The Android developer community is huge, with their biggest feat being the ability to develop custom ROMs or custom Android builds. A custom ROM is an aftermarket firmware production based on the Android source code provided by Google. So if you’re someone who wants to install a custom ROM on your device but are confused about which one to go with, read on as we bring the 12 best custom ROMs for Android in 2021.

Best Custom ROMs for Android (2021)

The main reason why people prefer custom ROMs is that almost every company drops support for their devices after 2-3 years of their launch. A custom ROM, on the other hand, helps keep your device alive and updated with the latest version of Android. Another reason why people seek custom ROMs is because of the extra features they offer. They also reduce bloatware that comes as a part of many manufacturer skins. While there are many custom ROMs out there, not all of them are stable enough to be used as your daily driver.

Installing a custom ROM requires you to unlock the bootloader first, and have a custom recovery like TWRP (website) installed. Make sure to always create a backup of your Android device before proceeding. While the download link for officially supported devices is mentioned below, some of these ROMs may have an unofficial port available for other devices as well.

Also, on some ROMs, you may have to flash a GApps package such as OpenGapps (website) or NikGApps (website). I have personally tested almost all the ROMs listed below on my Redmi K20 Pro, Poco F1, Mi A1. Also, if you like the custom ROM, consider donating the developer behind the work.

1. Pixel Experience

Pixel Experience is the best custom ROM for Android right now and I can draw out three reasons for that. First, it supports a huge number of devices from Xiaomi to Realme to Asus to Samsung. Second, it brings Pixel features for non-pixel devices like the newer Google Assistant, built-in GCam support, Pixel live wallpapers, and more.

Third, it has amazing stability among all the ROMs that I have tested for years. The main developer, Henrique Pereira, is not in a tearing hurry to port new Android versions to all the devices.

pixel experience

Instead, the developer picks a popular and developer-centric device and creates a base. After that, he publishes all the changes to GitHub for other maintainers to work upon. Not to mention, Pixel Experience has maintainers around the world who work round the clock to quell the bugs in a timely manner.

So to put it straight, if you want stability and new features right from Pixel devices then Pixel Experience is the best custom ROM on Android, bar none. Keep in mind, you won’t get the latest Android build immediately, but you will have a stable and hassle-free experience for sure.

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2. LineageOS

Next is the biggest name in the custom ROM scene – LineageOS. While many of you might not be familiar with the name, LineageOS is actually the same custom ROM that started as CyanogenMod. Back in the fall of 2016, Cyanogen Inc. announced that it was discontinuing development and shut down the infrastructure behind the project. Since then, the developer community has kept the project alive, but under the name of LineageOS.

2. LineageOS

Built on top of Google’s AOSP code and adding their own custom code to it, LineageOS works as a standalone ROM as well as the source code for many other custom ROMs out there. It has the biggest developer team under its name and officially supports over 190 devices. The ROM includes basic but useful features that include but are not limited to customizing the status bar, changing the overall theme, editing the navbar, and much more.

While Google’s AOSP is barebones, LineageOS gives it a sense of customizability while maintaining stability. Apart from that, if you want top-notch privacy and security on a custom ROM then I would highly recommend LineageOS. Not to mention, the development team has worked really fast on bringing Android 11 this time and it’s available for several devices.

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3. Evolution X

If I were to describe Evolution X, I would say it is the stable version of Resurrection Remix from yesteryear. This is because of the plethora of customization features it offers, and it does so without any loss in the stability of the ROM. Evolution X merges various code snippets into one main project to bring a long list of features and for many devices. While this does mean that updates come a little slower, they are still able to deliver regular updates.

evolution x Best Custom ROMs for Android (Updated February 2021)

Also, Evolution X has its own customization bar from where you can make any system-level changes. It also comes with the Android gesture navigation system out of the box. Lately, the development team behind Evolution X decided to remove certain features from the ROM as those features were not that useful and were slowing down the system. As a result, the latest versions are stable than ever and go easier on the system’s resources.

