Rooting or jailbreaking devices has been something I have been doing for quite some time now. The Motorola Droid was the first device I took the plunge into rooting a phone. It took me about 3 months to finally pull the trigger, but when I did my life would not be the same. Rooting is what got me hooked on mobile tech. Throughout the years once I got a device whether it was Android or iOS, it was getting rooted/jailbroken. However, the last year or so hacking these devices have gotten a bit tougher with each software updates, device releases, and carrier policies. Granted there are those who don’t have these kind of troubles or obstacles to overcome with carriers such as T-Mobile. But Verizon and others have their reasons to lock down these devices. These issues used to be a big deal to me, but not as much as it used to.
Devices and software has come a long long way from when I first got into rooting and modding. Heck, each year we are introduced to the new tech that would blow our minds back in the day if we knew what devices would be like now back then. Back then Android was on the rise and Apple was forced to actually innovate and get out of their comfortable #1 spot in the mobile tech world. These days between Android and Apple it is a level playing field in the value of tech. Competition has made it that much better for the consumer.
As far as Android goes, I think it is safe to say that is was necessary to root a phone to make it worth while back a few years ago, I’d go as far to say even a year ago. Android KitKat was a nice update, but Android Lollipop is the best things that has come to the OS in a long time. It’s not just about looks, it has relevant and practical features that make owing a device enjoyable. On the other side of the spectrum is Apple and they continue to make their experience better and better for the Apple user. Continuity is and has been the strong point with Apple in my opinion. Not too mention I really like the cameras on iPhones.
With all that said, I have been using a Verizon Note 4 for a couple weeks now and I can safely say that I am not missing being rooted as much as I thought I would be. As mentioned before I normally root my stuff right away, install mods, and rock it out. However, this time around things are different. Normally TouchWiz (Samsung’s OS of Android) bothered me. I hadn’t really liked the look of it because it seemed outdated, seemed to bog the phone down, and never really seemed to add benefit to the user experience. Last year Samsung made some nice changes to the Galaxy S5 and the Note 4. Both versions of TouchWiz look very similar with the Note 4 only differing in the Note apps. It doesn’t look as bad this time. Note that I always install Nova Launcher throw a nice icon pack on it. Google along with many other app developers have updated their content with Material Design. Therefore overall the looks are pretty much covered at this point.
Performance was another huge reason to root a phone. There were and are many ways to enhance performance on a phone by means of installing custom recovery, custom roms, and other mods like kernels. Xposed Framework is another way to add features you want that roms have, without the need of installing a rom. Jailbreaking an iPhone was great because you could get many features Android users use on a daily basis onto the iDevice. But now even iOS has many of those features built in and leads to my next point.
It isn’t as necessary to root/jailbreak as it used to be. The user experience is much better than what it was a few years ago. Everything looks 10x cleaner, performance is great for the most part, and the features we want are now stock. One of the major features I like is the hotspot tethering and I normally use a rooted app to use WiFi tethering. There are other options like PDAnet and FoxFi to get that job done. I bought the pro version a while back from PDAnet and it has been a reliable source to use for wireless tethering. Mind that PDAnet does not require root to use. Therefore adding another reason of why it doesn’t bother me to not be rooted right now.
Don’t get me wrong, if I could root the Note 4 at this moment it would be rooted. There is no question about that. The techie inside me really wants it rooted and are many reasons why. I love the tech community, the devs that work hard to give us a great experience with our favorite devices, and it’s just fun to tinker around to see what else I can do with my phone. But as I write this article I am analyzing the real reason why I am not bothered that my Note 4 is not rooted. It really boils down to personal growth and what is going on personally in my life.
Without going into any further history about my state of mind, let me just say that there are areas in my life that I think are getting better. One of those areas includes what I spend my emotions and energy on. Basically, is it worth getting worked up about whether a particular carrier locks down a device or not? That’s just one example. If you have not figured out by now that in life there are things that you can control and things that you cannot control. I can control who I subscribe to for my wireless network provider, what device I get, and how I want to use it. I can’t control if a phone gets to get rooted. Just like the Verizon Note 4 does not have root yet. I can also control my attitude towards how I want the experience to be like with my tech. I can choose to be frustrated with Verizon and Samsung for making it difficult for their devices to be rooted or I can be thankful for what I have. May I mention that the Note 4 is a great device. Because I choose to use Verizon and Samsung for my provider and phone, I have no right to get frustrated. Two important things I want out of a my mobile experience is reliable network and a quality device that has the features I want. My Verizon Note 4 takes care of those concerns.
Not worrying about being rooted is a good thing. It means that tech is getting better. Progress is happening and soon I am sure others will begin to feel the same way I do. Does that mean I love tech any less? Absolutely not. I continue to seek ways to enhance not only my experience with tech, but for others as well. I love to see innovation and I can’t wait to see what’s next.
What’s your thought? Have you lost the concern of rooting, modding, and hacking or is it give me root or give me death?
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