why T-Mobile the uncarrier, making a big deal of it all the time would do such a thing like this when it never turns out well in the end ofr these carriers, so why keep trying?? Come on T, dont be a dirty rat like this. Your better then Verizon and the others.

  • Shlomo Boukai

    Wow, I just thought I dowloaded a virus that installed the apps. I had no idea this came from software installed during the update. I hope T-Mobile will release an update where they remove DT_Ignite.

    • brnshuga Gray

      They say you can disable it in settings

  • A lot of misleading info out there. I deleted the apps downloaded by this and they didn’t come back on reboot. After reading about the app that does the downloading today I disabled it. No big deal. I agree it’s a little unlike T-Mobile, but I’m sure it’ll be addressed.

    • Sarcasm

      Thanks Brett we were waiting for you to give an all clear! What else should I let TMobile do with my phone without my knowledge?

    • Cam Bunton

      Good to know. Thanks Brett.

    • dkbnyc

      This should have been addressed in the “What’s in this update” statement when it was pushed. this surely has nothing to do with Chinese language support… Why hide it T-Mobile? WHY?

  • VG

    I’m sure the tech-savy users will be able to easily identify and disable the app, but the millions of average consumers will have no idea what is going on with their phones, and that is what T-Mobile and Verizon are counting on. The carriers will continue to exploit this until the FCC gets involved.

    • brnshuga Gray

      You are so right. I’m not the techy savvy user so I didn’t know. It’s really nice that my old man is. He was the one who sent me the link to understand why I had items downloaded on my phone without me telling it to do so. Lol

  • superg05

    i have not seen these on my edge but atleast there deletable right?

    • Mike Palomba

      Yea they are

      • superg05

        Prompted for an update today 77 mb o_O should i skip? i will just disable

        • TechHog

          Root your device and install a stock Samsung ROM. You lose wifi calling, but if you can live without that it’s worth it.

        • superg05

          updated note edge no dt no cookie jam at all better lte signal indoors and out so i guess it has a new radio image

        • ZxyLady

          Same here

    • ZxyLady

      I have the 4 and Note Edge, and I only have Drippler, which I installed myself when I got my Note 3, last year. Also, I did a factory reset after the update- I usually do that to have a fresh start on new software updates. And no software to be found. ANYWHERE.

  • ummduh

    Pshh, rooted on the first day. Wife’s too. Done and done.

    Still really shitty, though. Disappointed, T-mobile.

    • asmidnightfalls

      Any tips on a first time rooting?

      • ummduh

        Make a backup of your system and data in twrp before you go changing things. Otherwise, have at it. As long as you read about what you’re doing before you dive in, it’s pretty hard to screw up, and as long as you have a backup you can always go back.

  • Android_God

    this takes all of a couple of clicks to fix. You don’t need to be rooted. Still pretty slimy move by the used car salesman John! Is this like the latest uncarrier move? the guy is a douche nozzle

  • brnshuga Gray

    Hello, I’ve just noticed on Sunday morning that cookie jam, RetailMeNot, and drippler. My old man was like maybe my children had downloaded it to my Google profile at some point. And this was after the update also. T-Mo, really really disappointed.

  • J.J.

    easy fix for us, but of the millions of note 4 users, how many you think follow tech sites or even know half of the things their phone can do. a very very small percentage. i mean i still say “google now” to people with a s5 in there hand and they look at me like im crazy. this is not a good move tmo.

  • Jack Mehoff

    True carrier behavior at its worst, by the supposed “uncarrier”.

  • schwddyballs

    Everyone complaining about applications being installed to their phone is acting like a child. Disable the app and be done with it. If you don’t know how to uninstall or disable an app in your phone then you shouldn’t have a smartphone. Why don’t you call into customer service for another credit you silly bitches. Lol

    • dkbnyc

      That’s not the point… T-Mobile pushed an update they didn’t mention these apps. Didn’t mention that they’d download apps to your device whenever they wanted to. Also, there is nothing about this company that controls the software. What information are they able to steal from my device? I may trust T-Mobile [a little less not after this crap] but I know nothing about Digital Turbine Ignite to allow them to have access to my phone.