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4. Corvus OS

If you are looking for the best Android custom ROM for PUBG or generally, gaming then Corvus OS is what you need. It’s built on the foundation of Dirty Unicorns and has many features ported right from there. Among the main features, it supports various gaming-centric kernels such as Hydra kernel, Ryzen kernel, and more. You will be able to play games for a much longer time without your device getting hot beyond normal limits.

Best Custom ROMs for Android (Updated February 2021)

Apart from that, on the customization front too, Corvus OS is packed with features. You have a system accent picker, font customization option, theme scheduling, additional notification, and lock screen features, and much more. So to sum up, Corvus OS is not just a great gaming ROM, but overall a feature-packed ROM as well.

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5. Revenge OS

Revenge OS is a fairly new custom ROM in the Android world but has got pretty good traction because it has brought Android 11 builds for a lot of devices. The OS is built on the Android Open Source Project and has kept just the core essentials to keep the system lightweight and clutter-free. But the one thing that puts it in a different position is the way it looks and its design approach.

5. Revenge OS

You can create how your quick settings panel should look with various gradients of color, how many tiles do you need, what kind of media controls you want, and much more. In fact, it has brought those abandoned custom clock faces that Google showcased in Android 11 betas. I would say, if you want an Android 11 custom ROM then RevengeOS is a modern and beautiful OS out there and you should give it a try.

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6. Havoc-OS

To define Havoc-OS would take up more than a couple of words. In your first run of this ROM, you’d find it similar to just about any other custom ROM out there. Use it for a couple of days, and you literally start experiencing the true beauty of Havoc-OS. One of the first ROMs to successfully implement a truckload of features. It will definitely remind you of Resurrection Remix and Paranoid Android from the past.

6. Havoc-OS Best Custom ROMs for Android (Updated February 2021)

The added functionalities of Havoc-OS include tons of mods for the Status bar, buttons, lights, gestures, and other various configurations. While at times, it lacks stability, I can surely say that it has the maximum customizability features. So if you want something like Resurrection Remix but with the latest Android version then Havoc-OS will take you right home.

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7. Arrow OS

If minimalism is what you’re looking for then Arrow OS is right up your alley. Possibly the lightest and most functional custom ROM out there, the Arrow OS project is based on the AOSP code while adding useful tweaks to it. It’s very similar to the Pixel Experience ROM but brings additional features to the barebone feature list.

The most notable features of the Arrow OS project are the inclusion of the Android 10 gesture navigation system, Recents in the overview menu, and an option to choose the system accent color. The overview window shows the most used apps and a few other apps that you might use just like Pixel devices.

Best Custom ROMs for Android (Updated February 2021)

The customizable panel has a gesture replacement and that’s the 3-button navbar and it’s highly useful for users who want the old navigation system back. Other Arrow OS features include a custom dialer, custom Quick Settings tiles, lock screen shortcuts, Privacy Guard from LineageOS, and more. The Arrow OS project offers simple and minimalistic features that end up resulting in a clean and neat interface, that can further be customized if the user wants to.

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8. Bliss ROM

Bliss ROM is a new custom ROM in the Android ecosystem but it has huge potential. It not only develops ROMs for smartphones, but also for tablets and Windows devices like Surface Pro. And the overall experience is quite nice as it comes with a customized launcher and desktop mode.

While many users might not like this new way of system navigation, one cannot deny the fact that we need different kinds of skins to reshape the boundary of user interface design in custom ROMs.

9. Bliss ROM

Apart from including certain tweaks to the customizability and functionality, Bliss ROM vastly enhances the overall visual look of your device. It has a separate settings panel called Blissify from where you can change almost everything. Right from themes to animation and lock screen interface. I would say if you want to try something different, do give a shot at Bliss ROM.

