updated 09:10 am EDT, Thu June 17, 2010
ATT going back on promises of open OS
AT&T was alleged today to be blocking the use of the Sirius XM app on its Android phones. Both the new HTC Aria and Motorola Backflip prevent downloading of the title as the two have a known, carrier-imposed ban on downloading any apps outside of Android Market, even though the OS itself normally allows this. It's unclear why Sirius XM's app isn't officially in the market itself, but its presence outside Google's store denies it as an option.
Nexus Ones with AT&T-native service aren't affected by the limits as they use Google's reference version of Android.
The blocks were first discovered in March but have never been fully explained by AT&T. It remains the only North American carrier to prevent non-Market app installs, and this limitation compared to every other US carrier is believed to be a partial factor in AT&T's small share of US Android phones compared to Verizon, where no such limits are in place.