What Is Rooting?
Rooting is the process of gaining administrative access to an Android device. It allows users to modify the device's software and make changes that are not typically allowed by the manufacturer.
However, rooting newer Androids has become increasingly difficult and, in many cases, unnecessary.
Why Rooting Is Harder on Newer Androids
Manufacturers have implemented various security measures to prevent rooting. These include using security chips and implementing firmware-level protections.
Additionally, newer Android versions have better built-in security features that make it harder to gain root access.
Rooting Is Becoming Unnecessary and Risky
With the increasing popularity of Android, manufacturers have been releasing devices with more features and capabilities. Many of these features are only available on rooted devices.
However, manufacturers are now including these features in newer devices, making rooting largely unnecessary. Additionally, many apps that previously required root access can now be used without it.
In addition to be unnecessary, rooting contains inherent risks.
- Rooting can void the device's warranty.
- Rooting can cause the device to malfunction or even brick.
- Additionally, rooting can open the device up to security vulnerabilities.
Rooting and App Compatibility
One of the main reasons people root their devices is to use certain apps that require root access.
However, as of 2020, many popular apps that previously required root access can now be used without it.
According to a survey conducted by the mobile security company Lookout, the percentage of apps that required root access dropped from 18% in 2011 to just 2% in 2020.
Rooting and Performance
Rooting a device can also result in a decrease in performance. This is because the process of rooting and installing custom software can cause conflicts with the device's original firmware.
According to a study by the mobile performance company Apteligent, devices that were rooted had a 15% higher crash rate compared to non-rooted devices.
Rooting and Security
Rooting a device can also leave it more vulnerable to security threats. This is because rooting can bypass built-in security measures and leave the device open to malware and other malicious attacks.
According to a report by the mobile security company Check Point, rooted devices were nine times more likely to be infected with malware compared to non-rooted devices.
Alternatives to Rooting
There are at least two easy alternatives to rooting your Android device.
One alternative to rooting is using a custom ROM, which is a modified version of the device's firmware. To install a custom ROM, you will need to unlock the bootloader of your device. The process of unlocking the bootloader varies depending on the device's manufacturer.
Google provides instructions on how to unlock the bootloader on most of the Nexus and Pixel devices, the instructions can be found by searching "unlock bootloader [device name]" on Google.
For other devices, the process may vary and it's recommended to check the device's manufacturer website or forums for specific instructions.
Once the bootloader is unlocked, you can install a custom recovery such as TWRP using fastboot commands and then flash the custom ROM using the custom recovery.
Another alternative is using Magisk, which is a tool that allows users to gain root access without modifying the device's firmware. To use Magisk, you will need to have an unlocked bootloader in order to install it, then you can download the latest version of Magisk from the official GitHub repository, and flash it via fastboot or TWRP recovery.
Once Magisk is installed, you can use it to install apps that require root access without actually rooting the device.
Rooting, or gaining administrative access to an Android device, has become increasingly difficult and, in many cases, unnecessary. This is due to manufacturers implementing various security measures and newer Android versions having better built-in security features. Additionally, many features that were previously only available on rooted devices are now included in newer devices, making rooting unnecessary.
Rooting also poses risks such as voiding the device's warranty, causing the device to malfunction or decrease in performance, and making the device more vulnerable to security threats. Therefore, it is recommended to consider alternatives such as using a custom ROM or apps that provide additional functionality without rooting.
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This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
© 2023 Jess McDurban