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I've rooted my phone. Now what? What do I gain from rooting?
Are there any risks to rooting a device?

Given that the new T-Mobile G2 based on Android 2.2 (and so called 4G network) attempts to address much of the reasons people rooted previous phones, is there any benefit to still find a way to root this phone?

Other than potentially voiding warranty, what are the legal implications (e.g., DCMA ban on technical workarounds)?

  • Legal questions are off-topic, and the linked dupes should answer all other concerns (and probably the legal concerns regardless). Commented Sep 9, 2011 at 21:40

2 Answers 2


Rooting your phone, in and of itself, is not illegal (although, there have been some issues surrounding jailbreaking of iPhones...but that's a whole other discussion). Android as a platform is open source and installing a custom mod, or messing around with the internals of the operating system isn't a problem.

Now, as you pointed out in your comment to Bryan's post, there is some software that is licensed. As such, you are governed by the license that you agreed to for those applications (typically through purchase of the phone).

The real legal ramifications that come up would revolve around what it is that you do with your phone once it is rooted. Some would argue (and I don't necessarily agree) that using tethering with a rooted phone is illegal because you haven't paid for it (of course you have paid for the data...but...again, I digress). The phone service providers would most likely tell you its all illegal because they want to lock you in. By locking you in, they guarantee a revenue stream.

So, all-in-all, I don't particularly see a problem. However, I am not a lawyer, so I would ask one if you are truly concerned about the issue.


See my posts here on How to root your phone and You've rooted your phone. Now what?

In short: you will void your warranty. IANAL, but legally, it's your phone and you can do what you want with it, but the manufacturer can try to patch the holes that are used to root in order to prevent future rooting.

Other benefits: custom roms, overclocking, tethering, other root-only apps. And who is to say that you won't get Android 2.3 before a custom rom like Cyanogen does? With Cyanogen, you are guaranteed to get the next version of Android, whether tomorrow or two years down the road (look at G1s, for example), barring hardware capabilities.

  • There are definitely legal ramifications. While it is your phone and you can do what you want (Hardware), it is not necessarily your Software with which can do what you wish. You only own a license to use the software (Android 2.2). Any messing with it could be a violation of the terms of the license. I just do not know, without proper research, what the exact legal restrictions on Android are.
    – S Red
    Commented Dec 3, 2010 at 20:08
  • 3
    @S Red.: Android is released under free (as in libre, not as in beer) software license: Apache License and GNU/GPL. Free software license restricts the restrictions that manufacturer/carrier can impose on you, specifically free software license guarantees that users can modify and redistribute the free licensed software. However, note that not all software that comes with Android is released under free software license. Obviously, not all Market apps are open source, but also Google's apps (Gmail, Maps, etc) and carrier/manufacturer apps are not licensed under a free software license.
    – Lie Ryan
    Commented Dec 3, 2010 at 21:09

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