Update Motorola Droid Razr and Razr Maxx to Android 4.4 KitKat with CM 11 Firmware

Android 4.4 based CM 11 and Motorola Droid Razr and Razr Maxx can now work as a team as the firmware has been optimized for the mentioned handsets. Even though this is not the official release of CM11 (those of CM team had just launched the stable version of CM10.2) the platform is smoothly running on the devices since those of xda-developers (we should thanks them for this guide) had modified the Android 4.4 KitKat OS especially for the Droid Razr and Razr Maxx.

Unfortunately, as you might have heard, Motorola announced that Android 4.4 will not be coming to the Razr and Razr Maxx due to hardware limitations. So, the only way possible in which you can use and test the latest apps, features and capabilities that are available on Android Google Play is to install a custom ROM firmware, like CM 11. Therefore, if you are stuck on Jelly Bean and want to try something else, something better, then you must complete this step by step guide as there won’t be any OTA coming to you.

Probably you are wondering if there are bugs included on this version of CM11. Well, yes, there are some minor issues, but according to the devs these issues are not so relevant, which means you can install Android 4.4 KitKat on Droid Razr and Razr Maxx for daily use. Also, the devs are constantly working in providing a stable CM 11 OS, so you will be updated with a new firmware that will bring bug fixes and stability improvements.

Furthermore, as usual, CM11 is coming with both stock and extra (that cannot be found on the default version of Android 4.4 system) features, apps and capabilities along with other settings that can be used for improving the performances, optimize the battery life consumption, upgrade the web browsing experience, bump the speeds and lot more. In the end, your Motorola Droid Razr and Droid Razr Maxx will become your new playground, a playground installed with Android 4.4 KitKat OS.

But for being able to obtain all these you first have to take care of this step by step guide. In order to do so, you need to have a rooted Motorola Droi Razr or a rooted Motorola Droid Razr Maxx. CM11 will have to access some in built files and programs that are located on the internal system of your smartphone and this access can be granted only via root. Therefore, gaining root access is a must have. Unfortunately rooting is not official and because of that the warranty of your device will get void.

The warranty can be restored as soon as you decide to downgrade your phone to stock Android OS. Then, the root access will be revoked, the bootloader relocked and the factory restrictions reinstalled. So, your device will be restored to its initial state.

After gaining root access, you need to install a custom recovery image on your Droid Razr pr Droid Razr Maxx. CM 11 Android 4.4 firmware can be installed only via the same so that’s why the stock recovery isn’t useful and must be replaced. Use the latest versions of CWM or TWRP recovery, because the devs had tested the ROM only by using these apps. Don’t worry because CWM recovery is one of the most used custom recovery image for Android system while TWRP recovery represents the touch version of CWM.

Then, I am recommending you to make a Nandroid backup along with a classic backup for saving everything that is important for you. The Nandroid backup offers the possibility of saving the current ROM (if CM 11 is not on your taste then you can use the recovery mode for restoring the previous firmware) while by using suitable backup and restore apps from Google Play you can save the contacts, call logs, market apps, personal data, info and accounts and everything else it’s there on the internal storage of your handset.

On the other hand, the rest of the preparation tasks are referring to more general aspects. These aspects implies in ensuring that you can use a computer or notebook, while near you must be the Motorola Droid Razr, or Razr Maxx and its USB cable. On your handset from path “menu – settings –developer options” you need to check the USB debugging option because a connection between the smartphone and computer must be established. Also, on your computer you need to deactivate – temporarily only – the antivirus, antimalware or Firewall protection. Don’t worry, your computer will not be infected, this must be applied, because usually the security protection is interfering with the update operation.

If your phone gets turned off in the middle of the flashing procedure you will risk in bricking your Android based device. Because of that, the best will be to plug in the charger (especially if the battery power is less than 60%) before starting the proper tutorial. This guide is compatible only with the Motorola Droid Razr and Droid Razr Maxx (both GSM and CDMA variants) and you should install CM 11 Android 4.4 KitKat by using the steps from below only if you own the mentioned smartphones.

How to Update Motorola Droid Razr and Razr Maxx to Android 4.4 KitKat with CM 11 Firmware

  1. The CM11 Android 4.4 update file can be downloaded for the XT910 (GSM) version from here, while for the XT 912 (CDMA) model you should get the software from here.
  2. Also, from here download the Google Apps package.
  3. Save these files on your computer.
  4. Don’t unzip the same.
  5. Connect your phone with the PC via USB cable.
  6. Transfer the downloaded files on your phone’s SD card.
  7. Unplug the USB cord.
  8. Turn off your device.
  9. Reboot in recovery mode – use this tutorial if you don’t know how.
  10. From recovery select “wipe data factory reset”, “wipe cache partition” and “wipe dalvick cache”.
  11. Return to main menu of recovery.
  12. Select “install zip from SD card” followed by “choose zip from SD card”.
  13. Pick the CM11 firmware file; install Android 4.4 on your Motorola Droid Razr or Droid Razr Maxx.
  14. Do the same thing and flash Google Apps package on your phone.
  15. In the end select “+++go back+++” and “reboot system now”.

Perfect; you have successfully applied our step by step guide. You now know how to update your Motorola Droid Razr and Droid Razr Maxx to Android 4.4 KitKat OS even though an OTA release won’t be made available for your smartphone. CM 11 Custom ROM is now running on your device, so you should test the new software. Also, in the end don’t hesitate and use the comments field from below for sharing your experience and thoughts with us and with other users as well.

  • Sam

    I got to the screen where I applied the update, and then it read these lines:
    Finding update package…
    Opening update package…
    Verifying update package…
    Installation aborted.

    What do I do?

    • Will P.

      Same here…

    • Jennifer

      Same. Fix????