Android Movie Rentals blocked on rooted Android kit

Copy protection rules hit hacked phones

Rules could have wider implications as movie rentals role out on different Android devices.

Google is blocking Android users who have rooted their phones and tablets from renting flicks from the newly-launched Android Movie Store and YouTube rental channel. The Big G says this is down to copyright law.

“Rooting” Android phones is not illegal and has become increasingly popular as hardcore users look to get the latest version of the OS before anyone else. This is the first major instance that Google has attempted to ensure users stick to the official upgrade path.

At the moment, the movie store is only officially available on the Motorola Xoom. But the service is set to roll out on phones and tabs packing Android 2.2 or higher, meaning this rule could affect thousands of users, forcing them to revert to older versions of the OS to rent flicks on-the-go.

Those who do try to snag a film using a rooted device get the message, "Failed to fetch license for [movie title] (error 49)". On an official support page, Google explains that, “You'll receive this "Error 49" message if you attempt to play a movie on a rooted device. Rooted devices are currently unsupported due to requirements related to copyright protection.”

Is Google compromising its “open” credentials with this move? Or have the movie studios got it over a barrel? Let us know what you think on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Via Android Central