In this day and age where security breaches are everywhere and everybody is vulnerable in one way or another, it should be of no surprise that Android will start enforcing secure, verified boot on devices that ship with Android 7.0 (Nougat). While the Android OS already verifies the boot partition on most devices and lets the user know if something is up, they are given the option to continue at their own peril, or to power down the device and begin diagnostic and recovery work. With Android Nougat however, devices will only be able to boot in a very limited mode (when a user acknowledges the risks) or will refuse to boot altogether.
While this move could prove problematic for the root community, as an insecure boot image is often used as a workaround for a device whose manufacturer refuses to unlock the bootloader, there will likely be ways around it in custom versions of the OS, and the very real security risks being avoided are worth the hassle. This move also does not necessarily mean that any unofficial versions of Android 7.0 firmwares will refuse to boot – not all of the custom ROMS out right now require or utilize an insecure boot image and it’s likely to be the same case with Android Nougat.
Submitted by: Arnfried Walbrecht