How to install Android Wear 2.0 beta on your watch

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You’ve seen the announcement, watched the videos, and read up on Android Wear 2.0. Now, you’re ready to install it on your watch. How do you set out to do so? Well, first you need to make sure you own one of two Android Wear watches: LG Watch Urbane 2nd Edition or Huawei Watch.

Should you have either of those wearables, you can set about to flash the beta release of Android Wear 2.0 ahead of its eventual release. To do so, you’ll need to follow a few steps. Let’s get to it!

The first thing you should do is backup any data that you might need or want to keep. It’s not the same as a phone, sure, but there might be music stored on your watch that you’d like to have later. Whatever it is, save a copy somewhere.

Download Minimal ADB and Fastboot

Download the preview image for your watch

Prep the watch for flashing

  • From your phone, open the Android Wear app and unpair (forget) the watch.
  • On your watch, enable the Developer Options menu and ADB debugging
    • Open the Settings menu
    • Scroll to the bottom and look for Developer Options. If not there, tap “About”
    • Tap the software build number seven times
    • Navigate to Settings and tap “Developer Options”
    • Enable ADB debugging

Transfer image to watch and flash

  • Download and unzip the preview image file to the install location of Minimal ADB and Fastboot
  • Attach the watch charger to the watch and plug the USB end of the charger into your computer
  • Open Minimal ADB and Fastboot
  • Verify if the watch is detected by executing the following command: adb devices
  • Execute the following adb command to start the device in fastboot mode: adb reboot bootloader
    • You might have to unlock the device’s bootloader first. To do so, execute one of following two commands: fastboot flashing unlock or fastboot OEM unlock
  • Navigate to the directory location where you unzipped the preview image file from the first step
  • Execute the flash-all script by executing the command flash-all.sh or flash-all.bat (Windows)

From here, you can begin testing the preview version of Android Wear 2.0 on your watch. You may wish to lock the bootloader back up; click here to learn how to do so.

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