I am considering purchasing a Ericsson C702 simply for it's water resistance but it seems to have a mandatory "Vodafone LIVE" right softkey instead the infinitely more usable "shortcuts" key, I thought Vodafone group had moved away from such practices after the customer retaliation with previous phones but it seems they have not figured this one out.
I checked in settings in-store and could only seem to assign the up, down, left, right to various shortcuts and not change that key
A. Can it be done without flashing firmware?
B. Can it be done by flashing firmware (even at a modest cost) that anyone knows about?
You'll need to flash the firmware back to its non VFlive equivalent to regain any functionality it had in that area.
Most of the parallels can probably take care of this for you for an easy solution. If wanting to get a little more hands on about it Para, then check out Esato, its a community for cellphones started as an ericsson/SE community so you'll be able to find fairly good information there about how to do it.
Have just found this tutorial thread at topsony on how to debrand an A2 (Db3150) phone http://www.topsony.com/forum/showthread.php?t=15724 You may have to register there to see all or any of the above tutorial.