The Nokia 8.1, one of the best Nokia smartphones that one can buy in the country, has been part of the Android Q (now we know it’ll be known as Android 10 going forward) beta programme since the early days. Well, since Google I/O 2019 back in May.
I happened to have a loaned unit from HMD Global’s local office at that time just so that I could enrol into the beta and give Android 10 a spin. Unbeknownst to me, I ended up waiting for hours for nothing. I was waiting for an automatic over-the-air (OTA) update that never came on the night of May 7th.
So, the following day, May 8th, I took matters into my own hands and just downloaded the firmware from the same place I had registered and flashed away. It wasn’t hard since the HMD team makes everything a breeze with easy to follow step-by-step instructions for anyone new to the process and borrowing from my dark past of doing such things, I was looking for a non-existent Android 10 Easter Egg in no time.
However, that is not exactly the most user-friendly way of getting updates in 2019. Especially since the same folks have previously done better – it’s how I got Android Oreo beta on the Nokia 6 two years ago before finally being taken back to the drawing board a year later with the Nokia 7 Plus.
So it is quite refreshing to learn that over the last few hours, it has since become possible for Nokia 8.1 users to enrol in the Android 10 beta programme and receive the update over-the-air without having to spare a few minutes downloading the firmware on a computer, looking for a USB cable to plug their device into the computer, entering recovery mode, remembering some commands and so on.
The update which is available over-the-air bears Android 10 beta 5, released last month. HMD Global had made it available for download and subsequent flashing on Nokia 8.1 running on Android Pie early in the month.
Unfortunately, for those, like yours truly, that had been on beta 3 since May (or later), an over-the-air update is not being provided so it will be back to the trenches – cables, commands and all – in order to upgrade to beta 5 and stay in line to receive the final update come Q4.