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Installing Vanilla Android On Verizon Phones

Discussion in 'Android Lounge' started by Vanilla232, Jul 23, 2013.

  1. Vanilla232

    Vanilla232 Lurker
    Thread Starter

    I'm still a bit new to Android (just upgrading to my second Android phone now) so I was wondering, how readily can one install an unmodified "vanilla" build Android on a Verizon phone? (That would be, on a phone other than the Galaxy Nexus, which seems to have been discontinued.) Are there some Verizon-specific modifications that simply have to be included (mandatory apps, CDMA drivers, etc) or can essentially any rooted Verizon phone be used with vanilla Android?

    Alternatively, does anyone have any experience with alternative operating systems? I might be willing to try cyanogenmod, since apparently it offers more effective privacy controls and I've always been a bit bothered by how readily Android wants to connect to Google services.

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  2. Lordvincent 90

    Lordvincent 90 ▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓

    Hi and welcome to AF! :) AOSP (AKA "Android Open Source Project" aka "vanilla android" ) ROMs have to be compiled specifically for each device. Using a rom not made for your device is a recipe for disaster.

    Which phone specifically are you referring to?
    funkylogik and Vanilla232 like this.
  3. Vanilla232

    Vanilla232 Lurker
    Thread Starter

    I was thinking about getting a Galaxy Stratosphere 2 since it has a physical keyboard, but if it can't run vanilla Android and a different phone can, I'd go with the different one.
  4. Mostly Harmless

    Mostly Harmless Android Expert

    The Stratosphere 2 is a midrange phone, I would look to something that is top end and has a lot of rooting support. The SGS4 would be a good choice since it has a good size community over at XDA (the site you should be going to for all your rooting/rom needs):


    I would look around there and see if you are comfortable with the rooting procedure prior to buying/rooting the phone.
  5. EarlyMon

    EarlyMon The PearlyMon
    VIP Member

    funkylogik and mikedt like this.
  6. breadnatty08

    breadnatty08 pain rustique

    Unfortunately, manufacturer's are giving such mid ranged specs for phones with physical keyboards, and that's too bad. However, it looks like the Stratosphere 2 is getting little support. The Moto Droid 4 has quite a few stock/Cyanogen ROMs out there, though.
    My Galaxy S3 looks nearly identical to my wife's Galaxy Nexus FWIW. :)
    funkylogik and Vanilla232 like this.
  7. jhawkkw

    jhawkkw Chinchillin'

    Getting vanilla android on Verizon devices is getting harder and harder with Verizon mandating just about every device have a locked bootloader. AOSP (vanilla) roms need to be flash in recovery and require they're own kernels and these locked bootloaders prohibit the device from booting when it isn't stock. People have gotten clever work around solutions that remain for a while, but Verizon continues to squash these. The GS4 just lost it's work around method with it's latest update a few weeks ago for example. So those who took the update are out of luck. :(
    funkylogik likes this.
  8. Vanilla232

    Vanilla232 Lurker
    Thread Starter

    Ah, the Droid 4 has a physical keyboard. I'm having trouble finding vanilla Android roms for it, though I have found the appropriate Cyanogen download.

    I haven't found a bootloader unlock for it, though; that means I'm at the mercy of workarounds that might get patched over?

    And does anyone have experience with the Droid 4? It looks like an older model (and I heard rumours of a Droid 5 with physical keyboard) and seems to be identical to the Razr aside from the aforementioned feature.
  9. jhawkkw

    jhawkkw Chinchillin'

    I don't have hands on experience with it, but from what I picked up from roaming the forums is that since the Droid 4 has the same OMAP chipset as the Droid Razr/Bionic, there is no official unlock method for the bootloader and the developers have all but given up on it because not only is it secured at the software level with signature checking, but also at the hardware level. This is an extra layer of security that the Razr HD/M didn't have which is what allowed Dan Rosenberg to find an exploit to actually unlock them.

    Due to there being no unlock method, you are at the mercy of use workarounds like 2nd init booting/bootstrapping in order to boot aosp roms.
  10. Vanilla232

    Vanilla232 Lurker
    Thread Starter

    In that case, maybe I'll get a Droid Incredible, since that seems to have an unlockable bootloader and Cyanogen support. It also appears to have a vanilla Jelly Bean rom available.
  11. funkylogik

    funkylogik share the love peeps ;)

    Lol@Earlymon :D:beer:

    Can i just add that you wont get truly vanilla for a non-nexus phone. Cyanogen is fairly close i think.
    Totally agree with what everyone else said, if youre gona buy a phone to mod it, check out the forums and see how healthy the dev scene is for it :thumbup:

    Also.. a phone doesnt have to be high end to be well supported by the developers.
    My first android, a
    Vanilla232 likes this.
  12. Vanilla232

    Vanilla232 Lurker
    Thread Starter

  13. funkylogik

    funkylogik share the love peeps ;)

    Lol my friend, you fit the classic rom-flasher profile :beer::beer:
  14. mamawm

    mamawm Well-Known Member

    take a look at the droid dna, there's an exploit out to root and unlock the bootloader. development has really picked up lately. and it's a top notch phone and should be able to hold it's own for a while to come.

    and, best buy has the dna on for free this weekend.

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