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9. Project Sakura

We all know how mid-tier Samsung phones lag behind when it comes to enjoying the latest Android OS. And even in the custom ROM world, some years ago, Samsung phones were not supported because of the Exynos chip. However, things have changed and now Project Sakura aims to bring the latest Android build to a plethora of Samsung smartphones. You have got a clean and minimal stock-like user interface with support for both Android 10 and 11 builds.

Best Custom ROMs for Android (Updated February 2021)

From Galaxy A10 to M40, you have been covered on almost all the popular Samsung devices. And with the Version 4.R update, Project Sakura has brought many visual refinements such as themes, screen locking animation, new fonts, a Magisk module for visual modification, and more. I think if you have got a Samsung smartphone, Project Sakura can be a great place to begin with.

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10. MSM Extended

Another ROM that is based on the AOSP Gerrit but has its own custom mods is the MSM Extended. This project came into existence around the time of the Android Pie launch. However, despite being a relatively new project, the ROM has quickly evolved into becoming a very stable and reliable ROM and gives plenty of other competitors a run for their money.

msm xtended Best Custom ROMs for Android (Updated February 2021)

The ROM is very similar to OxygenOS and brings a lot of customizability options to the point that you might feel overwhelmed. The ROM recently updated its source code for the latest Android 10 and now they have started digging the Android 11 builds as well. Personally, I feel MSM Extended has too many features, but if you like feature-packed ROMs then you can definitely give it a try.

Download

11. crDroid

Imagine being on your device’s stock ROM, but with slight tweaks here and there that allow you to customize your device without losing out on the Stock stability. Well, that’s crDroid for you. crDroid has been around for some time and it has gained huge popularity among the stock Android enthusiasts. Similar to AOSP Extended, crDroid has an active development team and supports some of the old devices like Redmi Note 5 Pro, Poco F1, and more.

Best Custom ROMs for Android (Updated February 2021)

It offers the same AOSP experience that’s exclusive to Google’s lineup, along with truly tested features. Since crDroid is based on LineageOS at its base, the performance and battery life is phenomenal.

In my experience with this ROM, the battery life was just the same as the stock ROM, but I was able to customize a few things here and there. To put it into better words, think of LineageOS, but with added features and tweaks. Not to mention, the huge list of device support– both new and old.

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12. Paranoid Android

After a few years of break, Paranoid Android is back again. In case you don’t know, Paranoid Android was considered one of the most acclaimed custom ROMs of all time. The development team focused on bringing a polished and refined experience while using minimum resources. While it may not boast of the plethora of features and customization features that other ROMs offer, Paranoid Android or PA, does promise a soothing user experience overall.

12. Paranoid Android

It offers its own version of the quick settings menu, as well as a fully immersive mode for Android. Paranoid Android has long been regarded as the main project from which Google has brought over a lot of features, the biggest feature being the Ambient Mode, which was present in PA as Peek.

At this point, Paranoid Android has added support for a long list of smartphones including Xiaomi, OnePlus, Samsung and some Asus devices. So if you own phones from these OEMs, I would highly recommend Paranoid Android to any other ROM on this list.

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Make More Out of Your Device With the Best Custom ROMs for Android

Custom ROMs bring out a new experience to your mobile devices. While no ROM out there will ever be as stable as the stock ROM, having a custom ROM does give you the liberty to sacrifice a few points of stability in order to gain tons of features.

As I have been testing custom ROMs for many years, I never stay on a ROM for more than a week, so I’ve tried pretty much every custom ROM there is out there. For your sake, I have cherry-picked the best custom ROMs for Android above. But what about you? Let us know about your favorite ROM in the comments section below.

83 COMMENTS

  1. I really want to learn about how to install this custom roms but don’t have any one to teach me.
    Can someone teach me? Email me
    Email:benahine37 @gmail.com

  2. Is it really safe to install a custom rom in an android device. I’m planning to buy a Redmi note 10 pro and install Pixel Experience Plus on it. But I doubt that if I do so, will I be able to make payments from that phone again.

