Best custom ROMs for the Samsung Galaxy S4
If you haven't dabbled in the custom Android ROM subculture, you are missing out on what your handset is truly capable of before the marketing departments and carriers suck the lifeblood out of it.
Installing a modified operating system on your handset isn't the cumbersome process it used to, especially with popular handsets like the Galaxy S4, but you do have to get your handset rooted and CWM recovery installed, so you can swap custom ROMs at will. This might void your warranty, put your device in limbo and so on, thus be careful, and follow the instructions in the links to the point.
We are rounding up some of the best custom ROM work currently available for the Galaxy S4 to help you choose if you have decided to go the way of the Android warrior, root and fix your handset with something nicer than the stock TouchWiz that has been dealt to you. Or, better yet, try them all and see what sticks with you. Any personal favorite?
If you are familiar with the Omega series of ROMs dating back to the Galaxy S II, you will find its Galaxy S4 edition the most desirable if you still want to keep the original TouchWiz look and feel. Debloated and with a much faster performance than what you get out of the box, your S4 with Omega mixes features from Android 4.3, like the Camera app, with useful tools like Flash support, adding sub-symbols to the stock keyboard and many more tweaks and helpers.
The Pacman line combines the best of three reputable ROM series - ParanoidAndroid, Android Open Kang Project (AOKP) and CyanogenMod (CM). We needn't say more, as these ROM subcultures have spoken for themselves many times, we'd just say that the combination brings about light, fast and stable project with better battery life and stock feel without the TW bloat. The PIE launcher, CM themes and variable DPI settings are all here for your tinkering pleasure.
ReVolt is another mashup of ParanoidAndroid and CyanogenMod features for your Galaxy S4, which has proven itself many times over. Based on "AOKP source with cherrypicks from CM," ReVolt offers Apex, Nova and Trebuchet launchers built-in, DPI scaling, the MultiUser option and many more.
TouchWiz is given the boot with the FoxHound ROM, bloatware removed and nearly stock experience reigns with the added bonuses of call recording, hacked default email app, stock Google keyboard, and many more nice little add-ons that will make your life with the S4 easier and your battery last longer.
the rumor that more than one major phone maker will have a Nexus device this year turned out true but with a surprising twist - Samsung and HTC released the so-called Google Edition versions of their flagship handsets, with stock Android and no manufacturer overlays, bringing them close to the Nexus experience, but in, say, a Galaxy S4 body. Of course, even if you get the TouchWiz-ed regular version, enterprising ROM modders have come up with this Google Edition piece to load on your handset and equip it like the one that is sold at Google's Play Store for your own amusement.