What is OEM Unlocking? How to Enable it on an Android devices?

by Ronald Bass
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Android’s open-source nature is what makes it so popular, just like Linux for PCs. It is possible for developers from all over the world to work around it and modify the OS in their own way. Most smartphone manufacturers do not want users to alter their UIs. OEMs often place a software switch to prevent anyone from altering the OS. This acts as a firewall until it is turned off.

This switch is provided by OEMs so that smartphone users can continue to use their smartphones without worrying. The OEMs thoroughly test their software before making it available to consumers. This can lead to inconsistent software experiences. Apart from Oneplus, almost all smartphone manufacturers immediately void the warranty.

If the user activates OEM unlocking, then bootloader. However, this doesn’t stop users from continuing to use it. Some people find that customizing the OS to their taste is more important than keeping the warranty. This article will help users who want to enable OEM unlocking in order to unlock the bootloader.

What is OEM unlocking?

OEM unlocking can be found in the developer options section. It is normally disabled by default. This option was introduced in Android Lollipop, and it has been persistent ever since. After enabling OEM to unlock on your device the “unlock ability” flag will be set to 1. This will enable users to use “fastboot flashing unlock”. It stays on once you enable it. Even after a factory reset is performed, the device will not lock again until the setting can be manually changed in the developer options section. If you don’t know anything about flashing ROMs, this is not a safe procedure.

Why is OEM unlock so important?

Most users opt for OEM unlocking because they have a custom ROM. Perhaps their OEM has stopped supporting software, or the OEM UI is not appealing to them. To install custom firmware, your device must have root permissions. Rooting involves installing a custom recovery such as TWRP. Custom will also require access to the device storage parts. To access and modify the storage partitions of the device, the user must have an unlocked bootloader.

The OEMs have installed the bootloader on your device by default. When the device boots up the bootloader begin to run. It’s basically a program that contains instructions for the OS to ensure the smooth operation of your device. After unlocking the bootloader, the user can change the default image file set by the OEM and personalize the device to their liking.

Steps to Enable OEM Unlocking

This guide will walk you through each step of the process.

Step 1: Backup device.

You can take a backup of all your data, including contacts, messages, and apps. Usually, enabling OEM unlock won’t erase data from the device. However, bootloader unlocking is the final step after OEM unlock. This will wipe everything from your device.

Step 2: Click on the Developer option.

  • Open Settings and go to the “About Phone Section” section. Tap on it.
  • You will find all information about your device there, including the Android version and security patch. Look for the “Build Number” section.
  • Tap 7 times on the build number to see a popup stating that you are now a Developer.
  • You will find the developer options option in the main settings menu.

Step 3: Enable OEM unlocking

  • Open the settings menu on your phone.
  • Tap on the section that reads “Developer options”, and locate it.
  • Scroll down until you see the “OEM unlock” option.
  • You can tap on it to activate the toggle, and then you’re done.

Step 4: Use the Fastboot method to unlock the Bootloader

  • First, your device must be booted in fastboot mode. To do this, press any of the volume keys + power keys to restart your device. Different OEMs have different requirements.
  • Navigate to the folder that contains Fastboot and ADB binaries.
  • While holding the Shift key, right-click in an empty folder location.
  • Next, select ‘Open command windows here’ or “Open PowerShell windows here”.
  • For devices that were launched after 2015, enter the following command: fastboot Flashing Unlock.
  • Type the following command for devices manufactured before 2015: fastboot-oem unlock
  • Once the command has been executed, you’ll see a button to unlock your bootloader on your device’s screen.
  • You can use the volume buttons to change the volume and to select the option to unlock your bootloader.
  • A prompt will appear asking you to confirm your selection. You can confirm your selection by pressing the power button.
  • Now, the phone will reboot into fastboot mode. Enter “fastboot reboot” to boot into a PC.

Conclusion:

That’s all. You will be able to unlock your bootloader if you follow these steps. Sometimes things can go wrong, so make sure you have a backup.

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