Mar 16th, 2015

nexus 6 nexus 5 3

Android 5.1 is rolling out now for most Nexus devices, but as usual it’s taking a while to arrive on devices. If you’re not keen on waiting around for an update you can take things into your own hands with the official OTA files published by Google. Manually installing an OTA update is not as simply as when it arrives on your phone, but it’s also not terribly difficult to do. Follow along and in no time you’ll have Android 5.1 up and running.

Download OTA Update

First you’ll need the OTA files for your device. Click (or right-click “Save As”) on the corresponding link below to start downloading. To find your current build number go to Settings > About phone.

Nexus 5

Nexus 6

Nexus 7 2012 WiFi

Nexus 10

Enable USB Debugging

First thing you’ll need to do is download the latest Android SDK and follow the instructions.

*Phandroid is not responsible for any problems you may have. Proceed at your own risk.

  1. Enable USB debugging on your Nexus.
  2. Go to Settings > About phone, tap on Build number 7 times.
  3. Go back one screen and you should see Developer options. Tap it.
  4. Enable USB debugging
  5. If you’re upgrading from an existing Lollipop build you’ll also want to make sure to check the box for Enable OEM unlock.
  6. Plug your Nexus in to a Windows machine and press “Ok” when it asks to Allow USB debugging.

Get into Recovery

The easy part is over. Now it’s time to get down and dirty.

  1. Open a command prompt from inside Platform-Tools in the SDK and type the following:
    1. adb reboot bootloader
  2. Your Nexus should now reboot into the bootloader
  3. Press Volume Down until you see Recovery
  4. Select it by pressing the Power button
  5. Next you will see an Android robot with an exclamation point. Press Volume Up and Power at the same time.

Install the Update

It’s finally time to install Android 5.1. Your Nexus should now be in stock recovery.

  1. Highlight Apply update from ADB by pressing Volume Down.
  2. Press the Power button to select it.
  3. In the command prompt on your PC type the following command:
    1. adb sideload
  4. If everything is working correctly you will see a file transfer begin in ADB.
  5. Your Nexus will begin to update and reboot when finished. You’re done!

If you run into problems be sure to head on over to Android Forums and get help from fellow users.

local_offer    Android 5.1 Lollipop  Nexus 10  Nexus 5  Nexus 6  Nexus 7 2012  OTA Updates