Smozzy Beta: Browse the web without a data connection, sacrifice your security at the same Time

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Have you ever had issues connecting to data service on your Android device via T-Mobile? Maybe they have a data outage that is preventing you from getting online but you still have cell service. Or maybe you just want to help cut your data usage down so you don’t go over your plan. The mother of all work arounds has just emerged and it is a doozy.

There is a new app on the market called Smozzy Beta. The developer, Jeff Donahue, has found a way to allow all U.S. T-Mobile customers with unlimited  messaging and MMS services to leverage it for web surfing. Sounds crazy, right? Not when you get into the technical aspects of it.

Smozzy is basically just a wrapper around the standard Android browser, but instead of using a data (2.5, 3, 4G) connection, everything is funneled through SMS and MMS. Whenever you click a link, instead of firing off a packet to a remote web server, a web request is instead sent to Smozzy’s intermediate server via SMS. Smozzy forwards the request, downloads the web page you’re trying to visit, and then sends it along to your phone as MMS messages. Both SMS and MMS are completely free with T-Mobile’s unlimited messaging plan.

Are you lost yet? In English please! When you enable the service, the web page you want to visit is sent through Smozzy. They download the page and send it back to you as a message essentially. You still see the page like normal and all browsing is still the same. Click a link and it will open. Nothing really changes on how you view or use the web on your device. To make it even easier to understand, you can now use your browser via SMS and MMS instead of using a data plan.

  
There are a few other things that need to be mentioned though. This isn’t designed so you can cancel your data plan entirely. The overall process is a little slow, expect a good 10 seconds for an average webpage to load. Some of you on a edge are already used to that anyways.

The most important fact to know is there isn’t any type of encryption or security in place. That means sites that you set to auto log in, like Google, the password and username are sent as plain text to the Smozzy server. The same rings true if you were to check your bank account, Facebook,  or any other site you would sign into, it could easily be intercepted and potential used against you maliciously.

I am certain that T-Mobile will catch on to this in a hurry and find a way to either fix the loop hole on their end, or put a C&D letter to the dev and have the app pulled off the market. As innovative as the idea is, it could ultimately increase our data rates and cause a significant amount of damage to a users life. You are free to explore this application and its options at your leisure, but this is one app that we DON’T recommend you install. We are intentionally leaving the market link and QR code off this article. You are free to do as you please and find it on your own if it interests you. We don’t accept any responsibility for what you do with your device or your personal information.

Source: Extremetech

About the Author

Stormy Beach
I am the proud father of three, 3, 9, and 12. I recently upgraded from the Samsung Galaxy S3 to the Sony Xperia Z. Having so many kids warranted a change of pace. Let me tell you, it is mind blowing. I love Android, I love tech and I love my family. Not in that order though. I work hard, play even harder and take care of all that are around me when I can.

  • http://www.facebook.com/shizenyasuya Tj Jewett

    where is the “LOVE” button.  I almost want to use this just to stick it to t-mobile, but it’s been a while since i’ve gone over my data cap but still, i’m super annoyed with them for their tethering policy  granted there are workarounds for that they’ve just been getting more and more evil lately.  its almost like they’re already part of at&t  i wish there were another gsm alternative.  i would switch to sprint if they used sim-cards.

  • http://www.facebook.com/shizenyasuya Tj Jewett

    where is the “LOVE” button.  I almost want to use this just to stick it to t-mobile, but it’s been a while since i’ve gone over my data cap but still, i’m super annoyed with them for their tethering policy  granted there are workarounds for that they’ve just been getting more and more evil lately.  its almost like they’re already part of at&t  i wish there were another gsm alternative.  i would switch to sprint if they used sim-cards.

  • Anonymous

    Oh you want GSM alternatives in the US… 

    The carriers listed below have HSPA or HSPA+
    These are MVNO’s http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mobile_Virtual_Network_Operator

    http://www.mysimplemobile.com/ - Some great plans here. 
    https://www.tracfone.com - Not really sure about this ones plans. 

  • http://silicoxvalley.com person287

    It’s probably very easy for them to stop this by blocking the server’s number, or even worse making it premium rate as revenge for you ‘abusing’ their system, but basically I think this is genius. My guess is that a LOT of work went into this, so well done to the author.

  • http://twitter.com/Gurnted Chris Allen

    This would be great for where one is without data signal at all, but cutting back on data while paying extra for unlimited sms/mms is about ass backwards. Especially when one can get (damn near)FREE data from them with a flex-account. Would much rather toss $10 refill on every 90 days and have all the data I need. It’s not like they charge for data overages anyway. For that matter, nobody who I know who has received a “exceeded limit” sms even notices much (if any) throttling. Not knocking the concept of the app, for it’s always nice to have a backup plan. There are just SO many ways to pimp the t-mo network, that this would hardly see much use. 

    As far as them fixing it….don’t hold your breath. I posted about exploiting their data plans months ago, and they still have yet to plug the hole. Most of the folks at T-Mo US are probably more worried about being unemployed, or working for the death star in the next 6 months. Fixing holes on (someone else’s) sinking ship doesn’t seem to be among their top concerns.

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