Smartphone manufacturers don’t want consumers to be able to use their phones to their fullest. They have multiple reasons to want to keep their users out of their own phones.
To begin, a few restrictions can help keep uninformed users from meddling with important parts of their phones’ operating systems. This makes sense to a certain extent. Not all restrictions are put up to stop users from inadvertently ruining their phones. Rather, safeguards are often in place to keep users from using unauthorized free apps in place of paid company apps. Sometimes app stores go out of their way to hobble features on some apps for narrow-minded business considerations. If a user knew how to defeat these restrictions, he could easily make better use of the features that were rightfully his to use.
There are many ways available that help you get around these walls. The specific technique that you use depends on the kind of restriction that you need to overcome.
Unlocking your device
When you buy a phone under contract direct from a phone carrier, the phone you get is usually locked for exclusive use with that carrier. Unlocking the phone, though, can give it the ability to run on any network. This can be a useful ability. For instance, when you travel to another country, you won’t be forced to pay roaming charges. You will be able to simply get on a local carrier for the duration of your stay.
To unlock a phone, you need a special unlocking code. This code is provided by the carrier once your contract runs out or when you pay them for the code.
Jailbreaking your device
Apple places restrictions on its devices to make sure of that only apps from its App Store are allowed on board. Apple, though, has a strict App Store policy – the store’s app screening board denies listings to hundreds of apps each year. Many of these are useful apps. The only way that you can get these apps on board your Apple device is to break down the app restrictions in place. This is what jailbreaking achieves – it makes changes to the operating system that remove app related restrictions. With these restrictions out of the way, you will be able to install apps from any source.
While the traditional way to jailbreak an Apple device is to let an expert work on it, some coders have easy-to-use jailbreaking tools on the market that anyone can use to open up their phones – you don’t need coding or hacking skills. Redsn0w and JailbreakMe are two of the most popular names in the world of jailbreaking tools.
Rooting your device
The Android platform doesn’t have as many restrictions in place as Apple’s App Store. The operating system only makes sure that users do not have access to its deepest levels. These restrictions are put in place simply to help android phones safe from user error. Power users, though, are usually unhappy with the superficial control that they are able to achieve with the stock access privileges granted by the Android operating system. If you have a reason to want deep control, you have a way – you can read to your device.
Rooting is the process of allowing users of devices running the Android OS to achieve root-level access (elevated/privileged control). Once a device is rooted, applications can be grant access to root permissions. This allows them to perform administrative functions like uninstalling applications. Rooting is also required if you want to remove the original operating system and install another one altogether.