How to Flash / Install New ROM to Android Phone
At times when we buy a new phone we usually seek latest Android version. After time passes by one or two years, it is unable to handle new updates that directly impacts performance of the phone. By flashing the phone, a new life can be provided with many additional useful features when flashing is done with a new custom ROM. Find here on How to Flash / Install new ROM to Android Phone.
Why to flash your Phone?
There are several reasons why someone will install or flash a new ROM to his phone. Flashing your phone gives you many new features and customization including removal of bloatwares that came with the phone. Another benefit is that you can easily get stock Android instead of using manufacturer’s User Interface as found in Samsung Phones. Also, by installing a custom ROM you can easily upgrade your phone to most updated version of Android Operating System. This works for every kind of mobile phones.
It’s a well known sad truth that many manufacturers stop providing updates after few years. Manufacturers and carrier providers soon forget about their old devices as it is not profitable for them to provide new updates to old hardware. Also new phones has new features and much improved hardware for example, Samsung Galaxy S III was released in 2012 and was an incredible popular smartphone. However, the last updated OS it got was Android 4.3 Jelly Bean and that too 6 months after released by Google. Technology moved on and provided new better smartphones, however Galaxy S III is still an old cutting edge smartphone.
With the help of many phone customizers and developers its now possible to install latest Android Marshmallow with the help of custom ROM’s. This also increases phone performance as reported by many people.
If you own a phone that phone company has stopped providing updates to that phone. If you still love that phone then you can flash a new ROM so that you can use it happily. Through this tutorial you will be easily able to Flash/Install a New ROM to your Android Phone.
It is advised not to try this tutorial on new device. Use your old phone as you first need to uninstall the bootloader and will need to install a custom recovery environment for example TWRP.
Secondly, you will be requiring a ROM so that you can flash it in your old smartphone. Many custom ROM’s can be found by different independent developers. Out of many ROM’s, the most popular is CyanogenMod that is available for many smartphones. If you want to know what kind of ROM’s are for your device then check out XDA Developers forum with your specific phone model.
Please be informed to search the forum with your specific phone model or carrier as it helps to learn codename and separates it from other phones. For example Galaxy Nexus GSM (GT-i9250) is known as “maguro” whereas Verizon version (SCH-i515) is known as “toro”. Verizon users can not flash ROMs built for GSM AT&T version and vice versa. Other versions of the phone might use same model on all carriers. However, it is strictly advised to research and download compatible ROM for your device.
Here we will be using CyanogenMod 12.1 to Moto X (2013) that comes in zip file. To proceed further the first thing is to download latest stable version of CyanogenMod from its download page. On its download page you will see a list of devices in left sidebar from where you can easily spot your device and will be able to download the CyanogenMod. For bleeding edge and latest android version check “nightly” in left sidebar.
Along with ROM you will also require “Google Apps” zip file that contains apps like Play store, Gmail and Maps. These apps are not bundled with ROM’s. Download these from OpenGApps.org. Also be sure to download the right version of phone’s processor and android version. You can Google for correct processor and android version.
We now assume that you have an unlocked phone with TWRP installed including ROM and Google Apps ZIP files. If so, let’s proceed with further instructions.
FLash ROM with TWRP Recovery
To flash ROM, we first need to put two .zip files in our phone’s internat storage or in SD card. This can be obtained by connecting your phone to PC via USB cable and copy “cm-12.1-20160127-SNAPSHOT-YOG7DAO33J1-ghost.zip” and “open_gapps-arm-5.1-stock-20160211.zip” to phone’s memory.
We will be wiping out most data saved in your phone but this should keep your internal storage (photos, music and other files) intact but some data and app settings might be lost. To save your data copy all files and folder to PC. It will be a backup for internal storage that can be used in future.
Now turn off your phone and reboot it in TWRP recovery. Achieving this is different in many phones but generally holding power and Volume Down buttons simultaneously in most phones brings out “Recovery Mode”. If you do not how to boot your device in “Recovery Mode” then perform a Google Search with your specific phone model number. When you are done you will see a TWRP home screen.
Now once home screen is visible tap Wipe button and slide the bar at bottom to do a factory reset. Before, flashing a new ROM it is always advised to perform a factory reset. If you are simply upgrading your ROM then in that case you may skip this step. In case of issues with existing ROM, you may do a factory reset.
After factory reset, go back to home screen and click install.
Pressing install button will navigate to your ROM’s .zip file that was transferred earlier as shown in the picture.
Tapping on transferred .zip file will take you to swipe screen where you need to confirm swipe to flash.
It will require few time to flash ROM therefore, give some time.
After it’s done, now is the time to flash second .zip. To do this head back to home screen and install it. Pick Google Apps .zip file and repeat swipe to flash. This will also require some time.
When this is done now tap “Wipe cache/Dalvik” button and confirm it by swiping.
After cache has been wiped now tap on reboot system button to boot in normal Android mode. If it happens that TWRP asks to install SuperSU, then tap on “Do Not Install”
It will take few time to reboot your phone as it will be the first time. Therefore, be careful give it some time as interrupting the process in between will hang the phone and might not continue the installation process. If you face such issue then once again repeat the process in Recovery Mode. You can also install the back in this mode if anything goes wrong.
That’s it! Now enjoy and Play around with new ROM. If you like it then keep it or else install another. Comment if you face any issue.