How to turn a Galaxy S4 and HTC One into a Google Edition
You know what the best thing about the new Google Edition phones is? It uses existing hardware with the best of Google’s pure Android variant. Simply put, the Samsung Galaxy S4 Google Edition is pretty much just a regular international variant of the Samsung Galaxy S4. In the same way, the HTC One Google Edition is pretty much the same as the international variant of the HTC One. The only difference is the fact that the Google Edition variant is pretty much running a different ROM.
As a community, we are pretty much experienced in installing custom ROMs into our devices. The Google Edition is just another ROM to be installed into our smartphones. As luck would have it, the avid developers of XDA and the leak crew at Sammobile have found the ROMs we need to have a taste of what a Google Edition Smartphone would operate like.
Turning an HTC One into a Google Edition
- A Custom Recovery – You can choose between a CWM custom recovery or a TWRP custom recovery. TWRP is apparently the preferred choice in this situation.
- The Actual ROM – The developer has created a peer to peer sharing torrent link for the ROM. The download is below.
- A GSM Variant of the HTC One
Once you have those three the first thing you should do is back up all your files and app data. You wouldn’t want to blame us for losing your data since the next step is to do a factory reset of your HTC One. This should clear out any problem in compatibility of the new ROM with pre-installed apps and data.
After wiping your phone clean, you need to copy the actual ROM from your computer into the SD partition of your phone’s memory. You now need to launch the custom recovery of your choice and manually flash the ROM from your SD card.
Just like any custom ROM built from a system dump, there might be a few minimal things not working. First off, the data quick settings tile doesn’t work. If you need to tether data, you might have to rely on a 3rd party app since the built in one doesn’t seem to work. Finally, video recording is a bit wonky since it keeps using the front microphone to record the audio. Otherwise, the ROM is fine as a daily driver.
Turning a Galaxy S4 into a Google Edition
There is much more development going on in terms of building the perfect Google Edition port for the Samsung Galaxy S4. In fact there are about 4 developers competing for the crown of the best port. One thing you should consider is that these ports have gone beyond simply installing the Google Edition variants of the phone. Many of these ROMs are already being tweaked much like a custom ROM, so it may not be the exact Google Edition experience that you would have gotten if you bought the real Google Edition variant.
There is some great news though. Thanks to Samsung’s carelessness, they managed to leak an actual ROM build that was meant for the Galaxy S4 Google Edition. The best part is that it is running better than the latest available variant of Android: Jelly Bean 4.3. Sammobile has released a port of the ROM for the international variant of the Samsung Galaxy S4.
There are two versions, a deodexed and an odexed version.
Just like with the HTC One, all you really need after this is your phone and a working custom recovery of your choice. As it turns out, you can’t install the update through ODIN, probably because it doesn’t have the same installation procedure as a Touchwiz built ROM. Backup all your necessary data, wipe the phone and proceed to your custom recovery to flash the port.
According to Sammobile’s tests, there isn’t a single thing not working in the update. Since this was definitely built from an installable source, it works much better than the ROM dump they did with the HTC One.