Customization is the very first thing that strikes in my mind whenever I hear the word Android. If you’re someone who’s a power user or a tinkerer, then you might know what I’m talking about. Even one of the massive differences between Android and iOS is the degree of customizability. To enjoy the Android OS as a whole, rooting becomes the foremost and significant step. It gives you superuser access letting you customize the entire software as per your liking.
In the early days, rooting an Android smartphone was not that difficult with users able to get the root access in mere minutes using apps alone. With Android getting more and more mature, the entire rooting process got more difficult and less secure. Companies like Samsung are introducing additional layers of security to their software, making it hard to tinker with it. We have already talked about the benefits of rooting your phone a dozen times. Let’s look at the seven reasons why rooting your Android smartphone is not a good idea.
6 Reasons Why You Should Not Root Your Android Phone
Here is a list of seven reasons we think you need to consider before you root your Android smartphone for the very first time.
Reason 1: No More Warranty
If you’ve read any of our rooting guides, the first and foremost thing which we warn about is the fact that rooting will void your warranty. Most of the smartphone vendors and makers strictly oppose the idea of rooting and going ahead definitely void the warranty instantly. Although few brands let you root with official methods such as Google, OnePlus, Xiaomi, and Poco. If you’re planning to root your Android device, then you might want to check with the brand first in regards to warranty status.
Even though you can un-root your Android phone and make it look like you haven’t tampered with it, smartphone makers nowadays can track it. For instance, the moment you will root your Samsung device, the Knox Security gets breached permanently letting the brand know that you tinkered with it. Surprisingly, rooting is even illegal in a few countries.
Reason 2: Say Bye to Software Updates
One of the significant disadvantages of rooting an Android smartphone is the fact that your device will no longer receive software updates from the manufacturer. In 2019, the frequency of software updates has become one of the critical factors when a person goes out there to buy a new device. No software update means you’ll miss out on the latest additions and security patches, therefore, leaving your device vulnerable from a security point of view. Lack of most recent security patches on your device will make it easier for the cybercriminals to hack into it.
Thanks to tools like Magisk and FlashFire, many developers can root their devices without losing the ability to receive software updates. You can un-root your device for a brief period to update it to the latest software with the help of a system backup image. Sadly, this method doesn’t work with every other smartphone out there so you might want to spend a little extra amount of time on your research.
Reason 3: Bricking Issues
Another more significant concern when it comes to rooting is the bricking of your device. For those who’re unaware, bricking a device means that it is not booting or stuck at boot loop because you have tempered with the software of course. In the bricking situation, you are not able to do anything with your device, and all you see is a device logo all the time. If you’re new to rooting, then there is a high chance that you might come across this problem.
What makes this issue worse is the fact that you can not go to the service center to get it repaired since your device is now out of warranty. Although there are plenty of guides floating all over the internet to unbrick your phone, there is no guarantee whether it will work for you or not. In the end, you’ll have to advance with the rooting process at your own risk. With the introduction of Project Treble and partition-related root procedures, the chances of bricking your device have increased a lot.
Reason 4: Breaking of Android Security Model
In terms of security point of view, rooting your device breaks the Android’s security model. If you’re not aware, Android uses Linux’s security model but in a different way. Every app which you installed has its private data, which only that particular app can get access to. For instance, if you have installed a text messaging app, then only that app will be able to read the data stored on your internal storage. In this way, each app remains confined to a specific boundary so that apps can not spoof on each other.
When you root your device, certain apps ask for superuser permission, which a layman user will end up giving without having a second thought. In such situations, these apps will get access to the entire operating system making it easier for them to track, monitor, and can even manipulate the data hence risking your security. If you’re advancing with the rooting procedure, then we will recommend you to give the superuser permissions to apps that are widely trusted by the Android community.
Reason 5: Rooting is a hectic process
Even though rooting your device gives you endless possibilities, the complete process itself is a hassle and hectic at the same time. It is mainly because there are no universal rooting methods out there. There are different guides for different smartphone makers, and in most cases, various models. With companies adding an extra layer of security, the entire process now consists of lots of things such as unlocking the bootloader, installing a custom recovery, entering commands, flashing files, and much more.
Various manufacturers provide their official rooting procedure which you can follow while for others, you’ll have to rely on communities like XDA. You’ll come across plenty of rooting guides for your particular device model. Since bricking is quite common, you’ll have to do the right amount of research to find out which one works for most users out there. Even then, you’ll have to follow each instruction carefully. For an average user, all of this sounds like a long list of work, which ultimately is very time-consuming.
Reason 6: Bugs and Performance Issues with Custom ROM
Custom ROM is an integral part of Android customization since it acts as a base for your device’s overall customization. Most of the power users out there root their phones because of the attractive and extensive library of custom ROMs. Out of this vast library, there are plenty of trustable custom ROMs with an equal share of another side of the coin. Since most Android users don’t know what they’re doing, they end up installing some unsecured custom ROMs by following the step-by-step guide found online.
Besides, various custom ROMs are generally full of annoying bugs such as camera app crashing, fingerprint reader not working, and much more. Since a small team of developers maintains it, you can’t expect those bugs to get fixed instantly. Also, most of the custom ROMs lags in terms of Android security patches, which is also a significant concern in terms of security risks.
Reason 7: Incompatibility with specific apps and services
When you root your device, Google’s SafetyNet, which is built right into the Play Services, gets broken. SafetyNet allows apps to learn more about your device’s health and know whether it is rooted or not. Lots of apps and services don’t work well with rooted devices because of the lack of a safe environment. These apps include Pokemon Go, Netflix, Payment apps like Samsung Pay, and Google Pay. Although if your manufacturer supports the proper root method, problems like this might not appear at all.
A couple of years ago, Apple bricked some of the iPhones when the users were trying to get it fixed via a third-party repair center. As per the claim, the company decided to brick these devices as a part of a security procedure to protect the TouchID data and other sensitive customer’s information. This incompatibility happens because the software detects the process as a security risk and that someone is trying to hack into it.
We’re not trying to discourage readers out there from rooting their Android smartphones. Since we have already talked about the benefits of rooting a couple of times, we wanted to show you the other side of the coin and problems which are worth considering. If you still want to root your device, you can go ahead and follow some of our guides. We would recommend you research a couple of times before tinkering with the manufacturer’s software. After all, the research is only going to make things easier for you in one way or another.
Do let us know in the comment section below whether you’re going to root your device or not. You can also share your concerns and problems which we will try our best to answer as soon as possible.