Jelly Bean for all Galaxy Nexus Users: Methods Review
Before we start, we would like to say a big thanks Terry Boccarossa for his review he provided for us on how he is getting on with Jelly Bean. Terry’s Review: since I have a Samsung Galaxy Nexus GSM variant, which is no longer, updated by the OEM or the carrier.
Here in Canada the latest OS update sent was for 4.0.2 which was halted due to issues, so most phone are still stuck on 4.0.1, however this does not need to be the case for you. Do not be shackled by the manufacturer or tied down by your carrier thinking they all know best. There are many developers out there in the Android community; all they do is figure out ways to get past these barriers.
My phone is updated to the latest OS 4.1.1, which was automatically updated from 4.0.4. If you are wondering how I managed to do this, it is thanks to our developer friends at xda-developers.com. I will show you one of MANY methods to get your phone to the proper version that your phone was intended to be. The following steps I will show you have been created by mskip, a recognized xda developer. I have taken no part, nor do I take credit for any of his hard work. (Note: rooting is not required)
The tool I have been using with relative ease is called the ‘Gnex TOOLKIT’ found at the XDA Developers Forum The current version is 7.8 but keep going back to make sure you have the latest version available. This tool allows you to proceed with all the necessary steps needed without having to go type all the codes manually like other guides will show you which can be at times intimidating when it is your first time.
On the website for the Gnex toolkit, there are many pictures and videos to show you how to proceed. I will give you a quick run through of the basics needed so you can understand what you need to do first.
Image via Android Authority
You will need to choose the model of your phone. Now as I have the GSM variant I chose GSM model yakju-maguro. Make sure you know what version you are running. If you have the GSM version but you are in the US with Wallet available, select the correct model and choose Android 4.1.1
The first thing you need to do is to install the adb/fastboot drivers. These are needed so that you can unlock your bootloader, root your phone and flash CWM (ClockworkMod) Recovery. Once the drivers are installed on the PC (note the phone must not be plugged in when installing the drivers on the pc) plug your phone to your computer with the USB connector and your computer show start to update the drivers for your phone. Once drivers are installed, the toolkit will be able to see the list of devices attached. (If serial shows, the drivers are installed)
MAKE SURE YOU ENABLE USB DEBUGGING IN SETTINGS IN THE DEVELOPER OPTIONS BEFORE CONNECTING THE USB CABLE IN ADB MODE, SO THAT THE PC CAN DETECT THE PHONE PROPERLY.
Second, which is very important, is backing up your phone with a NANdroid backup. If anything happens to your phone down the road and you need to send it off for repair, you can flash everything back to its original settings. Also once we proceed to the next steps we will be performing a complete wipe of the phone so if you don’t want to lose anything in the phone, this is the time to do it.
Third, you will need to go in fastboot mode. For those that are not familiar with this, press and hold Volume up+volume down+power. The phone must be turned off first in order to get into this mode. Once the phone turns on into fastboot mode, select unlock your bootloader. Once you are in the process of doing this, on your phone you will be prompted to a large text asking you if you want to continue yes/no. Select yes and your bootloader will be unlocked, which may take a few minutes since it will be wiping everything in your phone.
Fourth, you want to flash CWM (ClockWorkMod) recovery to your phone, again this is done in fastboot mode.
Fifth and last step you will want to download extract & flash the Google factory stock ROM. that must be done again in fastboot mode. So again, if you are of the international GSM Variant you will need version 4.1.1 Build JRO03C. Download the file, which is 100+MB, you will then select to flash it on your phone.
Once all this is complete you will be updated to the latest OS Jelly Bean 4.1.1
I take no responsibility for any fault or damage caused by any procedures within this guide. No warranties of any kind are given. Now that you have a brand new OS loaded onto your phone, you will notice right away a new load up screen of a multicolored X. This is how you know you are flashed to the proper OS. For those that have not read up on what JB offers, the first thing to be noted would be what Google called ‘Project Butter’
Jelly Bean brings performance enhancements as well. Project Butter is what Google calls the faster performance found in Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. Ever since I flashed my phone to the latest OS I have not crashed, frozen or have had to remove my battery once. This phone is smoother, faster, and reliable and brings performance enhancements as well. Just like the name says – ‘Project Butter’
Google Now is a great new feature that brings many of the actions iPhone users rely on Siri to Android phones. Google Now is smarter than Siri in a few ways, including its ability to bring in your Google Search history to help inform you of events, activities and more. The voice recognition is much more reliable also, I encourage you to look up videos of Google now vs siri to see the difference.
Google Now users cards to constantly show users information without being intrusive, and it allow users to customize alerts and other settings. Google Now, has also just recently incorporated the latest real time sports scores updates once you’ve told Google your favorite teams, movie times that populate when you’re within reach of a cinema, and also public alerts in your area for things like earthquakes, hurricanes, and other emergencies.
The new notification system is by far one of my favorite Jelly Bean features. In Android 4.1 Google adds more information and actions to notifications. With expanded notifications, I can see the first several lines of an email, or I can text or call back a missed call right from the notification, you will also see a sample of a picture received by mms with the added option to share it. Apps that take advantage of expanded notification can show more information. So far this is mostly limited to Google apps like Gmail and the phone app, but I’m hopeful we’ll see third-party apps add support soon.
Offline Voice Dictation
Dictation is quickly becoming a great way to quickly enter text into our phones, and with Jelly Bean, the phone doesn’t need an Internet connection to make this happen. This is handy even when you have an Internet connection, as it means you won’t need to wait while on a slow connection. The Google voice dictation also shows words as they are spoken; instead of after I finish talking.This isn’t perfect, but it’s a nice way to quickly enter text into any text field on Android 4.1.1.
The new camera app in Jelly Bean offers gestures to quickly navigate and manage photos. Swipe from right to left in the camera app to see photos, and swipe back to start taking pictures. A pinch offers access to a camera roll to quickly flip through photos. A swipe down will remove the photo from the camera roll. Thankfully users have the option of undoing the action so it’s hard to accidentally delete a photo.
If you’ve ever been frustrated by the inability to place a widget because an app shortcut is in the way, Jelly Bean offers an easy fix. In Android 4.1, widgets will push the icons out of the way, making it easier to place a widget on the screen without starting over.
These are only a sample of what is to come with this new platform. Android is paving the way to a better future for smartphones. The ability to customize more features. The responsiveness of the phone and reliability is night and day compared to the beginnings of ICS. The battery lasts longer. I can go 14-20 hours without a charge where before I would be drained within 8 hours with a light to medium use. On the days where it is a heavy use, it will last approximately 6-8 hours, which is enough for a workday, but I would still bring a charger cable with you to avoid being stuck without a phone.
If you would like to speak with Terry Boccarossa to discuss the above please do so by visiting his Google+ profile, we would like to say a big thanks once again to Terry and would ask all our readers to add him to your circles.