    Please help me with this query.

    • Install Magisk and turn on ‘MagsikHide’ in settings of Magsik Manager app.
      I use Havoc OS on my Redmi Note 9 Pro
      It improved performance and battery life and also helped me to get ride of resource-hungry MIUI.
      Every app is working including banking apps, ‘Safety Net Test’ PASS.
      Go ahead buy and flash.

  3. I’m in desperate need of urgent help please: I have a Galaxy note 10.1 N-8000 running by default on Android 4 Jelly Bean. Since it no longer can run the apps that I need due to an obsolete Android I decided to use custom roms to update the Android version to one where new apps could be installed on. So far I have managed to install and get TWRP working on it and rooted it as well. I tried both the CWM version recovery image for it and the LineageOS and the first one didn’t make any changes at all to my tablet and the second bricked the tablet into a bootloop and I had to restore the backup of the tablet out of that loop. I really very badly need to update the Android on it right now and I’d like to keep the data on it too. Please could someone let me know what I need to do from now to update the Android version or what recovery image there is out there for me to flash on my tablet that’d be stable and reliable? I’m not an expert when it comes to Android systems, so if anyone knows, I’d appreciate it if they explained to me in a way that an average person would be able to understand what they need to do.

    • Bootloops generally happen when you try to flash roms or recoveries not made for your device. So firstly I would suggest you to double-check if the rom is made for your device( and you said it’s a tablet so this step is even more important because there are fewer rom’s for tablets)

      I hope you already know how to flash roms but still I will elaborate a bit on it. First you need to search your device on xda. For this you simply need to do a google search on the name of your device with xda in the end ( in your case “Galaxy note 10.1 N-8000 xda” ). Then open the custom rom or android development tab. Here you will find all your recoveries, roms, kernels everything. Download the rom and flash via your custom recovery.

      There is one last thing, in most of the cases, the rom file is not sufficient, you might need to flash gapps( for google apps), firmware( always needed in xiaomi phones, not sure for Samsung though) and fcrypt file( may or may not be needed -> you may find it on that xda page, if not just comment on the pages that you need those files, otherwise you will definitely find them on your device’s telegram page or custom rom’s telegram page.) Flash everything in the correct order mentioned by the rom developer ( and don’t flash the above files if the developer hasn’t mentioned them or it’s not there in their flashing guide webpage or video on the xda page). Also do take a backup of your data, because you will most probably loose your data, because generally you need to do a clean flash while changing android version where you must format your data ( you can use migrate app on your rooted device to take a backup of all your apps and app-data)

      -> One last tip, whenever you format your data from recovery in any step, always reboot to recovery because otherwise you may not be able to use your /data folder.
      -> Also I would recommend you to watch flashing guides of your particular device on YouTube as you’ll get a much better idea of what should be done and what shouldn’t

      Best of luck! Peace!

  4. Hello, I unlocked the bootloader the first time, downloaded the corrupt OS zip and it worked for me, but I went back to the stock ROM and the bootloader closed without knowing it.
    Now I want to revert to custom ROM. I opened the bootloader, but it didn’t work for me.
    My phone is Redmi 8a.
    any help?

  5. This post is really helpful, thanks.

    I plan to install a custom ROM once OnePlus stops updating my 12 GB RAM 7 Pro. It sucks when OEM’s stop updating Android and the only way that normies can get the latest OS is to buy a new phone.

  6. i am currently running havoc os 3.5 on redmi 7 3gb variant the os is smooth but while playing pubg the game shuts down in between even running in default graphics and without gfx tool should i install a custom kernel and what kernel should i install

  7. Hi Arjun

    A nice article. It gives a lot of insight.

    I have an old tablet – Acer Iconia A1 830. Strangely no custom ROMs are available for the same.

