Should You Install a Custom ROM on Your Android Device?

What are the pros and cons of installing a custom ROM on your Android device?

It can be hard to resist the temptation to root your Android device and install a custom ROM, even at the risk of voiding your warranty and bricking your device. Custom ROMs can give you additional features and in same cases, improve battery life. They also allow you to update to versions of Android that are not normally available to your phone, such as Ice Cream Sandwich (4.0). There are tools that make it a quick and simple process, but that doesn’t necessarily make it a good idea. There are risks and extra work involved.

Reasons you should not install a custom ROM:

  • You will void your warranty. The manufacturer or third-party warranty company will not be willing to repair a damaged phone that has been rooted or has a custom ROM installed. While the ROM may not be the cause of the issue, your warranty will still be voided.
  • During the process of rooting, something may go wrong. You could brick your phone. There are ways to unbrick it, but you could potentially need a new phone. Without your warranty (you just voided it), you will have to pay full retail price for a replacement.
  • Custom ROMs may cause you to experience odd issues. I once used a ROM that would crash every two to three minutes during phone calls. It was extremely frustrating.
  • Custom ROMs update quite frequently to fix bugs. (Sometimes causing more bugs, but that’s another story.) You’ll end up having to update every few days, sometimes even having to wipe your data and restore it later. This can be a good thing, because bugs are getting fixed, but it can also be annoying to have to update that frequently.
  • You may accidentally give a malicious app root access, allowing the app to do whatever it wants to do with your phone. It could potentially wipe all of your data, take your files, including private pictures, and send spam to your contacts.

With that said, I have a custom ROM installed on my phone. I was unhappy with the stock ROM due to a bug that caused Android OS to drain the battery very quickly. After that issue is resolved, I may switch back just so I don’t have to deal with keeping my ROM updated every few days and the bugs that can come along with those updates. Below are the reasons you should install a custom ROM, but I want you to think about the reasons not to install it while you’re reading them.

Should You Install a Custom ROM on Your Android Device?Reasons you should install a custom ROM:

  • Speed tweaks. Most ROMs are tweaked to maximize speed and minimize RAM usage. I have a Samsung phone, which comes with TouchWiz. For those of you who have not used TouchWiz before, it’s not the prettiest launcher available, it lacks features, and does not feel very smooth. The speed tweaks of my ROM have made TouchWiz a lot more enjoyable, but I still prefer to use other launchers, such as ADW Launcher.
  • Tethering. While this does void your carrier’s terms of service, and I do not recommend doing it without a tethering plan, custom ROMs usually provide you with the ability to tether without a tethering plan. It is often the only reason people want to install a custom ROM. Again, I do not recommend this because you may eventually be caught and your service may be terminated. It is essentially stealing from your carrier. You’d be getting one of its services for free.
  • Battery life improvements. With root access, you have the ability to calibrate your battery, which usually will fix any issues you’re having with battery life. Some custom ROMs also under clock the CPU to reduce battery usage. With my ROM, I get a few more hours of battery life than I had with the stock ROM, and performance is actually better. If battery life improvement is all you’re interested in, I recommend that you try JuiceDefender. It’s an app that manages your wireless connections and disables them when your phone is locked to save battery life. It enables the connections once every 15 minutes so that you can still get notifications.
  • Apps. Some apps require root access. A good example of this is DroidWall, which lets you keep apps from using data while on 3G. This is great if you’re on a limited data plan and getting close to your limit. I’m also a fan of BatteryCalibrator, which is the app I use to calibrate my battery after flashing a new ROM.
  • Over clocking and under clocking. You can use an app, such as SetCPU, to over clock your phone, giving it better performance, but sacrificing battery life. This may be something you want to do if you’re having trouble running a game you really want to play. Some Custom ROMs are already configured to over clock your phone. You may also be interested in under clocking your phone. Under clocking reduces performance but increases battery life.
  • Newer Android versions. I’m excited to try Ice Cream Sandwich, but a release date for this update, for my phone, has not been announced yet. However, I can install a custom ROM that includes version 4.0 of Android (ICS) and use it way before the official update is released.