    • skywalkr2

      What a pretentious comment. I am sure 99% of the public has NO IDEA how to disable apps. They shouldn’t have to know.

    • itgoesdown

      LOL I’m sure you love being a blind ass fanboy. ANDROID RULEZ GUYS. FREEEDOM BROOO (except for all the stupid ass junk that comes with your phones)

    • Whoa

      a guy that goes by schwddyballs is accusing everyone else being childish whoa
      if you go by the handle schwddyballs you shouldn’t have access to the internet

  • John Johnson

    “this could be a good thing.”

    *laughing*

    Funny. Oh, you were serious?? Really?

    “Nobody’s being charged for any of these”

    Have they determined as of yet if the downloaded data counts against capped user’s LTE allotment? If this is the case (and many on reddit seem to believe it is), then yes, they are being “charged” in the form of lower caps.

    I’m a fan of T-Mobile – but this kind of crap will change that *very* quickly.

  • Kai Boogie

    this shouldnt have been pushed to my device. thanks for the info

  • Mike Palomba

    This is being blown out of proportion. T-Mobile does tons of stuff to help us save data and money. Let them have a little leeway. It’s pretty harmless anyway

    • dkbnyc

      Okay then you can have everyone’s unless apps. EVERYBODY!!! Send your unless apps to Mike. Also, last I checked I paid for a device. T-Mobile didn’t chip in on the cost of my Note 4 so I don’t want apps on it I didn’t download. Pretty gosh darn nefarious of them if you ask me. Also, I’m paying for data… If it were FREE then I’d be all in with giving them a little leeway.

    • 21stNow

      I disagree with you on this.

  • DaveG

    Hi Cam, great article but the justification of this by the speeding up of device releases isn’t really a valid one. Preloaded apps won’t affect time to market for a device or a firmware release, at least not at the carriers I have worked at. The time to market is a lot more important than any additional bloatware.

  • D_Wall__

    I wondered where this came from. I just unistalled Drippler and the other one now. Didnt notice them. Kind of Shitty if you ask me.

    Did any Nexus 6 users have this issue?

    • Chris

      No Nexus 6 users will have this issue. Google is pretty much controlling that end.

      You can’t brand a Nexus 6. Just look at what Google/Motorola had AT&T did for trying to brand Nexus 6.

  • D-Netz

    Noticed a day after update, uninstalled. Seem to have some GPS and Network issues since update. TMO is working on it they say. Not sure if network and/or update.

    • TechHog

      You can’t uninstall it without root. If you didn’t delete it via root access, either you disabled DT Ignite, or you uninstalled the apps it installed. If it’s the latter, they’ll come back next time you restart your phone unless you disable DT Ignite.

  • mingkee

    Good!
    This is a reason why I didn’t buy Samsh*t phone anymore.
    Make sure you check the network activities to make sure your personal data won’t leak to somewhere in Chi-Na.

    • dkbnyc

      This has nothing to do with Samsung exclusively. The Note 4 just happens to be the lastest Android released. Rest assured this crap will appear on future T-Mobile devices unless we consumers make a big enough stink about it. I for one haven’t applied the update and won’t until this crap is removed from it.

      • itgoesdown

        future t-mobile ANDROID devices. keep sucking from that google bottle though. none of you android fanboys want to admit this is all because GOOGLE allows it

        • dkbnyc

          I prefer Android to Crapple. So what? That’s not the point. WTF are you here? Grow up child.

        • Chris

          still wrong. T-mobile Branded Android devices. Google controls what happens to the Nexus line and so although it’s a T-mobile Android phone being sold in stores. It does not have DT Ignite. Just look at what Google/Motorola had AT&T do for branding the Nexus 6.

