How to download the Android 9.0 Pie beta on the OnePlus 6

Dig into the tasty Android 9.0 Pie open beta on the OnePlus 6

oneplus 6 hands on chrome
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

The OnePlus 6 comes with flagship-rivaling power, drop-dead gorgeous looks, and a clever and capable camera suite — all for under $600. As if that wasn’t enough, it’s now confirmed that the titanic OnePlus phone will also be getting a software upgrade to Android 9.0 Pie.

Android 9.0 Pie isn’t just a bigger number — it’s packed to the brim with new and improved features. There are too many to list here, but you can expect to find a slick new navigation system, more artificial intelligence goodness, and ways to limit screen time. The final release of the OnePlus 6’s slice of Pie isn’t quite ready yet — but OnePlus has made the beta available to anyone with a OnePlus 6. If that includes you, here’s how to download the Android 9.0 Pie open beta on the OnePlus 6.

Make sure you’re fully backed up

As with any major changes to an Android phone, we recommend you make sure your phone is backed up before you begin. While rare, data loss can occur from OS upgrades, and it’s more likely in the case of beta builds like this one. If you really don’t like it and want to go back to your old operating system, well that’s another way to possibly lose data — so make sure you’re fully backed up before you begin.

On that note, don’t expect everything to work perfectly. Beta builds are works in progress, and you might come across some issues that hamper your usage. As a beta user, these are things that you sign up for when you install the update, so keep that in mind. Finally, note that some of the more secure services will not work. Google Pay will not work with this beta build, and the Google Play Store may warn that your “Device is not Certified by Google.”

Eligible phones

These instructions are intended to be used with the most recent version of OnePlus’ Oxygen OS, and nothing else. You cannot use these instructions with a rooted Android device, or with a device that’s running a custom OS.

How to install the Android 9.0 Pie open beta on a OnePlus 6

oneplus 6 hands on against wall
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

Downloading Android 9.0 Pie is simpler than you might think:

  1. Head to OnePlus’ download page on your computer or your OnePlus 6. You’ll find the file you need under the “ROM downloads” section below the OnePlus 6, and the file you’re looking for will be called “OnePlus 6 OxygenOS Open Beta,” followed by a number. Open that link, then scroll down and click the “Download” button.
  2. If you’re using a computer or laptop, connect your OnePlus 6 using the charging cable, and copy the downloaded file over from your PC into your phone. If you’re using a Mac, you’ll need to download the Android File Transfer program to do this.
  3. If you downloaded it straight to your phone, open the File Manager app and go to the Storage tabGo to Download, tap and hold the file to select it, then tap on the triple vertical dots on the top right and hit Cut. You will now need to choose the path — tap on the Internal storage marker above the file, then press Paste. The file is now stored in the root directory.
  4. Once the file is transferred to your OnePlus 6, head over to Settings > System updates, then hit the vertical dot symbol on the top-right of the screen.
  5. Hit Local upgrade, find the file, and hit Install.
  6. To finalize the installation you’ll need to reboot your phone — but once that’s done, you’re free to enjoy your Pie.

A bit worried about what you’ll do when the final version comes out? Don’t be — OTA (over the air) updates are supported in this beta build, and you should be able to upgrade to the final version of Android 9.0 Pie via the usual updating process.

How to downgrade to Android 8 Oreo

Really not enjoying Google’s latest, or just can’t live with the beta build? Well, no matter — going back isn’t tough either. To roll back to Android 8.1 Oreo, head back to the OnePlus downloads page, tap the beta link, and scroll down until you find the download marked “Downgrade version.” Simply download that file, and run through the same installation process as with the beta to downgrade.

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