Google Employees Already Running Android L on Nexus 4 Phones


Staff member
Mar 24, 2011
By Gary Sims September 22, 2014


Google’s official firmware images for the next version of Android, currently known as Android L, were only made available for the Nexus 5 and the Nexus 7 (2013). This led to various questions, speculations, and oft-times grumblings about support for the Nexus 4 and the first generation of the Nexus 7 tablet. Although the AOSP version of Android L has been subsequently ported to the Nexus 4 by some clever folks over at XDA, Google still only supplies downloads for the latest iterations of its Nexus phone and Nexus tablet.

There is a possibility that Google is planning to officially release Android L for the Nexus 4.

However, there is a possibility that Google is planning to officially release Android L for the Nexus 4. According to online postings made by Google employees it looks possible that the company has released internal versions of Android L for the Nexus 4.
The comments, one which comes from a user with a email address and the other with a email address, are responses to bug reports filed against Chromium on In both cases the users mention testing various bits of Chromium functionality on Nexus 4 phones, running Android L.

The first of the two comments confirms that a particular bug had been fixed in Chromium 38.0.2125.24 when tested on a Nexus 4 running “LRW52G”. The initial release of the Android L Developer Preview were LPV79 and LPV81C. It is assumed that LRW52G is an internal Google build of Android L.


The second comment is more specific. The Google employee says “With my N4 on Android L, I could…” A clear statement that they are using Android L on a Nexus 4 phone. Of course, they could be using the build made available via XDA. However when you put the two comments together, the possibility exists of an official internal build of Android L for the Nexus 4, which is being used by Google employees.

Although good news, this is by no means a guarantee that we will see an official release of Android L for the Nexus 4 or for the Nexus 7 (2012). It is good practice for any engineering company to test a product as much as possible before release and if that means making internal builds available for unsupported hardware then that is fine. But Google’s aspirations for Android L on the Nexus 4 could stop right there.

However, since Google has committed to bringing Android L to the Android One platform, there should be no reason (other than the man power / expense) for Google not to release Android L on the Nexus 4.