December 30, 2013
A few years back, I had a really run-down Samsung Charge as my phone and it was a solid piece of hardware. As good as it was, there was one issue I could never get past: the color scheme was unchangeable.
I was tired of staring at a perpetual Halloween-Thanksgiving mashup every time I wrote a text message, so I took to the Internet to see if I was missing anything. I kept coming across the response, “Root your phone, duh.”
This was an intriguing turn of events, and I found that rooting your Android device simply means that you are modifying your stock OS to access the ‘root’ functions of it. It sounded complex and technical, but I followed a few very detailed guides, and in 30 minutes, I had a fully rooted device.
You should know that there are some risks that come with rooting, though. One: rooting your Android will void the warranty. Two: there is always the risk of “bricking” your phone, which means you’ll have a very expensive paper weight.
But take comfort in the fact that it’s not as difficult as it might appear, and the reward is well worth the risk. You’ll be fine if you can remember: there is usually a way to undo mistakes made, always have an exit strategy prepared, and do your research above all else.
Since the first day I rooted my Samsung Charge I’ve not been without a rooted Android device, and I’d wager that you’ll do the same after you enjoy my top 10 favorite benefits, features, and perks:
1. Installing Incompatible Apps
As you may have noticed, there are very few apps on the Google Play store that won’t work with your device. A rooted device ensures that any and every app can be downloaded; there might be a few bugs, but they’ll still run.
2. Building an Autonomous Android
To date, Tasker has been one of the most used function automation apps for non-rooted Android users. If you root, you’ll notice that Tasker can go above and beyond to automate almost everything, like toggling GPS, altering CPU speed, and powering the screen on and off.
3. Over and Underclocking the CPU
Do you crave performance even though it will sap your battery? What about preserving your battery life over all else? With a rooted device you don’t have to choose, because you can either overclock or underclock your CPU accordingly.
4. Ad Blocker
Simple, but oh-so-convenient. Block out any ads on your apps to avoid sluggish performance and unwanted banner clicks.
5. Android OS Updates
Certain Android phones get updates much later than others, which is frustrating. However you can manually download and flash the latest version of Android if you have a rooted device – even if your device manufacturer hasn’t released it yet.
6. Free Tethering
Use your phone as a Wi-Fi hotspot without the monthly charges from your carrier. Data rates still apply, but it comes through in a pinch.
7. Flawless Device Backup
Backup almost every aspect of your Android device from text messages and call logs to the actual data stored in apps. You can’t touch this level of backup power if you’re un-rooted.
8. Uninstall Anything
When you get your phone, there are pre-installed apps that you are unable to remove. They slow down performance and take up valuable space. After you root your device, you will notice that no app is impervious to your powers of deletion.
9. Custom ROMs
These custom-built versions of Android are my favorite part of having a rooted device. Simply flash a beautifully creative ROM to your device to customize, add features, and tweak your factory OS for a complete makeover.
10. The Community
Despite what you may think, rooting Android devices is incredibly popular. There is a strong community of very helpful people who have built the roads for you to follow, and they will help you at every turn with your journey. You’re not alone, so don’t go it alone!
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