I believe that there are more reasons to install a custom ROM than to stick with the stock ROM, but I still don’t recommend it for everyone. You must be willing to deal with getting it set up, backing up all of your apps, restoring them after flashing, calibrating your battery, and updating very frequently. This is something that I’d prefer to avoid, so I’ll likely go back to the stock ROM after the issue that I was experiencing has been resolved. I love the performance tweaks and additional features, but I’d rather not spend the time required to keep up with it. However, you may feel differently. You may think that the benefits far outweigh the extra work involved, and that’s fine. I’d love to hear what you think.

What is your opinion on rooting and installing custom ROMs? Do you do it? Are you against it?

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  • michael weiler

    I had a mortorola backflip the rom the company released was complete crap (see the forums of the phone). Custom rom WOW what a difference….first off it was running an OS they said it could not but better than that it was useable again!

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      I’m glad that you were able to have a more enjoyable experience by installing a custom ROM. I’m curious to know if you tried a different launcher before installing a new ROM? Launchers are available in the market and will often perform better than the stock launcher.

      • Mburrieza

        Some Motorola roms are complete crap, specialy outside US. Many BIG bugs never solved. For example the Moto Quench (still on sale) is selling with Android 1.5 (yes its not a mistake). Most apps are not compatible. With cm you can install 2.3, making the device usable.The worproblema is Moto saying that the phone cannot be upgraded to 2.1 due to hardware restrictions and its running 2.3 without problems

      • Mburrieza

        Some Motorola roms are complete crap, specialy outside US. Many BIG bugs never solved. For example the Moto Quench (still on sale) is selling with Android 1.5 (yes its not a mistake). Most apps are not compatible. With cm you can install 2.3, making the device usable.The worproblema is Moto saying that the phone cannot be upgraded to 2.1 due to hardware restrictions and its running 2.3 without problems

  • Darrin G.

    I had the Moto Cliq, which was complete CRAP until I installed Cyanogenmod on it. Later I got the MyTouch 4G and put a custom ROM based on a newer phone and it was a MAJOR improvement.

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      I’ve heard good things about Cyanogen, but it’s not available for my phone yet.

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      I’ve heard good things about Cyanogen, but it’s not available for my phone yet.

  • http://twitter.com/akashaheart Stephaine Akashaheart Hand

    I have not rooted my phone but I did root my droid pad due to it was made out of the country and it did not have the android market or the you can not use this app due to country restrictions So I loaded a rom on it and it works great

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      Really? I wasn’t aware that it was restricted based on your location. I’ll have to look into that. At least installing a custom ROM resolved your issue :-).

      • http://twitter.com/akashaheart Stephaine Akashaheart Hand

        yes some apps like google books will not work if it thinks your device is in a country it does not support

      • http://twitter.com/akashaheart Stephaine Akashaheart Hand

        yes some apps like google books will not work if it thinks your device is in a country it does not support

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      Really? I wasn’t aware that it was restricted based on your location. I’ll have to look into that. At least installing a custom ROM resolved your issue :-).

    • http://jcmogensen.webs.com/ J.C. Mogensen

      Lack of Google apps on the Viewsonic GTablet was a big problem for me. That and the half-baked OS installed by the OEM meant rooting and installing a custom ROM was the only way to get any kind of functionality from an otherwise good and affordable piece of hardware.

      • Billbaldwin

        I too have a Viewsonic GTab, purchased because it was fine hardware at a good price. Came with Froyo, but the interface to the OS made it less than cool. Had ok apps from Amazon app store even tho’ it would not do Google Market. Now has Vegan Gingerbread and performs great with all apps . . . .

    • http://jcmogensen.webs.com/ J.C. Mogensen

      Lack of Google apps on the Viewsonic GTablet was a big problem for me. That and the half-baked OS installed by the OEM meant rooting and installing a custom ROM was the only way to get any kind of functionality from an otherwise good and affordable piece of hardware.

  • http://twitter.com/Genford Tim Genford Jensen

    Go to http://forum.xda-developers.com/ here you can read all about how to root your phone and what you have to look out for.

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      I agree. XDA is a great resource for all things regarding Android, but more specifically, rooting and custom ROMs.

