Few weeks ago, sources revealed that Galaxy S3 and Note 2 won’t be upgraded to Android 4.2.2. Instead, Samsung is straight away going to release Android 4.3 update for these devices. But it will take some more time for them to build this update. Since building process involves lots of testing, we might expect Samsung to roll out Android 4.3 update somewhere in the Q4 of this year (say in between September & October). Being a high end device, this might feel embarrassing for Note 2 owners. But on the other hand, they’ll be getting a direct upgrade to latest Android 4.3. So, that much delay is worth waiting for an official update to come out (especially for Android 4.3).
Though Android 4.3 is a little update over previous Android 4.2.2, it includes some of the captivating features such as virtual surround sound, permission manager, enhanced dial pad, Location detection through Wi-Fi, faster user switching, enhanced photo dream, additional international language support etc. Some of the hardware related features are: improved Linux kernel, Bluetooth Smart support etc. Sounds interesting, doesn’t it? But as I mentioned earlier, you’ll be seeing these features (or the whole update) after the span of some months.
But why one should wait for an official update to show up? Being an open source OS, Android source code can be compiled by anyone i.e. developers can make their own custom OS (by compiling original source) based on this code. Compilation and porting of original Android source code is often called as AOSP ROM (Android Open Source Project). But the result of an OS made by tweaking the same by our own way is called a Custom ROM. Currently, there are many custom ROMs available for huge number of Android devices but some of them are quite famous. The list includes- Cyanogenmod, AOKP, ParanoidAndroid, RootBox, LiquidSmooth, Carbon etc.
Currently, only Cyanogenmod has built a ROM based on Android 4.3, known as Cyanogenmod 10.2 (in short CM10.2). Courtsey to XDA Recognized Developer pulser_g2. CM 10.2 offers lots of new features over stock Android. This includes- pre-rooted firmware, new theme engine, focal camera, CM’s own customization settings etc. As of now, CM 10.2 is in experimental phase i.e. you may experience some bugs after installation of the same. But no worries! As developers are working hard on this project, those bugs will be fixed soon in the upcoming updates.
Still wondering how to upgrade your Note 2 to Android 4.3? Well, that’s why we’ve come up with an article upon the same. Procedure given below will help you in upgrading your device to latest Android 4.3 OS via Cyanogenmod 10.1 Custom ROM.
Disclaimer: We at AndroidLegend.com don’t held any responsibility if you brick your phone by performing the steps mentioned in given article. After all, it’s your decision to flash Android 4.3 on your Galaxy Note 2. You’ve been warned before. So, please proceed with your own risk. Although the chances of failure are very low.
This guide is meant only for international Variant of Samsung Galaxy Note 2 having model number GT-N7100. Don’t try to implement it on any other device (than the mentioned one) else it may turn your device into semi bricked state. This won’t work on any Carrier locked variant of Note 2.
Check your device model number by following this path on your phone: Menu –> Settings –> About device.
- Charge your device up to 75% battery level so that you can flash ROM without any interruption.
- Your phone data will be lost after performing the installation of CM 10.2 ROM (excluding External storage like SD card). Therefore, it is highly recommended to backup all your data from internal storage (includes contacts, messages (SMS/MMS), call logs, Internet APNs etc.).
- (Important) It is necessary to have Custom Recovery like Clockworkmod / TWRP installed in your phone for flashing Custom ROM like Cyanogenmod. If you haven’t installed one yet, follow this guide.
Note: You can’t proceed to ROM installation unless you’ve CWM recovery installed in your Galaxy Note 2 N7100.
- Download Cyanogenmod 10.2 (Android 4.3) package from the link mentioned below:
- Unofficial CM 10.2 ROM Development Page for Galaxy Note 2
- After downloading CM 10.2 package, connect your device to the PC. Enable MTP on it (unless you’re using the same) to access internal / external storage & transfer CM 10.2 ROM file on its root directory (or anywhere you want. Here, we have mentioned ‘root directory’ because it’s convenient location to access).
- Disconnect the phone from PC. Now boot into Clockworkmod recovery or any Custom recovery you’ve installed. For doing that, switch off the phone completely. Now, press & hold Volume Up + Home Button simultaneously & while holding these 2 buttons, gently press Power key. Release Power button as soon as Samsung Galaxy Note 2 appears on the screen.
- After getting into recovery mode, make a nandroid backup of your current ROM so that the same can be restored back in case of installation failure. To do so, Highlight backup and restore option from the main menu of recovery, select it & then choose backup option to start the backup process.
- Select wipe data/factory reset & subsequently wipe cache partition to wipe the data & caches respectively from the present ROM memory. (Caution! performing this step will erase all the data from phone (ROM memory), which includes SMS / MMS, contacts, reminders, APNs, call logs, apps etc. therefore ensure that you’ve taken backup of all these things before. Please refer pre-requisites section of this article for the same).
- Now select install zip from sdcard & then on next screen select choose zip from sdcard. It will show you all the files & folders located on internal / external storage (depending upon the option you’ve chosen) of your device. Navigate to the ROM file that you’ve copied earlier from Computer, select it using power button (unless you’re using touch CWM) & confirm the installation by pressing on Yes. This would start installation process.
- After you finish flashing the ROM, select “reboot system now” to Restart the phone.
That’s it! Android 4.3 is now up and running on your Samsung Galaxy Note 2. If you’ve any queries or need help regarding the procedure mentioned above, feel free to ask us in comments below & we’ll be happy to help you out in solving the issue. Don’t forget to report new changes in Android 4.3. We’d be pleased to hear from you. Enjoy..
Tip: If you don’t want this ROM anymore then you always have an option to restore your previous ROM. This can be done by using CMW’s backup & restore feature. To restore the previous ROM, boot into the recovery mode, select Backup and Restore option & on next screen, select restore. Now choose the backup you like to restore (or restore the backup you’ve made before flashing this ROM).
Update (15 Aug 2013): Google Apps for Android 4.3 are now available. Download it from here. You can flash them through recovery.
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Viraj was a former chief editor at Android Legend. He no longer works here. But no worries you can still get in touch with him via his Google+