Good and EVO

How to clear your locked-down Google Wallet settings on the HTC EVO 4G LTE

google wallet logo - for some reason we don't have an alt tag here

John reported earlier that Google Wallet has been locked down on the HTC EVO 4G LTE. Google probably blocked access to Wallet due to people getting frustrated and calling in non-stop for support, but for the few who got Wallet activated on their EVOs either by root methods or by sheer luck, a larger majority are now unable to get into the Wallet app at all. This means flashing any other ROMs might brick the secure element, since you now have no ability to enter Wallet and clear Wallet settings.

There is a work-around, but here’s one word of warning before you proceed: I have no idea what happens to any funds you may have loaded onto a Google prepaid card after you go through and reset your Wallet settings. The only reason to clear your Wallet settings if you have previously set it up is to prevent the secure element from bricking, either by flashing a new ROM or resetting the phone. A bricked secure element could render Google Wallet useless on your phone for all time.

To clear the settings, you’ll have to jump through a few hoops. Here’s the short version:

After this, you can just flash any other ROM you want. One thing to note is that the GT-I9300 settings allow you full Wallet access, so if you’re just wanting access to your funds and functionality again, that may be all you need.

The long version of the process is this, and requires a rooted phone and a computer with ADB:

  • adb shell
  • cd /sdcard/
  • su
  • cp /system/build.prop /sdcard/build.wallet
  • cp /system/build.prop /sdcard/build.good
  • exit
  • exit

On your phone, mount it as a drive/Media Sync. Edit the build.wallet file that appears in the root of the drive using notepad++. Change ro.product.model= and ro.product.device= to have GT-I9300 after the equal sign. If you don’t see a build.wallet file, reboot your phone and it should appear.

  • adb shell
  • su
  • busybox mount -o remount,rw /system
  • cd /system
  • mv build.prop build.good
  • cp /sdcard/build.wallet /system/build.prop
  • chmod 644 build.prop
  • exit
  • exit
  • adb reboot

You should now be able to get into Google Wallet to either use it, or clear the settings allowing you to safely flash another ROM. One thing people have reported issues with is while the phone thinks it’s a GT-I9300, there may be a reddish hue to the camera. I didn’t notice that when my phone thought it was a GT-I9300, but then again I’m a bit colorblind.

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Paul E King

Paul King started with GoodAndEVO in 2011, which merged with Pocketables, and as of 2018 he's evidently the owner. He lives in Nashville, works at a film production company, is married with two kids. Facebook | Twitter | Donate | More posts by Paul | Subscribe to Paul's posts

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13 thoughts on “How to clear your locked-down Google Wallet settings on the HTC EVO 4G LTE

  • Any specific reason why it turns the camera a redish hue? Is there any way to have google wallet and a normal front facing camera?

    Reply
    • Avatar of Paul E King

      That I do not know. All I can figure out is there is something in the camera.apk that shipped that does things differently if you use a GT-I9300.

      If someone could modify the camera drivers to know it’s an EVO and not check build.prop, or write an intercept program for wallet so it only gets told it’s a GT-i9300, seems like that would be a fix.

      As it stands right now though I do not know if any workarounds, but will post if one pops up.

      Reply
    • I just got the front facing camera working fine and google wallet simultaneously!! :-D I changed ro.product.devce to = jewel but left the other normal fields as GT-I9300

      Reply
      • Avatar of Paul E King

        Thanks man, I am going to have to attempt this tomorrow.

        Reply
  • I can’t belive that google locked this app down the way that they did knowing that you can’t clear the settings in wallet to do a master reset. Anytime you call a carrier about a problem the first thing they tell you to do is to do a master reset. I can see allot of people unknowingly bricking their NFC ellement because of this lockdown. Do they expect sprint and HTC to pick up the bill for returned phones? Bad form google. I am just glad that I am already rooted and its an easy fix. Thanks Paul for this article.

    Reply
  • Worked perfectly! Thanks! Can’t believe the fix was that simple! Now, to use the remaining $8.30 in my Google Wallet & then clear the settings before they lock it down again.

    Reply
  • The mod about leaving the ro.product.device=. As jewel and not GT-19300 did not work on my end but to have a working wallet we may have to live with a red tint on the front facing camera. If after you do the mod and then return the build to its original settings you lock your self out again.

    Reply
  • What about just clearing the Google Wallet app data in the settings? I did that a couple weeks ago and it reset my wallet same as clearing it in the app without messing up my secure element.

    Reply
    • Avatar of Paul E King

      I honestly do not know. I was under the impression that if anything with the ROM mismatched when Wallet was activated it would mess the element up.

      When you’re clearing the data via wallet, you’ve got a long progress bar showing what it’s doing while deleting info.

      Did you have the app set up, activated, and with a card on it?

      Reply
      • I only got as far as trying to add a prepaid card but it would never go through. The first time I wanted to restart the process after reading some suggestions, I wiped the app data not knowing that you could do that in-app. It worked and I could start over with activation. For me, wiping in-app and wiping the app data took about the same time. Also, I’m unrooted.

        Reply
        • Avatar of Paul E King

          What I think the issue is is when you add a card, it goes into this secure element space… it’s supposed to be inaccessible by the operating system and unretrievable.

          When it’s activated to send via Google Wallet, another piece of hardware does all the work of sending it… never letting the OS retrieve the data

          You never managed to get a card written to the secure element. So your method would probably be fine.

          I may be misunderstanding how the SE works, but I thought a key was generated by some combo of the ROM, the card number, and the element. Said key resided in Wallet to unlock the mechanism to transmit the code.

          Could be totally off… but that’s my understanding – if you had a card added and just wiped data it would not remove the information from the SE and might cause a brick situation.

          Then again, google won’t talk to me. So I do not know.

          Reply
  • Question…if I never set up my Google Wallet, do I still have to reset it?

    Reply
    • Avatar of Paul E King

      I have been told no. As long as no payment information was ever stored by google wallet, there should be no need to reset google wallet.

      Having not bricked my phone’s secure element or knowing anyone who has, I can’t say for certain that there’s not something required before flashing with wallet, but I’d guess that if no payment is stored no secure element brickage is to be worried about.

      Reply

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