Live - De-Googled Phone Misunderstandings, + Q&A
This video is designed to help clear up some mis-understandings that some people have regarding Android phones vs. de-Googled phones. The de-Googled phones definitely have major privacy and safety advantages over Android phones. Click the video to learn more about the value of moving to a de-Googled phone.
NOTE: Rob is a jazz musician, and the video starts with 3.5 minutes of him playing some jazz on a small electronic keyboard. So feel free to enjoy the music or skip over to ~3.5 minutes into the video.
Here are some clips from this video’s transcript.
In the heat of his discussion, Rob Braxman often said Google when he obviously intended to say de-Googled. So I’ve noted those changes below.
06:36 What’s the advantage of the [De-]Google[d] phone, since Google is going to find out who you are anyway? Even with a [De-Google[d] phone, versus, you know, your Android, normal Google Android, because they will identify your old phone and see that you should switch phones, and you’re going to be the same person. So therefore they’re going to find you anyway and track you and…
07:03 NO! Absolutely incorrect. Absolutely incorrect. So just, we just want to make sure we’re clear on that. First of all, when you have a [De-]Google[d] phone, and i’m going to use this one, which is a Pixel. So this is a Pixel. This is a Google Pixel 4A. When you have a [De-]Google[d] phone, first of all, you never, ever, log into the phone. The phone doesn’t have a login.
07:45 So if you have a standard Google phone, obviously Google knows everything, because you logged in. It’s called deterministic. They know exactly who you are because you logged into the phone. So there’s no hiding who you are. I mean you could do, play any game you want, with the baseband modem, or whatever tricks you want, and delete this, delete that, and I don’t know what you’re gonna do, or get rid of the play store, and disable this. There’s nothing you could do on the Google phone because you sucking logged in! Okay?
08:22 Now you’re gonna say, Well, I don’t have to log in. Okay. Let’s start with the thing about you logging in. If you’re logged in, you pass the IMEI off the phone, because that’s one of the things that Google does. They take the IMEI, the International Mobile Equipment Identity (identifier), which is the unique identifier of this phone. That’s a unique serial number of this phone: the IMEI. So they got the IMEI of your phone.
08:52 Okay, so now you say I’m not going to log in. Well you’re right. That’s not going to do any good, because they can still see the IMEI, whether you’re logged in or not. They can see the IMEI because it’s a Google Android. So yes, if you have a Google phone, whether you log in or not, the moment you log in the first time, it doesn’t matter if you log in the next time or not, because they got the zucking IMEI.
09:34 Now let’s say that this is the [De-]Google[d] phone. I never log into a [De-]Google[d] phone. There is no login. So what do they know about the phone? Well, guess what? On a [De-]Google[d] phone, Google does not, or a third-party app, Google included, does not have access to the IMEI.
10:00 So the IMEI is available only to system apps. There is no system app on a [De-]Google[d] phone because there is no Google. Google is the only system app. There is no system app on a [De-]Google[d] phone. So they cannot get the IMEI, and Android doesn’t let you read the IMEI anyway, unless you’re a system app.
11:25 Rob starts talking about a Google phone running wi-fi scanning. Google scans the towers around every identifiable Google phone, so they can triangulate its location. That goes on 24/7, as long as the phone is on and broadcasting and receiving signals.
But that doesn’t happen on a de-Googled phone. Yes, there’s wi-fi, but since the de-Googled phone has never logged into Google and, thus, its IMEI isn’t known, it’s more transparent to wi-fi and less personally identified.
If you value your privacy and safety, get serious about de-Googleing your life.