If you’re an Android fan, you’ve probably heard about Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. It’s probably the biggest Android upgrade so far, bringing awesome features like a new, redesigned user interface, improved notifications, a new lock screen, improved keyboard, and a whole lot more. As of now, the only phone you can get with Ice Cream Sandwich is the Galaxy Nexus, but what if you have an older Android phone? Will you be able to get ICS on your device?
There are a couple of ways to get Ice Cream Sandwich. The first is to wait for your device maker to release an official upgrade to your device. This is the easiest way, because it does not require any work from you; just wait (it could be a long time) and most newer Android phones will receive an upgrade. If you want to know when, check with your device manufacturer, but don’t expect to be able to get a very concrete answer from it about the matter.
The other way to get ICS on your device is to install a custom ROM. This requires that your device be rooted and have a custom bootloader installed, but many users who are planning on going this route have those things installed already. If you are new to all this, check out the XDA Forum for your device to find instructions on rooting your phone or tablet. As of now, here are the devices that have Ice Cream Sandwich ports, and links to threads with the ROMs to download along with any instructions for their installation.
Keep in mind that the builds for these devices are not quite at 100% yet, so make sure to create a backup of your current install and do not install these builds on any mission-critical devices. There may be bugs, and you should never run beta / unstable OS builds on a device that you depend on every day. If you’re looking for some video of Ice Cream Sandwich in action on these devices, here are videos of it running on the Xoom and the Droid 3.
For those of you who have taken the plunge, what do you think of Android 4.0?