A total of 59 Chinese Apps were recently banned in India including some popular applications like TikTok, ShareIT, UC Browser, and Clean Master. While these apps are no longer available in the Google Play Store, users who have already downloaded these can simply uninstall to get rid of the apps. However, some Chinese custom Android skins like Xiaomi MIUI or Realme’s Realme UI have Clean Master integrated with the system itself. Also Read - Top 10 alternatives to Chinese apps like TikTok, Shareit as Indian govt bans them
Uninstalling a core element of the system is not as easy as a simple uninstall. However, it is possible. Here is how you can get rid of Clean Master and its services if you are on MIUI, ColorOS or Realme UI. This tutorial by TechPP will help you do just that. Note that process will require a data cable and a PC or Laptop. Also Read - Government of India bans 59 Chinese apps including TikTok, UC Browser, WeChat
Watch: Alternatives to banned Chinese apps like TikTok, ShareIt, UC Browser, CamScanner
We will be working with core system apps here that will require the Minimal ADB and Fastboot tool. BGR India recommends that you have some experience with using ADB and Fastboot beforehand before trying this tutorial. You will also need to install Minimal ADB and Fastboot setup on your PC/ Laptop first, along with the required drivers for your phone. Also Read - Amazon, Flipkart and others to add labels to Chinese goods sold online in India
How to remove Clean Master from MIUI/ Realme UI
Step 1: Unlock developer options on your phone
To connect any phone to your system via adb, you need to first unlock developer options on the device. To do this, head over to the ‘About Phone’ section. On MIUI, head into ‘MIUI version’. If on Realme UI or ColorOS, this will be the ‘Build Number’ section. Tap on these sections at least seven times continuously to unlock developer options on your device.
Step 2: Enable USB Debugging
To go into the actual developer settings, navigate to Settings>Additional Settings>Developer Options. Once here, look for the ‘USB Debugging’ option and enable it. Connect your phone to your PC/ Laptop via a data cable.
Navigate to the Minimal ADB and Fastboot folder on your PC and open a command window in that folder. You can do this by pressing Shift+Right Click and choosing ‘Open command window here/Open Powershell window here’ in the menu that appears.
Step 3: Use ADB to uninstall the apps
Type ‘adb devices’ in the black command prompt window and press enter. You should see your phone as a connected device below. Your phone will be listed as a random combination of letters and numbers, followed by the word ‘device’. You may see a prompt to authorize access to the PC on your phone, make sure you accept it. If your device doesn’t show up, remove the data cable, connect it again, and repeat the steps so far.
Once your device has shown up, we can proceed with the next commands. Type in ‘adb shell’ and press enter. In the subsequent line, you need to type in the command to remove the app associated with clean master. This step will differ for devices based on which Android skin you’re on.
For MIUI, type in ‘pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.miui.cleanmaster’ and hit enter.
For ColorOS / Realme UI, type in ‘pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.coloros.phonemanager’ and hit enter.
After the command is executed, you should see you ‘Success’ showing up on the screen. This indicates that the app’s package has been removed.
Things to remember
Note that now that these core apps are removed, you will not be able to use the Cleaner function in the MIUI Security app. Meanwhile, on Realme UI and ColorOS, you will not find the Phone Manager app anymore, which you probably don’t need anyway.
Installing a new System Update over this setup may bring back the apps that we have removed. In such a case you can repeat this whole process to get rid of Clean Master again. Also note that with the government regulations in effect, both Xiaomi and Oppo/Realme will likely push out an update to remove Clean Master and is associate apps from your system. Until then, you can use this procedure to get rid of the banned Chinese app.