Google recently launched its highly-anticipated next-generation Android operating system, Android 4.4 KitKat, for its Nexus range of devices including Nexus 4, Nexus 5, Nexus 7 and Nexus 10. The new Android 4.4 custom firmware is built using Nexus 5 AOSP source which can be custom installed, until the firmware is officially released for the Nexus devices.
Incidentally, Nexus 5 was the first device to receive the latest Android update via AOSP custom firmware. Now Nexus 7 (both first and second generation) users can enjoy the latest KitKat features, thanks to the release of AOSP ROM. As this is a custom release, you need a custom recovery such as ClockworkMod (CWM) to be pre-installed in order to flash the firmware.
A few of the notable feature enhancements introduced in Android 4.4 KitKat are as follows: faster multitasking, easier file access, immersive mode, smart caller ID and centralised messaging.
Interested Nexus 7 users can follow our step-by-step guide to install Android 4.4 KitKat on their tablets. IBTimes UK reminds its readers that it will not be held liable for any device damage during or after the firmware installation. Users are advised to proceed at their own risk.
- The AOSP ROM and instructions provided in this guide are meant for Asus Nexus 7 (first and second generation) models only. Do not attempt installing the firmware on any other model, as you might end up bricking the device.
- Ensure the device is factory unlocked and rooted with ClockworkMod (CWM) recovery or TWRP installed on it.
- Back up important data and settings on the tablet via one of the custom recovery tools such as CWM or TWRP to prevent data loss during firmware installation.
- Ensure the device has at least 80% battery charge to prevent unexpected device shutdown (due to battery drain) during firmware installation.
- Enable USB Debugging mode by navigating to Settings > Developer Options (if tablet is running Android 4.0 or later) or go to Settings > Applications > Development (if running Android 2.3 or earlier). If the device is running Android 4.2, then perform the following steps:
- Go to Settings > About Tablet
- Scroll down to the bottom of the screen and select Build Number
- Tap Build number seven times to unlock or reveal hidden Developer Options. Now, select the checkbox to enable USB Debugging mode under Settings > Developer Options.
- Perform a Dalvik Cache wipe before continuing from recovery mode.
How to Update Nexus 7 to Android 4.4 KitKat via AOSP ROM
- Connect and mount the Nexus 7 USB mass storage on computer via USB cable.
- Copy and paste the downloaded AOSP ROM and Google Apps zip files to the root folder on the tablet.
- Power off the tablet and disconnect its USB cable from computer.
- Boot the Nexus 7 into Bootloader Mode by pressing and holding Volume Up, Volume Down and Power buttons together.
- Follow the onscreen instructions and select Bootloader option to boot into Recovery mode.
- Before flashing the new ROM do the following steps in CWM recovery:
> wipe data/factory reset
> wipe cache partition
> go to "advanced" and perform wipe dalvik cache
> go to "mounts and storage" and format system
NOTE: Use volume buttons to navigate between options and Power button to select an option in Recovery.
- In CWM recovery, click Install Zip from SD card and select the ROM zip file copied earlier to the tablet (repeat this step for installing Google Apps as well). After selecting the ROM file, allow the ROM to be installed on the device. This process may take about five minutes to complete.
- After the installation completes, hit "Go Back" and select Reboot System Now to reboot the tablet into the newly installed ROM.
Android 4.4 based AOSP custom ROM is now successfully installed on your Asus Nexus 7. Go to Settings > About Tablet to verify the firmware installed.
[Source: Team Android]