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[VIDEO] How google blocks 5G for unlisted countries (explained)

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swangjang

Senior Member
Sep 12, 2018
136
90
Google Pixel 5
I made a video explaining how google blocks 5G in the software by default for unlisted countries.
I also tried posting this on reddit at r/googlepixel but mods deleted it.
I think this information should be spread to the wider general public because it affects just about every one of us here, having to root our phones to enable 5G, when this should just be enabled out of the box with absolutely no tinkering required.

If a phone is advertised as "5G ready", we should expect to be able to connect to our carrier's 5G network out of the box, regardless of being in a "supported country" or not.
This video shows that carrier-google certification is not necessary to connect to your carrier's 5G network.
I wonder if it's possible to file a class action lawsuit because blocking 5G in the software clearly has to be some sort of "misleading" or "false advertising" in terms of the phone being "5G" ready.

 
Last edited:

swangjang

Senior Member
Sep 12, 2018
136
90
Google Pixel 5
@elong7681
In reply to your other question. (proton rom thread may not be the best thread to discuss this)
carrier_policy.xml file is located inside the carrier mbn file.

To extract the mbn file, you need:
Efs Tools https://github.com/JohnBel/EfsTools/releases
dotnet-core https://dotnet.microsoft.com/download/dotnet-core/3.1
dotnet https://dotnet.microsoft.com/download/dotnet/5.0

1. Install dotnet-core and dotnet
2. Copy mbn file into the efstools folder
3. Run in command prompt: EfsTools.exe extractMbn -i mcfg_sw.mbn -p mcfg
4. New folder (mcfg) will be created and mbn file will be extracted inside.

Carrier_policy.xml is inside the "policyman" folder.

This video will also explain how the mbn files are used to enable or disable 5G.
 
Last edited:

elong7681

Senior Member
May 23, 2015
190
59
40
US
Google Pixel 2 XL
Google Pixel 5
@elong7681
In reply to your other question. (proton rom thread may not be the best thread to discuss this)
carrier_policy.xml file is located inside the carrier mbn file.

To extract the mbn file, you need:
Efs Tools https://github.com/JohnBel/EfsTools/releases/tag/0.13
dotnet-core https://dotnet.microsoft.com/download/dotnet-core/3.1
dotnet https://dotnet.microsoft.com/download/dotnet/5.0

1. Install dotnet-core and dotnet
2. Copy mbn file into the efstools folder
3. Run in command prompt: EfsTools.exe extractMbn -i mcfg_sw.mbn -p mcfg
4. New folder (mcfg) will be created and mbn file will be extracted inside.

Carrier_policy.xml is inside the "policyman" folder.

This video will also explain how the mbn files are used to enable or disable 5G.
Thanks, I agree making this thread was a good idea.
 

swangjang

Senior Member
Sep 12, 2018
136
90
Google Pixel 5
I managed to pull the modem.img from the device.

To find which partition has what installed:
su
ls -la /dev/block/bootdevice/by-name

To pull the modem partition:
su
dd if=dev/block/sda12 of=/sdcard/modem_a.img
dd if=dev/block/sda13 of=/sdcard/modem_b.img

Unfortunately, it's not organised in folders to something like mcfg_sw/generic/*
but instead, it's all labeled in numbers.
They also can't be extracted using the method in post #2.
 

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elong7681

Senior Member
May 23, 2015
190
59
40
US
Google Pixel 2 XL
Google Pixel 5
I managed to pull the modem.img from the device.

