Sprint says the BlackBerry KeyOne’s horribly annoying behavior of constantly reinstalling bloatware apps, even when owners remove and disable them, is a bug and shouldn’t be happening. But it doesn’t have a perfect fix yet.
In a statement to Phone Arena about the issue, which is only present on Sprint versions of the phone, the carrier says reinstalls are happening due to an issue with a service called Sprint Mobile ID, which automatically installs apps when the KeyOne is first being set up. “Sprint Mobile ID is designed to engage only at the time of device activation, and once the process is complete Sprint Mobile ID is not intended to run again,” the company said.
Except, some sort of bug has caused the service to run every few hours. So if someone disabled or uninstalled one of the phone’s many preinstalled apps — which includes basics like Uber and Facebook Messenger but also things like AAA and a radio app — they’d reappear later that day.
Sprint now plans to push a software update that’ll fix the issue. But for the time being, KeyOne owners have to go through a somewhat annoying workaround to get the apps to stop reinstalling: uninstalling the BlackBerry launcher altogether.
What’s happening here is pretty much all Sprint’s fault, because it decided to make extra money off the KeyOne by loading it up with sponsored apps. It’s not clear exactly what the Sprint Mobile ID service is, but it sounds a whole lot like DT Ignite, a service used by other carriers that lets them push out sponsored apps when a phone is being set up. This makes sure the most current version of each app is installed, but it also lets the carrier potentially change what apps appear, depending on who’s paying them that month.