Today is the last day to request a bootloader unlock code for Huawei/Honor devices
Chinese technology giant Huawei and its sub-brand Honor have been slowly garnering more respect among the Android enthusiast community in the past year. With timely software updates, commitments to supporting custom development, and widespread Project Treble adoption for all devices they have updated to Android Oreo, it’s not hard to see why Huawei and Honor smartphones were starting to become more popular on our forums. Unfortunately, the company had a sudden change of heart. Two months ago, the company announced that they will stop providing bootloader unlock codes. If you want to unlock the bootloader of your Huawei or Honor device, today is the last day to request a code.
While unlocking the bootloader on a Huawei or Honor device isn’t as simple as on Google or OnePlus devices, it’s not a difficult process. On Huawei and Honor devices, you need to acquire a bootloader unlock code if you want to be able to unlock the bootloader. The page to request a code requires you to fill in details about your device and sign in with your Huawei account, but it’s a fairly simple form to fill out. Getting the bootloader unlock code is usually instant, too, unlike Xiaomi devices where you have to wait 360 hours.
Unlocking the bootloader opens up the ability to gain root access with Magisk or SuperSU, install a custom recovery like TWRP to make backups, flash custom ROMs such as LineageOS, Resurrection Remix, or CarbonROM, flash custom kernels, or flash modifications like ARISE and the Xposed Framework. We’ve shown how flashing an AOSP ROM can result in huge performance improvements on budget Honor devices like the Honor 9 Lite without sacrificing camera quality thanks to mods like the Huawei P20 camera port. None of this would be possible without an unlockable bootloader, which is why it’s a huge blow to the community for the unlock codes to no longer be obtainable.
We have reached out to our contacts at Honor and Huawei and have not heard any news that the company will provide bootloader unlock codes in the future. The company’s reason for ending the program is it provides a “better user experience and avoids issues caused by ROM flashing.” We don’t agree with this reason because the company already makes you jump through hoops to unlock the bootloader. Furthermore, it’s entirely opt-in, so users who experience problems have only themselves to blame if something goes wrong. It certainly doesn’t help that Huawei and Honor stopped providing firmware for local upgrades, either, as their eRecovery tool often fails to restore devices when it’s accessed outside of China.
If you would like to unlock the bootloader on your Huawei or Honor device, you need to register for an unlock code immediately. You don’t necessarily have to unlock the bootloader now, but if you don’t get the code now you’ll never have that option in the future. So go grab that code now and save it somewhere in case you decide to make the plunge. If you do decide to unlock the bootloader, be sure to check out the XDA forum for your device to stay up to date on the latest developments.