To find which partition has what installed:
su
ls -la /dev/block/bootdevice/by-name

To pull the modem partition:
su
dd if=dev/block/sda12 of=/sdcard/modem_a.img
dd if=dev/block/sda13 of=/sdcard/modem_b.img

Unfortunately, it's not organised in folders to something like mcfg_sw/generic/*
but instead, it's all labeled in numbers.
They also can't be extracted using the method in post #2.
@swangjang I have a quick question for you, before I rooted and started flashing roms and kernels but after I unlocked my bootloader I had the ability to record phones calls through the Google phone app but I only used it once so I stopped paying attention to the phone app while I was using it but I just recently noticed that I can no longer record phone calls, the record button is no longer present when I'm using the phone. I live in the US and that option is available for us but I no longer have the option, is there any chance you could help me get that option back ?
 

swangjang

Senior Member
Sep 12, 2018
136
90
Google Pixel 5
@swangjang I have a quick question for you, before I rooted and started flashing roms and kernels but after I unlocked my bootloader I had the ability to record phones calls through the Google phone app but I only used it once so I stopped paying attention to the phone app while I was using it but I just recently noticed that I can no longer record phone calls, the record button is no longer present when I'm using the phone. I live in the US and that option is available for us but I no longer have the option, is there any chance you could help me get that option back ?

I don't know much about it either lol. As far as I know, phone call recording was supposed to be removed from Google Phone app due to recording laws. Maybe you somehow had the beta version of the app and it got updated?
I use skvalex's recording app. You have to pay for premium after a free trial and it's quite costly for an app but I don't regret paying for it. It records both sides internally so bluetooth calls are also recorded both sides.
Something that might be worth considering if you can't find a way to get it back.
 
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elong7681

Senior Member
May 23, 2015
190
59
40
US
Google Pixel 2 XL
Google Pixel 5
I don't know much about it either lol. As far as I know, phone call recording was supposed to be removed from Google Phone app due to recording laws. Maybe you somehow had the beta version of the app and it got updated?
I use skvalex's recording app. You have to pay for premium after a free trial and it's quite costly for an app but I don't regret paying for it. It records both sides internally so bluetooth calls are also recorded both sides.
Something that might be worth considering if you can't find a way to get it back.
Thanks for your quick reply and the app reference
 
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nsiti

Senior Member
Mar 28, 2011
258
28
@elong7681
In reply to your other question. (proton rom thread may not be the best thread to discuss this)
carrier_policy.xml file is located inside the carrier mbn file.

To extract the mbn file, you need:
Efs Tools https://github.com/JohnBel/EfsTools/releases/tag/0.13
dotnet-core https://dotnet.microsoft.com/download/dotnet-core/3.1
dotnet https://dotnet.microsoft.com/download/dotnet/5.0

1. Install dotnet-core and dotnet
2. Copy mbn file into the efstools folder
3. Run in command prompt: EfsTools.exe extractMbn -i mcfg_sw.mbn -p mcfg
4. New folder (mcfg) will be created and mbn file will be extracted inside.

Carrier_policy.xml is inside the "policyman" folder.

This video will also explain how the mbn files are used to enable or disable 5G.

Hi, this is helpful, but it would be great if you could give further detailed instructions as to how to enable 5G for unsupported carriers. In other words, what needs to be done after step #4 above (editing and copying of files)?

Also, would this process work is a dual sim configuration?

Thanks for your expose!
 

swangjang

Senior Member
Sep 12, 2018
136
90
Google Pixel 5
Hi, this is helpful, but it would be great if you could give further detailed instructions as to how to enable 5G for unsupported carriers. In other words, what needs to be done after step #4 above (editing and copying of files)?

Also, would this process work is a dual sim configuration?

Thanks for your expose!

There are tutorials in other threads in this forum on how to do that. But if written guides are difficult to follow (not judging, the guides assume you have some PC knowledge and it took me a while to understand them too), I can make a video showing step by step process this weekend.

I'm not sure about dual sim 5G. 5G DSDS (Dual Sim Dual Standby) was only just implemented in March update and I don't have a 5G esim to test it.
 
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elong7681

Senior Member
May 23, 2015
190
59
40
US
Google Pixel 2 XL
Google Pixel 5
There are tutorials in other threads in this forum on how to do that. But if written guides are difficult to follow (not judging, the guides assume you have some PC knowledge and it took me a while to understand them too), I can make a video showing step by step process this weekend.

