How to Root HTC Google Pixel and Install TWRP Recovery

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If you own a HTC Google Pixel, and also want to root the device, then you are on the right page.

The Google Flagship devices, Pixel and Pixel XL, both are manufactured by Taiwan-based maker, HTC. They both shares the identical design, and they’re quite similar, just they boasts of a different screen size and battery sizes. The 5.5-inch Pixel XL is larger than the 5-inch Pixel. The Pixel device seems inspired by the HTC One A9, while the Pixel XL fits perfectly in the hands. Both of the devices comes with AMOLED displays, with vivid and rich colors. Both devices runs on latest Android 7.1 Nougat, with Stock Google Android UI, and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 processor powers the devices, along with 4GB of RAM. The Pixel comes with 5-inch AMOLED display with 1920×1080 pixels resolution and 2770 mAh battery, while the Pixel XL comes with 5.5-inch AMOLED display with 2560×1440 pixels resolution and 3450mAh battery. Both of the devices boasts of USB Type-C reversible type interface, and available in two storage variants of 32GB and 128GB. The flagship Google devices comes with IP53 Rating, Fast Charging support, and both have similar specifications. But, Pixel XL is always preferable since it comes with larger display and better pixel density. The Google Pixel starts at $649 for 32GB, whereas Pixel XL comes at $769 for the 32GB storage, while an extra $100 could get the larger 128GB storage variants of both of the smartphones.

If you are an Android Enthusiast, and want to Root and Install TWRP recovery on your beloved, then you have landed on the right page. In the due course of the article, we will guiding you through the process to root Google Pixel .

The TWRP features the material design, and attractive user interface (UI), and by following this guide you can install latest TWRP for Google Pixel. You can download TWRP Recovery from the links provided in the pre-requisite section of this article. Kindly note that this is an official TWRP recovery and is only for Google Pixel (Kindly confirm the model by going to Settings>About). The process given below is merely for rooting and installing TWRP on Google Pixel, do not try out this method on any other device.

If you want to unleash the full potential of the hardware of your Google Pixel , then rooting and flashing custom recovery like TWRP is the main concern. The Stock ROMs have often limited and unsupported features in the sense of Customization. When you have a rooted device and also flashed TWRP recovery, then you are free to install any Custom ROMs, Mods, Kernel, and Xposed etc., as well as many apps which requires root access to work properly. You can easily root the device with One Click Android Root Tool, with either via PC or through the APK, which is a quick process.

Brief Details and Advantage of TWRP Recovery

TWRP (Team Win Recovery Project) is an open source, community development project. By flashing the TWRP, your device will be enabled to install any custom firmware, rooting your smartphone, mod zip files for customizations, Xposed Modules for customized features, one click root and unroot processes. Apart from that, it allows you to take Full Nandroid Backup and restore it later, one click image file flashing, remove bloatware, overclock and underclock. Using TWRP, one can easily clean Wipe, Cache and Data after flashing any image file to reflect the changes and rectify minor errors due to cache.

For installing the TWRP, your Google Pixel phone must have the Unlocked bootloader. That means you have to firstly unlock the bootloader to root your device as well doing any customization.

Prerequiste

Ensure to check your model number, which must be:

Relevant
  • HTC Google Pixel G-2PW4100, G-2PW4200

Supported Firmware:

  • Google Pixel NJH47F Android 7.1.2 Nougat
  • Google Nexus Pixel NZH54D Android 7.1.2 Nougat

You must have to ensure that prior to rooting your phone , you have read thoroughly the disclaimer and you agree to proceed further on your risk.

  • Phone Should be Charged

Your phone must be 70% charged at least, else, it may lead to complications sometimes while experimenting. Why to take risk, try to charge it fully.

  • Back Up

If you are either going to root your phone or install a Custom ROM, it is a good habit to make a back up of your phone. Make a back up of all your media like images, videos and all on your PC and your contacts on Cloud.

