What is an Android Custom ROM?
The term ROM, which stands for Read Only Memory and really has very little to do with what a custom Android ROM actually is, can be confusing. A custom Android ROM refers to a phone’s firmware, based on Google’s Android platform. Android is open source and therefore any developer can edit the code, recompile it, and re-release for a wide variety of devices. Users can install ROMs to change a device’s appearance and behavior. ROMs are developed by the Android community, often times by a group of core developers who do this purely out of passion for modding. This means that most are completely free. Custom ROMs are available for phones, tablets, media players, smart watches and almost any type of device running Android.
When you buy your Android device, it comes with what we call a “stock ROM” or the “stock firmware”. This refers to the preinstalled operating system. This ROM usually has limited functionality as defined by the phone’s manufacturer. By flashing a custom ROM, you can unlock extra features and sometimes improve the performance.
Flashing a ROM is easy and if you follow instructions, you barely need to know what you’re doing… and I barely need to have friends! It’s been 17 days since someone texted me. You should know that if you do something incorrectly while flashing a ROM, you risk rendering your phone inoperable. This is rare but can happen if you aren’t careful, and it’s called “bricking”.
Why use a Custom ROM ?
Many Android users will never touch a custom ROM and will be perfectly satisfied. For those of us who want to push the performance of our devices and unlock extra features, we’ll be using custom ROMs. Here are some of the benefits of switching to a Custom ROM:
Out of the box, your phone or tablet’s hardware is clocked at a speed that the manufacturer considers optimal in terms of heat and battery life. On a custom ROM, you’ll be able to overclock your hardware to get big performance increases. These changes can really show when you’re playing graphics intensive games. Another way a ROM can improve performance is by removing carrier or OEM-installed apps, known as bloatware, which can free up system resources.
On the flip-side of overclocking, there’s underclocking. If you don’t really need all the speed of your massive processor, you can dial it back a bit by underclocking. With your processor running at a lower speed, you can often extend battery life by days! This is something to consider if you find yourself charging your phone multiple times per day. A custom ROM, again, by removing bloatware, can help free up the CPU to do less because there are fewer apps running in the background.
One of the most frustrating things about owning an Android is waiting for your manufacturer to push an update to your phone so you can get the latest features. Often times manufacturers will even cut support for your device entirely. This leaves you stuck with a phone with an old version of Android. The solution is a custom ROM on the newest Android version. Even if your phone is stuck on KitKat, you can download and flash a ROM based on Lollipop. Many of the more popular ROMs even update on a daily basis. These updates are called “Nightlies”.
Android is already very customizable right out of the box. With a custom ROM you can even modify things like the color of your notification light, the force of your vibration, the saturation of the colors on your screen and much more. I wish I could customize myself a friend!
And Finally Here are the 10 Best Custom ROMs for Android:
Note: Installing a custom ROM requires you to root a device, which voids the warranty on most smartphones and if things go wrong, the process might even brick your device. So, do it only if you are sure and be careful.
CyanogenMod has grown a lot since its yesteryear’s and it’s now a full fledged company, which also offers Cyanogen OS. CyanogenMod’s popularity in the Android world is no surprise because it packs a plethora of unique features like the integrated theme engine, custom profiles, gestures and the ability to customize everything. You can configure the working of the navigation bar, status bar, notification drawer and hardware buttons. Moreover, the ROM is regularly updated and supports most of the devices available on the market. It also recently started offering nightly builds of CyanogenMod 14, based on Android 7.0 Nougout.
2. Paranoid Android
Paranoid Android is another very popular ROM, which has been competing against CyanogenMod since a long time. The ROM has a beautiful interface and you can customize everything the way you want. There are a number of cool unique features like hover notifications, cool immersive mode (hides the status and navigation bars), dynamic system bars, peek notifications from lockscreen and ability to use gestures instead of the navigation buttons. Furthermore, it packs in Cyanogen’s theme engine along with various other customization features. The ROM is officially available for Nexus, Oppo and OnePlus devices but you can get it on other devices through unofficial channels on XDA.
Cataclysm might not be a fancy looking ROM, as it rocks the stock Android look but it aims at bringing value additions for a solid performance. The ROM brings a lot of handy additions like configurable toggles, lockscreen along with customization options for status bar, notifications etc. Other notable features include Smart Radio, App Ops, battery styles, navigation bar options and more. The ROM is best known for its great performance and solid builds, with the least number of bugs. The ROM is only available for Nexus devices officially but you can get the ROM for other devices from unofficial channels like XDA. Well, if you are looking for a solid Marshmallow ROM with tons of features, Cataclysm should be good enough.
