I can't answer any of your other Q's. I stopped rooting my devices since Google pay and other services became prominent for me. I certainly don't plan on downgrading either. Possibly someone else has those answers for you.
I have the P20 Pro on Koodo too, but no update. In Ottawa. Do you have the Canadian model? CLT-L04?
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Does anyone know if the update for the P20 Pro will have the camera changes that the Mate 20 Pro did, that reduces the awful waterpaint affect?
Yes I have CLT-L04, bought from Koodo directly. They're rolling out to batches, you should get yours soon . I Just clicked Check Update and it appeared, no automated OTA message.
I dont know what you mean about the water paint effect. I have always been very happy with the camera with Master AI on, and constantly get complements and people asking "what phone is this?!". If anything, system performance is about the same but with much smoother animations and transitions. Everything just seems more polished. Haven't noticed any big difference with the camera, perhaps a bit faster but I don't have another phone to compare to. Overall, no complaints!
I previously had an LGv30 and after an OTA to Oreo it just ruined the battery life and performance. With this OTA, my P20 Pro has no such issues, and my Bluetooth audio bug has been fixed, which is a huge relief.