Android 12 custom GSIs bring the latest Android OS to any Project Treble-supported device
Android 12 is here, albeit the stable version is available only on Google’s Pixel lineup — including the newly introduced Pixel 6 series — for now. A handful of OEMs like Samsung and OnePlus are also offering public beta builds of their customized skins based on the stable Android 12 codebase, but the list of eligible devices is quite small. Nonetheless, the aftermarket development community is helping us experience all the new features of Android 12 through custom ROMs across a growing list of devices. Besides, Google does offer its own set of Android 12 Generic System Image (GSI) packages on its website, so that developers can test their apps against the latest API level.
While you should be able to boot Google’s AOSP GSI onto any Project Treble-supported device, you’ll be missing out on many features that lend to a proper day-to-day experience. This is exactly where XDA Recognized Developer phhusson‘s custom GSI distribution comes in. These GSI packages come with a plethora of bug fixes and feature additions that aren’t available in the barebone Google-provided GSIs. The developer has now rebased his custom Project Treble GSI project (AKA “Phh-Treble”) on top of Android 12 and started publishing pre-release builds with new device-specific patches required for the latest Android version.
If the vanilla AOSP experience is not enough for you, then you can also try out an unofficial build of the Pixel Experience GSI, courtesy of XDA Senior Member ponces. It comes with all the goodies that you’d usually find on a Google Pixel device, including the Pixel launcher, wallpapers, icons, fonts, and even the boot animation. Keep in mind that the GSI backbone is based on phhusson’s release, which means it does carry forward nearly the same set of bugs and glitches.
At the time of writing this article, there is no A-only build available for download, so you do need a device with A/B partitioning to boot the aforementioned GSIs. Once phhusson’s custom AOSP GSI becomes more stable, he and other developers will start building more variants. Before you go ahead and flash any of the custom Android 12 GSIs on your device, be sure to take a backup of your data and then only go through our GSI installation guide.