According to an internal T-Mobile screen spotted by a TMo News tipster the T-Mobile G2 has been stripped of one of the celebrated features of Froyo, namely tethering.
This just serves as a reminder that “stock Android” only means as much as the carriers will allow it to as they are still free to pluck features from it as they see fit. The only other commercially available stock Android handset is the Droid and it was similarly robbed of the full functionality of Froyo. When it received the update users found that it offered only wired tethering rather than the full hotspot feature found in the Nexus One.
In case you can’t read the FAQ in the image at the bottom of the post here is the relevant text:
Tethering and Wi-Fi sharing will not be supported initially on the device, but T-Mobile knows that consumers are interested in these features and we’re working to develop a solution to support them in the future.T-Mobile WebsiteHTC G2 FAQs
Now while T-Mobile has done Verizon one better by removing both wired and hotspot tethering at least they are only saying that it isn’t supported as opposed to Verizon’s claims that the Droid’s hardware was incapable of offering hotspot functionality, but why T-Mobile would drop something that they know consumers are interested in is a little baffling. It might raise flags that they are looking to cement a position on tethering charges which is something they have often skirted in the past.
If you are into the hardware for the G2 and reading this site this news shouldn’t stop you from making a purchase by any means as there is no doubt that the G2 will be rooted and tethering with the best of them in no time, but it is reflective of the recurring theme of carriers and manufacturers throwing up road blocks on our open platform.
Anyone else ready to start the petition for the Nexus Two?
Update: And suspicion confirmed. T-Mobile has given an official response mirroring the language above, but adding that; “T-Mobile does not currently support handset tethering or offer a tethering rate plan.”