We’re going to finish the “Only-for-Android Week” with a feature that really makes the difference between Android and the rest of platforms: Root + cooked ROMs. Let’s zoom on it.
To be root is to have “superuser” rights on your Android, that’s it, to have comprehensive control over all the apps and features of your Android (even the system processes). What is this for? Root users can install only-root apps, backup, tethering (use 3G on a PC), change boot animation, uninstall operator apps… and what’s most important is that it permits to install cooked ROMs and themes.
A ROM is an Android system image modified (or cooked) by developers (or “chefs”) which aim is to improve the original version. By introducing some parameters in the code they can achieve some improvements in battery-life, modems (navigation speed), speed transition between screens, desktop and app drawer appearance, sound quality… among many other features. It just depends on the developers’ skills and on what they want to focus (battery, sound quality, fast response…). There are coming ROMs up for all the official Android versions Eclair 2.1, Froyo 2.2, Gingerbread 2.3… and also for specific devices. Thus, Darky’s ROM is only for Galaxy S while CyanogenMod or MIUI offers ROMS for a wide range of devices. Most often, the “chefs” release cooked ROMs with updated Android versions sooner than the official phone operators.
Root is awesome, but be careful! Having comprehensive control over all our Android system could be dangerous too. Either during the process to get root access or once you’ve done it, there’s a risk of changing or deleting some system’s stuff that can brick your phone. So read carefully the instructions before make a step. The benefits of being root are worth, but do it just when you know how. What’s more, after become root you won’t receive anymore automatic version updates from your operator, and you will be out of warranty.
Some apps only for root:
Titanium Backup Root: Probably the best app on the market to backup/restore your data.
Root explorer: A file manager with which you can read, write or delete all the files in your Android
SetCPU: Overclock or underclock your Android processor adjusting it to your need at every time.
ROM Manager: If the ROM you want to install is supported, you will be able to install it in a few clicks. Check it out!
… and a tip: search “bootanimation.zip” to find cooked boot animation for your Android.
Happy root apps discovery!