Posted in: Mobile software

Rooted Androids not welcome in Google Movie Rental, sorry

You rooted your Android, huh? Well, you can leave the popcorn here, there’s no Movie Rental for you. The Google Movie Rental service launched at Google I/O and lets you rent a movie (for around $2) and watch it on your droid smartphone (or PC or tablet if you want).

However it will not be working on rooted devices due to copyright violation concerns.

If you try to watch a movie through Google Movie Rental on your rooted Android you’ll get Error 49. The support page states 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.

I’m guessing this is done to stop apps that can just copy the rented movie and let you keep it forever (and share it with others). It’s not an unreasonable concern but it clashes with Android’s open nature – many have rooted their device just to customize it to their liking.

But movie companies are not exactly known for risking their movies get pirated, so we’ll have to wait and see how this pans out. For now though, if you’ve rooted your droid you can’t use Movie Rental – you can try Netflix though.



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