T-Mobile Galaxy S4 users, you really cannot expect Samsung to come out to you with Android 5.1 update OTA. Your device is old now, it’s even got its grand-successor in Galaxy S6 out now. When the Samsung 5.1 update does starts rolling out, it will be owners of Galaxy S6 and S5 — in that order — who will be the happy ones, not you. Even the Note 4 and Note 3 users — in that order, again — would get it at some point, but not you. So, what do you do? Well, pay attention to custom ROM world, where one ROM by the name of GamerROM is already taking care of your Android 5.1 update — with pure Android UI, no less!
GamerROM is an AOSP based ROM, hence it’s completely a Nexus lookalike, boasting the stock Lollipop UI — lovely, tasty, awesome! — with the coolest of animations from 5.1 to new features from both 5.1 and Cyanogenmod 12.1, on which the GamerROM is based on.
Since Android 4.0 and Holo UI entered our life, it’s become ultimately hard to like TouchWiz, and with Lollipop that feeling has only strengthened. Samsung’s UI is out of depth now, even after the flat-ish update it got with S5, and now S6, but Android UI remains a treat.
That said, the GamerROM and its base, CM12.1, both are at early stages of development and this is only initial test build of the ROM. It works alright though, except for the broken video recording, but you cannot expect it to be completely void of force closes or several bugs. It can do you good as your daily driver, but be sure to fully test it out before fully depending on it.
And in any case, if you want to go back to official Samsung firmware for your T-Mobile 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 T-Mobile 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
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 need to download the Gapps separately as this ROM contains them already but flashes separately than ROM to be in line with Google’s policies, while saving you some labor work.
- T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy S4, model no. SGH-M919
- 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.
- 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 | Note 2 | Galaxy S5 (all models) | Galaxy S5 (Sprint and Verizon) | S4 (Verizon) (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