4. Resurrection Remix
Resurrection Remix is one of the most stable, regularly updated and clean looking ROMs, which also stands out through its features. The ROM lets you personalize everything, from the lockscreen, notifications drawer to the navigation buttons and animations. Other feature include Pitch Black dark theme, customizable notifications and more. Ressurrection Remix is a ROM aimed at people who want to tinker with every element in the interface. The ROM’s website states clearly that it has an amalgam of features from other popular ROMs. The good news is that the ROM is supported on various Android smartphones and the developers recently outed a Marshmallow build as well.
5. Dirty Unicorns
If plethora of options and features excite you, you must get the Dirty Unicorns ROM. The Marshmallow based open-source ROM includes the CM Theme engine along with other cool features like status bar & notification drawer mods, notification LED settings, lockscreen configurations and more extensive customizations. The ROM includes a cool “Dirty Tweaks” section, where you will find all the tweaks including double tap to lock, immersive mode, OmniSwitch floating toolbar, dataflow indicators and more. There are many more features and you should love it if you love fiddling with settings. The ROM is supported on many devices, although some devices have been left behind after the dawn of Marshmallow builds.
XenonHD is a fast and performance oriented ROM, thanks to its lightweight nature. Along with the performance, the ROM does not sacrifice on features as well. It brings layers based RRO theming, which lets you theme your interface according to your need. The ROM brings a stock look but you can customize everything including the status bar, notification drawer, buttons etc. The Lollipop based ROM also includes features like built-in root access, privacy guard, filter notifications and more. The ROM is certainly not very feature rich but it arguably brings the most stable and breezy performance. The ROM is available for a few Samsung, Sony, Nexus, HTC, Oppo devices through the official channels but you can get it on other devices from unofficial channels as well.
BlissPop might not be as popular as others on the list but it holds its own due to its unique features. The CM12 Lollipop based ROM adds a number if cool features like “Bliss interface”, which packs in all tweak settings in one place, making sure your Settings page is cleaner and more usable. There are other cool features like lockscreen shortcuts, battery styles, status bar configurations, navigation rings, left-handed mode, LiveDisplay etc. It also lets you customize all the interface elements to its core. For instance, you can change the icons, colors, texts, fonts and more in the status bar. BlissPop is available for a number of devices through official as well as unofficial channels.
OmniROM is another popular ROM developed by ex-Cyanogen developers and a Marshmallow build of the ROM was recently released with unique features it has been known for. The ROM brings features like OmniJAWS weather service, DSPManager, delta update system, dark mode UI, quick settings panel, enhanced Do Not Disturb mode along with the usual customization options we expect from a ROM. The most intriguing feature it brings is OmniSwitch, which lets you switch between different apps quickly and easily. OmniROM is available for various devices from the likes of Oppo, Sony, Samsung, HTC, Asus, LG and of course, Nexus devices.
9. Euphoria OS
Euphoria OS, previously known as Mahdi is a popular ROM based on AOSP and it recently took the plunge to Android 6.0 Marshmallow. Along with the usual personalization options, it brings features like privacy guard, LED manager, hardware keys configuration, profiles, double tap to wake and more. Also, it uses a custom kernel, which is supposed to bring better performance and battery usage improvements by under-clocking the device, when not using extensive apps. Other features of the ROM include different animations, lockscreen weather, configurable power menu & recents screen and more. Euphoria OS is available officially for a few smartphones including the ones from Nexus, Motorola, OnePlus, LG etc.
MIUI is a popular name, thanks to Xiaomi’s increasing market share and the good news is that the ROM is available as for other devices as well. While the OS does look like a rehash of iOS, it still looks beautiful and most importantly, works flawlessly. MIUI is for people who want a huge departure from stock Android. The ROM brings some handy features like Child Mode, Showtime, popup view, Blacklist, data stats, MiCloud, Theme store and more. It also lets you customize everything about the interface and moreover, the ROM is regularly updated. The ROM also supports a lot of devices including older ones, so you can certainly breathe new life to your older smartphones through MIUI.
Note :- Installing a Custom ROM is not a easy task , this may be avoid your warranty and can hard brick your device