The Google Pixel Will Have an Unlockable Bootloader After All

By Tom Pritchard on at

One of the selling points of Android has always been that you can go inside and fuck about with it, without incurring the wrath of the technological overload in charge of things. When Google announced its first in-house smartphone, the Pixel, there was concern that those days would be over. Thankfully, this is not the case.

Some people were worried that Google was taking a more Apple-inspired hands-on approach to Android, meaning the Pixel would be less open and less friendly to developers. But the company has confirmed that the Pixel does come with an unlockable bootloader. That means that it can be rooted, though, as you might expect, there are some stipulations involved.

The main one is that the only phones guaranteed to have the unlockable bootloader are the ones purchased directly from Google. If you buy it elsewhere, like through a mobile network, there's a chance it won't be there. Other stipulations are the same as past phones: if you root your device, you're also giving up the right to over-the-air updates. That's because rooting involving modifying partitions, and that will cause the updates to fail.

So, basically, you'd be giving up the one of the main reasons stock Android is so desirable.

But the Android community is pretty hard working. Even if you do root a Pixel, there are bound to a great many ways you can update the operating system without directly relying on Google. [WonderHowTo via Slashgear]