How to Install Android L on your Nexus Device?

Android L is the latest version of mobile operating system developed by Google. Google introduced it at the I/O conference, 2014. However, it is not officially launched in the market. Google is now offering Android L Beta versions, which are also known as the developer previews. The Android L Beta versions contain entire Android L factory images only for Nexus 5 and Nexus 7 (2013 Wi-Fi model). For installing Android L Beta on your Nexus device, you require these Android L factory images. Although you have to be careful while installing Android L on your Nexus Device as it may hamper the working of other apps on your device because according to Google the operating system may contains several defects and errors that can cause damage to your device. Thus, it is advisable to create a backup for all the data of your device before commencing the installation process. After creating a backup, you can begin with the installation process and experience a completely new operating system offering plenty of new features and designs.

Read : Android 4.4 KitKat : The previous version of Android L


Read : Difference between Android Jelly Bean 4.3 and Kitkat 4.4


  • You will also need to download the Android L preview factory image from Google Developers for your Nexus 7 or Nexus 5 device (2013 Wi-Fi model).
  • A program that can manage archived files such as WinRAR or 7-Zip.
  • You must also have a proper set up for ADB and Fastboot.

Steps to install Android L on your Nexus Device

Now, let us discuss the steps for installing Android L on your Nexus Device:

Android Debug Bridge (ADB) and Fastboot Tools

The first step is to download and install ADB and Fastboot on your device that enables you to send instructions to your device from your PC with the help of a USB cable. You can find these tools in the Android SDK but it a large file that also contains many other tools that you will not require. Therefore, you can simply download the above two tools from the XDA forum. It is 2MB installer and contains both the tools. Install these tools in a folder that can be easily accessed by you.

Android L Image

Now you have to download Android L image for your device. The image will be in a .tgz format. Now you will require an extractor program such as 7- zip or WinRaR that will help you in extracting the archived files. Use the same folder that contains Fastboot and ADB to save the extracted files.

Enable USB Debugging

Click on the ‘settings’ option of your device and scroll down to the ‘about device’ option. Tap on the ‘Build number’ seven times to unlock the developer options. Now click on the back button just once and you will be able to see the developer options. Click on the developer options and enable the USB debugging mode.

Windows Drivers

After enabling the USB debugging mode, windows will once again look for drivers when you connect your device with the PC. This step is compulsory for your PC to identify your Nexus device as a developer device. Now go to the control panel and click on the option of devices and printers to search your device. Your device will be displayed there as Android Composite ADB Interface. If it does not identify then update your drivers. A popup message will appear asking ‘allow USB debugging’. Verify your device and click on the allow option. Your device is now ready.

Fastboot Mode

Turn off your device, without disconnecting it from your PC. You have to put it on Fastboot mode. There are two methods available for this. The first one is to simultaneously press both power and volume up/down buttons. The second method is to double click on py_cmd to open command prompt in the folder in which you had downloaded the tools. To restart your device in Fastboot mode, type ‘ADB reboot- Bootloader’.

Unlock Bootloader

Your device will be locked mode by default that will not enable you to install Android L image. Type the command ‘fastboot oem unlock’ for unlocking your device. The device will now question you whether you want to unlock the bootloader or not, choose the yes option by pressing power button. This will remove the data on your Nexus device and prepare it for the new Android operating system installation process.

Installing Android L

To begin with the installation procedure of Android L on your device, just type ‘flash-all’ in the command prompt to begin with the installation procedure. Once Android L is successfully installed on your device, lock the bootloader once again for security purposes.

I followed this procedure and installed new Android L on my Nexus 5 phone and I love it. What do you think about it?

Also read : Best Operating System for Cell Phones/Mobiles

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