How to Manually Upgrade an Android Device Operating System

How to Manually Upgrade an Android Device Operating System
Updating Your Device Over the Air (OTA)
  • Connect your device to Wi-Fi. Do so by swiping down from the top of your screen and tapping the Wi-Fi button.
  • Check out this guide for details on connecting to a wireless network.
  • Updating Android over Wi-Fi is the simplest and most recommended way of doing so.
  • Open your device’s Settings. It’s typically a gear-shaped (⚙️) icon but could also be an app that looks like a series of slider bars.
  • Scroll down and tap About Device. It’s near the bottom of the menu.
  • On a tablet, you may need to tap the General tab at the top of the screen first.
  • Tap Update. It’s at the top of the menu, and depending on the version of Android you’re running, may read “Software Update” or “System Firmware Update”.
  • Tap Check for Updates. Your device will search for available system updates.
  • Many versions of Android are device-specific. Your device will only search for updates that are compatible with your device.
  • Tap Update. If there is an update available, this button will appear at the top of the menu.
  • Tap Install. The button may also read “Reboot and Install” or “Install System Software”. This starts the download and installation process.
  • Wait for the installation to complete. Your phone will automatically reboot when the installation finishes.
Updating Your Device Using a Computer
  • Go to your device manufacturer’s official website from a desktop browser. Once there, follow links to its support and downloads page.
  • You may have to enter specific device information or register your device to access software updates.
  • Download and install device management software. The names and functions of such software vary from manufacturer to manufacturer.
  • For example, Samsung’s device management software is called “Kies,” Motorola’s is called “MDM,” etc.
  • Return to the device manufacturer’s official website. Once there, return to the support and downloads page.
  • Search for available updates. These updates come in a downloadable file that you can install using your manufacturer’s device management software.
  • Connect your device to your computer. Use the cable that came with the device. In most cases, it will be a USB to micro USB cable.
  • Open the device management application.
  • Locate the update command. It will typically be listed in a tab or drop-down menu along the top of the window.
  • In Kies, for example, it’s under the “Tools” drop-down menu.
  • Click on the update command. Doing so will start the update process. Follow on-screen prompts to complete the process.
Update Using a Rooted ROM
  • Back up your device. Do this in case you want to revert the rooting process later on.
  • Rooting an Android phone or tablet is different for every model.
  • Rooting to upgrade is not supported by your carrier’s or manufacturer’s technical support and may void your warranty.
  • Search online for rooting software. Using a browser on your computer, look for rooting software that is designed to be used with your specific device model.
  • Download the software. Follow on-screen instructions to download and install the rooting software to your computer.
  • Connect your device to your computer. Use the cable that came with the device. In most cases, it will be a USB to micro USB cable.
  • Open the rooting software. Do so on your computer.
  • Start the rooting process. Follow the on-screen prompts in the rooting software to complete the process.
  • If the software does not provide instructions, search online for a tutorial about rooting your specific device.
  • Restart your device. Now your device will run on the Android version you installed.