Last time around, it too months for us poor Verizon customers to get our flagship of 2013 unlocked. HTC’s One (M7) was–and still is–a magnificent phone. But alas, some of us wanted more freedom so when “rumrunner” and “firewater” hit the scene, we were all thrilled to bits. You see, Verizon is one of the few carriers out there that DEMANDS it’s phones be locked down. No custom software, no rooting, no nothing it what they’d prefer. The development community however has proven resourceful in the past and has exceeded my expectations in every way by cracking HTC’s latest and greatest wide open only a week after launch.

Only hours ago, the Firewater dev team released its method for gaining S-OFF (“security off”) on the device. The method is relatively straightforward if you’re handy with a command line — first your device will need to be rooted (by way of a quick install of an app called “weaksauce”), then disable any lock screen security, push the files to your device and let them work their magic. It’s really that simple! The key point of S-OFF, is that it’s a property which disables hardware write protection on HTC devices, letting you tinker around with stuff on the internal flash that you wouldn’t normally be able to modify. Many pre-production devices come with S-OFF, but most retail models are S-ON, meaning “security on.” S-OFF is not to be confused with bootloader unlocking, which opens up the device in a more limited manner, allowing custom recovery images and ROMs to be loaded. The HTCdev website will allow you to do that with their phones, except of course Verizon as well…

I can confirm it works (quite well) and plenty of folks will be off and running with custom ROMs or simply converting a Google Play Edition (GPE) operating system into one that can be run on your (formerly) Verizon locked phone.

S-OFF for HTC One M8 paves way for further hackery | Android Central.