Wednesday, September 26, 2012

T-Mobile's MobileLife Contacts App Disabled!

Among other things that are beyond the scope of this post, T-mobile is known for slapping mostly useless, extremely annoying, often intrusive, and always poorly implemented applications onto mobile phones. MobileLife Contacts is, quite possibly, one of the worst I have seen so far in that it is all of the above plus very hard to get rid of. I could go on ranting, but, I guess, you just want to know how to uninstall the "pest".

Well, on T-mobile smart phones with HTC Sense/Android 4 (HTC One S, for example), you cannot really uninstall (as in "remove") any of the pre-installed bloatware apps unless you root the phone, but you can disable many of them. Phone-operation-wise, the effect of disabling an app is the same as that of uninstalling (i.e. removing) it.


Yes, MobileLife Contacts can be disabled!

Here are the steps (assuming you are running HTC Sense 4):

1. Settings - Apps - All

2. Disable Customization Setup.

3. Disable Customization Settings Provider.

4. Disable MobileLife Contacts.

5. Enable Customization Settings Provider (yes, in the reverse order).

6. Enable Customization Setup.


It appears that quite a few T-mobile's "pest apps" can be disabled this way. Have fun experimenting, but don't blame me if you screw something up (a standard disclaimer).


UPDATE FOR HTC SENSE 4+

It appears that in HTC Sense 4.5 (aka HTC Sense 4+) you can't disable Customization Setup and Customization Settings Provider from the GUI anymore. Thanks to Marco Duran for bringing it to my attention.

My educated guess is that you should be able to disable them via terminal (you will need to install a terminal emulator) using something like this:
pm disable com.htc.CustomizationSetup
pm disable com.htc.provider.CustomizationSettings

Then, once you are done getting rid of MobileLife Contacts, you can enable those back:
pm enable com.htc.provider.CustomizationSettings
pm enable com.htc.CustomizationSetup

Unless HTC introduced some additional dependencies in HTC Sense 4+ (which I don't know), this should work, but I cannot guarantee it as I have not tried it myself.


P.S. On a smart phone running stock Android 4 (not HTC Sense 4) just do steps 1 and 4 described above.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

IP said...

You are most welcome.

Anonymous said...

MobileLife Contacts notification just showed up on my Samsung Gallaxy 2. Got phone in Nov '12. Has latest op system. Cannot find the program. How to delete?

IP said...

I don't have a Samsung Galaxy 2 in front of me right now, but, as far as I can remember, it's even easier to disable MobileLife Contacts on it than it is on a phone with HTC Sense 4. You just do steps 1 and 4 described in the post above. Go to "Settings", then - "Apps". If you can't see MobileLife Contacts there, hit "All". It should be there. Then just tap on it, and it should show you the application details. Hit the "Disable" button and confirm by hitting "OK" in the pop-up dialog. This should take care of the "pest". It _may_ show up again after a system update.

Duane Brown said...

IP, thanks for the Samsung S2 comment. That worked for my wife's phone.

IP said...

You are welcome, Duane.

Marco Duran said...

Hello, thanks for the hint

Whta do you mean by disabling the Custom settings provider? I don't have any system app in "All" named somewaht near that. I do have HTC Sense 4.

Thanks

Ira Portman said...

Hi, Marco,
Thanks for bringing it to my attention. It appears that in HTC Sense 4.5 (aka HTC Sense 4+) you can't disable Customization Setup and Customization Settings Provider from the GUI.

My educated guess is that you should be able to disable them via terminal using something like this:

pm disable com.htc.CustomizationSetup

pm disable com.htc.provider.CustomizationSettings

Then, once you are done getting rid of MobileLife Contacts, you can enable those back:

pm enable com.htc.provider.CustomizationSettings

pm enable com.htc.CustomizationSetup

It's just a thought. I have not tried it myself.

pascala said...

the commands work like a charm on my HTC One S - through adb shell or Terminal Emulator. But the commands have to be executed as root. Some apps, e.g. Flickr for HTC Sense can still not be disabled. Thanks anyway

Ira Portman said...

You are welcome, pascala. So were you able to disable MobileLife Contacts (specifically MobileLife Contacts - not Flickr or anything else) using the "pm disable" command to disable Customization Setup and Customization Settings Provider or not?