        • mingkee

          Regardless of this issue, T-Mobile branding junk is still less than other carriers’.
          Moreover, T-Mobile version Android phones are easier to root than other carriers’ (unlocked bootloader on most Samsh*t and LG phones).

        • mingkee

          Fortunately, there’s a word coming to rescue: root.
          I seldom rely on root except third party app writing to memory card problem.

        • itgoesdown

          LOL of course you offer up ROOTING as a solution. That isn’t a solution for the vast majority of people who use the phone. Get fucking real.

        • 5am6ung

          Carrier iq can also be found in iphones. Look it up

    • TechHog

      This is a carrier problem, not a Samsung problem. It’ll be on other T-Mobile phones soon too, just like it’s already on every new Verizon phone. Uncarrier is dead.

  • Don Goyo

    This is so disrespectful and out of line.

  • Mirad77

    A couple of days ago I was concern with similar about another device and asked if some pre-installed software can track data, some one told me I was stupid. If I liked guessing games I’d say no one should be concern, since there is no personal data as I was told by the person that called me stupid.

    • Ordeith

      T-Mobile uses Carrier IQ on their android handsets.

      A little about Carrier IQ:

      “Trevor presents much of his findings, which seemingly demonstrate Carrier IQ’s keystroke logging, location tracking and ability to intercept text messages. Even information that should be transferred only within encrypted sessions is captured in plain text by Carrier IQ. During the entire demonstration, Trevor’s phone was in airplane mode, operating only over WiFi. Although his actions were outside the scope of his wireless carrier, the software continued to monitor his every key press. On his Android device, it’s evident that Carrier IQ is running, even though it does not appear in the list of active processes. Further, the application doesn’t respond to “Force Quit” commands, and it’s set to startup when Android launches.

  • Mirad77

    Richard or galaxyman or whatever your username is this days, any words from your best friends at Galaxyland?

    • TechHog

      T-Mobile is responsible for this, not Samsung.

      • Mirad77

        I know. As clearly stipulated by the article, Sammy’s name and reputation is on the line here as is that of Tmo.

  • For those that are saying this isn’t a big deal, look at all of the permissions you automatically grant the DT Ignite app and see how comfortable you are with that thing being on your device without your consent. Yes, I know you can disable it (and I have) but there should definitely be a way to remove it entirely.

    • Ordeith

      That’s nothing, T-Mobile still uses CarrierIQ, look up what THAT can do for a real eye opener.

    • Stone Cold

      Reminds me of the same insane permissions the Facebook app wanted.

      • kalel33

        The Facebook app is over the top on their permissions. Want to know where I’m at, who I’m talking too, and read my emails and text. Nope, won’t sign in with Facebook on my phone.

        • Stone Cold

          Only through chrome for me uninstalled the app completely.

  • TechHog

    You’re seriously trying to defend this? Go to shill hell, Cam! I’m done coming to this site. Enjoy your money from Ledger.

    • Cam Bunton

      Nope. But it’s good to try and see it from both sides. That’s my job.

      • Not sinister :/

        I understand see it from both sides but I think the article is favored towards TMobile as of it’s no big deal.

        TMobile sold the rights for the apps to be included into the update. Tmobile failed to disclose apps within documentation for firmware notes, and apps reinstall after reboot.

        Thats not sinister? How is that not bad or evil? This is the company that has been calling out carrier’s for bad practices but this is somehow good business practice?

    • Matt Pankey

      He doesn’t work for T-Mobile. In fact, they’re probably not thrilled with this article.

  • Simonde

    Thanksgiving night I had an update notification for Cookie Jam and Drippler. I didn’t allow them to update because I didn’t know what they were or how they got on to my phone without my giving permission. I knew I hadn’t downloaded them. I deleted them, and so far they have stayed deleted, even through a couple of restarts. I was surprised and annoyed. Reading this, I’m now mad.

  • jayhawker520

    WHAT?!?! An Android phone is installing more unwanted apps, games, bloatware, etc. without users permissions? How unheard of for Android. Haha this is one of the MANY reasons I switched to iPhone years ago!

