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Finding the Right Android ROM

Your android device is like your girlfriend or boyfriend. It can serve you pretty decently and ensure that you are almost never bored. However, unlike girlfriends/boyfriends you do not have to deal with all the strenuous effort of understanding them. If you do not like what they have to offer (the android device) you can just root it and install a new ROM. Yeah, if we could do that to the people we are in a relationship with things would be so simple. Although rooting your device is quite simple, replacing the ROM can be very hectic due to all the options that are available out there. You need to such and find one that specifically fits with who you are. Here’s how to go about it.

So, what is a ROM? Android ROMs are basically modified versions of the android OS software. Just like your PC runs on Windows 8 so does your tablet or smartphone run on an OS software. Now, this software is there to hold together everything that your device has from Angry Birds to Messaging. Beyond that they basically make your device more appealing and add myriads of beneficial features.

Custom Android ROMs

The entire thing can seem like gibberish but do not fret. There are dozens of apps that can be used to help you change your ROM. They range from ROM Manager to Pimp my ROM. However, this post is not here to let you know that there are apps for doing so but to give you the step by step methods used to do so.

Here is what you need to know before you go chasing after random ROMs because a friend told you it was amazing. There are three major types of ROMs out there for you to pick from. Ones that offer future versions of the Android software, ROMs that give your device new features, and ROMs that focus on the speed and stability of your device. Of course there are other versions but these three are basically what you need to look out for.

Future versions; Imagine having the ability to put the W16engine from a Bugatti Veyron and stuffing it into that Beetle that you were never really proud of dragging around. Yes, that’s what the future version allows you to do. When the Android 2.2 Froyo was out almost all ROM developers dove right into syncing their developments with the system because, well, it was the newest. That means that all versions of ROM from that point onwards will use future versions. However, most developers wait until the source code is available so they can base their ROMs on Froyo. Downside, I know. Another disadvantage is that they are the least stable due to the fact that not all the kinks have been dealt with.

New features; This category is really interesting. Imagine being able to control the music on your device while the screen is locked, or making a call while using the browser. All these things are possible with this category of ROMs. Note that these features are built-in as opposed to having to download an app that lets you do them on a device that’s yet to be rooted. You can still get this features at the moment through the Android Market so think wisely before getting this type of ROM.

Speed and stability; You need to understand that these ROMs are ONLY built for speed and stability. Do not rush to get one that has other features plus speed and stability because you’re probably being ripped off. Unfortunately (yes, all positives have negatives), they are a bit slow on giving you the new features. But that won’t be why you will be trying to get this ROM, is it?

How does one find and install new ROMs? Well, it’s a good thing you are reading this post because I am here with all the answers.

Before I can give you the nitty gritties you should have already rooted your device. If that is already done then you should be able to follow the steps perfectly.

If that is done then what you should have is a recovery image. This is basically the fundamental system of the android device. It’s accessed when you boot your device while holding down on two external buttons which of course depends on you device. You need to search through Google for this one e.g. Galaxy Tab Recovery Mode.

The first step here is to install an app that will give your device the ability to do so. We would recommend ROM Manager. Once you have opened the app just press down on the Flash ClockworkMod at the top of the main menu to confirm your phone’s model. A progress bar will let you know how things are going and once it’s done you can download and install a new ROM.

What about finding one that’s right for you? Well, before I came along that would have been a bitch. Luckily, all my dreary hours online let me find the Unlockr that offers infinite number of ROMs each specifically designed for a particular device. While you’re on the site just click on the model of your phone and you are good to go. On top of that ROM Manager also offers ROMs for download so you can easily check them out. The ones they offer are the most popular but the app does not let you know which category they belong to. To find that out go to the Unlockr and search for it in their database. From there on out it all about you and your fearlessness. Trial and error all the way. You can still download one and store it in your SD card for future installment.

Installment is pretty much a non-issue. If you are doing as I say then you should have ROM Manager. With that installation is pretty simple. Once it has downloaded you should first back-up your existing ROM. I cannot emphasize enough how important that is. If things get real you can always fall back on your old ROM. What you need to do is “Wipe Data and Cache” if you are moving from one android version to a more improved one. But the work to be done will be more than enough to fill your plate if you were using a Froyo system. That’s because you’ll have to reinstall all your apps, rearrange the homescreen, and configure all your settings. If a problem persists you can keep restoring from your back up and going at it again.

From here it’s all up to what you want to do. Rage out if you like what you got. Check out all the features and capabilities that your device should have depending on the category you went for.

In the next segment, you can read which are the best Android ROMs in the market at the moment in my opinion.  Feel free to criticize or cite your views on the comments section.  Have fun.