As Android Users excitedly wait for the newer versions of their favorite OS, the team Android has taken a newer route and made a beta version for the platform available. You can get it for your phone or tablet in case the device you use is a Pixel, Pixel XL or Pixel C, and/or Nexus 6P, Nexus 5X or Nexus Player. There are different ways you can choose to try out this beta version and we have listed them below –
Using Android Beta Portal.
As this Android O Developer Preview is a public beta version, you might easily go to the Android Beta portal and choose the beta version. The developer of Android, Google will thus send an update to your device. You can follow these steps to have the update sent and installed.
Go to Android Beta Program Portal. You need to sign in to your Google aacount that you use on your device.
Once inside, scroll down and locate your devices which are eligible for the beta version.
You can select any device you want for the beta version on and then you need to select Enrol Device.
When the update is been sent, you have to follow the prompts to install the update.
When you wish to leave the beta version, just tap on the unenroll button. An update shall be sent again, which can be used to return to the official Android 7.1.2 Nougat. However, do back-up your data as the device will be rebooted during the switch.
Using Command Line
To install the Android Developer Preview this way, you must have a thorough understanding of either Android Software Development Kit or Command Prompt (used in Windows) or Terminal (used in OS X or Linux). Remember that in case you do not understand the working of these, it is better to not go down this road as it may potentially harm your software if even the littlest of things go wrong. Make sure you have the latest Android SDK with Android O tools and images. If you don’t have Android SDK then you need to go to Android Development Website and then download it from there. You would need ADB as well as the fastboot files in the Platform Tools section for this process. Your knowledge of Terminal will come handy as the commands here are written as they would be on Terminal. In case, you use Windows, do not use the “./” in the following steps.
The first and thing you need to do now before going to install beta version through command line is to unlock your bootloader. Before that, however –
Developer Settings and USB Debugging
Your device on which you are going to perform these commands has to be a compatible Nexus and/or Pixel device as mentioned above with Android Nougat. Now you must
Head to Settings on your device.
You need to scroll down to the bottom and click the option About Phone/Tablet and select.
Go to build number and tap seven times to get developer access.
When done, go back to previous Settings menu and find the new section called Developer Options. Tap on it.
Then you need to turn on the Developer Options and also make sure that the USB debugging is turned on too.
Then tap to Enable OEM Unlock marked.
Now simply, connect your Android to PC or a laptop. When asked whether or not to allow USB debugging, select OK.
Unlocking the Bootloader
Once done with the above steps, you may concentrate on the task on hand which is to unlock the bootloader. To access the bootloader, either switch the phone off manually or press your power and volume down button together. You may also run this command (it will ensure your device’s connection with your computer), and deduce whether or not your device is ready for update.
If the return is a string of characters, the device is all set. To go inside to the bootloader you need to follow the command which is given below:
./adb reboot bootloader
You will find many things on your screen now. Locate the lock state of device at the bottom and check if it is locked, which it most probably will be until and unless you unlock it in the past and then did not lock it back. You need to enter the following commands then you may unlock this bootloader. The only thing to remember is that once the bootloader is unlocked, your device might get a factory reset, causing you to lose your data. In case you do not have a back up, press the power button with Start highlighted. This will get you back your normal device and after backing up the data, you might again initiate the unlocking process.
./fastboot flashing unlock
Select the box asking you to proceed about unlocking. If you are sure to unlock it then you need to hold the volume button and then power button.
The above command will make sure everything is alright by rebooting your bootloader. Once that is done, you may move on to the next step.
Stock Firmware Image
Once the unlocking is done, flash the Android O image. Go to Factory images, select your device, and proceed with downloading the latest factory image. After that you can uncompress it in the Platform Tools with ADB and fastboot files. However, you have to ensure that your bootloader is indeed unlocked and you are in the bootloader menu before proceeding thus. An easier way to check the communication between your phone/tab and the computer is to check the serial number of your device and that of the displayed connected device. This command now will update your bootloader-
./fastboot flash bootloader [bootloader file].img
Nothing will happen on your device, but a dialogue will open on your command prompt. Once the flashing is done then reboot the bootloader to make sure that it is functioning properly.
Done with that? Flash your updated radios in case you are going to update a device with radios built in it.
./fastboot flash radio [radio file].img
Now, you are done with the extra precautions we were taking. The command below has a “-w” used which will remove your user data, To avoid that, remove the “-w” from the command. This command will in fact flash the actual image to the device.
./fastboot -w update [image file].zip
Once it gets over, the phone will get restarted and booted. Your device will be void of all the previous data, and will be ready to be used. However it will take it a bit longer to boot up the first time. You would know that the new version is installed as soon as you are taken through a setup process.
However, you might as well use scripts instead of the commands above as scripts are less hassle. The compressed folder will have scripts with system image, which will do most of the steps without much hassle. The only problem being that you would have to keep the device in bootloader menu and unlock it before starting the script.
Going Back to Nougat
You will obviously get enough of your Android O and would want to go back to Nougat. We’ve got you. Just find yourself the right system image which would work on your device and go through the same steps as above. The only change would be in the program to be installed – first it was Android O and now it is Nougat. You have to download the correct Nougat image, something which is compatible with your device too. You might as well unenroll the device as discussed above if you took the first way for installing beta version.
Android O is going to be with us soon, and the third beta is likened as a more stable platform. You might face some issues as is the case with every beta version, however the features are smooth and pretty as well as sufficient in range and function for a beta version.