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      I agree. XDA is a great resource for all things regarding Android, but more specifically, rooting and custom ROMs.

  • http://lance.compulsivetech.biz/ Lance Seidman

    I would totally add my own ROM as Carrier IQ has been caught on many phones that are android-based and sad how they collect literally EVERYTHING you do, even when you press your phone key buttons to call someone.

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      Carrier IQ is a popular reason for installing custom ROMs, although I did not mention it in my post. Some sources say it’s harmless, some say it’s malicious. Either way, I believe my carrier (Sprint) is removing it from their devices in an upcoming update.

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      Carrier IQ is a popular reason for installing custom ROMs, although I did not mention it in my post. Some sources say it’s harmless, some say it’s malicious. Either way, I believe my carrier (Sprint) is removing it from their devices in an upcoming update.

  • http://lance.compulsivetech.biz/ Lance Seidman

    I would totally add my own ROM as Carrier IQ has been caught on many phones that are android-based and sad how they collect literally EVERYTHING you do, even when you press your phone key buttons to call someone.

  • Greg Fischer

    One of the 1st things I do is check to see if CM is available for a device I’m interested in.
    I’ve been installing custom ROMs since my MyTouch3G days (Cupcake/Donut). If CM wasn’t available, there were plenty of others to choose from.
    Speed. Customization. The fact that it is an option on the Android platform.

    My EVO 4G (and just prior to that, before it had a hardware failure, EVO 3D) had HTCSense. I HATE Sense. With a passion.
    There was no stable CM for the 3D, but the Senseless ROM cured my woes.
    CM7 on my EVO 4G has made it an entirely different animal. It’s fast, I can change the theme anytime I want (that wasn’t as easy back in the Cupcake and Donut days as it is now!).

    I think the hard -and scary- part for those new to the rooting/custom ROM scene is the rooting/potential bricking aspect.
    Even w/ “1-click” options available for so many models, somebody somehow manages to NOT follow explicit, clear instructions and b0rks their phone.

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      I believe CM is currently being developed for my phone. I’m excited to try it out. Maybe it’ll keep me from wanting to go back to the stock ROM.

      It’s true that even with a process that seems simple, someone can make a mistake and ruin their phone. I hope that anyone that tries it, follows instructions carefully.

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      I believe CM is currently being developed for my phone. I’m excited to try it out. Maybe it’ll keep me from wanting to go back to the stock ROM.

      It’s true that even with a process that seems simple, someone can make a mistake and ruin their phone. I hope that anyone that tries it, follows instructions carefully.

  • Greg Fischer

    One of the 1st things I do is check to see if CM is available for a device I’m interested in.
    I’ve been installing custom ROMs since my MyTouch3G days (Cupcake/Donut). If CM wasn’t available, there were plenty of others to choose from.
    Speed. Customization. The fact that it is an option on the Android platform.

    My EVO 4G (and just prior to that, before it had a hardware failure, EVO 3D) had HTCSense. I HATE Sense. With a passion.
    There was no stable CM for the 3D, but the Senseless ROM cured my woes.
    CM7 on my EVO 4G has made it an entirely different animal. It’s fast, I can change the theme anytime I want (that wasn’t as easy back in the Cupcake and Donut days as it is now!).

    I think the hard -and scary- part for those new to the rooting/custom ROM scene is the rooting/potential bricking aspect.
    Even w/ “1-click” options available for so many models, somebody somehow manages to NOT follow explicit, clear instructions and b0rks their phone.

  • http://www.lanarea.eu Ken Verhaegen

    My Xperia X8 has had many roms on it. So many it even “broke” my phone, not being a brick though. I went mad at some roms that randomly rebooted, and I threw it in a water bucket… xD (It drowned, and works again, but battery has only 5hours of maximum capacity…)

    I like the way how some awesome people on XDA have the knowledge and perseverance to create a rom that not only looks good, works good, but also speeds up the phone, or even lengthens the battery life.

    It can be hard to wait for a rom to develop to its maximum capacity/possibilities. I noticed this, not only myself, but also the people that wanted a decent rom for the Xperia X8. I run a facebook page for it (fb/XperiaX8GingerBread), and people are still asking for help, the phone being 1,5 years old. (And now sold for a price that I can sell my lettuce for…)

    As I can’t help them anymore with testing roms (at least not decently), I’m still helping them with other problems around the phone. And answering questions, if they would be in English, or easily translatable.

