Technology

Want To Enjoy Android Pie On Your Old Phone? Use LineageOS 16

LineageOS 16 android pie
Image Source: LineageOS (screenshot)

If you own an older Android smartphone that does not get the latest operating system updates, then LineageOS 16 can help you. The developers of the OS have released the latest version of the software, which brings Android 9.0 (better known as Android Pie) to older smartphones.

List of supported devices

LineageOS is basically a custom ROM or an unofficial version of the Android OS. This means if your Android phone is not getting the latest updates, you can install LineageOS to enjoy Android 9.0 on your phone. However, your phone must be compatible with LineageOS 16.0.

The software currently supports about 30 phones dating as far back as 2014. Some of the older Android devices that support LineageOS 16.0 are the Sony Xperia XA2, OnePlus One, Google Nexus 6 and Samsung Galaxy S5. The software supports some newer devices as well, like the Xiaomi Poco F1, Huawei P20 Pro and Motorola Moto X4. You can view the initial list of all the supported devices here. If your device is not among them, don’t worry; support for more devices should be rolled out soon.

“Additional devices will begin receiving builds as they are ready after we make minor changes to our build scripts to better handle the unique features, and resulting complications, of the most modern devices,” the developer team said.

Not just limited to Android Pie

Android devices stop getting official updates three years after their purchase date. However, users can still update their devices via custom ROMs and firmware. LineageOS is one such reliable custom ROM that has offered Android updates for years. LineageOS is the successor of the CyanogenMod project, which was closed in late 2016.

Thus, if your device doesn’t get official Android updates, but you want to enjoy the functions and features of the latest version of Android, then you need LineageOS 16.0. One point to note is that since it is not an official Android update, some of the Android Pie features may not work or may not work as intended.

In addition to supporting Android 9 Pie, LineageOS 16 adds some of its own features as well. The Lineage team has updated the Styles API so that it supports future Android updates as well. For instance, LineageOS will be compatible with Android’s upcoming dark mode. There is also a “mark as read” option in the notifications for messages.

Further, LineageOS 16 allows users to set custom intervals to check for updates automatically. Lineage’s Trust interface also blocks new USB devices when the phone is locked. Similarly, the Trebuchet app launcher hides apps behind passcodes.

How to install LineageOS 16.0

If you are installing a custom ROM for the first time, you will first need to unlock the bootloader of your device and install an updated custom recovery like TWRP. Then when LineageOS 16.0 becomes available for your phone, you can install it via TWRP.

If you are updating from LineageOS 15.1, then you can install LineageOS 16.0 without wiping your data. Before you start the process, it is recommended that you take a backup of your data, including the system, boot, vendor, and data partitions. Next, follow these steps to install LineageOS 16.0:

  1. First, download the latest version of the software from the built-in updater or the download portal.
  2. Next, download the appropriate add-on packages, such as the Gapps package. After this, reboot your device into recovery mode and flash the LineageOS 16.0 build, followed by the add-on packages.
  3. Now, reboot into the system.

It must be noted that if you are currently using an official build, then you do not to need wipe the data from your device. If you are on an unofficial build, then you must wipe date before starting the installation.

End of LineageOS 14.1

With the release of LineageOS 16.0, the team also bid farewell to LineageOS 14.1 development. This means the developers are no longer actively working on Android Nougat-based ROMs. However, the team could still release security updates for devices still running the older OS.

“The Nougat-based release has been discontinued and the last builds were published on February 7th, 2019. The branches will not be locked, so it’ll still be open for contributions such as security patches…” the team said.