There are lots of methods (and reasons) to root your Android, although not all are within reach of the average user, as is obvious in those long and elaborate tutorials you can find on the XDA-Developers forum. Towelroot offers a preferred option to do root, as with it all you have to do is click a button and wait a few seconds. The Chinese tool KingRoot follows these lines, offering a simple and completely automated process compatible with a large number of devices. And after its latest update to version 4.0 it can root devices with Android Lollipop, to boot.
Things to keep in mind
The most important thing – and one we never get tired of repeating – is if you’re going to root your device make sure you understand what it’s all about and the advantages (and disadvantages) that come with it. It’s all fine and good to be able to do things like install custom roms, access Android updates much earlier than the official release date, and have access to tools that require superuser permissions, but if you don’t know what any of that even means, best to forget about the process. Every smartphone is a world unto itself, and the recovery systems differ from model to model, not to mention the remote (but feasible) possibility that the process gets stuck halfway and you have to do a full system restore, meaning you need to make sure you have a backup of your data.
In terms of functionality, in theory KingRoot can root almost any version of Android. According to its webpage it can handle everything from Android 2.X to 5.1. With respect to the models supported, it’s quite complicated to give a proper list, as a quick look around the Internet shows that the same users with the same smartphones and operating systems have different results. Luckily, the tool itself takes care of informing you about the efficiency of the process before doing it, as you’ll see below.
How Kingroot works
To start, Kingroot is an app that takes advantage of Android’s vulnerabilities to do the root, which is why many antiviruses might deem it malware in the same way they would a keygen or a patcher, except that rooting your device is completely legal. Thus when you try to install the APK, the system will warn you that it’s a dangerous file even though it actually isn’t.
Once installed, you’ll come across a screen completely in Chinese that offers valuable information about how to proceed with the root. This is what it says:
- (Below to the left) A rating out of three stars with the estimated success rate at the time you do the root on your Android.
- (Below in the center) The estimated time that the process will take, broken down into minutes and seconds.
- (Below to the right) The number of times that devices of the same model and with the same version of Android as the one running the app have been successfully rooted.
- (Below everything) A blue button that will start the root process when pressed.
In the following screen you’ll see a progress percentage for the root process. In the lower part there’s a notice that it’s normal for the device to restart.
After the installation
The best way to see if the procedure has worked is to install the Root Checker app, which will check if your device is already rooted. It’s also advisable to install a permissions administrator tool like SuperSU that lets you limit the access that services and external tools request to run, since even though the app will auto-install the KingUser permissions manager, it will be Chinese to you, literally. As you’ll now be ‘unprotected’, it will do you well to have an app installed to confirm with you when an app tries to do anything weird with your permissions.