How to Upgrade Xiaomi Mi A2 to Android 9 Pie

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I read Xiaomi Mi A2 got an official upgrade to Android 9 Pie in India around mid November. This got me interested in reviewing Xiaomi Mi A2 with the latest Android operating system, and GearBest sent me a sample for this purpose. However in the first part of Xiaomi Mi A2 review, I only got a security update to November 5 2018 security patch level, but the operating system remained Android 8.1.

I was a disappointed, but I did not look into it so far since I was busy with other tasks, but this morning I finally got the update! Hooray!

XIaomi Mi A2 Android 9- Update
Click to Enlarge

If like me, you are based in Thailand or another country stuck to Android 8.1, and would like to upgrade Xiaomi Mi A2 to Android 9, you can follow those simple steps which I have tested personally:

  1. Book a flight ticket to Hong Kong
  2. Board the actual flight and land in Hong Kong
  3. Purchase a tourist SIM card with 1.5GB data allowance, and install it in your phone
  4. Once the network is activated, you’ll get a notification of Android 9 update after a few minutes
  5. Hold your excitement as the update is around 1GB, and you don’t want to eat up your data allowance (Very important step!)
  6. Connect to your hotel’s WiFi, and carry on with the OTA update
  7. Enjoy Android 9 on your Xiaomi Mi A2!

Step 3 may be optional… Easy right? The UI has also changed, and the Linux kernel is much more up-to-date in Android 9 (Linux 4.4.135), than in Android 8.1 (Linux 4.4.58).

Android 9 Launcher Notifications
Click to Enlarge

Wait… What? You’ve never read such stupid instructions, and you’re not going to spend several hundreds dollars to upgrade your phone’s firmware. Ah OK,  fair enough. 🙂 If Xiaomi has not pushed Android 9.0 OTA update to your country just yet, you don’t necessarily need to travel overseas. Here’s another way courtesy of TAS:

  1. Unlock the bootloader of your Mi A2.
  2. Download and extract the zipped OTA firmware in your PC.
  3. Download the OTA flasher file , extract it and rename the folder to a2-pie-update.
  4. Copy the image files from step 2 to the a2-pie-update folder.
  5. Connect your Mi A2 to PC with a USB cable.
  6. Run OTAFlasher.bat file by double-clicking on it.
  7. Wait until the long process of the bat file is finished. This will take a while.
  8. Android 9.0 should now be running on your Mi A2, Have fun.

I suppose there’s a third way to force the install by faking your location maybe through a VPN or other method. I’m not sure exactly how Xiaomi detects your country. If it is based on your SIM card, then it may be harder to spoof your location.

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Diego
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Diego

So i should dig out an old Airtel sim to try? 😛

Tomm
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Tomm

“Private DNS” option is one of the best features on Pie.

tkaiser
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tkaiser

To be used with which DNS ‘provider’?

Tomm
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Tomm

Very likely

“1dot1dot1dot1.cloudflare-dns.com”

AlexFonewn
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AlexFonewn

Sorry to ask this, but what would be the implications, advantages, of using a private DNS?

Tomm
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Tomm

Compared to default (ISP in worst case or 8.8.8.8, which is most used DNS), 3rd party DNS such as cloudflare DNS is more secure and tested globally overall faster resolver than rest.

Personally, faster resolving (had before Google DNS and quad9) and this information from their page made my mind:

https://www.cloudflare.com/learning/dns/what-is-1.1.1.1/

“Alternatively, 1.1.1.1 does not mine any user data. Logs are kept for 24 hours for debugging purposes, then they are purged.”

I use 1.1.1.1 on pretty much every thing I own, on my mobile (1dot1dot1dot1.cloudflare-dns.com), PS4, PC, New Nintendo 2DS XL, Raspberry Pi, LG Smart TV…

tkaiser
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tkaiser

> “Alternatively, 1.1.1.1 does not mine any user data. Logs are kept for 24 hours for debugging purposes, then they are purged.”

Why exactly do you believe an US based company?

https://twitter.com/PowerDNS_Bert/status/1073641249192726528?s=09

Diego
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Diego

Dont see what 1.1.1.1 would do better than 8.8.8.8 both are US services. I prefer my local ISPs DNS

Shawn K Lewis
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Shawn K Lewis

My Xiaomi Mi A2 to is updating to Android 9 Pie as I type. I live in Trinidad and Tobago. I suppose the update went worldwide recently.

Diego
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Diego

@CNX Switzerland now also coming. Just 1.1GB 🙂