You have definitely heard about rooting Android. Perhaps you want to root your phone or know more about it. This article will give a general overview of Android root. If you are a beginner then after reading this article you can make an informed decision about whether you will root your phone or not. Also, this article will clearly explain the rooting processes itself.
What is root?
Though Android is mostly known as a mobile operating system (OS), it is actually based on Linux. Linux is a very powerful OS for computers. A Linux user can have almost complete control over his / her machine. But it seems like that is not true for Android. For example, you can’t uninstall some preinstalled apps or install certain advanced apps on your phone unless you root. Though from the onset Android was marketed as an OS that is more open to customization (unlike iOS or Windows Mobile), there are actually many restrictions regarding what you can do with it.
Google has a good reason to put these restrictions – Security. But if you want, you can bring the power and control of Android back to you. In its default state, Android treats you as a normal user. What rooting does is it promotes your state and makes you a superuser, which is a Linux function. A superuser has permission to do anything and access any file in the OS. Thus rooting gives you complete control over your device.
Pros of rooting
Your Android phone has a lot of customization options, what more can rooting add? Well, rooting is not just about adding functionality, it is also about how it changes your phone. Here are the main highlights:
The ability to install advanced apps:
Ever saw a great app in Play Store with advanced functions but failed to install it because it requires root access? Yes, we all have. Now you can install these apps. There are even more such apps outside the Play Sore.
Change your phone’s look and feel:
Samsung, Sony, HTC all have their own skin over Android OS. But what if you want to change that to something you like? Rooting lets you install custom ROMs like Cyanogenmod and make your phone look truly yours.
Better performance and battery life:
Are you using your phone’s hardware to its full potential? Not unless you have rooted it. With root access, you can turn off background apps, uninstall useless manufacturer apps (even those from Google) and boost your phone’s performance and battery life.
Advanced backup ability:
Rooting gives you the ability to take complete system backup using apps like Titanium Backup.
There is a certain enjoyment hidden in tinkering your device’s internal settings. If you love these types of things, rooting is a must for you.
Cons of rooting
It is generally a good advice not to root a brand new expensive phone. First of all, rooting voids warranty for most of the manufacturers. Also, if you brick your phone (i.e. make a mess) while rooting, your phone company will not take any responsibility.
By rooting you remove Google’s security measures from your phone. So you are responsible for your own security. If you are not careful, your phone might experience a security breach.
Making the decision
So, should you root your device or not? This question doesn’t have an easy answer. One thing for sure – you shouldn’t root your device because it can be rooted. Though rooting has become an easy task nowadays, it is basically for advanced users only. If you are happy with your phone, there is no reason to root. But if you have a general interest in these types of tech things, you should give it a try. For a certain type of people, rooting can be great fun. And there is no denial of the fact that rooting unleashes the real power of your device. Whether you need that power or not is your decision. Remember, with power comes responsibility!
How to safely root your device
Ideally, choose a phone which doesn’t have warranty anymore and backup personal data. Now, you can root your phone in the hard way or in the easy way. The hard way is better if you want to learn more about Android. Here, you have to unlock the bootloader of your device. How you unlock the bootloader of your phone depends on which company’s phone you are using. You should realize this process involves a fair bit of searching on the internet and reading tutorials.
So, what have you decided? Will you root your Android? If you have decided to root your device, we would recommend not using the automatic tools but going through the hard way. Automatic tools will root your device for you in one click. But the more you know the process first hand, the more you empower yourself. By the way, though most of the Android devices can be rooted, there are a few devices which are notoriously difficult to root. Before rooting, you should search the internet for device-specific rooting information.