Posted by: reformedmusings | December 9, 2016

Moto X Pure Edition on Android 7.1.1

Back when the Moto X Pure Edition (MXPE) 2015 first hit the market, Motorola advertised that the MXPE would get rapid software updates. That never really came about. Lenovo bought Motorola and basically ignored the product line. The Android 6.0 update was a long time coming, and the stock MXPE still runs 6.0, even though 7.0 came out months ago and 7.1.1 is current. All we get from Lenovo is dead silence, with rumors of a Feb/Mar update to 7.0. I found that unacceptable.

So, I started poking around xda-developers again. I used a number of ROM builds on my old Galaxy S3, which I bequeathed to a family member. After researching several 7.1 builds, I settled on Android Ice Cold Project (AICP) by hashbang173. hashbang173 has done some great work with the MXPE in the past, so I had high hopes for AICP. He based AICP on CyanogenMod 14.1, to which he is also a contributor.

First step was a nandroid image backup in TWRP just in case things didn’t go well. I also backed up my MMS and phone records, and saved current settings for my email, launcher, etc. And, of course, Titanium Backup Pro had current backups of all my apps and their settings.

After all the backups, I flashed the 12/06 nightly build along with the Open GApps Project gapps mini file for 7.1 on arm64.

All this went very smoothly. It took around an hour to wipe my MXPE back to factory in TWRP, then flash the OS and gapps, then go through the initial setup, and finally restoring the appropriate apps from their TiBackups. The result was awesome.

Unlike some older AOSP ROMs, AICP doesn’t include an ad blocker, although it comes rooted with SuperSU. So, I had to load and update AdAway and restart. I spent the next day as time permitted tweaking the myriad of handy settings, especially the Status Bar. AICP includes an over-the-air updater to keep the geeks like me up to date on the daily builds. Each build gets even better.

hashbang173 and crew fix bugs quickly, and update the ROM promptly. They had Android 7.1.1 incorporated within a few days of its release. They also incorporated the December Android security patch within a few days. Lenovo still has the stock MXPE on Android 6.0 with May’s security update. They aren’t even trying.

The MXPE runs very smoothly on AICP, which duplicates the handy Moto gestures and functions nicely. I am really enjoying AICP.  Here it is in all its Android 7.1.1 glory:


Take that, Lenovo! Welcome to the Open Source world.

BTW, it’s chilly here!


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