Android OS is known for its developer-friendly nature. Unlike iOS, Android gives them room to customize almost everything. In conclusion, that’s the reason why we witness the existence of Custom ROMs & Ports only on Android.
Custom ROMs & Ported ROMs are two different things. A Custom ROM is a modified version of the operating system that is available for Android devices. As Android is open-source, anyone can build their flavour of Android. Custom ROMs were built by ROM developers or Android enthusiasts. They take the Android source code and modify some things or add some features to it. That’s how you get a Custom ROM. OS like Lineage, Arrow, Derpfest, Pixel Experience falls under this category.
On the other hand, Ported ROMs comes out by taking an existing ROM as a base from other devices and making necessary changes and improvements to it. The ROM now can be installed on devices that are not supported by their manufacturers to receive any future updates. Both of them are getting a lot of attention similar to the operating systems from OEM’s. Custom ROMs & Ported ROMS allows you to try other operating systems.
For instance, I’m a POCO user myself and my phone supports bootloader unlocking. Out of the box, it comes with MIUI. However, I can change the OS on it and can install any Custom ROM of my choice. Do note that, this process of installing Custom ROMs & Ported ROMs has its own merits and demerits.
Custom ROMS & Ports: Are they safe & secure?
Judging the safety factor of Custom ROMs & Ported ROMs is difficult. However, one thing is sure. They are not as safe & stable as your OEM ROMs. Wanna know why?
- They Lack Dedicated Support: An OEM ROM is a specialized version of Android that is made by the manufacturer. Operating systems like MIUI, Oxygen OS, Samsung Experience, EMUI falls under this category. They were designed based on Android and were taken care of by the manufacturer itself. Occasional updates, bug fixes and optimisations were taken care of by a group of developers hired by the manufacturers. On the other hand, as I said, Custom ROMs were developed by Android Enthusiasts as a side project. Therefore, lacking dedicated support like OEM’s. As a result, you rarely find constant support on Custom ROMs.
- Lack of Accountability: When you purchase a phone, the brand is accountable to your needs according to consumer law. You can’t find that accountability in Custom ROMs. Since you don’t pay a penny for the developers, they are not accountable to you. You can’t expect the developers of the ROM to solve the bug fixes and optimisations like your OEM ROMs.
- Lacks Trust: Of all thing things, Custom ROMs lacks that trust factor of OEM’s. The OEM ROMs were developed in a closed environment. Therefore, tampering is highly impossible. Since Custom ROMs comes out from a process of tampering with the code, trusting it is like dancing on a sword.
However, do note that not all Custom ROMs are bad. The key here is to find a trusted source where everything goes smoothly like they used to have in OEM ROMs. However, it is a hectic task since the list of Custom ROMs is growing every day, especially for the people who just entered into the realm of Custom ROM.
Therefore, we compiled a list of trusted sources from where we are downloading and using Custom ROMs a lot lately. These sources are good, secured and often cited as the best sources for Custom ROMs. Let’s begin the list. Shall we?
1. XDA Forums
XDA Developers or XDA is a mobile software development community that’s introduced way back in 2002. This forum primarily revolves around technology in mobiles, issues, suggestions & support groups. Everyone can use this forum to post their queries regarding troubleshooting on mobile phones. It also hosts suggestions and debates covering various issues regarding mobile phones.
XDA also introduces various discussion zones and also dedicated device support forums. For instance, XDA has got a dedicated device support forum for OnePlus devices. You can check them out through this link. XDA also recently opened forums for the OnePlus Nord 2, Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3, and Galaxy Z Flip 3
These forums are very useful as they cover everything about the phone. That includes Tutorials, Q&A’s, News, Mods and more. These discussion forums also host a dedicated option for ROMs, Kernels, & Recoveries. Developers all around the world upload their ROM creations here. Most of them were renowned, safe and secure. For instance, you can check here. The thread is regarding Pixel Experience on POCO F1. Go and check out whether your device has this forum or not. You can do it by using the link given below.
Pling is the largest website for the Free Software and Content community. It is somewhat similar to XDA. Pling also hosts support groups, project development cycles, coverage & more. You can find some interesting features covering all the aspects of a mobile phone. It includes free Apps, UI Concepts, Mobile ROMs, MODS & Firmwares. As of now, Pling has got more than 100K+ registered users and 2.6 million unique visitors each month.
Pling attracts developers all around the world via donations & its reward system. Every single download on pling rewards the creator with a small “minitip” and costs a little resource to keep online. That’s how Pling supports developers and creators encouraging them to share their work online. Pling is one of the amazing sources for mobile phone ROMS. It hosts almost every device that supports boot-loader unlock. you can browse through them through the link given below.
3. Pixel Experience
Pixel Experience is an AOSP based ROM, with Google apps included and all Pixel goodies. It’s well-renowned and one of the trusted sources to try Stock Android. The moto of Pixel Experience is to provide maximum possible stability and security, along with essential and useful features for the proper functioning of the device. Pixel Experience is widely considered for its Stable Nature, Constant Updates and Support.
Pixel Experience was run by Henrique Silva. He is the lead developer and the man behind Pixel Experience. The ROM also has massive core support from various developers just like an average OEM ROM. Pixel Experience is unique in its way. Unlike other Custom ROMs, Pixel Experience is not confined to a couple of devices. It supports a wide range of devices from Asus, Motorola, POCO, Samsung, OnePlus and Realme. The best part is that the list gets increased every day. You can check them by using the link below.
4. Telegram Channels
Telegram is widely considered as the messenger that can do more than messaging. In Telegram, users can create a simple channel or group and can invite people to join them easily. You can find everything in Telegram right now just like the torrents use to do. Sharing and downloading content in Telegram is much easier. Unlike WhatsApp, Telegram does not impose many restrictions on data sharing. Therefore, Telegram has now become a major hub for Custom ROMS & Mods.
Almost every famous ROM owns a dedicated channel along with a support group on Telegram. Users can use bots in Telegram like this to maintain disguise and anonymity. Features like these are attracting developers around the world to share their creations. Here’s a list of renowned developers on Telegram that has amazing Custom & Ported ROMs.
OOFGang | PocoPixel | Pixel ROM | Erfan GSI | AMACK
SourceForge is a centralized online location to control and manage open-source software projects. People use SourceForge to develop, download, review, and publish open-source software. Therefore, making it a hub for various Custom ROM creations. The SourceForge repository claimed to host more than 502,000 projects. It had more than 3.7 million registered users. Therefore, making it one of the largest & trusted sources for Custom ROMs. You can check various Custom ROM projects on SourceForge by using the link below.
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