    • Chris

      lol. yeah, just like how apple installed Newstand, Apple Maps, Stocks, Reminders, Notes, app a few years ago. I personally consider it a bloatware since I don’t use but it’s there because Apple says so.

      This fanboyism is getting old.

      • skywalkr2

        Not to mention apps like the stock ticker.

      • donnybee

        All are installed by the manufacturer, not carrier or third parties. Also, they don’t run in the background. They don’t open communications to other parties. They are installed on an OS level, and therefore remain secure.

        When considering that all OS’s have apps installed at an OS level, that are separate from carriers, that’s not exactly something to condemn to one OS. What is unfortunate is when third parties are allowed to install apps at will, or manufacturers are allowed to run clumpy overlays, or the system is based on being open in nature and updates do not come timely enough to respond to any of the 98% of mobile malware.

        You call iPhone owners fanboys. But really, they just don’t want the worst written OS running on under-performing hardware. Especially in an open environment.

      • jayhawker520

        The FIRST-PARTY apps you mentioned (Newsstand, Apple Maps, Stocks, Reminders and Notes) were actually developed and installed by Apple, not the phone carriers OR some third-party adware company disguised as a game company. Android continues to sell itself cheap (similar to PC manufacturers) by letting anyone pay them to add bloatware to their devices. I think that the phone carriers AND OS manufacturers should not be allowed to install third-party apps, especially if you’re paying full price for the phone. (Reminder for Chris: Apple developed apps are NOT third-party apps. Therefore, your argument is invalid)

        Besides, these Apple apps actually have a useful purpose to most consumers. What does ‘Cookie Jam’ do for me??… NO I don’t want to bake virtual cookies today (I really hope that’s not the point of the game..)

        I have thankfully not used a bug-infested Android in years, but I would bet that Android comes installed with other THIRD-PARTY apps. At least Apple comes with first-party apps! (Let me stop your reply, yes, we already know iOS 8.0 had bugs).

        Would I call myself an Apple fanboy? No. Apple is not perfect (yes I admitted it! I know.. shocking! I hope the Cupertino Gods don’t find me!!) I had issues with my cloud services a few months ago, but at least Apple fixed it with iOS 8.0 (yes, the update actually did something useful!) I love that I can integrate my digital movies, music, videos, pictures, etc. across my iPhone, iPad and Apple TV. But would I ever get a Mac… probably not. I prefer my Windows OS freedom. There are pros and cons to Apple devices, but when I compare it to Android dead batteries, crashes and more glitches than an ’80s video game, I would choose Apple for a STABLE experience.

  • randomnerd_number38

    Ready for a fun conspiracy theory? If you’re T-Mobile and you’re benefitting from tons of coverage about how you’re shaking up the wireless industry, how do you keep that gravy train rolling?

    1) find out hat at least one major carrier is signed up for and using DT IGNITE
    2) sign up yourself, place the software on one of your most publicized smartphones
    3) ensure a big stink is raised in the media by installing random apps on end users phones with said software
    4) wait as news articles evolve. “T-Mobile installs random apps in your phone”, when put through a news cycle a few times, begets articles and blog posts everywhere that become a more general story about carriers having too much control over our phones.
    5) stop using dt ignite and decry it as a mistake. Put out press releases and stories talking about how how you made the uncarrier move and you listen to your customers
    6) watch the articles pop up everywhere about how wonderful and uncarrier Tmobile is.

    Mmhmmm.

    • chrisrj8084

      I was just thinking this, time will tell if we are correct.

    • itgoesdown

      LOL no one outside of the android fanboy community would even care about this or realize what this even means. Try again

      • randomnerd_number38

        Stranger things have happened.

  • Ordeith

    No surprise from the carrier that still embeds CarrierIQ in their Android handsets.

    • Spanky

      Carrier IQ was on my AT&T-branded HTC M8 as well. Converting it to Developer Edition took care of that pesky problem and about 25 bloatware apps that I froze previously.

