Update T-Mobile Galaxy S2 to Android 4.4 KitKat with ParanoidAndroid Custom ROM

The T-Mobile variant of the Samsung Galaxy S2 can now be updated to latest Android OS as the new version of ParanoidAndroid custom ROM firmware has been released. So, after we have showed you how to update numerous Android handsets (use our how to, or update section for getting suitable step by step guides) to custom Android 4.4 KitKat software, now we will do the same for the T-Mobile Galaxy S2. Therefore, by using this tutorial you will learn how to install Android 4.4 Paranoid Android custom ROM on your T-Mobile SGS2.

As you might know, the Galaxy S2 will be stuck on Jelly Bean OS, since Samsung announced that the Android 4.4 KitKat firmware will not be made available for this device due to hardware limitations. This is Samsung’s way for telling us: you should buy a new smartphone if you want to enjoy the latest Android system. Well, we have a better alternative for you, as by flashing a custom ROM you can safely enjoy Android 4.4 on your own T-Mobile Galaxy S2 and this even before the official release of the same – as you know, for now the KitKat firmware is OTA available only for Nexus devices.

The Paranoid Android 4.0 custom ROM comes with ported features and capabilities from CM 11, with stock apps and also with extra features that can be found only on the ParanoidAndroid platform. So, you will install a mixed ROM that brings only the best things for your T-Mobile Galaxy S2. Now, even though this is only an unofficial release of Android 4.4, the firmware is not buggy and can be safely installed for a daily use. There might be some minor bugs included, but the same will be resolved by the devs – by the way, the ParanoidAndroid OS has been developed and offered by those of xda-developers so we have them to thanks for this step by step guide.

According to the users who have already flashed this update on their handsets, the software is stable and comes without issues or things that aren’t working perfectly. Because of that, you shouldn’t worry; just choose to apply the ROM on your phone and test the latest Android experience. This tutorial is quite easy to complete, though the pre requisites are numerous.

Of course, for preparing your phone you will have to complete the guidelines from below. Then, you can safely proceed to the flashing operation which will guide through the installation process of Android 4.4 KitKat ParanoidAndroid custom ROM on T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy S2 model number SGH-T989.

Your SGS2 must be rooted and installed with CWM or TWRP recovery. Make sure you root your handset by using a suitable tutorial as gaining root access is an unofficial operation. Basically, by gaining root access you will remove the factory and default restrictions from your smartphone. That’s why the warranty will get void and also that’s why on rooted handsets you can apply custom ROMs that require access to the internal system. Now, as for the custom recovery image, I recommend you to choose between the latest version of CWM recovery, or the latest version of TWRP recovery. Why? Well, basically the devs had flashed this software only by using the mentioned apps.

You must backup the data that is saved on your phone’s internal storage memory. The backup is required because a wipe is also indicated (we will talk more about the wipe a little bit later when I will show you how to clear de cache and wipe the system). Without wiping the system, Paranoid Android custom ROM might not run properly on your T-Mobile Galaxy S2. Just keep in mind that your smartphone is rooted – so use free distributed apps from Google Play for saving your contacts, text messages, call logs, EFS folder and so on. Also, use CWM or TWRP recovery and make a Nandroid backup – save the current ROM as if you won’t like this Android 4.4 KitKat variant, you can choose to restore the old firmware without following a detailed tutorial similar with the present one.

For this method you will have to use a computer (where you will download the required files), your phone and its USB cable (you will have to connect the devices by using the same). Since a connection between the computer and your S2 must be established, on your handset before doing anything else you need to access the path “menu -> settings -> developer options” for enabling the USB debugging option. I also recommend you to charge your device especially if the battery status displays less than 60% power left. Finally, it is indicated to disable the antivirus, antimalware and Firewall protection from both computer and smartphone.

As I have mentioned several times until now, this step by step guide is compatible only with the T-Mobile version of Samsung Galaxy S2, which means that you should install Android 4.4 KitKat Paranoid Android firmware by using the steps from below only if you own the mentioned handset. Else you can end up in bricking your beloved Android based device.

How to Update T-Mobile Galaxy S2 to Android 4.4 KitKat with ParanoidAndroid Custom ROM Firmware

  1. Download the update file from here and place the same on your computer.
  2. Do the same for Google Apps, which can be downloaded from here.
  3. Place both files on desktop. Don’t unzip the files.
  4. You now need to connect your smartphone with your computer by using the USB cable.
  5. Once the connection established you need to transfer the files from desktop and place them on your phone’s SD card.
  6. Do that and then remove the USB cable as the computer is no longer useful.
  7. Turn off your SGS2 and use this guide.
  8. By following that tutorial you will learn how to enter your T-Mobile Galaxy S2 into recovery mode.
  9. As I have mentioned before, now you will have to clear the cache and wipe the system.
  10. For wiping the system select “wipe data factory reset”.
  11. For clearing the cache select “wipe cache partition”; also choose “advance” and select “wipe dalvick cache”.
  12. Go back to recovery mode and by using its menu select “install zip from SD card” followed by “choose zip from SD card”.
  13. Pick the Android 4.4 KitKat firmware file and flash the update on your T-Mobile Galaxy S2.
  14. Up next, by doing the same thing pick the Googe Apps package and install it on your phone.
  15. Finally, from the main menu of recovery select “reboot system now”.
  16. If your handset gets stuck in a boot loop you have to reboot into recovery once more and select “wipe data factory reset” and “wipe cache partition”.
  17. Also, if you want to restore the old ROM, use the recovery menu and choose “backup / restore”. You can apply this only if a Nandroid backup have been applied before as I have recommended you.

That was all; now your T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy S2 is running on Android 4.4 KitKat software. The Paranoid Android custom ROM firmware has been successfully installed on your handset which means that you are enjoying a custom platform that can be optimized for obtaining increased speeds, upgraded battery life, an improved web browsing experience and lot more. Do test this new system and share your results with us.

  • daddy

    On my phone there is no option for “advance” and “wipe dalvick cache”. If I skip that step the install fails. The messages say “E:failed to verify whole-file signature” and “e:signature verification failed”. Any Ideas?

    • daddy

      Also there is no option for “install zip from SD card”. I have the files on the card, but can’t navigate to load them. I am trying trying using the ADB SIDELOAD command. That is when I get the aforementioned messages.

      • OneSpecies

        Is your phone rooted?