80% of Android phone owners in China have rooted their device

Andy Boxall | April 16, 2015


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Research carried out by Tencent, the Chinese mobile giant, shows that 80% of Chinese smartphone users had rooted their Android smartphones during 2014. Only 6% had never heard of rooting a device, while 13% stated they were aware of the practice, but had never felt the need to try it out.

Research shows rooting Android phones is popular in China

rooted android

The survey covered nearly 9,000 individuals, and those who had rooted their phones were also asked why. The results are interesting. The primary reason, gaining 27% of the response, was to update the phone to a new version of the operating system. Outside of China, Android updates often require many months work before making it through to users phones. In China, where the open source version of Android is more widely used, and often extensively modified, updates can be even slower.

The reasons given for rooting phones

reasons root

Rooting a phone takes a degree of technical knowledge, therefore those who’re most interested in the inner workings of their phones will be willing to root the device, so it’s no surprise to see just over 26% of people simply wanted to try out a different version of Android. Other reasons include the phone coming with too many unwanted apps – often referred to as bloatware, and something that’s far more prevalent in Chinese smartphones – and an attempt to make the battery last longer.

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