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From this question I known how to remove vendor installed apps.

However is it safe to uninstall Flash and Facebook? I guess that the Android browser depends somehow on Flash and might brake after I remove Flash package.

I simply want to have more space for other apps and don't want to be reminded every time about updates for Flash and Facebook.

Update: From my point of view both answers are correct. In general it is not safe to uninstall vendor installed apps. However my HTC Desire won't have any new OTA updates so in my case is it safe to delete them.

I just found out that latest ROM update (with Android 2.3) for HTC Desire isn't available as OTA update, you have to install it manually. And Facebook app is already removed from the ROM.

Unfortunately I cannot mark both answers as correct therefore I choose the answer with higher number of votes as correct one.

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FYI, uninstalling vendor/system apps will prevent both OTA and manual updates. My answer (thanks for marking it as correct!) doesn't specify the delivery mechanism, it just says "any future updates from your carrier/manufacturer will not install." –  Logos Nov 23 '11 at 18:23
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3 Answers

up vote 5 down vote accepted

@roxan is incorrect, it is NOT safe to remove stock ROM apps. If you do so, any future updates from your carrier/manufacturer will not install.

A much safer method is to use an app like Titanium Backup to 'freeze' the apps, preventing them from being seen by the system and running/being updated. If you really feel the need to uninstall them, you can use Titanium Backup to back them up first (requires root). That way you can restore them from backup in the future if you need to apply a ROM update.

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That's not going to help if the goal is to free up memory. –  Al E. Nov 23 '11 at 13:37
    
I've never said its safe to remove all/any stock ROM apps. I've only said its safe to remove Flash and Facebook. And about not being able to update the apps, that's exactly what OP wants. And finally by removing doesn't mean you have to delete the file, you can back it up to SD card and install it again when required. –  roxan Nov 23 '11 at 14:22
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In addition to what @AlEverett mentioned, this also seems like a bit of a strange situation. If you're using Ti to freeze apps then you need root, which could (in some cases) break OTAs anyway. Further, if you want to retain root, then installing an OTA is generally a very bad idea. Not only will you lose root, it's always possible that you might not be able to get it back. –  eldarerathis Nov 23 '11 at 14:30
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@Logos: Almost every major manufacturer (and Google in some instances) has patched a root exploit with an update at some point. Pretty much the only phones that are exempted are the ones with unlockable bootloaders. Examples: here, here, and here. –  eldarerathis Nov 23 '11 at 16:30
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@MatthewRead: Some OTAs will do a hash check on system apps before applying the patches. Example here. –  eldarerathis Nov 23 '11 at 18:42
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See this page on the CyanogenMod wiki which gives a pretty detailed analysis of what apps are "safe to remove" from the OS.

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You can safely remove Flash and Facebook. Android browser won't be able to play flash content after you remove it. That's the only downside of it, no breaking or anything else.

Most of the vendor installed apps are installed in system partition. Even if you delete those apps you can't use that freed up space for installing regular program from market.

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It is not safe to uninstall system/vendor apps if your phone still gets Android updates. See my answer for details. –  Logos Nov 23 '11 at 13:15
    
@Logos: It's perfectly safe if you don't intend to install OTA updates direct from your manufacturer, though (provided it's non-essential; obviously removing e.g. the "Phone" app would likely be a bad idea). –  eldarerathis Nov 23 '11 at 14:09
    
I feel that it's an extremely important caveat that you didn't mention in your answer and as such worth making a fuss about. I've fielded a lot of questions about "why won't my phone update anymore" after people have uninstalled bloatware and they wind up having to do a complete reset on their phone as they don't have the apps backed up. –  Logos Nov 23 '11 at 16:09
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