    I love how you’ve written this article Joseph, and I hope you’ll bring us more.

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      You threw it into a bucket of water and it still works? Maybe that could serve as a good advertisement for your phone hahaha.

      The work that some of the people do on XDA is quite impressive.

      Thank you. I will likely be contributing a lot more :-).

      • http://www.lanarea.eu Ken Verhaegen

        Yeah, I left it drying for like a week in my closet. Fully disassembled.

        The battery life is close to zero because of it, but it still works like a charm and still serves me well while I watch tv, so I can surf the World Wide Interwebs (back on basic rom 2.1-upd1 since then.)
        How much did you contribute in the Android scene the last few years?

        No thanks, my pleasure, and all that.

        • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

          That’s great that it still works though.
          I haven’t contributed anything to the Android community other than this article, so far. I’m pretty new to Android, but I will be posting more articles regarding it in the future. I was an iPhone user before.

        • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

          That’s great that it still works though.
          I haven’t contributed anything to the Android community other than this article, so far. I’m pretty new to Android, but I will be posting more articles regarding it in the future. I was an iPhone user before.

      • http://www.lanarea.eu Ken Verhaegen

        Yeah, I left it drying for like a week in my closet. Fully disassembled.

        The battery life is close to zero because of it, but it still works like a charm and still serves me well while I watch tv, so I can surf the World Wide Interwebs (back on basic rom 2.1-upd1 since then.)
        How much did you contribute in the Android scene the last few years?

        No thanks, my pleasure, and all that.

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      You threw it into a bucket of water and it still works? Maybe that could serve as a good advertisement for your phone hahaha.

      The work that some of the people do on XDA is quite impressive.

      Thank you. I will likely be contributing a lot more :-).

  • http://www.lanarea.eu Ken Verhaegen

    My Xperia X8 has had many roms on it. So many it even “broke” my phone, not being a brick though. I went mad at some roms that randomly rebooted, and I threw it in a water bucket… xD (It drowned, and works again, but battery has only 5hours of maximum capacity…)

    I like the way how some awesome people on XDA have the knowledge and perseverance to create a rom that not only looks good, works good, but also speeds up the phone, or even lengthens the battery life.

    It can be hard to wait for a rom to develop to its maximum capacity/possibilities. I noticed this, not only myself, but also the people that wanted a decent rom for the Xperia X8. I run a facebook page for it (fb/XperiaX8GingerBread), and people are still asking for help, the phone being 1,5 years old. (And now sold for a price that I can sell my lettuce for…)

    As I can’t help them anymore with testing roms (at least not decently), I’m still helping them with other problems around the phone. And answering questions, if they would be in English, or easily translatable.

    I love how you’ve written this article Joseph, and I hope you’ll bring us more.

  • Matthew Straight

    I really want a smart phone.. 

  • ciscokid

    great info, but you are missing one vital piece of the puzzle,

    where does one find ROMs? especially for ice cream sandwich????

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      XDA is a good resource for info on ROMs. xda-developers.com

  • ciscokid

    great info, but you are missing one vital piece of the puzzle,

    where does one find ROMs? especially for ice cream sandwich????

  • http://twitter.com/Saukkisetae Mika Savolainen

    1. Rooted my tablet a week ago. (Didn’t have the google apps nor the market).
    2. Rooted my phone at work about two hours ago (Warranty period ended – >out with the bloatware and in with the new OS and tethering)
    3. As soon as I get home from work, my girlfriend’s phone will get the treatment (For the same reasons as mine did.)

  • SOBAN BASHIR

    In the words of Arnie from Predator: DO IT! DO IT NOW! Root makes the phone yours and yours alone. It’s mines, all mines bagginses!

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Matt-Henry/527496157 Matt Henry

      Way to seamlessly combine movie quotes into good Android related advice

  • SOBAN BASHIR

    In the words of Arnie from Predator: DO IT! DO IT NOW! Root makes the phone yours and yours alone. It’s mines, all mines bagginses!

