05-29-2019 03:10 PM
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  1. cronie's Avatar
    I have a new android phone. I just did a factory reset, complete wipe. I have not installed any apps but I am still getting ads!

    Examples:
    https://i.imgur.com/MhC4BYo.jpg
    https://i.imgur.com/AEt3mJd.jpg

    I don't use my phone for anything but phonecalls, so where is this stuff coming from and how do I get rid of it permanently?
    02-06-2018 07:22 PM
  2. B. Diddy's Avatar
    Welcome to Android Central! From your other posts, I understand that you have a phone made by UMX. This is most likely a cheap Chinese brand, and it therefore wouldn't surprise me if it came with preinstalled adware. Do you still get ads in Safe Mode? On most Android devices, while powered on, press and hold Power until the Power Off menu appears. Press and hold the Power Off selection until the Safe Mode prompt appears. Tap OK.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    02-07-2018 11:03 AM
  3. cronie's Avatar
    Welcome to Android Central! From your other posts, I understand that you have a phone made by UMX. This is most likely a cheap Chinese brand, and it therefore wouldn't surprise me if it came with preinstalled adware. Do you still get ads in Safe Mode? On most Android devices, while powered on, press and hold Power until the Power Off menu appears. Press and hold the Power Off selection until the Safe Mode prompt appears. Tap OK.
    Yes, it is a P.O.S.

    I don't see any safe mode in the power menu ... just power off, reboot and airplane mode

    but if this is any indication ... I just did a factory reset (I am doing this a lot lately, trying to find the root of this)

    I did a reset and got to the point where it asked for my gmail name. At that point I had to go eat dinner and I set the phone down. I came back about 30 minutes later and there was a full screen ad! I had not even entered my information!

    What can I do? I don't have the option to get a different phone. There is nothing in apps that looks like an advertising bot. I have tried malwarebytes and it doesn't detect any malware. I am out of ideas
    02-08-2018 06:56 PM
  4. B. Diddy's Avatar
    In the power menu, what happens if you long-press the Power Off button? That's usually how the Safe Mode feature shows up.

    But if the ads are appearing even before you've finished the setup wizard, then it's likely that the phone came with adware preinstalled. Unless you rooted the phone (and I don't know if there's a way to root that phone), you wouldn't be able to get rid of preinstalled bloatware or adware. You may just have to live with the ads. Or are you able to return the phone from where you got it and ask for a refund?
    02-08-2018 11:54 PM
  5. cronie's Avatar
    In the power menu, what happens if you long-press the Power Off button? That's usually how the Safe Mode feature shows up.

    But if the ads are appearing even before you've finished the setup wizard, then it's likely that the phone came with adware preinstalled. Unless you rooted the phone (and I don't know if there's a way to root that phone), you wouldn't be able to get rid of preinstalled bloatware or adware. You may just have to live with the ads. Or are you able to return the phone from where you got it and ask for a refund?
    This is the long press menu https://i.imgur.com/vF1hdII.jpg

    I don't know what rooting is, I have dev mode ... but there is nothing in there that helps this, I don't think.

    Can't get a refund, the phone is through assurance wireless, a free program for poor people. I guess you get what you pay for.

    It is obnoxious ... the ads always show up after I leave the phone for a few hours, so as soon as I get a call, I have to avoid downloading some BS ...

    I have always used computers and I don't understand this android stuff ... everything is hidden! Why can't I see what is really happening? There is a list of apps, but clearly it is not showing everything.

    Is there any way this is a part of android itself? I mean, google makes all it's money off advertising.
    02-09-2018 06:03 AM
  6. davidnc's Avatar
    This is the long press menu https://i.imgur.com/vF1hdII.jpg

    I don't know what rooting is, I have dev mode ... but there is nothing in there that helps this, I don't think.

    Can't get a refund, the phone is through assurance wireless, a free program for poor people. I guess you get what you pay for.

    It is obnoxious ... the ads always show up after I leave the phone for a few hours, so as soon as I get a call, I have to avoid downloading some BS ...

    I have always used computers and I don't understand this android stuff ... everything is hidden! Why can't I see what is really happening? There is a list of apps, but clearly it is not showing everything.

    Is there any way this is a part of android itself? I mean, google makes all it's money off advertising.
    So , Did you ever get into safe mode ?

    From your screenshot I circled where to long press on your phones screen , until reboot into safe mode showed on the screen
    A little window opens that shows that message,in that window press ok and you will be in safe mode .
    To get out of safe mode just turn phone off normally, then turn phone back on.
    I
    Attached Thumbnails New phone, no apps but still ads!-safemode.jpg  
    02-09-2018 06:39 AM
  7. cronie's Avatar
    So , Did you ever get into safe mode ?

