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Google Just Made It Easier to Flash Images & Sideload Updates on Your Android Device

Anyone who's ever flashed factory images to manually update an Android phone knows how tedious the process can be. Unlocking the bootloader and flashing Android firmware requires the use of ADB and Fastboot—but, like getting a whole pizza pie when all you wanted was a slice, users in the past had to download the entire Android Studio development package or SDK in order to get the two utilities.

Thankfully, Google has now made ADB and Fastboot available as standalone downloads. Averaging about 3.5 MB in size, casual users can now access specific files they need without having to download files and programs that can take up to 1.6 GB in precious storage space. The Android "platform tools" are listed below, and are available for the following operating systems:

To use the above files, all you have to do is download the ZIP, then extract it to a folder on your computer that you can access easily.

Now that Google has compiled all the specific files necessary to perform smaller tasks like sideloading OTA updates, regular users won't ever need to worry about scouring around and going to third-party sources to get the tools they need to tinker with their Android phones. And this also has the added benefit of knowing that Google's platform tools will always be up to date, as the above links will always point to the latest versions.

Cover photo and screenshots by Dallas Thomas/Gadget Hacks

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