How to install the Android 15 Beta on Google Pixel

How to install the Android 15 Beta on Google Pixel

Android 15 has graduated from Developer Preview, with the beta program now available for Google Pixel devices. Here’s what you need to know about the first Android 15 beta and how to install it.

What’s the latest Android 15 beta?

Google first released Android 15 in February. Two developer previews have been released leading up to April 11, when Google released Android 15 Beta 1.

Beta 1 is the first of several beta releases scheduled for 2024, with Google expected to launch several more updates through the next few months.

Notably, Android 15’s Developer Preview builds were both fairly unstable for users, with sideloading issues being prevalent. While the Android 15 Beta is likely to fix these problems, users should still take precautions. Avoid installing beta builds on a device you can’t go without, and if you do sideload the update, toggle “OEM Unlocking” in developer options before starting the install process.

What Pixel devices can install the Android 15 Beta?

As of Android 15, all Snapdragon-powered Pixel smartphones will no longer be supported. Only Pixels powered by Tensor are available with Android 15, meaning all Pixel devices released since October 2021.

That includes the following:

  • Pixel 6
  • Pixel 6 Pro
  • Pixel 6a
  • Pixel 7
  • Pixel 7 Pro
  • Pixel 7a
  • Pixel Fold
  • Pixel Tablet
  • Pixel 8
  • Pixel 8 Pro

For Google Pixel 6 and 6 Pro, this is the last major Android update available.

When it debuts, the upcoming Pixel 8a will likely also be added to the Android 15 Beta quickly.

How to install Android 15 with the Android Beta Program on Pixel

While the initial Developer Preview releases of Android 15 required sideloading, Google makes the beta releases readily available through OTA updates.

To get set up, you’ll visit and “Opt in” on your selected device. Any compatible Pixel (listed above) with your same Google account will be able to join the program on this page. Once opted in, you’ll be able to check for updates on your device to actually install the update. This usually happens within an hour, but can occasionally take longer.

Importantly, the Android 14 QPR3 Beta is technically still ongoing alongside the Android 15 Beta program. If you do not want to move to Android 15, you’ll need to opt out of the program to prevent getting this update. If you are on that program and want to participate in the Android 15 Beta, simply check for updates. Anyone who sideloaded Android 15 Developer Preview 2 will also be put into the beta automatically.

How to sideload Android 15 Beta on Google Pixel

By far, the fastest way to get a new version of Android on your Pixel is to sideload it. It’s a relatively easy process, but you’ll need to get set up to do it. Here’s how.

  1. Download the needed files.
  2. Boot into Recovery mode.
  3. Navigate to ADB sideload.
  4. Connect the handset to a computer with ADB tools installed.
  5. Enter the sideload command.
  6. Reboot your phone.

WARNING: Google notes that you’ll need to be running the correct Android build to sideload Android 15 Beta 1. If you are currently running Android 15 Developer Preview 1 or Android 14 QPR3 Beta 1, you cannot directly sideload to Android 15 Beta 1. You must first install Android 15 Developer Preview 2 or Android 14 QPR3 Beta 2.

Devices running Android 15 DP1 (build AP31.240119.016) or Android 14 QPR3 Beta 1 (build AP21.240119.009are not able to sideload the images of the Android 15 Beta 1 build (build AP31.240322.018) due to a bug in the installed build. If you would like to sideload Android 15 Beta 1, first take the OTA update to Android 15 DP2 (build AP31.240223.016.A3) or Android 14 QPR3 Beta 2 (build AP21.240305.005).

1. Download Android 15 Beta files

To get started, you’ll first need to download the files needed to actually put the Android 15 Beta 1 on your Pixel.

There are two ways to do so. First, you can install a Factory Image, which wipes your phone and starts everything from scratch. Alternatively, and the way we’ll detail here, there’s an OTA file, which installs over your current version of Android without wiping your phone.

You can download the beta OTA file from Google’s Full OTA Image hosting site. That site contains OTA downloads for sideloading different updates, including the Android 15 Beta, on every Pixel and Nexus device, so you’ll need to scroll down to ensure you are downloading the file that is associated with your device. OTA downloads are available here.

For the Android 15 Beta, only Pixel 6/Pro, Pixel 6a, Pixel 7/Pro, Pixel 7a, Pixel Fold, and Pixel Tablet are available, and you can upgrade straight to QPR3 even if you were on the normal beta.

You won’t be able to install it on the original Pixel/XL, Pixel 2/XL, Pixel 3/XL, Pixel 3a/XL, Pixel 4/XL, Pixel 4a, Pixel 4a 5G, Pixel 5, or Pixel 5a.

Note: This process (using OTA) won’t wipe your device, but it’s good practice to back up any irreplaceable data in case something goes wrong. You should also enable “OEM Unlocking” in Developer Options as a means of recovery.

2. Boot into Recovery mode

Next, you’ll boot your Pixel into Recovery mode. To do this, fully power down your handset. Then hold down on the Power button and the Volume down button at the same time until you get to the Bootloader page. You will know you’re in the right place when you see an Android figure lying down on the screen.

Using your volume buttons, scroll down to Recovery mode. Select this by clicking the power button. Alternatively, if you’re already connected to a computer with ADB, you can use the reboot recovery command.

Now, you should see a smaller Android lying down with an exclamation mark over it. From here, press the Power button and the Volume up button for about a second to fully enter Recovery mode. Releasing the Volume up button will send you into Recovery.

3. Navigate to ADB sideload

Using the volume buttons, scroll down to Apply update from ADB and select it with the power button. This will launch a mostly blank screen with text near the bottom directing you on how to sideload an OTA.

4. Connect the handset to a computer with ADB tools installed

This step is important as it’s the only way to transfer the downloaded OTA file to your handset. You’ll need to have ADB and Fastboot tools in a handy place. You can download ADB tools from the Android Developers website. You can also use the Universal ADB Drivers from ClockWorkMod, which can make the process a bit easier on Windows devices.

5. Enter the sideload command

As long as everything is in place, you can now sideload the OTA file. On Windows, ensure your Command Prompt is directed to the ADB tools folder and type in adb sideload. If you’re on macOS or Linux, do the same thing in Terminal (use “cd” and “ls” commands to make sure your Terminal is pointed at the right folder – Google it if you need help) but type in ./adb sideload. You’ll then need to insert the file name of the .zip folder you downloaded from Google and hit enter to start the process.

If everything is working properly, you should see some dialog on your computer and handset that shows the process of the sideload and installation process.

6. Reboot your phone

Once the OTA is done installing, you will be taken back to Recovery Mode. The last step to jump into the new update is to select the Reboot now option with your power button..

Questions? Let us know in the comments.

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