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Verizon Galaxy Nexus Finally Got Its Software Update

September 28, 2014 - Written By Phil Bourget

I, like many other people that love Android and Google’s Nexus program, all remember the day in fall of 2011 when Google announced the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, the herald for Ice Cream Sandwich, Android 4.0.  But we also remember that it got great fast updates, being the favorite and child of Google itself, up until the release of the Nexus 4, when it got put back a little for the new device.  All the Galaxy Nexus owners, whether it be the GSM model, known as maguro, the Verizon model, known as toro, or the Sprint model, known as toroplus, remember the feeling of getting Google’s 4.1, then 4.2, and finally 4.3 versions of Android Jelly Bean.  But, and many of us GNex owners may not know the numbers exactly, on the day of the announcement of continued support of the Galaxy Nexus last summer at Google I/O 2013: no continued support for Galaxy Nexus.

And that, folks, is where we pick up this story of the dejected and abandoned Galaxy Nexus.  The poor phone was just six days out of its year-and-a-half of surefire support from Google.  Six days.  Yeah, people were peeved, and I mean who wouldn’t be, when their normal, everyday use phone was officially left behind.  But, as with most phones that are dropped from ‘official support channels’, the community, clad in AOSP source code and a hefty amount of community support, made Kit Kat, Android 4.4, happen for the Galaxy Nexus.  This is where we want to introduce Shiny ROM.

Shiny ROM is what official Kit Kat would have been.  Shiny is officially supporting the GSM and Verizon Galaxy Nexus models(Galaxy Nexi?)as well as the Wi-Fi only variant of the 2012 Nexus 7 tablet from Google and ASUS.  The maguro and toro variants of the Galaxy Nexus are perfect candidates for Shiny, given what it is.  Shiny is stock, no special additions, mod-friendly and mod-able, Android Kit Kat, not rooted, and having a built in over-the-air (OTA) update function for when new updates come down the pipe.  Shiny is unique in two large ways.  First, there’s the extremely limited (and Sprint variant-excluding) support of Nexus devices.  And second, there’s the fact that there’s no in-built Super User, the root privileges manager, functionality.  You have to root it on your own, just like if it was officially official Nexus firmware.

‘But’, you say as you look at your Galaxy Nexus sitting in your sock, underwear, or desk drawer ‘how would I get my phone to run it, and what would be the point?’  Well, person, one large reason is that Android has become a lot more stable, as well as secure, since the Galaxy Nexus was abandoned with 4.3 Jelly Bean on its death certificate from Google last year.  If you ever want to have a backup phone, and want it to run today’s software, then Shiny is for you.  If you want to have a phone to have your son or daughter use as their first phone, (since most phones nowadays are sometimes too large for young teen hands) then this will make sure they have a great device with equally-as-great Android built specifically for it.  If you’re one of those people that uses Verizon and still have your Nexus simply because it still has unlimited data associated with it, then this is perfect for you, since it fixes some of the jank and Verizon garbage on the device.

If you want to go check out Shiny ROM, go to either the official page on RootzWiki in the source section or check out the official website here.  The installation instructions are on the RootzWiki page, so be sure to check back there if you do decide to go for this great ROM.  Being a user of both the Nexus 5 and Galaxy Nexus, both from Sprint (and both abandoned by it too…), I love the Kit Kat look on my curved GNex glass.  If you have or have used the Galaxy Nexus, do you think that Kit Kat deserves to get some screen time on it?  If you have read through all of Shiny’s documentation, have you decided to go for this one, especially since Galaxy Nexi(that’s right I’m coining the term)everywhere will be essentially neglected from the Android release coming this fall?  Let us know down below.