A 4-year old smartphone is no longer legit with new OTAs and other similar Android notifications, even if we discuss about a Nexus branded device such as the Google Nexus 4. Mainly due to hardware limitations and for other marketing purpose, the Nexus 4 will not receive the Android 8.0 Oreo firmware, and that’s a fact. But, the very same fact doesn’t imply that you are using a doomed phone as there are third party devs who will always be here to support you.
And by keeping that in mind I must tell you that the new Lineage OS 15.0 build is now available for your Google Nexus 4 - of course, not the official, nor the final release of Lineage OS, but a ported and modified version of the same platform. Developed by those of xda-developers (all the credits for this new update opportunity must go to them), this new custom ROM software brings the Android 8.0 Oreo system to your Nexus 4 and from a first look everything is almost perfect.
The Lineage OS 15.0 is stable enough for a daily use. That doesn’t mean that the software is fully stable, but only that you are not going to experience important or major problems while running the Oreo software. Overall, it is a decent Android OS that will smoothly perform most of the time – don’t expect an extra-fast and light ROM because, after all, you are still using a 4-year old device. Anyway, in term of speeds and performance, the Lineage OS 15.0 should provide the power you seek.
This Lineage release is not bringing the pure Android 8.0 Ore firmware to your Google Nexus 4. Being a custom ROM, this update still comes with a modified, customized and optimized version of the stock Android build. But, that shouldn’t be a problem as the ROM is featuring important apps and capabilities which can help you obtain better results from your smartphone, regardless of what type of apps and processes you choose to install and run on your handset.
As you are used to, a custom ROM can be installed only if the current Android system is rooted and only after a custom recovery image is installed. So, before doing anything else you need to complete these two additional operations – in what concerns the custom recovery image I recommend you to use the latest version of TWRP recovery.
Yes, this is an unofficial update operation, but that shouldn’t matter too much – being an old device, you shouldn’t worry about losing the warranty, as this is the major downside when custom ROMs are involved.
What you need to do is a backup because the Lineage OS 15.0 can be installed on your Google Nexus 4 only after you make a hard reset and only after you clear app data cache. Thus, a full wipe will be operated and if you are not careful enough you can easily lose all your personal data, info, accounts and files. The general idea is to secure as much as you can – and you can save everything from your device if you choose to use different cloud storage platforms and services – offered by Google or downloaded from Google Play. While using such backup and restore solutions make sure you save your contacts, call logs, texts, images, videos, audio files, market apps, internet settings, calendar info, saved passwords, IMEI / NVRAM data and more.
Of course, you can still use the TWRP recovery image for making a Nandroid backup – that’s a dedicated backup operation that is saving the whole Android system into a separate package, which can then be used for a downgrade operation. Basically, if you don’t like how the Android 8.0 Oreo firmware is running on your Google Nexus 4 you can go back to stock by flashing the Nandroid backup package through recovery.
The Lineage OS 15.0 can be installed successfully by using the steps from below. But, before using those steps you should first review the essential pre-requisites from the following list:
- Your computer, notebook or any other similar device should be used for completing the download operations described below.
- Your Nexus 4 and its cable as a connection between your PC and you handset will be required.
- On your phone ensure that Developer Options can be accessed – tap repeatedly on Built Number (after 7 or 10 taps you will receive the ‘you are a developer’ message).
- Access Developer Options (from Menu - > Settings) and check the USB Debugging field – this is for making sure that the USB connection can be successfully completed.
- Different malfunctions can be caused within the Android core system if your Nexus 4 gets turned off during the Android 8.0 Oreo update operation.
- Therefore, charge your smartphone before initiating the steps from below; I recommend you to plug in the charger if the power is lower than 50%.
- Of course, remember to gain root access and install TWRP recovery before doing anything else.
How to Update Google Nexus 4 to Android 8.0 Oreo via Lineage OS 15.0
- On your computer you need to download two files: the Lineage OS 15.0 package (you can get it from here) and compatible Google Apps (Google Apps must be flashed separately – you can download this file from here).
- It doesn’t matter where you save the files; for your own convenient, place everything on desktop.
- Switch off your Nexus 4 and then access recovery mode.
- First of all, you need to perform the wipe; that can be applied by choosing “wipe data factory reset”, “wipe cache partition” and “wipe dalvik cache”.
- When the wiping process is completed reboot your smartphone.
- Connect your smartphone with your computer with the help of the USB cable and afterwards transfer the downloaded files from desktop to your phone.
- The computer is no longer required so you can remove the USB cord.
- Reboot recovery mode on your Google Nexus 4 again.
- This time type on Install and load the Lineage OS first. Swipe in order to begin the Android 8.0 update operation.
- Then, repeat the last step from above and flash the Google Apps package.
- When everything is completed from main menu of recovery pick “reboot system now”.
- And that should be all.
Boot your Google Nexus 4 into Android 8.0 Oreo ROM. Test the Lineage OS 15.0 and try all the new features, apps and capabilities. Also, tell us how everything is working for you and share other impressions or observations related with this update operation – that’s how we can help other users and that’s how we can be part of the Android community. Enjoy and stay close to us – you can talk with us anytime you want by using the comments field from below.