Xiaomi’s HyperOS Updates and Bootloader Unlocking Restrictions
Xiaomi, the renowned smartphone manufacturer, recently unveiled its new Xiaomi 14 series alongside the introduction of a revamped Android skin overlay named HyperOS, replacing the well-known MIUI. While this development brought excitement to Xiaomi enthusiasts, it was accompanied by significant changes regarding bootloader-unlocked devices. This article explores Xiaomi’s decision not to provide HyperOS updates for unlocked bootloaders, as well as the new restrictions and requirements they’ve imposed.
No HyperOS Updates for Unlocked Bootloaders
Xiaomi has made it clear that devices with unlocked bootloaders, whether they are running HyperOS or MIUI 14, will not receive HyperOS updates. Bootloaders, which are typically locked by manufacturers to enhance security and prevent unauthorized modifications to the device’s software, have long been a subject of interest for tech-savvy users who wish to customize their devices. However, Xiaomi’s latest move restricts this customization.
Tougher Unlocking Process for HyperOS Devices
Unlocking Xiaomi devices has traditionally involved submitting an application via the Windows app provided by the company. Once the application is submitted, users had to patiently wait for one week before they could finally unlock the bootloader. However, with the advent of HyperOS, the unlocking process has become even more challenging.
In the case of HyperOS devices, Xiaomi has decided to raise the bar for unlocking. Chinese users will not only need to endure the one-week waiting period but also reach level 5 on Xiaomi’s community forums. This additional requirement sets a higher threshold for Chinese users seeking to unlock their devices. For users outside of China, Xiaomi is yet to provide information on the new unlocking process. As a result, they must anticipate an official announcement from Xiaomi detailing the new procedures.
Instant Updates upon Re-locking
A silver lining to Xiaomi’s policy is that if a user chooses to re-lock their device, they will immediately become eligible for the next HyperOS update. This means that individuals who temporarily unlocked their bootloader for customization purposes can easily return to the standard software and keep their devices up to date.
Three Device Unlocks per Year
Another notable change introduced by Xiaomi is the limitation on the number of device unlocks. Specifically, users will only be allowed to unlock up to three devices per year. While this limitation appears to be China-specific at the moment, it is worth noting that Xiaomi could potentially expand this restriction to other markets in the future.
Security Concerns Behind the Restrictions
When questioned about the rationale behind these stringent measures, Xiaomi cited security concerns as the primary driver of their decision. By restricting bootloader unlocks and implementing additional requirements, Xiaomi aims to bolster the security of its devices and prevent unauthorized access that could lead to vulnerabilities.
In summary, Xiaomi’s transition to HyperOS brings changes to the bootloader unlocking process. Devices with unlocked bootloaders, whether they run HyperOS or MIUI 14, will not receive HyperOS updates. Unlocking a HyperOS device now requires Chinese users to meet specific community forum criteria, and users outside China must await further instructions. While these measures may appear strict, they are motivated by Xiaomi’s commitment to enhancing device security and safeguarding user experiences. It remains to be seen whether these restrictions will be extended to other markets or how users will adapt to these new policies.