As long as you were prepared to unlock your phone’s bootloader, you could install a lot of custom ROMs and customizations back then. The custom ROM community, however, has become less vibrant as Android has grown. A lot of manufacturers have also ceased providing the option to unlock the bootloader of their phones due to security and safety concerns. This list was exempted by Asus, and despite some recent misunderstandings, the company is still dedicated to its bootloader unlock tool.
According to an Android Authority report, Asus appears to have made it impossible to unlock the bootloader on their Zenfone smartphones. The following was based on a customer service representative’s response to a question regarding the Zenfone 10’s bootloader being locked. The Zenfone 9 from a year ago was also subject to the revised restrictions.
It turns out that this is untrue. Though it is not yet accessible, Asus aims to make its bootloader unlock tool available for the Zenfone 10. The Taiwanese business rectified the matter in a letter to Mishaal Rahman, claiming that its customer service representatives misinterpreted the initial query.
The bootloader of the Zenfone 10 could be unlocked starting in Q3 of this year, according to an earlier statement by Asus. The bootloader unlock tool and kernel source code for the Zenfone 9 were made available shortly after its August 2016 launch. However, for the time being, you cannot unlock its bootloader as the tool is now down for maintenance.
Interestingly, months after the ROG Phone 7 appeared on sale, the Taiwanese company has yet to make the bootloader unlock tool available online (via ZenTalk forums). Along with the Zenfone 10, the ROG Phone 7 may possibly get compatibility for the Asus bootloader unlock tool in Q3.
The inability to momentarily unlock the bootloader of the Zenfone 9 or 10 won’t matter much to you unless you only purchase Asus smartphones for modding and custom ROMs. Asus staying committed to the modding community and continuing to offer its bootloader unlock tool is still encouraging.