December 15, 2009

Enabling Paid Apps in Android Market

Useless talk:
Google restricts the Android Market’s paid apps to some “special” list of service operators. Doubtless, these are the operators who sell the Android phones boxed up with contracts.
When I first got my G1, I thought this restriction might have been applied through IP restrictions. But when I inserted a T-mobile SIM (which came with the phone) for some reason the paid apps seems to appear when browsing Market through WIFI. ????

More useless Talk:
As per lbcoder from XDA Devs, There are two android global properties responsible for this restraint. "gsm.sim.operator.numeric" and "gsm.operator.numeric", and these are the concatenation of the network MCC (mobile country code) and MNC (mobile network code) values. So if we are to browse the Paid apps we need to insert some MCC+MNC from Google’s preferred provider’s to our phone’s global property values.

Forget everything above (The actual solution):

As of now, for the people who are using Original Firmware (not using a Developer Phone), you only have the SIM switch method. Use a SIM from an Android reselling operator. Yeah, that sucks.
You may want to replace your Rom with CUSTOM FIRMWARE. <-- THIS IS SERIOUS STUFF. DO AT YOUR OWN RISK, and go to next part.

HTC/Google firmware (NO root access, NO ADP). Need Android SDK.
Following is an excerpt from :
After connecting with usb, from the tools folder of the android SDK type:

adb shell

you might want to write down your original settings incase you want to return to defaults... type:


at the end of the list, you will see the original values for the properties that will be changed below....

then execute the following commands:

setprop gsm.sim.operator.numeric 31026
setprop gsm.operator.numeric 31026
setprop gsm.sim.operator.iso-country us
setprop gsm.operator.iso-country us
setprop gsm.operator.alpha T-Mobile
setprop gsm.sim.operator.alpha T-Mobile
kill $(ps | grep vending | tr -s ' ' | cut -d ' ' -f2)
rm -rf /data/data/*

* the last two gave me errors.
the kill line: grep and other commands not found... I use ps, but didn't find the process ( I had fresh booted ).. so I skipped that step..
the rm -rf line: I just went to the folder and deleted the files manually..

This will enable payed downloads as it has on mine.

to revert to the changes run the commands again with the values you initially saved somewhere.

Hope this helps anyone that doesn't want to root *just* yet, but wants paid apps.


Install Market Enabler (for rooted phones only)
Download for free from HERE or just visit the Project site for more details and donations ;)
Pick your preferred country/operator from 'Settings list'. DONE.

Use any Debit/Credit card to buys Apps using Google checkout.

Happy Shopping :)

Market-Enabler is an application to simulate the phone's location/carrier and access markets from a choice of countries/carriers.

Market screen from Android 1.6, with Paid apps.

December 13, 2009


Learning sucks. Notably when you've lost 50% of your learning ability.