    I have even drilled down to the same spec (processor, kernel) based other ROMs, but read a post on Quora that it would not be prudent to install other device ROM.

    Can you advise in this situation, how can I bridge new life to it?

    Would an android go or other custom ROM sufice?

    Appreciate Help

    Sincere Regards

    Sibananda

  8. What woud be the best ROM for dawing on a jlinksz P10? On the paper it’s got a lot of punch, with 10 core 4 GB RAM, but in reality lag and intermitent lines are a drag…

  9. Hi, I have an HTC Desire 820 that still runs fairly well 😀 kitkat 4.4.4 haha …some apps no longer compatible, so thought to upgrade os ..have just done the adjustments to enable developer options and before adding twrp recovery seeing what custom os is available and suited to this phone..anything marshmellow or above would seem perhaps worth install? best option ? ..all help gratefully appreciated to revive , thankyou, from your article, you seem on the pulse (did check download links..optimistically 😀 )

  10. Havoc OS and MSM Xtended are the most stable and reliable ROMs. I’ve used all the ROMs listed above but the Evolution X is quite a buggy one. And Pixel Experience lacks in performance with default kernel. The new Corvus ROM should be deserves an inclusion in the list. It tops in performance by boosting the CPU clock speed to its maximum limit.

  11. Are you serious? evox in the top 3?. It’s one of the most bugged custom roms if not the most. It’s known as BugLagEvox…

    • Exactly worst ROM ever. I don’t know why is it so overrated? It’s full of bugs. It drains about 15% battery overnight in idle state which doesn’t happen in any other ROM. In my view derpfest is far better than evo x.

  12. Dude you seriously showing us the article from archives ? all the above roms are for Android 7 , and some of the roms are not even available , DEVS left the rom project and youre still showing old roms in 2020.

    Hire someone who uses custom roms on daily basis or who has some knowledge on the current trends,

    BEEBOM (tech that matters ) seriously guys ?

    • You might be seeing an older version of the article due to some cache issues. Recently, we updated the article with the latest Custom ROMs. So refresh the page or open it in an incognito window.

      • Lol an autistic retard^^

        His brain is incapable of processing language yet he dares recommend others to “get a clue”. Please commit suicide.

  13. I need to check my phone an configure it,maybe my phone isn’t suitable for that I’ll open everything & put another comment.

  14. Havoc os Rom beats all the Roms in customization features, it’s a rom that has tons of features more than RR Rom.

  15. Hey Team,
    I am having a Dell Tablet 8 3840 LTE. Since day 1 i am facing issues of slow down and pathetic android OS. Its presently working on 4.4.4..we bought it considering the specs but since day 1 its not performing. Please help me with suggesting the ROM and whether Root can solve the issue for me?

  16. Hi There,
    my Phone note 3 Neo the imei number was changed after i stock to another firmware.
    Is there any custom rom could change or edit back my imei number?

  17. Need custom ROM for lenovo A6010. Please name a official custom rom for this handset except Mokee and Oct OS.

    • Well, you are an idiot. You do not need a custom rom. What you might need is another launcher, there’s a lot of launchers in google store. You’ll find something for you. I by myself use txt launcher, but it’s not for idiots like you.

      • Actually the idiot here is yourself since you don’t even know what they’re trying to do yet you said something baselessly and offended that person too. You have issues to randomly just want to bother others. Get yourself sorted out along with your phone.

  18. Is there any custom rom for Samsung Galaxy S Duos GT-S7562. I tried to search a lot but i didn’t find any for it. If you guyz know any of them then plzz suggest me. You can also suggest me about its stock rom. any links etc. Plzz

  19. Lineage OS IS THE BEST!!! AMONG ALL , I am user of linage os Moto g2 2014 is Android Oreo available for Moto g2

  20. I installed resurrection remix os on my Kult 10 and lost my ime . For the past one month my efforts to restore by googling and trying several guides there so far failed.

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