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I've recently purchased a Samsung S3 Mini, and as I do with all my new devices, I go through and uninstall applications that I know I will never use.

Twice now since I've owned the device, there have been android updates, and in both cases it has re-installed the apps I removed (as well as add a few new ones that can't be uninstalled but that's another question).

So is there a way to configure my phone to not install these unwanted applications?

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I'm afraid not. These bundled apps are part of the ROM image, so the app updates are part of the system update. When you install an update, it just copies the data wholesale into the phone's system partition: it doesn't install apps one by one. For this reason, there's no way to filter out individual apps from the update.

You can't even remove those files from the update image on your PC: removing files would make the update signature fail to match. The phone would detect this and not install the update.

You just have to disable the bundled apps you don't want after each system update, or unlock your bootloader and install a custom ROM.

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  • That is what I was afraid of. Are the bundled apps added by the manufacturer or by Google?
    – JRSofty
    Commented Jun 29, 2014 at 9:35
  • Google includes some Google apps (such as YouTube and anything beginning with "Play"), known as "gapps". The manufacturer adds some more to that (e.g. Samsung adds Group Play and several apps beginning with S). If you got your phone from a carrier, they can add some apps too.
    – Dan Hulme
    Commented Jun 29, 2014 at 12:56
  • Thanks Dan, I can only guess where all these amazon apps are coming from then.
    – JRSofty
    Commented Jun 29, 2014 at 13:18

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