  • donnybee

    This isn’t fair! My iPhone won’t install fun apps that T-Mobile wants to share! I have to tell my phone which apps to download and then grant each one its permissions separately. Dammit I hate having a phone that’s secure and meant to only service me.

    What’s the best Android device, guys? I hate being left out of these kinds of fun Android activities! :(

    • Chris

      same thing happens with iOS – but not carriers. It’s apple forcing apps to you.

      “I hate having a phone that’s secure and meant to only service me.”

      That’s the worst of the worst comments I’ve seen. Time and time researchers have post vulnerabilities with the iOS that can easily be found online. get real.

      • donnybee

        The apps are part of the OS. Every OS has that. But no third-party apps come installed. Which is exactly why I say there’s no funny business like you see with this article and 99% of all Android devices at boot.

        Also, any vulnerabilities with iOS easily get patched with wide-spread updates from Apple. Perfect example is the recent closed backdoor for jailbreaking. But consider for a moment that even when a backdoor exists for jailbreaking, the system still is secure unless you open it by jailbreaking.

    • Spanky

      I am a recent Android to iOS convert. Although there are things that I miss about Android, I’m really enjoying the iOS experience. Not having carriers in the equation is a beautiful thing.

    • Slippery

      IOS SECURE???? Oh wait it’s just another donkeybee ramble….

      • donnybee

        You’re right, my rambles are probably getting annoying to those who don’t know what’s going on out there. So I’ll stop talking and instead share what 2014 has to offer. Enjoy :)

        “The Apple OS is built with one thing in mind: User Experience. This idea goes far beyond the design on the hardware and the visuals of the software. High backend security features allow for less concern when it comes to hacking the phone or downloading malicious apps due to apples strict app verification policy.
        ..with more lax rules in their app market Android allows for many fake/malware ridden apps to be released especially when it comes to “Trojan Horse” infections.”
        ~Source: recomhub [dot] com/blog/most-secure-smartphone/

        “Apple’s iPhone and iPad have become the new corporate standards due to high user satisfaction and superior security capabilities”
        ~Source: www [dot] infoworld [dot] com/article/2604692/mobile-device-management/mobile-security-ios-vs-android-vs-blackberry-vs-windows-phone

        “”iOS is the most secure because attention to security is focused at the app level as much as it is at the operating system level,” said Ira Grossman, CTO of end user and mobile computing at Cleveland-based MCPc”
        “”Apple has evolved furthest up the security stack. Every application is sandboxed, meaning storage and memory are isolated. It has the most control over patching,” said one large security expert”
        “Patch level management and control over update deployment is a crucial advantage Apple has over its Android rival, according to many MDM companies. When it comes to Apple, which pushes out its own patches directly to users, it can mean security vulnerabilities are patched in a matter of 24 hours.
        Unlike with Apple, Android users run a hodgepodge of Android variant OSes. Exasperating matters for Android users is that carriers have a track record of dragging their feet when it comes to rolling out patches to customers.”
        ~Source: www [dot] crn [dot] com/news/mobility/300072707/mobile-security-smackdown-ios-vs-android-vs-blackberry-vs-windows-phone.htm/pgno/0/1

        ““The major security differences between iOS and Android are largely that Android is a much more open operating environment, more easily allowing users to download apps from app stores that have poor or non-existent app analysis and vetting procedures.””
        “That’s not to say that iPhones are impervious from malware…Still, iPhone users generally have more peace of mind than Android users. ..iPhone users can rest easy, unless they’ve jailbroken their devices”
        “iPhones, for their part, benefit from Apple’s stricter security measures. The single instance of iOS malware detected by F-Secure [a Finnish security firm] was designed to target jailbroken iPhones — meaning that the majority of iPhone users are 100% safe from mobile malware.”
        ~Source: heavy [dot] com/tech/2014/08/iphone-vs-android-best-security-os-phone-smartphone-malware-mobile/

