Privacy oriented OS for an old phone?

Hi there community,
I found a old smartphone which I would like to bring back into shape, in terms of security,updates and privacy. It seems the device isn’t likely compatible with most of the privacy oriented OS out there. I hope, the community can help.

There’s not much you can do, unfortunately. Even Google Play System Updates (which give some security updates for devices on Android >10/11 independent of the OEM) isn’t present, since the phone only appears to be supported up to Android 6. Unless you really absolutely have to, I wouldn’t recommend using it at all for anything important.


Maybe you could find a custom ROM for your phone to get a higher version of Android than Android 6. This would bring some security fixes which aren’t in Android Marshmallow.

Generally I would advise that you update or replace the installed apps with modern ones and just stay aware of the fact that the phone is outdated and you shouldn’t use it for anything important.

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I looked around and not much can be found. Any custom ROMs to suggest ?

Done and I just installed the minimal apps and I am even thinking of remove some pre-installed apps or replacing them.

You could try install rethinkdns, i’m not sure it will be compatible with android 6 though

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That’s a good idea. I will try it.

Installed it and it’s great. Any other suggestions, apps to install ?

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Just disable bloatware and unwanted apps, delete google ID, install brave as default browser.
Keep it simple.

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Use this to remove bloat (most cases spyware) and replace some apps with privacy respecting ones.

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I did disable the bloatware , deleted my google id and Brave is ma default browser. I do think , I could replace a few apps with privacy oriented ones.

I am no sure if , the code will work on Noa. If I had a way of checking without bricking the phone , I would have already done it. Never, every will I understand the stupidity behind producing a device which can last/provide a sense of security for a short term , just to make a profit.

It ain’t bricking your phone. Just select the recommended apps to uninstall and that’s all. You can also easily restore them. For your phone this is the only solution you should use.

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Thank you than. Their ‘‘DISCLAIMER: Use at your own risk. I am not responsible for anything that could happen to your phone.’’ disclaimer threw me off. Anything else to add ? Any apps to add /remove? Custom ROM that might help me upgrade ?

Custom ROMs are even more risky since you are playing with bootloader. Here there is no risk, stop worrying I used it, and lot of others did. It is the reason the project is alive. Now you do it.

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It is important to note that Privacy Guides does not recommend using “debloaters” for Android. One of our team members talks about this here:


Thank you everyone, for the help and for sharing your knowledge !
This community is a true inspiration.


Didn’t knew this was the case thanks. I created a random google account and enable basic google services as shown here. I don’t own grapheneos atm. Is there some hope to reduce data collection with google on android ? What should I do? My current threat model requires no google account for personal use. But my school has made one for me, I only use it on my computer