The official Android 5.1 update for Verizon Galaxy S4 via OTA or Kies is easily at least 3-4 months away, even if we’re to believe Samsung still cares about its S4 users — don’t forget that S4 is now full 2 years old, an update criteria that most OEMs stick to barely. But that’s not a big worry, at least we have the awesome developer community to bend toward, and grab an 5.1 update unofficially. The GamerROM is based off AOSP Android 5.1 update, and gets your OS all the goodness of pure stock Android UI — goodbye TouchWiz! — along with all the new features from the 5.1.
Even though is development stage, the GamerROM is working quite alright for the Verizon Galaxy S4. That’s a big plus, and a good achievement by the community to get a working build so early — even Nexus 4 is yet to get an official Android 5.1 update from Google as of today.
Though, there’s a one bug currently, the video recording is broken for now, but we really think it would be fixed pretty soon, maybe within a week, or two at the max. Network, Wi-fi, Bluetooth, etc. are all working fine.
Normally, you need to download the Google services (Gapps) separately from unofficially AOSP ROMs like this one, but the developer has found a way to combine the two downloads of ROM and Gapps into one without breaking the code of conduct which requires them separately. Within a single download, the script flashes only the ROM part first, and then flashes the Gapps part separately from the ROM, which is something we used to do manually.
And in any case, if you want to go back to official Samsung firmware for your Verizon Galaxy S4, you can do so pretty easily — a simple firmware flash using Odin software is all it takes to remove custom ROM, custom recovery and root, all in one shot, and restoring the phone back to stock, Samsung firmware.
Note: As you already know, it’s not an official Samsung Android 5.1 update for Verizon Galaxy S4, so expect few kinks at some corners of the ROM that are yet to be fixed by the team. Any major bugs will be reported below.
- Video recording is not working
Download the ROM file in .zip format from the source development page here, where you could also keep a tab on updates for the ROM, and any current issues with the ROM with fixes, if any, available. No nee to download the Gapps file as its contained in the ROM file.
- Samsung Galaxy S4 at Verizon, model no. SCH-i545
- Don’t try on any other Galaxy series set or other device of Samsung or any other company
Warning: Warranty may be void of your device if you follow the procedures given on this page. You only are responsible for your device. We won’t be liable if any damage occurs to your device and/or its components.
Important Note: Backup important files stored on your device before proceeding with the steps below, so that in case something goes wrong you’ll have backup of all your important files.
- Bootloader of firmware MDK is preferred but not necessary. If you could install the MDK firmware, it’s great! Chances of that are slim if you are quite now to this.
- Transfer the ROM file package file to your device’s internal storage and remember the location where you save it.
- You need TWRP recovery for this. Get it from here. There’s good instructions set there, too. For more help, Google is your friend.
- Boot into Recovery mode.
- Once in TWRP recovery, take a backup of your current ROM. Select Backup, then do a “Swipe to Back Up” on the bottom of the screen.
- Once the backup is finished, select Wipe, then do a “Swipe to Factory Reset” on the bottom of the screen.
- Go back to the main menu of TWRP recovery and select Install.
- Navigate to the file where you saved your ROM’s zip file, select it and “Swipe to Confirm Flash” on the bottom of the screen. Now wait until the flashing process finishes. It will also flash Gapps after flashing the ROM.
- Go to back to recovery’s Main menu, select Reboot » select System.
Your device will now reboot with Android 5.1 update, thanks to GamerROM custom ROM.
In case you need any help over this, let us know. And, you can thank the developer g7755725 for this.
Android 5.1 update is also available on:
- Samsung: Note 4 | Note 3 | Galaxy S5 (all models) | Galaxy S5 (Sprint and Verizon) | S4 LTE | S3 | S3 LTE
- Google: Nexus 4
- OnePlus: One
- LG: G3
- HTC: One Max
- Motorola: Droid Razr | Moto G (SOKP) (Hyperdrive) | Moto X 2014 (SOKP) (official soak test) | Moto E 1st Gen (CM12.1) (SOKP)
- Sony: Xperia Z Ultra | Z2