'Hack' VZ Navigator and other subscription Apps

Just thought I'd share this, It was not my discovery, but I don't remember my exact source. So sorry to you if it's your thunder I'm stealing.

I've used this to get VZ Navigator and Mobile Mail. These are all I can verify working at this point.

Requirements:
Bitpim (v1.0.7) which is the unstable release www.bitpim.org
*Update* apparantly bitpim v1.0.6 official works as well
Phone and USB cable
Data Plan Recommended for using VZ Navigator

1) Download VZ Navigator make sure it's the full version for 9.99/month (i wasn't charged for it since it was removed within hours of downloading it, but i make no promises here)(this also works with other subscription apps), and make sure its up to date by running it once or twice) Then make sure to Install BitPim, plug in phone and let it load the drivers if you haven't done so.

2) Start Bitpim, it will likely recognize the phone as 'Other CDMA phone on COM3'. (com port # may vary)
**edit 10-28-09, the new version of BitPim recognizes this correctly as a VX-11000, regardless it still works either way**

3) Click Edit in Bitpim, and then Settings. Change Phone Type to LG-VX10000 (Voyager) and then click ok. The bottom of bitpim should show it as the voyager with a yellow circle.

4) Click View in Bitpim, then View Filesystem.

5) Click the Plus next to the folder. It will take a minute for it to propogate the data. Then Find the folder called 'brew' and right click it. You should see an option to Backup Entire Tree (don't do as I did and click Backup Directory..it will not work. This part will take a long time. I didn't time it, but 10-15 minutes or so. You can see the progress at the bottom of bitpim. Once it's gone through it's entire process you may save it to wherever you'd like. Just remember where.

6) Disconnect your phone. Go to Menu, Media Center, Browse and Download and remove the application from the phone(cancel subscription). Then power the phone down and back on.

7) Bitpim should still be up and active, so plug the phone back in and again click the plus next to the folder to let it propogate.

8)Right Click on the 'brew' folder and choose Restore... Select the .zip file you saved and when the window pops up to select the files to restore click ok. Again this part takes a while. But once it is complete you are nearly done.

9) Disconnect the phone, reboot the phone and you should be all set. Note* VZ Navigator will re-update itself, this is normal.

If there are questions I'll do my best to answer them.
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**Updated Info as of 10-28-09**
Answers to many frequently asked questions.
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-This process must be followed for every phone from start to finish, you cannot use a backup from one phone on another.
-This will not work for Visual Voice Mail
-The original instructions above are still correct, but our phone is now supported by bitpim and will show as a VX-11000 as it should. The COM Port is different for many users, this is normal.
-Using VZ Navigator, if you change the audible voice to another one after cancelling, it for some people has re-activated the subscription for the software and will need to be cancelled again. This will likely result in a charge for the month.
-Updating your phones firmware to V04 and V05 will not deactivate this. I've confirmed this with my own enV Touch. And it will most likely work with future firmware as well.
-Many users have confirmed that they have been charged for a month of usage. But the charge disappears for the following month. There is no guarantee one way or the other, I was not charged but I was one of the early adopters of this 'hack'. Just be prepared for this, as Verizon will most likely not reverse this charge.
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Comments

  • Is it possible, can you do a youtube video of this process like the DUN Hack? Great information - thanks for sharing it.
  • I don't have a camcorder/video recorder to make a video. If someone has one, feel free to contribute a video of the process. I've done it on 3 touch's for myself and friends. Has worked every time without a problem.
  • ill test it out and make a vid
  • Only had one question on the mobile email... Does the same folder need to get backed up or is it a different one? and if you have already done the back up on the nav do you have to redo it along with the mobile e-mail?
  • This works...I have it done and FREE NAVI!
  • how do you know if its not being charged? Under browse and download it still gives the option to cancel subscription. Does this mean i'm still paying?
  • dono , I'm wondering the same thing, guess I'll just wait and see.
  • I am really looking forward to more responses about this. I am very new to this phone (or any phone like it for that matter) after coming from the Samsung U-410 or what ever it was. If this works it would be great to get a map / nav feature with out spending so much per month. I wish they would just let you go to google maps or mapquest via the mobile web and view a map. I am nervous about attempting this because I don't want to screw it up and render the new phone useless.
  • is it possible to hack a vcast vpack subscription?
  • some clarification:

    To answer your questions about mail. the 'brew' folder contains all the applications, so you can do this process for both nav and mail at the same time, just download both, then cancel both at the same time before reloading the brew folder.

    I've had this working for some time across a couple LG phones, and it will always show the cancel subscription option. The only reason this shows is because when you cancel your subscription, remove it then copy the data back to your phone,you reapply the software (without verizon's knowledge).

    I've never been charged for it. I wasn't even charged for the 9.99 vz nav subscription since it was cancelled so quickly.

    It is entirely possible that at some point in time they may have a way of discovering this. But as of now (and for a couple years now) it's been working fine.
  • If you want to be sure you are not being charged, after you cancel it, call verizon and tell them you downloaded it accidently. Tell them you cancelled the subscription on the phone and wanted to be sure. They will verify that it was removed on their end. I've never heard of anybody being charged the initial 9.99 since it's cancelled so soon after. But again you are doing all of this at your own risk.

    There probably are additional apps that this works for, but only the subscription ones. I haven't gotten it to work with Visual Voicemail on my enV Touch, but it did work on my enV2, they must have changed something. Looks like it may work for CityID, but I didn't care for that app personally.
  • Ok did everything that was posted above but when I go to restore I get an error message saying that my phone is not responding and the transfer stops. Bitpim tells me to go to toubleshoot and it doesnt say anything about it. Anyone had this issue?
  • Anyone gotten it to work for CityID or Visual Voicemail?