    From your screenshot I circled where to long press on your phones screen , until reboot into safe mode showed on the screen
    A little window opens that shows that message,in that window press ok and you will be in safe mode .
    To get out of safe mode just turn phone off normally, then turn phone back on.
    Ihttps://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/201...81ad897cf5.jpg
    OK, here is safe mode:

    https://i.imgur.com/iTViu9j.jpg
    02-09-2018 11:04 AM
  8. Rukbat's Avatar
    Ali Express is a Chinese marketing company - they market things the little Chinese companies produce, So from that first ad you posted, I'd go along with B. Diddy, that the ads come pre-installed on the phone and all you can do is tap the back button and ignore them.
    02-09-2018 11:42 AM
  9. cronie's Avatar
    Ali Express is a Chinese marketing company - they market things the little Chinese companies produce, So from that first ad you posted, I'd go along with B. Diddy, that the ads come pre-installed on the phone and all you can do is tap the back button and ignore them.
    There's got to be some way to get rid of this junk
    02-09-2018 11:45 AM
  10. Ry's Avatar
    There's got to be some way to get rid of this junk
    Return it and get a real phone?
    02-09-2018 01:48 PM
  11. cronie's Avatar
    Return it and get a real phone?
    Unfortunately, that is not an option
    02-09-2018 01:52 PM
  12. B. Diddy's Avatar
    With Assurance, I assume you're very limited in your phone selection. Those phones are also tightly locked down, since it's a free (or low cost) program for the financially disadvantaged -- so therefore they want to make sure people aren't taking advantage of the program to use the phones for more than they're intended. I'm afraid there's probably not much you can do besides tolerate the ads. Sorry!
    02-09-2018 08:13 PM
  13. cronie's Avatar
    With Assurance, I assume you're very limited in your phone selection. Those phones are also tightly locked down, since it's a free (or low cost) program for the financially disadvantaged -- so therefore they want to make sure people aren't taking advantage of the program to use the phones for more than they're intended. I'm afraid there's probably not much you can do besides tolerate the ads. Sorry!
    Well, I don't believe in tolerating this kind of stuff without a fight.

    I am going to try and get the company to deal with this, but I expect them to try and blame me. Is there any way that this kind of thing could be downloaded on the internet from google apps? Are there any viruses or malware that can survive multiple factory resets?

    I need some education so I can argue with these people. I am having a really hard time even getting hold of a person, I am pretty sure most of the emails are being written by customer service bots.
    02-11-2018 10:16 AM
  14. B. Diddy's Avatar
    There is malware that can install itself to the system root, and therefore still work in Safe Mode or after a factory reset. To get rid of malware that's installed to the system root, you have to reinstall the firmware (which will probably be challenging on that phone). Do you recall if these ads have always been present as long as you've had to phone, or did they only start recently?
    02-11-2018 08:53 PM
  15. cronie's Avatar
    There is malware that can install itself to the system root, and therefore still work in Safe Mode or after a factory reset. To get rid of malware that's installed to the system root, you have to reinstall the firmware (which will probably be challenging on that phone). Do you recall if these ads have always been present as long as you've had to phone, or did they only start recently?
    I don't recall exactly, but yeah, basically since I had the phone. My thinking is that maybe someone else had the phone, got a virus and sent it back. Then I got it as "refurbished."

    I would say I noticed the ads within 12-24 hours of getting the phone. I downloaded 3 or so apps off google play and nothing else, I have a computer so I don't use the phone to browse the web.

    Hypothetically, what would be involved with reinstalling the firmware?
    02-11-2018 11:59 PM
  16. B. Diddy's Avatar
    There's another thread here with someone describing the same issue: https://forums.androidcentral.com/an...-you-help.html. It's likely that the phone came with adware as part of the Assurance Wireless deal. Perhaps that's how the phones get subsidized, to some degree.

    Trying to get rid of the ads would require rooting the phone and finding an ad-free firmware somewhere on the web. I would guess that rooting or otherwise modifying the phone is probably prohibited by your Assurance agreement, and besides, it's highly unlikely that anyone has a firmware for such an obscure phone. If you still want to try, the forums at XDA-developers.com are probably a better resource. Good luck!
    02-12-2018 12:17 AM
  17. LadyWho's Avatar
    I finally found a thread that is describing my exact issue!
    I have this exact problem with my unimax phone from assurance wireless. Everything cronie said has happened to me, and the ads are even there when I pick up the phone before I use my pin to unlock. They even pop up if I am making a phone call.

