How to download the Android 11 beta to your smartphone


a close up of a screen: How to download Android 11 beta© Provided by TechRadar How to download Android 11 beta

You can now download the Android 11 beta, because Google has released an early version of its newest operating system that select users can test out, ahead of the wider roll-out towards the end of the year.

Well, some people can download the Android 11 beta, but currently you need to be using one of the newer Google Pixel phones (so not the original Google Pixel) or one of the newer OnePlus 8 phones, although the beta is set to come to more phones later in the year.

If you’ve got a Google Pixel 2, Pixel 2 XL, Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL, Pixel 3a, Pixel 3a XL, Pixel 4 or Pixel 4 XL, OnePlus 8 or OnePlus 8 Pro, and want to test out an early build of the Android upgrade that’ll come to most smartphones over the next year, you can. That beta list will be growing as the months go on, with Xiaomi and Oppo saying their phones will join the list soon.

It’s worth pointing out this is an early build, and it can be a little risky to download, so make sure to back up your data first. This is especially true on OnePlus 8 phones, as OnePlus has warned it’s a developers’ build – find out more about that here.

How to download the Android 11 beta easily

  1. Join the Android Beta Program here
  2. Enroll your compatible smartphone
  3. Follow the prompts on your smartphone to download Android 11
  4. Restart your smartphone

How to download the Android 11 beta in-depth

a hand holding a cell phone: The Google Pixel 4, which is compatible (Image credit: Future)© Provided by TechRadar The Google Pixel 4, which is compatible (Image credit: Future)

First, if you’ve got a compatible smartphone, you’re going to want to enroll in the Android Beta Program, and you can do that by clicking this link

It’s worth pointing out Google states the Android 11 beta ‘may contain errors and defects that can affect normal functioning of your device’ and the only way to go back to Android 10 if you have an issue is to factory reset your phone, so make sure to back up your data first.

If you’ve joined previous Android beta tests, you still have to sign up again to be able to test Android 11

When you’ve joined the Android 11 Beta Program, select ‘enroll’ by your phone in order to make that the one testing the new operating system.

Now, on your smartphone, you should receive a notification prompting you to download and install Android 11. If it doesn’t come straight away, give it some time, as we’ve found these can occasionally take a while to land on your device.

If you want to install Android 11 manually, instead of waiting for a notification, go to your phone’s Settings menu. Then select ‘System’, then ‘System Update’ and finally ‘Check for updates’. 

If your phone is ready, you’ll be informed, but this doesn’t always happen straight away.

Whether you’ve downloaded Android 11 via the notification or through a manual System Update, it’ll take some time to install. It’ll then restart your phone. Now, you should be ready to test out Android 11 and discover all of its new features.

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Brian Jones

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