Samsung Galaxy S4 users can now update their phones to stock Android 4.3 Jelly Bean via pre-rooted Google Play Edition ROM for GT-I9500 and GT-I9505 models. The stock Jelly Bean ROM is based on the original Android Open Source Project (AOSP), which offers a bloatware-free Android experience.

This is the same stock Android 4.3 ROM that was earlier ported to Google Play Edition of Galaxy S4 (GT-I9505G). As this firmware lacks support for ODIN flash tool, it can be installed only through CWM recovery.

IBTimes UK reminds its readers it will not be held liable for device damage during or after firmware installation. Users are advised to proceed at their own risk.


  • The Android 4.3 Google Play Edition ROM and instructions provided are limited to Galaxy S4 GT-I9500 and GT-I9505 models only. Verify device model number by navigating to Settings > About Phone
  • Back-up data and settings using recommended custom recovery tool such as ClockworkMod (CWM) or TWRP, as data wiping process is mandatory in this tutorial
  • Download and install correct USB drivers for Galaxy S4 on computer
  • Ensure USB debugging mode is enabled on phone by navigating to Settings > Applications > Development or Settings > Developer Options
  • Double-check the device has at least 80% battery charge to prevent unexpected device shutdown (due to battery drain) while installing ROM
  • Make sure device is unlocked (not locked to specific carrier) with ClockworkMod Recovery (CWM) pre-installed
  • If device is stuck at booting or experiences boot loop issues, Wipe Cache Partition and Wipe Dalvik Cache a few more times before rebooting
  • Allow newly installed ROM to stabilise for five minutes before using device
  • If a Status 7 error message flashes while installing firmware, it could be due to an incompatible device or absence of a necessary kernel (for instance, a Jelly Bean Kernel must be installed before installing any Jelly Bean ROM)

How to Update Galaxy S4 to Android 4.3 Jelly Bean via Pre-Rooted Google Play Edition ROM

  • Download Android 4.3 Google Play Edition ROM for Galaxy S4 GT-I9500 and GT-I9505. Also download Google Apps for your phone on computer
  • Connect and mount phone's USB mass storage on computer via USB cable
  • Copy downloaded Android 4.3 ROM zip and Google Apps zip files to root folder on phone's SD card
  • Power off phone and disconnect USB cable from computer
  • Now, boot phone into Recovery mode by pressing and holding Volume Up, Home and Power buttons
  • Follow onscreen instructions to enter recovery mode
  • In ClockworkMod recovery, perform a full data wipe task by choosing Wipe Data / Factory Reset. Note: Use volume buttons to navigate and Power to select desired option
  • Wait until wipe process completes and then perform Wipe Cache Partition. Let process complete and then select Wipe Dalvik Cache from Advance option. This will prevent ROM-related errors or boot loop issues
  • Once wipe process is done, return to main recovery menu and click Install Zip from SD card
  • Then select Choose Zip from SD card. Locate the Android 4.3 ROM zip file copied earlier and select by tapping Power. Confirm ROM installation on next screen and let the installation begin
  • Note: Repeat previous step for installing Google Apps and choose "No" when recovery asks for disable recovery flash
  • After Google Apps is also installed, choose "+++++Go Back+++++" and tap reboot system now in recovery menu. The phone will now reboot automatically and the first boot might take about five minutes to complete

The Galaxy S4 is now running on Android 4.3 based Google Play Edition ROM. Go to Settings > About Phone to verify the firmware version installed.

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[Source: XDA Developers]