        “..it would seem iPhone and iPad users are on the greener side of the grass. Studies have found that a much larger percentage of mobile malware targets Android over iOS, the software that runs Apple’s devices. That’s primarily due to Android’s huge global popularity and its open approach. Plus, Apple securely controls which apps are available on its App Store, strictly reviewing all apps to avoid allowing malware through.”
        “A multitude of threats to Android could be greatly eliminated if all users upgraded their mobile phones to the latest version of the OS. The inconsistency of Android devices across old versions plays into the hands of malware creators..
        Apple does not have the same problem, as each release of iOS quickly reaches its users, due to the fact that iOS updates are big events that prompt mass upgrades. This means that consequential security scares are rare enough to be big news when they occur. While there are drawbacks to Apple’s tight grip over everything that occurs on its OS, there’s no doubt it makes for a more secure environment..”
        “There’s no doubt that Android offers a bit more of a Wild West environment than iOS.”
        ~Source: www [dot] forbes [dot] com/sites/symantec/2014/07/24/android-vs-ios-which-is-more-secure/

        Title: “iOS scores as most secure mobile OS in spyware report”
        ~Source: www [dot] cnet [dot] com/news/ios-scores-as-most-secure-mobile-os-in-new-report/

        With love,
        ‘Donkeybee’ (and the rest of the informed world)

        • skywalkr2

          Funny my experience with IOS is just pure frustration.

        • donnybee

          It’s not for everyone, that’s for sure. I know plenty of people who just really do like the feel and look of Android. Phone ownership will always come down to personal preference, as it should. However, that doesn’t negate the facts. It just means some have different needs.

        • Deer

          The fact that you’ve stated clearly is that you are using your own opinion as a fact and trying to distribute missinformation

        • donnybee

          What is a fact is that a closed environment OS, regardless of manufacturer, is exponentially more secure than an open environment OS, again not regarding manufacturer.

          iOS is closed and tightly sandboxed. Android is open. If you really think these are not facts, and just opinions, then perhaps you’re the misinformed.

        • ZxyLady

          Since clearly you’re not concerned with facts beyond your own opinion, I will mention that IOS and Android are equal victims of viruses and other malware etc. it obviously has no bearing regardless on quality or sandboxing or any other thing. Hackers are equal opportunity. And Apple had been known to sit on holes in their software before, and what, they did that for us customers or did they do that for others? (Disclaimer: I do not own Apple tech in my home. Apples trickery and unethical actions are unforgivable, imho. Any company who intentionally users our government for its own gain and then hides most of its money so as to not pay is taxes doesn’t deserve my money or support)

        • donnybee

          I’m glad you brought the government in this; you must know that the government isn’t happy with Apple for its security on their devices. They would rather be able to crack into phones when they feel a need to and Apple has made it impossible for them. In fact, with a passcode, even Apple has declared and demonstrated that they can’t get into an iOS device.

          In regards to your comment about equal opportunities for malware and virus attacks, I’m assuming that you believe with Android being the target to 98% of malware and the rest of the mobile OS’s sharing the other 2% that it’s “equal”. I’m sorry but I took math and I really do have to disagree that 98 and 2 are equal numbers.

          Look, the premise of Android is to be open. That works for users and hackers alike. You want the benefits of downloading from shady places, so you also get the downsides that are built into the OS. You can disagree all you want. This isn’t some love affection with Apple that I’m sharing with security experts. I’ve owned plenty of different smartphones over the years and I understand how they’re different. Thanks, but no thanks for the feelings, but I’d rather face the facts and I believe my own experiences and those of the security experts more than your lax security complex feelings.

        • Donny Like A Iphonez

          I could easily link articles that report the opposite…. I won’t because regardless what I post your fan goggles won’t allow you to entertain any thought but pro apple….

        • donnybee

          Someone really thinks an open environment OS is more secure than a closed environment OS. This really is starting to get funny.

        • ZxyLady

          The next thing you’re going to post is how Apple devices don’t get viruses either right? lol!!

