The HTC Explorer (also known as Pico) has never been a flagship phone, and since this particular device is also about two years old, then you can be certain that it will never take advantage of the official Android 4.4 update.

On the bright side, you can still experience Android 4.4 KitKat on the aforementioned device, with the help of custom ROMs. This guide will allow you to install CyanogenMod 11 on your HTC Explorer, and you'll be able to enjoy the latest Android features.

NOTE: This is not an official CyanogenMod release. This is a "port" developed by XDA members and developers. As such, you may run into a few bugs, but overall, it seems that the ROM is stable.

IMPORTANT READ BEFORE PROCEEDING

  • This guide is designed for the HTC Explorer / Pico. Do not attempt to apply this guide on any other smartphone or HTC model
  • In order to apply this guide, your HTC Explorer will need to be rooted, and it needs to run the latest version of CWM or TWRP. (Both methods are explained below)
  • This is not an official update. Rooting your smartphone and installing custom ROMs will void its warranty
  • This guide requires you to perform wipeouts. This means that you will lose some data, so it's recommended that you create backups
  • You can use special applications to perform backups, such as "Helium", "SMS backup & restore" and / or "APN Settings Backup & Restore" in order to backup your app data, text messages and APN settings respectively
  • During the process, you will create a NANDROID backup as a safety measure
  • You'll need to enable USB Debugging before proceeding. To do so, go to "Settings" > "Developer Options" and enable "USB Debugging"
  • Make sure that the installed USB drivers on your computer support the HTC Explorer
  • Before proceeding, make sure that your smartphone is fully charged. It is crucial that your handset does not remain out of battery during the flashing process
  • Do not skip any steps
  • This is an advanced guide. If you damage or brick your phone, or if you lose important data, you cannot hold the developers or anyone else responsible

Installing Android 4.4 KitKat CM 11 (Unofficial) on the HTC Explorer (CWM METHOD):

  1. Download the ROM zip by visiting this link
  2. The ROM does not include Google apps due to licensing issues. You will need to download the Google apps zip separately by visiting this link
  3. Connect your smartphone to your computer using the USB cable
  4. Copy the zip files from your computer to your phone's storage
  5. After the transfer, disconnect your HTC Explorer from your PC
  6. Boot your device in recovery mode. To do so, turn it off, and then press and hold the "Volume Down" and "Power" buttons at the same time
  7. You should now create a NANDROID backup. This will allow you to return to your current ROM should you choose to do so. Select "Backup and restore" and save the file
  8. In the CWM recovery screen, select "Data Wipeout / Factory reset". Then, select "Wipe Cache", and from the "Advanced Option" menu, select" Dalvik cache"
  9. After the wipe, go back to the recovery menu and select "Install zip from SD card". Browse for the CM 11 zip and flash it
  10. After the ROM has been flashed, select "Install zip from SD card" again, but this time browse for the Gapps zip file instead
  11. After flashing both the CM 11 and the Gapps zips, select "+++Go Back+++" and then select "Reboot system now". Keep in mind that this first reboot after the flashing process may take a while. Be patient and don't press any buttons.

NOTE: In case you wish to return to your previous ROM, you can use the NANDROID backup created at step 7 in order to do so.

Installing Android 4.4 KitKat CM 11 (Unofficial) on the HTC Explorer (TWRP METHOD):

  1. Download the CM 11 file by visiting this link
  2. Download the Gapps zip file by visiting this link
  3. Once both files have been downloaded, connect your HTC Explorer to your computer
  4. Copy the files onto your phone's storage. (root directory, don't copy in a folder or create a new folder for the files)
  5. Once the transfer is complete, disconnect your smartphone and boot in recovery mode. To do so, shut down your smartphone and then press and hold the "Volume Down" and "Power" buttons at the same time, until the recovery screen appears
  6. In the TWRP recovery menu, you should now create a NANDROID backup. This backup will allow you to return to your previous ROM if you choose to do so. Simply select "Backup", name your file and then "Swipe to Backup"
  7. Now go to "Wipe", select "Advanced" and select "Wipe Cache", as well as "Dalvik cache". Then, swipe the "Swipe to wipe" button
  8. After you've wiped the cache, select "Install". Browse for the CM 11 file and flash it on your device
  9. Once CM 11 is flashed, select "Install" again and browse for the Google apps zip file
  10. After both files have been flashed, return to the recovery menu and select "Reboot". Keep in mind that this first reboot may take a while. You'll need to be patient, and don't press any buttons

NOTE: in case you don't like CM 11 or you simply wish to return to your previous ROM, then you can do so by using the NANDROID backup created at step 6

IMPORTAT: Whether you have used the CWM or TWRP method, in case the first boot takes more than 10 minutes, or in case your smartphone is stuck in a boot loop, then you'll need to restart the guide from the beginning, without skipping any steps


See More: HTC Explorer / Pico: Install Android 4.4 CM 11 ROM (Unofficial CM Release) (CWM and TWRP Methods)