I'm not sure about dual sim 5G. 5G DSDS (Dual Sim Dual Standby) was only just implemented in March update and I don't have a 5G esim to test it.
@swangjang that would be awesome
 

swangjang

Senior Member
Sep 12, 2018
136
90
Google Pixel 5

elong7681

Senior Member
May 23, 2015
190
59
40
US
Google Pixel 2 XL
Google Pixel 5
Seems it's not necessary any more.
I haven't tried it yet but it seems promising.
@swangjang if it isn't too much trouble and you have the time I personally think it would still benefit the community if you did that video tutorial because being able to do it manually would teach people how to do it versus using a simple magisk module either way thank you for your help and work thus far.
 
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  • 5
    I made a video explaining how google blocks 5G in the software by default for unlisted countries.
    I also tried posting this on reddit at r/googlepixel but mods deleted it.
    I think this information should be spread to the wider general public because it affects just about every one of us here, having to root our phones to enable 5G, when this should just be enabled out of the box with absolutely no tinkering required.

    If a phone is advertised as "5G ready", we should expect to be able to connect to our carrier's 5G network out of the box, regardless of being in a "supported country" or not.
    This video shows that carrier-google certification is not necessary to connect to your carrier's 5G network.
    I wonder if it's possible to file a class action lawsuit because blocking 5G in the software clearly has to be some sort of "misleading" or "false advertising" in terms of the phone being "5G" ready.

    3
    @elong7681
    In reply to your other question. (proton rom thread may not be the best thread to discuss this)
    carrier_policy.xml file is located inside the carrier mbn file.

    To extract the mbn file, you need:
    Efs Tools https://github.com/JohnBel/EfsTools/releases
    dotnet-core https://dotnet.microsoft.com/download/dotnet-core/3.1
    dotnet https://dotnet.microsoft.com/download/dotnet/5.0

    1. Install dotnet-core and dotnet
    2. Copy mbn file into the efstools folder
    3. Run in command prompt: EfsTools.exe extractMbn -i mcfg_sw.mbn -p mcfg
    4. New folder (mcfg) will be created and mbn file will be extracted inside.

    Carrier_policy.xml is inside the "policyman" folder.

    This video will also explain how the mbn files are used to enable or disable 5G.
    3
    I live in an unsupported country, too (Austria) and wanted to tell you that installing Android 12 DP3 unlocked 5G (and VoLTE) on my Pixel 5!

    So it looks like they changed something for the upcoming Android version...
    2
    Hey @swangjang another xda member said you might be able to help me with a question on whether advanced charging controller is working or able to be working on protonkernel?

    Apologies for not being on topic, if you're OK with it I'm happy to private message you?
    Hey no worries! I'm just a dude sharing what I learned and discovered. PM me or use whatever method. I don't mind at all.

    To answer your question about advanced charging controller, I posted this a month ago that worked for me.

    But mind you, that was with the April update and with cleanslate kernel. I haven't updated mine to May patch yet and what used to work in the previous patch may no longer work in the new patch, so it's all just trial and error.

    Charging control is all done by the kernel (I believe) so it doesn't matter which ROM you have installed. You'll have your phone tomorrow so I guess you'll just have to try out different kernels and find what works.

    After installing the ACC module, open terminal (eg Termux) with "su" and type in "acc -t" with your phone plugged in to a charger. The terminal will tell you which charging switch will work or not. Then open the ACC app and choose the switch.

    If the terminal doesn't give you anything that works, install a different kernel and run the command again.

    Personally, I just decided to buy myself one of these bad boys. It's a hardware solution of ACC and this thing will last a life time, probably be more reliable and hassle-free because I won't need to tinker between different kernels anymore.

    Edit: to actually answer your question: I haven't tried it on proton kernel lol I'll need to update my phone to the May patch first (which I plan to do this weekend) to try if it works on proton kernel.
    2
    Seems it's not necessary any more.
    I haven't tried it yet but it seems promising.