        • donnybee

          The next thing you’re going to post is how Android is as safe as iOS right? Lol!!!!

          Look into Android my man, it’s open source incase you didn’t know. In fact, the best security for Android is made by Samsung..and it’s been cracked. Android is like a house with no windows to “let the air flow freely”. Some love the wind so they buy the house.. But those houses will be the target of 98% of break-ins. Why? Because it’s open for entry.

          Discredit me. Or not.. That’s cool too. But you look like a fool having this discussion.

    • skittle

      Some have accused Apples iPhone experience as not being flexible. At least they have finally incorporated flexibility into the new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus design.

      • donnybee

        Lol I see what you did there ;) that was pretty clever.

        But seriously let’s hope everyone has learned to not sit on their phones lol

        • skittle

          True :) I loved your reply. Actually I want to get try an iPhone 6 Plus. I love tech and have rooted phones before, I am not too into phone wars though and just want to learn as much as I can about phones.

        • donnybee

          Yeah, I really love all tech. I think all tech has its place and its crowd. I’ve owned more different mobile OS devices than most people (: my favorite to this day is WebOS but Windows Phone has been intriguing again. I owned a couple Windows devices but bounced around before they had all the new features. If only they had more apps…

  • Sorin Lazarescu

    Root phone and uninstall all bloatware. Done.

    • gaaa

      Rooting is disabled on most phones. Also, manufacturers/carriers have used it as an excuse to void warranty. Also, it prevents you from installing OTA updates so now the whole family is missing out on 4.4 or 5.0

      • Sorin Lazarescu

        Just out of curiosity, on what Samsung phone am I missing out on Lollipop now because I rooted my phone? Don’t answer, the answer is none. How hard is it to use Odin when the 5.0 image comes out? A download, put phone in recovery mode (10 seconds), start Odin and click 2 buttons? Oh Lordy Lord, I gone done messed up because I rooted my phone and now I am missing out on not yet available software.

      • kalel33

        You can’t disable rooting, you can always flash back to the carrier ROM for warranty, and rooted phones are usually much faster at getting updates to the Android OS than waiting for a carrier to roll out an OTA. You don’t understand rooting at all.

        • Flashing back carrier ROM doesn’t matter if you’ve tripped the KNOX efuse. AFAIK still no way to fix that.

    • itgoesdown

      Jesus christ, you’re so stuck in your idiot fanboy ways, you can’t even think about how ludicrous it is to expect a majority of people who actually use this phone to ROOT it. GTFO

      • Sorin Lazarescu

        You GTFO. Regardless of what fanboy I am, I will root/jailbreak my phone. Nothing but good things come with root.

        • Lex

          Rooting… is like jailbreaking…. in which it voids the insurance and such right?

    • Dark

      Agreed +1, root and unistall or freeze bloatware. Also, rooting has nothing to do with fanboy ways. It is simply a method of obtaining more user control over one’s property. I paid for my phone, it is my property, theoretically I should be the one to decide what gets installed on it and what apps remain on it.
      I believe that it is an utter travesty that carrier and manufacturers are designing these phones so that the owner cannot remove unwanted software. It would be like me selling you a car and locking the hood so that you could not modify or tinker with the engine, even though it would be yours, and then telling you that I still own everything under the hood and you just own the shell of the car essentially.

  • Huey P Long

    I was going to the TMob store to pick up a new Galaxy Note 4 this afternoon-then I read this information. I connected to T-Mobile chat & asked a guy named “RaymondO” about this. He was away for about 2 minutes, “checking on this issue.” When he came back he did some of the finest ‘dancing around the bush’ I’ve ever seen. He called it malware. He subtly suggested it was NOT T-Mobile doing it. He said I could disable updates to deal with the situation. I have sent a few chat sessions to my email address so I could refer to them later. THIS time, when I clicked the Email Button to email it to me, it accepted my address, but the email never showed up. And yes, I checked my spam. Past chat sessions arrived within 2 to 3 minutes at the most. Not this one:)

  • kanehi

    The new programs included in the update is a bit underhanded since TMo doesn’t even describe what the update does. No wonder these programs appeared on my Note 4 and I know I didn’t download them beforehand. I downloaded the update via Kies. I’ll play around with the new programs and see what benefits it can offer.

