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How to Unlock Bootloader Of Google Pixel Devices

In this guide, we will show you the steps to unlock the bootloader on your Google Pixel device. The newly released devices from the Silicon Valley giant behold a slew of intriguing features and some that it could have done away with. While the likes of an improved camera, AI integration, and a whopping 7 years of OS upgrades are welcomed, the unnecessary addition of a temperature sensor [which pushes the device’s price to an all-new height] is just an unnecessary feature for many.

However, there isn’t any iota of a complaint when it comes to the custom development. You could always count on these devices as being the most active players in this domain. From flashing custom binaries to gaining administrative privileges, the possibilities stand endless. However, before you can carry out any of these tweaks, you will have to unlock the bootloader on your Google Pixel device. And in this guide, we will show you how to do just that. Follow along.

Benefits and Risks of Unlocked Bootloader on Pixel

Unlocking the bootloader is the gateway to extracting the maximum benefits of Android’s open-source ecosystem. For example, you will be able to install a custom ROM or flash a custom recovery like TWRP. Likewise, you will also be able to get access to the system partition as well as administrative privileges by rooting your device via Magisk. This will then allow you to flash Magisk Modules, Xposed Framework, Substratum Themes, and Viper4Android among others.

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However, carrying out these tweaks brings in a few uninvited risks as well. To begin with, it will wipe off all the data and could nullify the device’s warranty as well. Along the same lines, it will degrade the Widevine L1 certification to L3, thereby preventing you from streaming content in HD [FIXED]. The SafetyNet will be triggered [FIXED], thereby preventing you from using banking apps [FIXED]. So if that’s well and good then let’s get started with the steps to unlock the bootloader on your Google Pixel.

How to Unlock Bootloader on Google Pixel Devices

unlock bootloader any google pixel device

The below instructions are listed under separate sections for ease of understanding. Make sure to follow in the exact same sequence as mentioned. Droidwin and its members wouldn’t be held responsible in case of a thermonuclear war, your alarm doesn’t wake you up, or if anything happens to your device and data by performing the below steps.

STEP 1: Take a Backup

Make sure to take a backup of all the data on your device. This is because the process will wipe off all the stored data from your device.

STEP 2: Install Android SDK

install adb platform tools windows

First and foremost, you will have to install the Android SDK Platform Tools on your PC. This is the official ADB and Fastboot binary provided by Google and is the only recommended one. So download it and then extract it to any convenient location on your PC. Doing so will give you the platform-tools folder, which will be used throughout this guide.

STEP 3: Enable USB Debugging and OEM Unlocking on Google Pixel Devices

Next up, you will also have to enable USB Debugging and OEM Unlocking on your device. The former will make your device recognizable by the PC in ADB mode. This will then allow you to boot your device to Fastboot Mode. On the other hand, OEM Unlocking is required to carry out the bootloader unlocking process.

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So head over to Settings > About Phone > