Less than a month after hackers figured out how to unlock the bootloader and root the 8th-gen Amazon Fire HD 8 tablet (the 2018 model), there’s now a method for doing that with Amazon’s cheaper 7 inch tablets.

Xda-developers forum member k4y0z has posted instructions for unlocking the 5th-gen and 7th-gen Amazon Fire tablets (the versions released in 2015 and 2017).

@k4y0z @ xda-developers

You should read all the instructions before you get started to see if you’re comfortable with the whole process. For example, if you have the 2017 version of Amazon’s 7 inch tablet, there’s a chance you may have to open the case and use a paperclip or some other conductive item to short a circuit — although some folks have been able to unlock the 2017 model without taking that step.

If you have a 2015 model, you don’t even need to open the tablet up. All you need is a micro USB cable and a computer running Linux.

But either way, there’s a chance you could at least temporarily brick you tablet if something goes wrong.

The good news is that if you break your tablet you probably won’t be out a lot of money — the Amazon Fire 7 has a list price of $50, and this week it’s on sale for just $40.

Anyway, once your bootloader is unlocked, you can install a version of TWRP that lets you load custom firmware onto the tablet. This makes it possible to root the 5th-gen and 7th-gen Amazon Fire tablets, remove pre-installed software you may not want to use, or even install custom ROMs.

k4y0z @ xda-developers

While the Amazon Fire isn’t exactly the best tablet money can buy, it is certainly one of the best cheap tablets. It has a 1.3 GHz quad-core MediaTek processor, a 7 inch, 1024 x 600 pixel IPS display, 1GB of RAM, and 8GB to 16GB of built-in storage plus a microSD card reader and 3.5mm headphone jack. There are front-and rear cameras, and support for Bluetooth and dual-band WiFi.

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