  • http://jcmogensen.webs.com/ J.C. Mogensen

    Great article.

    I have installed custom ROMs on every phone I’ve had going back to my Samsung Omnia running WinMo. With my  Galaxy Nexus I decide to live with the stock setup for as long as possible. I made it one week. I unlocked the bootloader, rooted and installed a custom ROM so I could do 3 things – add a search soft key to the bottom, get rid of the Google Search bar at the top and enable WiFi tethering.

    Keep up the great writing, Joseph.

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      The Google search bar can’t be removed on the stock ROM? That would annoy me.

  • http://jcmogensen.webs.com/ J.C. Mogensen

    Great article.

    I have installed custom ROMs on every phone I’ve had going back to my Samsung Omnia running WinMo. With my  Galaxy Nexus I decide to live with the stock setup for as long as possible. I made it one week. I unlocked the bootloader, rooted and installed a custom ROM so I could do 3 things – add a search soft key to the bottom, get rid of the Google Search bar at the top and enable WiFi tethering.

    Keep up the great writing, Joseph.

  • 1966 C A H

    “It is essentially stealing from your carrier. You’d be getting one of its services for free.”  I think you misspelled “This prevents the carrier from charging you again for the data you already paid for.”

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      While I agree that tethering should be available for free, using a service without paying for it is illegal.

      • Jolest+lgforum

        If I’m paying Verizon for an “unlimited” data plan, it’s none of their business how much data I use or what I use it for.  Any other interpretation of “unlimited” is false advertising, and we know cell phone companies wouldn’t do that…  [cough]…

      • Justin_lucas4

        you still pay for it its not stealing its using ur data on ur plain if it dint alot more ppl will b doing it that way

  • 1966 C A H

    “It is essentially stealing from your carrier. You’d be getting one of its services for free.”  I think you misspelled “This prevents the carrier from charging you again for the data you already paid for.”

  • http://www.facebook.com/enigma69 John Wentworth

    I won’t buy a phone unless it has an active custom rom community, or I know it will, examples of that include my current verizon thunderbolt, which thanks to XDA and Rootzwiki is now the best android phone I’ve ever owned.
    I undervolt and tweak the kernel for maximum battery life, this thing is always going to be a battery killer, but thanks to XDA I easily get a days worth of moderate usage out of it. 
    The AOSP rom I installed made my phone MUCH faster and has actually saved me money, I think if I was still on stock I’d feel compelled to upgrade to a dual core phone, but my thunderbolt with a custom rom feels just as fast as any phone I’ve tried out.
    Also even though the roms aren’t complete, XDA and eventually CM9 will bring me Ice Cream Sandwich, which I’m almost positive HTC will never provide.

    For a technical user who knows what they are doing I see very few reasons not to install custom roms, and all of my android phones have used custom roms exclusively, except for the few days it takes to get a root on new phones :)
    If you don’t like to deal with bugs you can use the stock software for a few months and by then roms should be getting pretty stable, I’m a flash addict, but I’ve settled on a rom for my thunderbolt and I don’t have to flash constantly anymore. 

    As far as voiding your warranty, as long as your not using a motorola phone, I never buy motorola because the phones are too locked down, It’s very hard to brick an android phone to the point that you can’t recover from it, Samsung phones are virtually unbrickable, and HTC phones are usually fairly easy to recover from, you can usually flash back to stock if something goes wrong with your phone and get warranty coverage.

    All that said, if you don’t know what your doing, don’t install a custom rom, get a nerd friend who knows what he’s doing to do it for you :)

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      Voiding your warranty by installing a custom ROMs means that they won’t cover other things that go wrong it with (not just bricking). Flashing the stock ROM may work, but there is a counter that shows how many times a ROM has been installed on the device. There is a piece of hardware that can reset it, but I’m not sure if I can discuss that here.

