UPDATE 10.19.14: The full version of Android 5.0 has been released! Head to my How to Get Android 5.0 “Lollipop” on the Nexus 5 / Nexus 7 instead!
Google I/O just passed and one of the most exciting thing for most people was the revamp Android got with Android L. Android L is the latest version of Android and seems to be quite aimed at the design of Android for once. Smooth 60fps animations, subtle touches of color and shapes, revamping of the multitasking UI, and much more.
If you are anything like me, it’s at this point that you’re already asking how do I install the Android L preview? Well, if you have a Nexus 5 or a Nexus 7 (Wifi version only) you can do it right now by flashing the developer preview.
Before you jump on it, some caveats. First, this will erase your data so make sure to back everything up and get ready for that headache in general. Second, this is a developer preview so expect some bugs and things to just not work very well. If neither of those two things made you flinch in the slightest, then let’s get started.
Here’s how to flash the Android L Preview onto your Nexus 5 or Nexus 7:
I. Before You Begin
1. This will erase the data from your Nexus 5 or Nexus 7 so please backup everything to your computer (like photos, etc.) and make sure everything else is synced with your Google account).
2. These are previews and not fully functional, expect bugs.
3. I’m using Windows for this procedure as it’s what most will have to use. You can follow these same steps though for Mac (with changing the syntax for typing in commands).
II. Enable Developer Mode
1. On the device, go to Settings > About Phone.
2. Tap on Build Number repeatedly until it says you are a developer.
3. Hit back.
4. Tap on Developer Options.
5. Turn on USB debugging.
III. Download and Setup the SDK & Android L Preview
2. Under tools, select SDK Tools, Platform-tools, and Build-tools.
3. Select everything under Android L Developer Preview section and click Install packages.
4. Accept the Licensing Agreement for all of the packages and click Install.
5. Download the correct version of the preview for your device below:
6. Right-click the file you downloaded and select Extract All and extract it to your Desktop.
7. Take all of the files that are inside the folder and copy them to the C:/android-sdk/platform-tools/
IV. Flash the Android L Preview
1. Plug the device in via USB cable.
2. Open the folder android-sdk/platform-tools.
3. Hold shift on your keyboard and right click in a blank area in that folder, then select Open Command Window Here.
4. Type adb devices and you should get a serial number back (if you didn’t your drivers are not installed properly, head here for more help with that). If you did get a serial number, continue.
5. Type the following into the command prompt with hitting enter at the end of each line:
adb reboot bootloader
6. When the device reboots into fastboot mode, type the following into the command prompt with hitting enter at the end of each line:
fastboot oem unlock
7. Say yes on the device and this will unlock the bootloader (and erase your data). Then the device will reboot.
8. When it reboots, type the following into the command prompt with hitting enter at the end of each line:
9. This will now begin to flash the Android L image to your phone.
10. When it’s all done, unplug, and enjoy.
If you did this, what do you think of Android L so far?
If you want to undo this and get back to KitKat follow this video.