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How to root an Android device in 4 easy steps

Lee Bell
15 Mar 2016
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Want more customisation on your Android device? Follow our simple 4-step guide to rooting your phone or tablet

If you know what the term “jail breaking” means, then you’re probably familiar with rooting. Those unware of what either terms refer to should know that jailbreaking is the same for iPhone as rooting is for Android: the process of removing the hardware restrictions that Apple or Google (or your phone's manufacturer) has implemented on their respective devices.

For Android users, rooting gives you complete access and administrative privileges on your device, so you can take full advantage of its performances and capabilities. This enables you to make changes and install apps that couldn’t be used on a non-rooted phone. While this sounds like a good idea, the bad news is that doing so could void the warranty on the device you own, or if you don’t know what you’re doing, one wrong move could brick your device completely.

Warnings aside, this is a super simple 4-step guide showing you the easiest way to root your Android device. All you’ll need a PC, a USB cable and an internet connection to download some free software.

Step 1

First off, you’ll need to download and install a 'one click' Android rooting software. For our guide, we used Kingo Android Root, mainly because it’s one the most popular and reliable programs out there. Its website lists more than 220 supported mobile phones and tablets, so there’s a good chance your device will be covered – and even phones that aren't listed may still be rootable.


How to root an Android device - install Android Root

Step 2

Before connecting your phone or tablet to your PC you’ll need to enable the USB debugging mode on your Android device. This can be found in Settings, About Phone, and then Developer Options. If developer options aren't displayed in the settings menu, simply go to About and open Software Information, then select More. Tap 'Build number' seven times to enable Developer options. Now go to Developer Options and check the 'USB debugging' option and approve the setting change.

How to root an Android device - allow root via developer access

Step 3

Next, run the Kingo Root software on your PC. Connect your phone via its sync cable and look out for the software telling you it's recognised the device is connected. Your device might ask you again if you want to “allow USB debugging?” via a pop-up screen. Check the "Always allow from this computer," option and select OK.

How to root an Android device - install Android Root on phone

Step 4

Click the ‘Root’ button and the software will tell you it’s rooting. It should take between two and five minutes depending on your phone. And that’s it! Your Android device is now rooted. What you do from now on is up to you. You can reverse the process if you like by running the software again and selecting the “Remove Root” option.

How to root an Android device - rooting in operation