  • http://www.facebook.com/enigma69 John Wentworth

    I won’t buy a phone unless it has an active custom rom community, or I know it will, examples of that include my current verizon thunderbolt, which thanks to XDA and Rootzwiki is now the best android phone I’ve ever owned.
    I undervolt and tweak the kernel for maximum battery life, this thing is always going to be a battery killer, but thanks to XDA I easily get a days worth of moderate usage out of it. 
    The AOSP rom I installed made my phone MUCH faster and has actually saved me money, I think if I was still on stock I’d feel compelled to upgrade to a dual core phone, but my thunderbolt with a custom rom feels just as fast as any phone I’ve tried out.
    Also even though the roms aren’t complete, XDA and eventually CM9 will bring me Ice Cream Sandwich, which I’m almost positive HTC will never provide.

    For a technical user who knows what they are doing I see very few reasons not to install custom roms, and all of my android phones have used custom roms exclusively, except for the few days it takes to get a root on new phones :)
    If you don’t like to deal with bugs you can use the stock software for a few months and by then roms should be getting pretty stable, I’m a flash addict, but I’ve settled on a rom for my thunderbolt and I don’t have to flash constantly anymore. 

    As far as voiding your warranty, as long as your not using a motorola phone, I never buy motorola because the phones are too locked down, It’s very hard to brick an android phone to the point that you can’t recover from it, Samsung phones are virtually unbrickable, and HTC phones are usually fairly easy to recover from, you can usually flash back to stock if something goes wrong with your phone and get warranty coverage.

    All that said, if you don’t know what your doing, don’t install a custom rom, get a nerd friend who knows what he’s doing to do it for you :)

  • Ryan Draga

    I rooted my old HTC Dream and flashed it with CM7 just a month or so before I replaced it with a brand new LG Optimus 3D (which I also rooted, but have left stock due to the lack of any compatible custom roms for it at present). Honestly when I started out modding Android devices I would have said “yes use a custom ROM”, but now I think I’m quite satisfied with just rooting the device.

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      What features/apps do you enjoy with root access, without a custom ROM?

  • Ryan Draga

    I rooted my old HTC Dream and flashed it with CM7 just a month or so before I replaced it with a brand new LG Optimus 3D (which I also rooted, but have left stock due to the lack of any compatible custom roms for it at present). Honestly when I started out modding Android devices I would have said “yes use a custom ROM”, but now I think I’m quite satisfied with just rooting the device.

  • Anonymous

    On my second line, I got CM7 going.  The HTC Hero for Sprint was only updated to Android 2.1.  I really wanted to try out 2.2 when it dropped so I decided to root it then when it was my main phone. If you use Clockwork Mod as you rom loader, it will give you the option that you should definitely take and back up your existing rom (especially for those concerned with voiding warranties). I got a bonus and loaded CM7, which is made after Android 2.3. In addition to removing all of that blotware, the phone ran faster, used less battery, and I didn’t have to worry about that Carrier IQ scare.  Wouldn’t pressure anyone into doing it, but its good to know that there are options…… especially with this Motorola Photon 4G that has ugly widgets, nasty blotware, and a horrible pic gallery.

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      I agree; It’s nice to have the option to change the ROM if you dislike the stock ROM.

  • Anonymous

    On my second line, I got CM7 going.  The HTC Hero for Sprint was only updated to Android 2.1.  I really wanted to try out 2.2 when it dropped so I decided to root it then when it was my main phone. If you use Clockwork Mod as you rom loader, it will give you the option that you should definitely take and back up your existing rom (especially for those concerned with voiding warranties). I got a bonus and loaded CM7, which is made after Android 2.3. In addition to removing all of that blotware, the phone ran faster, used less battery, and I didn’t have to worry about that Carrier IQ scare.  Wouldn’t pressure anyone into doing it, but its good to know that there are options…… especially with this Motorola Photon 4G that has ugly widgets, nasty blotware, and a horrible pic gallery.

  • Chris Harpner

    T-Mobile doesn’t have any problem at all with tethering and there’s no separate plan for it (or if there is, the T-Mobile operators told me it’s perfectly fine to do it, and I’ve done it, and suffered no consequences).