  • Enable USB Debugging

(Applicable only for PC method, Skip if you will use APK method)

You must enable USB debugging option by going in to Settings, Applications and Developer options.

Downloads For Rooting Google Pixel

Download Universal ADB Drivers here (If your PC have already drivers installed then skip this)

Download platform-tools/ SDK Tools package from Android SDK on PC from here. (Android command line tools> SDK Tools package)

Download TWRP Recovery for Google Pixel from here:

TWRP Recovery 3.1.1.0 (Login required)

Download SuperSU by Chainfire from here.

Make sure that you have downloaded the required files (link in pre-requisite section of this article). Then, proceed to the steps.


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Steps to Unlock Bootloader of Google Pixel

Note: If you have already unlocked bootloader, then skip these steps.

Step 1: First, you need to Connect your Google Pixel Device to the computer, in Fastboot Mode. You can reboot your device to fastboot using the command in adb terminal:

adb reboot bootloader

Step 2: Now, open the Adb Terminal in PC, and then just enter this command:

fastboot oem unlock-go

Step 3: Then, issue this command:

fastboot oem unlock-go

At this stage, your device will be reboot automatically. Now, you can Root Google Pixel, as bootloader of your device is already unlocked.

Steps to Flash/ Install TWRP on Google Pixel

Step 1: Assuming you have already downloaded the platform-tools from Android SDK (SDK Manager) platform-tools on your PC. The platform-tools contains the required adb and fastboot binaries.

Step 2: Make sure that the drivers are installed on your computer. Then, skip to the next step.

Note: If Developer Settings and USB Debugging settings are already enabled on your device, as suggested in Prerequisite section, then simply skip the Step 3 and Step 4, and follow Step 5 directly.

Step 3: Now, enable the developer settings on your Google Pixel Device. To achieve the same, just navigate to the Settings -> About and then find the ‘Build Number ‘, and then tap on ‘Build Number’ for 7 times, this will enable the developer settings on your device.

Step 4: If you have USB Debugging already, then skip this step. If you have not, then open the Developer Options and then enable USB debugging option.

Step 5: Now, open the command prompt in computer/ ADB Terminal, and simply type the command:

adb reboot bootloader

Step 6: Your device should have not entered into fastboot mode. Now copy the TWRP.img file downloaded in prerequisite section, to the same folder where adb and fastboot binaries are located. Rename the file to ‘twrp.img’ and then enter this command:

fastboot flash recovery twrp.img

and then run this command, type:

fastboot reboot

Step 7 (Important): Some devices might not replace the custom recovery automatically during the first boot. You can search Google for key combinations to enter your device into recovery mode. After running the ‘fastboot reboot’ command, press and hold the proper key combination to enter device into TWRP Mode. Once the device boots to TWRP mode, the TWRP will automatically patch the stock ROM, to prevent the chances of replacing TWRP with Stock Recovery.

After typing fastboot reboot, hold the key combo and boot to TWRP. Once TWRP is booted, TWRP will patch the stock ROM to prevent the stock ROM from replacing TWRP. If you don’t follow this step, you will have to repeat the install.

Procedure to Root Google Pixel/ Install SuperSU

Make sure that you have downloaded SuperSU (link in pre-requisite section of this article). Then, proceed to the steps.

Step 1: Transfer the downloaded SuperSU.zip file to the internal storage / SD card of your Google Pixel smartphone.

Step 2: Now, just boot into the recovery. From the TWRP interface, you can optionally backup the Stock ROM. Though, I would recommend to backup the Stock ROM. Because if in case process gets failed, you can flash the Stock ROM.

Install TWRP 3;0

Step 3: Tap on Install ‘, and then navigate to the file ‘SuperSU.zip’ and swipe to confirm flash (located at the bottom of the screen). The flashing process of SuperSU has been started and will take few seconds to complete.

Congratulations, now you have rooted Google Pixel and also flashed the TWRP. Now, you can install Xposed Framework, and customize your smartphone as per your preference. If you wish to verify, you may download and check the Root Status through Root Checker app.