For years, tech geeks and Android OS enthusiasts have been rooting their smartphones to do things that were not available in Android by default.
From editing screenshots to removing bloatware, pro users have to root their phones to get these features. With the evolution of Android, Google has added plenty of features to the OS that once were only accessible via rooting, hence eliminating the need to root Android for many people.
With every significant Android release, the need to root Android is vanishing as you can get many android tricks without the root.
Here are some of the top features that no longer require you to root your android phone:
Edit and take Screenshots
Taking screenshots was once a privilege only for root users. Yes, you are read that right. Only root users were able to take screenshots on their devices. However, now it seems like a thing of the past. If you are not a lifelong user of Android smartphones, this might be hard to digest, but yes, it was supposed to be like that.
Taking screenshots on Android is available for quite a long time now but editing screenshots feature has also been for the rooted users. CyanogenMod custom ROM users could later use the “Edit and Delete” button after taking a screenshot. After recent Android releases, this feature is now a feature in Android OS by default; and you don’t have to root or install a custom ROM to get this feature.
Change Screen Resolution
If you are aware of DPI, then you know how bad a phone could look when you have a small screen phone but the app icons are too big on it and sometimes the big screen phones have app icons that are too small. The DPI values are not in order. With the help of ADB commands, you can easily change the display resolution.
Just run this command after enabling developer options from the system settings:
wm density [DPI] && adb reboot
Don’t forget to note the original DPI values before changing them so that you can revert if you don’t like it. To note the DPI value, you can install “DPI Checker” from Google Play Store and run it for native DPI value. For the ADB tool, you can visit the Android developer’s website. Choose a smaller number to get a screen that fits all the icons.
Get Google Now Cards
Unsupported Android phones cannot use Google Now cards feature on lower Android versions. The only possible solution was rooting your Android phone. Now, Nova launcher has released an update of their launcher with which users can access Google Now cards by pressing the Home button or any custom key. You can map the keys to launch Google Now from the launcher settings. You can also remap how the keys work in Nova launcher like single Home press opens Google Assistant.
Android OS was not as secure and strict as iOS, and that was the reason people used to root their phones to revoke app permissions. Application developers used to access the permissions such as camera, location, contacts, and others in their application without any reason. Some app developers were caught stealing users’ data and selling it. Now, permission manager is built right into Android OS. No need to root your android phone to get this feature. Controlling permissions in Android is granular now and gives the user the power the control of its privacy.
Restrict Data Usage
Android OS allows users to restrict background app data. However, it is not like a firewall that completely blocks the network access for particular apps. Still, it is useful than ever. To get the advantage of this feature, navigate to the settings.
One thing is clear; no one likes bloatware. However, there was a time when manufacturers and carriers were playing with your feelings by not letting you delete unwanted apps. The only way to get rid of the bloatware was to root your android device. Pathetic days, right? Now, you are not stuck with it anymore. Google lets you disable pre-installed applications that are not necessary for the core functionality of the OS. You can even disable Gallery, Calendar and Clock apps but no one would do that.
You can also hide apps with the help of ADB commands. Connect your phone and type “adb shell pm list packages”. Find the package name of the app you want to hide from your phone, copy it and type adb shell pm hide [package name] and reboot. To revert, replace “hide” with “unhide” and apps will be back.
Improve Sound Quality
With the help of root, users were able to port Dolby Digital quality to their phones. That’s pretty cool. In rooted phones, one can use Xposed modules to enhance the sound experience, but you don’t want to get into complexity you can install apps that can do a similar job. Music apps like Spotify offer built-in equalizer. “Equalizer – Bass Boost” is a free app and works with all accessories. You can also create presets depending on your headphones or external speakers. You have to disable other equalizer apps to make it work. The rest is easy. Experiment with the bass, treble and make presets you like.
Restart your Phone with One Tap
Ages ago, Android users have to turn off their Android phones and then turn it back on manually. There was no option to restart it. Don’t you think how stupid it was? It was so frustrating to press the power button again and again for this purpose; we needed that “Restart” button very badly. Thanks to Google that they listened to our problem and added restart in the power menu. Moreover, they didn’t just stop there, in Android Pie, “Lockdown” and “Screenshot” soft buttons were also added to the power menu. What a treat, just like Android.
Clone and Run Apps
Sometimes a person needs more than one accounts. In a nutshell, if you want to run two accounts on the phone, you can do it without rooting your phone. You can manage two Facebook and WhatsApp profiles on one phone without any interference. Several apps are now available to help you in running apps but “App Cloner” and “Parallel Space” are worth trying.
Secure Apps from Intruders
There is always a snoopy friend who is interested in what you have in your phone. It is irritating, and it’s hard to stop them from doing this. The most obvious solution is installing an app lock, but the app locks are vulnerable and full of Ads. Instead of going for an app lock, apps like Nova Launcher or Apex Launcher allow users to hide the apps in the app drawer. There you go, no need to root your phone.
Customizing navigation bar was only available for rooted Android phone users. There were several popular modes for the Xposed module to change the style of the navigation bar. However, now it’s a thing of the past. Users get to customize navigation bars without root. It’s not available as a built-in feature but you can download and install third party apps for this purpose.
Adding Soft Keys
As the trend of the bezel-less screen is rapidly growing, most of the phones now are coming with a software navigation button. If you are bored of your black navigation bar and soft keys, you can change the way they look without root now. You can swap the keys and tweak them, but apps like “Custom Navigation Bar” are still testing these features in experimental tweaks. You can also use “Simple Control (Navigation bar)” app to customize your soft keys. Even if your phone doesn’t have soft buttons, you can add some using an app named “Virtual SoftKeys (no root)” on Google Play. Enable the permissions and adjust the settings of the navigation keys the way you want them to be.
Let us know what do you think about these tricks, also share if you know any other trick or app that works without root comment below!