    I don't really have that much need for Navigator or mobile email, but the others would be nice additions.
  • Visual Voicemail doesn't seem to work with this, but CityID may. Try it and let us know.
  • Do you have to have an APP downloaded in order for Bitpim to see the phone? I did not D/L the app (for fear of being charged) yet until I get the Bitpim working. When I plug my phone in, it tries to install it as a modem and then fails. Bitpim cannot find the phone at all. Thanks for any help.
  • No, you don't need one downloaded. Looks like you need the drivers for the LG phone. There's one available from http://www.lgmobilephones.com/outlook.aspx (just get the driver, not the rest). I have windows 7 and was unable to get that driver to install. So if you have trouble I found one that works here: http://www.megaupload.com/?d=TGIWMVNR
  • Thanks but it still does not work. The computer sees the cell phone as the LG VX11000 but Bitpim just can't find it. I am lost. I have it on auto and still nothing.
  • just got it to recognize. Here goes.....
  • What did you end up doing to get it to work ijetmx? I'm having a very similar issue.
  • when I plugged in the phone it lights up and goes to the music / drop screen. As soon as I exited out of that and locked the phone (screen off and black) shortly there after it was recognized by the Bitpim as the post states. I am now restoring and hoping the phone works after the fact.....
  • Well so far so good. App is back. Now we will just watch the charges to see.
  • berzerkus,

    Worked like a charm for both VZNavigator and Mobile Email. Thanks for the information!
  • If used for mobile email, would I still need the data package?
  • I believe the mobile email uses data when sending and receiving. I used it before I added the vpack and noticed a little data being charged. Not 100% sure if it was because of the email app or not.
  • Yes, you would need the data package to hit the internet, and mobile email is a form of internet access; there's no way around it.
    Verizon can't really tell what's on your phone easily if you do something like this, and they can't easily tell WHAT data you are pushing and pulling (be it mobile email, phone web, VZ Navigator GIS info, PC tethered access to internet) so you will probably get away with having navigator, etc on your phone and using it without Verizon's knowledge and not get charged.
    But Verizon can and does always track data usage.
    If you exceed what seems reasonable for the services they have you down for, they will look into it.
    Further, while I'm certainly not an expert, I assume that if Verizon really wanted to, they could see everything that is on your phone anytime they want, if it is on and has a signal. They just can't do that to all of their subscribers all the time, and if they did it much in an obvious way, they would probably get sued on privacy issues.
    I'll further add, I often see people talking about users "getting in trouble" for tethering their PC or using services like VZ Navigator for free. This seems incredible to me. Verizon should be getting in trouble; these are forms of "double billing" for data access. ATM services have gotten in trouble for double billing before, as have cell phone services.
    In this case, they bill once for you to pull down the data, and then AGAIN for you to pull down a specific type of data. They are NOT providing an additional service; it just appears that they are. At most, it would be reasonable for them to charge a one-time fee for the software itself.
    The additional charge for PC tethering is a particularly egregious example of this practice. It would never stand up in a court of law. When you browse on your phone, you are using the exact same data access as when you browse through a tethered PC. Data that Verizon cannot claim is different in any way.
    This isn't specifically an indictment of Verizon; most cellular service providers engage in some forms of this practice, and it needs to stop, via consumer rights advocacy groups, for example.
    I am curious - What are others thoughts on this topic? Do you agree or disagree and why?
  • I've never thought of it as double billing. I can see their angle on it though. Yes you are pulling the same data, but an application that THEY have provided for you is allocating the data in a different way making it easier to use some internet capabilities. The debate could rage on forever, so let's open another discussion about it to give it some room to grow. This could get really interesting.
  • I logged into my Verizon account and looked under my media / history of downloads and it shows the mobile email app subscription in the list today. No price is listed. Does this mean it will show up on the bill? Can any of you that have recently did this check on yours and see if it appears. Thanks.
  • ijetmx, i think mine both showed up on my bill but at no cost since it was cancelled. Once your next billing cycle starts (and assuming you are not behind on payments) it should drop off. If it doesn't then, than that is a whole other issue.
  • mikert: thinking about the points u have made, remind me of the old at@t days(b4 cell phones), when u would rent your telephone. typicaly, u would pay for your -slash that there phone over and over. you cant buy an app from verizon, you can only purchase uses, all b it unlimited, but still uses. i think they are banking on people paying 4 the convience, instead of us carring around our laptop,music player, garmin and phone- all we need is our env touch. your right they are double billing us, verizon has bin doing this 4ever, and making bank-so much so companies like tmobile have bin following suit. i understand they must remain profitable, but the line between profitabilety and highway robery have blured. all the major carriers have adjusted there pricing around verizons pricing (they are the most profitable), and they are not competing on services txt or minutes, there competing with phones. its a great business plan and its working. the only way things will ever change is if a company comes along and bucks the system, but why would they, and if they did they would be buried by the big 4. or, we get so fed up we give the goverment no choice but to act ( maybe on an election year). all being sed, i chose verizon soley on its network (i think its the best one there is), not for any other reason. i used to have tmobile, the network sucked and when the pricing became the same- i switched.
  • does it work with games too,
    if i could download a game, copy it to bitpim
    then cancel it and yell at verizon saying it was an accident
    then go and copy it back to the phone w/out verizons knowledge
    that would be awesome, FREE GAMES :D
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