  • Lepe

    Hi! what do you suggest for me. I am a new andriod user, I have a Motorola Milestone with version 2.2 already, I really want to get rid of the inconvenience about battery charge, you mentioned, and get a faster apps, cause sometimes just crashed. I am in Guatemala, so its a pain in the ass keep waiting for an update in this area. I´ve heard about gingerbread, looks to be better than the one I have. and Second… Do I have to change the current kernel version??  thanks for all.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Lindsay-Manahan/100003214191551 Lindsay Manahan

    my best friend’s aunt makes $70/hr on the laptop. She has been out of work for 6 months but last month her check was $8183 just working on the laptop for a few hours. Read this site NuttyRich. cöm

  • Jan Hough

    Hi Joseph,
    Thanks so much for your initiative – great to be able to get a sensible discussion going on quite a complex issue!

    I have a few comments. You article gives “apps” as a plus for installing custom ROMs. This is slightly confusing as this is a benefit of rooting, not installing the ROM. Another disadvantage of new ROMs is that all your downloaded apps are lost UNLESS you have backed them up.

    An article/discussion of the benefits and dangers of rooting would be great.
    Some interesting apps that work best with rooting are: AutoKiller Memory Optimiser, Root Browser, Titanium Backup. BTW, FX (beta) is an excellent file manager program.

    Regarding installing ROMs, I must say I am having a difficult time to decide what to do. The advantages of particular individual ROMs are not always clearly stated, and also the broken functions are also not always clearly stated (e.g. for my Galaxy S I9000 the ICS beta ROM destroys FM radio, TV out, no Apps pages, etc)

    BTW, what phone do you have at present?

    One BIG problem I have on my phone is the large amount of time it takes to refresh all my (262 downloaded) apps listing on the “Apps” pages. I use the GO launcher which helps a bit compared to the inbuilt TouchWiz launcher. Installing a new ROM will always irritatingly resort my apps or possibly loose the apps folders which helps me to keep organized.One of the reasons I haven’t tried a new ROM yet!

    • http://josephdefazio.com Joseph DeFazio

      I see what you mean about apps. I grouped them together because rooting is required to install a ROM, although in some cases you’d skip that and go straight to Odin.

      I guess the missing apps would depend upon the ROM you install.

      I currently have a Samsung Galaxy S II Epic 4G Touch.

      I recommend that you try a launcher that’s a bit easier on the device. GO launcher can be laggy on a lot of phones. You could try ADW or Launcher Pro.

  • Gaurav Playboy1

    never install custom roms in your android divices 

  • Kjohnson792

    Hell Naw !!! I Did It Today && Now My Phone Wont Power On. I’m So Hurt.

  • http://twitter.com/maxzamoraj Maximiliano Andrés

    Its not a good idea to install a custom ROM. It is only useful to… put nice themes… and tools…
    You can download an app made by the creators of GO Launcher, its a very good app that really gives you a hand with the battery life.
    It’s called “GO Power” and it has these functions:
    -Different saving-power modes, and custom modes.
    -Process killer. Like… boot your phone, use it for a few hours, and then use the “Optimize” function, and you kill like 40 processes, and gives you extra battery hours.
    -Battery life prediction for different cases (Playing music, playing games, using simple apps, leaving the screen on, etc…)
    Another app, or more like a widget (also from GO Launcher’s creators), it’s GO Switch.
    Its a nice widget, in which you can personalize what buttons to show.
    For example: I just want to have the Wi-Fi, GPS, Ringer mode, data traffic, screen light, and Roaming buttons.
    These apps are very, very useful! They are: “GO Power” and “GO Switch”.
    -Max

  • Simran

    Custom roms are useless in terms of too much lag, they will only work for a couple of days or maybe a week then slow down so much that you have to restart your phone. BASICALLY THERE IS NOTHING BETTER THAN STOCK. 

    NEXUS S 
    STOCK 4.0.4 ICS

  • Dave Ludwig

    I have a question about custom ROMs. I have a T-Mobile Galaxy S3 and I do not know if some of the features that come with the phone were T-Mobile, or Samsung, specific, and would I lose these features with a custom ROM? Things like, swiping across the screen to take a snapshot of it, or the whole press-and-rotate thing to make the camera come up quickly. Do all the hardware buttons still work, the Back and Settings buttons on the bottom? Obviously I want to get rid of all the T-Mobile apps, and I like the clean look of the stock Jelly Bean OS, but might not want to lose these extra features. Thanks.