    In my case I had this model of phone from them for almost a year with no issue, that phone needed to be returned for another issue and the phone they sent as a replacement was the one that started with the ads. That new phone had an issue with the battery heating up way hot, so they sent a new phone (refurbished?) again and this one has the ads. I too have done factory reset without installing any apps and not transferring anything from the old phone. Also have run adware apps and antivirus apps with no effect.

    I will call them but I know their response will be:
    a) it's not the phone doing it and
    b) that's the only phone they will allow me to have.
    I suspect if I BUY a more expensive phone they MIGHT activate it with my account, but the whole point of the program is we can't afford wireless and therefore we can't afford a new phone.
    Yet another way low income people are put down.

    If I get any good answer from then I'll come back here to report. (Maybe I can get them to agree to send a phone that is brand new and not refurbished?)
    02-16-2018 08:43 AM
  18. cronie's Avatar
    I finally found a thread that is describing my exact issue!
    .....refurbished?)
    I used to think Comcast had the worst customer service, but assurance wireless is just in a whole different category of customer disrespect. I have never felt so powerless and vulnerable as a consumer. And no one is ever going to do anything about it since no one gives a damn about poor people, even though it is tax dollars going into this corporation's pocket.

    Finally got them to send me a replacement phone earlier in the week. There is no service or discussion with their "tech support." Basically they pass you around to 5 different people and have to explain your problem 5 different times to 5 different people that do not understand anything of what you are telling them until finally they send you the exact same model of phone.

    I begged them to send me a different model, but they wouldn't. It is supposed to arrive today or tomorrow and I am going to try to do an unboxing video to see if it happens right away. The whole thing is just so demoralizing.
    02-16-2018 08:59 AM
  19. B. Diddy's Avatar
    Another thread about the same issue: https://community.virginmobileusa.co...pen/td-p/18213. Someone there identified the Gallery app as the culprit, so try disabling it. Go to Settings>Apps, tap Menu>Show System, select Gallery, and tap Disable (if possible). Then install another gallery app like Google Photos or Focus -- the latter is by a respected ROM developer.
    LadyWho likes this.
    02-16-2018 10:07 AM
  20. dpham00's Avatar
    You can try the debloater tool. Unfortunately I don't know the exact app so it would be a trial and error kind of thing. Also be careful as you can mess up your phone to the point that it could be unusable.


    https://www.google.com.vn/amp/s/foru...-t2998294/amp/
    02-16-2018 10:11 AM
  21. cronie's Avatar
    You can try the debloater tool. Unfortunately I don't know the exact app so it would be a trial and error kind of thing. Also be careful as you can mess up your phone to the point that it could be unusable.


    https://www.google.com.vn/amp/s/foru...-t2998294/amp/
    I appreciate the info, but this seems like something that could bite me in the butt ... I don't have enough knowledge about android or the specific problem I am having to make an informed judgement on this.
    02-16-2018 10:30 AM
  22. LadyWho's Avatar
    I begged them to send me a different model, but they wouldn't. It is supposed to arrive today or tomorrow and I am going to try to do an unboxing video to see if it happens right away. The whole thing is just so demoralizing.
    I hear you. This is a time wasting hideous experience.
    02-16-2018 10:35 AM
  23. LadyWho's Avatar
    Another thread about the same issue: https://community.virginmobileusa.co...pen/td-p/18213. Someone there identified the Gallery app as the culprit, so try disabling it. Go to Settings>Apps, tap Menu>Show System, select Gallery, and tap Disable (if possible). Then install another gallery app like Google Photos or Focus -- the latter is by a respected ROM developer.
    You are awesome to keep researching this for us. I looked all over virgin mobile for threads about it and didn't find it. I will try disabling the gallery and post back if successful. At the very least, it confirms a suspicion that there can be something embedded in the default apps that is causing it.
    In your instructions, where you say MENU, it didn't dawn on me right away you meant to click on the little tree dot menu button, once I figured that out it was golden
    B. Diddy likes this.
    02-16-2018 10:40 AM
  24. cronie's Avatar
    Another thread about the same issue: https://community.virginmobileusa.co...pen/td-p/18213. Someone there identified the Gallery app as the culprit, so try disabling it. Go to Settings>Apps, tap Menu>Show System, select Gallery, and tap Disable (if possible). Then install another gallery app like Google Photos or Focus -- the latter is by a respected ROM developer.
    I definitely appreciate you looking into this, but disabling the gallery did not help me ... still ads.
    02-16-2018 12:34 PM
  25. LadyWho's Avatar
    Sadly, disabling gallery did not help me either, I was ad free for about an hour, didn't go online, didn't do anything, but then the ads came back.

    Cronie, please come back after your new phone comes, let us know if it's better, thanks.
    02-16-2018 01:06 PM
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