  • RJKMadison

    Geez, I had these apps install on my VZW tablet today and I panicked that it was p0wnd. The apps do not show up as installed from Play or AppStore.

    • RJKMadison

      BTW. Mine is an LG G Pad 8.3 LTE.

  • TK

    Mr. Legere and other carrier CEO’s – you don’t get to decide what software I have on a phone that I own. Get your crap off of my property.

    • Well they arguably do get to decide; they pre-load it with whatever they want and make some things harder to remove than others. I think what you meant is they wouldn’t be able to push MORE stuff to us, especially if it’s not necessary for the operation of the network. But I’m guessing we opted into this somewhere in their terms of service.

      • VG

        Just curious: Would you be OK with your ISP (Internet Service Provider) pushing and installing unwanted programs onto your PC and/or Mac? Even if the terms of service allowed this, or if they changed the terms in the future to allow this?

        • Don’t get me wrong, I don’t like this either and I too hope it’s removed (I own a Note 4 too). BUT… I think I have a little more faith in the company to explain and/or resolve this than others here seem to.

        • Ordeith

          I have no faith in a company that embeds Carrier IQ into their Android handsets like T-Mobile does.

        • Leadership doesn’t change overnight.

        • Blinded

          Dude you should work for Comcast in retentions! I think you’d do awesome sarcasm

  • Jason Crumbley

    So much for being the “Un-Carrier”.

  • John Legeres mom passed away yesterday, let’s give him a chance to address this. It doesn’t seem like the kind of thing he’d be OK with even though it is probably allowed in their terms of service.

  • chris san

    I went ahead with the update last night and it said it contained bug fixes and performance improvements. Up until this point I do not see any new apps what so ever. Everything is normal.

  • Yoda

    That’s why I only buy nexus or Google play edition devices

    • Matt Pankey

      Well, aren’t you fancy.

  • Malin

    I did the update on Dec.2 which said it was for the Chinese language support. But right after the update I had the three apps listed in the article. I uninstalled them retarded my phone and they never came back, I also disabled Dt Ignite. I didn’t like the fact that this App was put on my phone let alone in such a sneaky manner. It kind of makes you think is the Magenta any different than the other carriers (being very sneaky).

  • AllThingsReviewed215

    I don’t have this problem. Maybe because I’m rooted.

  • Keg Man

    I got the update but dont have any of the apps. perhaps because I didn’t connect to a wifi before Iread this post? i turned the app off so we will see what happens.

  • Dark

    I got the update and sure enough I found DT Ignite, disabled it first, then after some thinking, I decided to root my phone and remove it entirely, along with any crap it had installed. I also firewalled and will freeze if necessary the software update app so that they can’t push anymore updates onto me without my permission.
    And just an FYI for everyone excited about 5.0, there is some discussion that updating to that may make it very difficult if not impossible to get root in the future. Just something to think about. Because they will keep installing crapware on your phones even after 5.0 and if you want to get it off your phone, you may not be able to. And no, rooting is not that hard to do. Just find a good online guide that gives precise instructions and also learn a little about what you should and shouldnt do once you have obtained root.

  • tlynn

    Yes I’ve had this on almost every note 3 and 4 I have received from tmobile. I keep getting or its transferring with every phone dome sort of malware/spare or so it seems. Tmobile has replaced my phone at least 10x in this past year because they are baffled. It doesn’t matter if I master reset change aim change number. ..you name it I’ve done it all, and I’ve spent soon much money, but to the point I’m going to go back to the iPhone.

  • Cailean MacIlliuntaig

    It bothers me that code of any sort is put onto a device I own without notification to me, or my consent. I’m disgruntled, but not angry, mainly because I can delete/disable/modify it to NOT do that…