I've been a fan of this TV since purchasing it new in 2013. There hasn't been a lot of information out there regarding issues with it, so I've been following this thread every now and then hoping for someone to come up with a way to downgrade after that awful update that removed features some of us really liked. Hell, I bought the TV because it had Plex built in. I saw it on the showroom floor and was sold. At the time, there was very limited Smart TV support for Plex, but I was an avid user.
Anyway, fast forward to shortly after the update and I began searching for ways to downgrade. So far my search for the stock firmware has been fruitless, but one thing I did manage to accomplish that I haven't seen anywhere else is gaining root. Once rooted, I modified the build.prop file to trick the Google Play Store into thinking the TV is a Samsung Galaxy S3 phone. I'll probably switch that up to a device with specs that more closely match the GA7900, but it worked well enough to open up the entire play store so I can install apps that aren't limited to the device! I've had mixed results. Some work flawlessly, others wouldn't orient themselves properly due to the lack of accelerometer (fixed with an existing setting in the TV's menu), and some just flat out crashed.
I did this back in November, and have been looking for a recovery option like TWRP (TeamWin Recovery Project) or CWM (ClockworkMod) in order to back up the existing system before I really stuff things up and need to restore the whole thing. I've been extremely lucky so far, and the process is definitely not for the faint of heart. If anyone is interested, I can post as much detail as I recall, but looking back, it was relatively easy.
Enable ADB Debugging (I used a third-party app because the built-in debugger wouldn't connect via network for some reason)
Use Cydia Impactor to gain root
You don't need a debugger that REQUIRES root, just allows the connection so that Cydia Impactor can made the modifications necessary. I read in a few places that this process was not a permanent root, meaning you would lose it on a reboot. That has not been my experience so far. This method has survived all reboots, and a few scary issues where I thought I bricked it.
So I say all of this to ask a question:
Do any of you still have your system on the factory installed firmware and willing to take a chance? I'm working on finding a way to back up and restore the entire file system. If I can get that working, the next step will be downgrading, or at the very least, finding apps that will restore the functionality we all lost with the update.
Please note: I am not a developer, so if you're not familiar with the rooting process of most Android devices, you might want to steer clear of this. Unless of course you have a bunch of disposable income and don't mind bricking your set