Shortly after it was released Pokemon go in the summer of 2016, Niantic updated the app to lock all Android phones that had been rooted. This was not a surprise, as this can lead to cheating, especially in online games, but Niantic took its war on rooted phones one step further.
While rooted devices can have security implications for the owners themselves, they also are considered potential threats to a specific class of Android applications: online games. Rooted devices have the potential to install modified versions of the game that, in theory, could give players an unfair advantage.
Thus, some developers, by default, prevent rooted devices from playing. While that may be understandable, Pokémon Go developer Niantic Labs is using a rather controversial method to do so.
How to detect a rooted device?
There are different ways to detect a rooted device, but Pokémon Go is said to be using a crude and unreliable route. The game is being accused of abusing the “read storage permission”That gamers bestow with a completely different purpose to scan the phone’s file system. Then search for certain files and folders, as a directory of Magisk Manager, as evidence of a rooted device and locks the phone from connecting to servers.
The fact that Pokémon Go tracks sites where it shouldn’t bother some users. However, the reliability of the method is causing more than worries, but also headaches. The application doesn’t actually check if the device is rooted, so those with certain files and folders, perhaps from incomplete rooting attempts, are still locked out of the game.
And then there’s the fact that those who are smart enough to root their phones also know enough about how to get around the process. It involves removing or hiding files and folders, which are known to trigger anti-root lock and that’s it. Revoking Pokémon Go’s permissions to read storage doesn’t help at all.
Yes OK Niantic is definitely within its rights to protect its gameEven if that means blocking rooted devices, you should have implemented a more robust way to verify those devices. On the other hand, modders and hackers almost always find ways to circumvent them..
Is it possible to play Pokémon Go on a rooted device?
According to the Android police, you will need a device with an unlocked bootloader. As well you will need to restore from a stock system and boot, or remove any form of root access and Xposed you have installed. Otherwise, this process may not work. You will also need a custom bootloader.
It is possible to do it, however you need to know what you are doing before passing something to your device or wasting your time with custom bootloaders. It is unfortunate that this process is necessary only to play a popular game, but if you follow the instructions carefully, you will be fine.. Be sure to check out the guide if you need to brush up on how to root your phone.