Last Updated: June 2nd, 2014

After announcing KitKat and the Nexus 5 earlier today, and releasing the Android 4.4 SDK, tools, and other related goodies, Google has moved on to the next important step - source code. As announced on the Android Building forum, Android 4.4 is now trickling in, bit by bit, into the AOSP repos. If all goes well, we can expect it to complete within several hours.

Update: The source push is 100% complete.

The two new branches are called kitkat-release and kitkat-dev, and the release tag is android-4.4_r1. The code for hammerhead, aka Nexus 5, is already up, with the respective kernel repo still waiting its turn.

Hopping onto the platform/build repo for a moment, we can see that the corresponding build for the KitKat release is KRT16M. Presumably, this is the build we'll see on the Nexus 5 and possibly on other Nexus updates (though by that time, it may change).


So what does getting the source code availability mean to users? It means custom ROMs, such as CyanogenMod, AOKP, OmniROM, etc. can start pulling in the changes and attempting to build Android 4.4 as soon as all the merge conflicts are resolved. Who knows, maybe someone will build pure AOSP ROMs for the popular Nexus devices by tonight...

Source: Android Building

P.S. I do miss JBQ, but Ed Heyl seems to be doing a fine job with his first major Android release.

Artem Russakovskii
Artem is a die-hard Android fan, passionate tech blogger, obsessive-compulsive editor, bug hunting programmer, and the founder of Android Police.
Most of the time, you will find Artem either hacking away at code or thinking of the next 15 blog posts.

  • HebeGuess

    no more JBQ time..

    • Clayton Ginther

      leave it to the french to back out.

    • ari_free

      I knew someone was going to bring that up...

  • Kamil

    This is actually the first time at which I definitively am going to finally root my phone and install a custom rom with 4.4.

    • https://steamcommunity.com/id/m-p-3 m-p{3}

      This is one major strength of Android.

      Too bad Google decided their devices have an 18 months update lifecycle :(

  • Kieron Quinn

    Thing is, if the SDK image (which I'm messing with now) is anything to go by, we need a factory image for the following;
    Camera, Gallery, SMS (Hangouts), Emoji, Google Experience

    • nvitone23

      which means? lol

      • Kieron Quinn

        Any ROMs before the factory images will be lacking half the KitKat features

        • nvitone23

          thanks for clarifying that

      • Guest

        I am sure that they will release the factory images after uploading is done.

        • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

          "We are making the proprietary binaries and factory images available for the Nexus 5 today as well.

          In the coming weeks, other Nexus devices (Nexus 4, 7, and 10) will receive their KitKat update, and we'll make those proprietary binaries and factory images available at that time."


          • brkshr

            I doubt they will release factory images for anything until the Nexus 5 starts getting into peoples hands. Just doesn't seem right.

          • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

            The Nexus 5 factory images and binaries are out today.

          • brkshr

            Just saw your other post too. That's interesting...

            I guess I should have said that I didn't think that Google would release 4.4 factory images for older hardware, before we even have a chance of seeing it on the latest Nexus 5. My guess is that we will get images for the N4 and maybe N713 on the same day or within a day or two after the N5 starts showing up on doorsteps. Just speculation on my part.

        • Kieron Quinn

          Supposedly a dump of a N5 should do for the Gapps, but not the blobs

    • yodatom10

      yep were gonna need to get a gapps package

  • Franco Rossel

    Now, factory images please.

  • ather akber

    Get me 4.4 on my Note 3 and i will gladly trip my knox flag!!

  • Gustavo


    • Clayton Ginther

      long live the GNEX!

    • Cerberus_tm

      Pleeease, I beg of you, devs! Low RAM is its biggest problem, and I'd really like to see 4.4 on the Gnex!

    • http://ishq-e-mustafa.blogspot.com/ Abdulmusawwir Qadri Barkaati

      In Devs we trust ;)

  • yodatom10

    Alright galaxy nexus devs i have faith.

  • yodatom10

    in other news this wont help us with our hunt for the new hangouts apk. correct ?

    • Clint P

      The Nexus 5 factory images will be out today. It's possible to pull the apk out of the factory image.

  • Ray


  • ranova

    damnit, wheres the new hangouts apk! I doubt it, but I hope the one from the source works with 4.3 and lower!

  • Peter Blanco

    I just want the Hangout apk. I can wait for everything else... Just the apk. Pretty please?

    • Kieron Quinn

      Wait for the factory image, it isn't open sourced

      • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

        We just need a dump from someone's Nexus 5.

        • Kieron Quinn

          I have the new clock if you want it :S

          • Peter Blanco

            Hangouts is out!

        • http://www.LOVEanon.org/ Michael Oghia (Ogie)

          The only time you'll ever hear someone asking for someone else's "dump."

          One man's junk is another man's treasure?

  • Omar McFarlane

    Factory images please... :)

  • Wrecking_your_fun

    Too bad that it probably still won't boot with out the proprietary blobs, I doubt that even if people build it that it will boot

  • Curious Clarence

    Anyone knows how the work on that automatic rom installer from Cyanogenmod is moving along?

  • DemoManMLS

    Crazy that devices like the Note 2 will have 4.4 via AOSP based ROMs before 4.3 TouchWiz hits it officially.

    • Grizzly Atoms

      Touchwiz is terrible. I use open source alternatives for my spen.

      • DemoManMLS

        Losing HDMI/MHL on AOSP kind of hurts a bit at times. Not that I can't switch between AOSP and TW stuff within a few minutes but would be nice to eventually see HDMI/MHL working on AOSP.

      • tlingitsoldier

        I tried using PAC Man ROMs on my Note 2. Aside from it being buggy, and occasionally crashing, the alternatives for the built in S Pen software were functional, but terrible. Touchwiz as a framework is surprisingly good. Don't care for the UI though, which is why I switched back to Jelly Beans ROM. I hated having a dozen different background process running to replicate what the built in software could do with the S Pen. And most of the time they barely worked. Like they were supposed to.

  • Jadephyre

    So what, we don't have the new binaries yet, so it won't matter that the source gets pushed.
    They may well have posted "we have stocked the loo with more wet-nappies" and that would have been just as phenomenal news as this.

  • Shawn T

    Dev's are our heroes! I'm counting on you guys for my S3!

  • yodatom10

    factory image for the 5 is up..... get hangouts apk https://developers.google.com/android/nexus/images#hammerhead

  • yodatom10
    • unadventurer

      you sir are a champion

  • http://aidan.info.tm/ Zack Casey

    Wow! Google wasted no time with this release.

  • Jager

    How do I download the update?

  • OMCuser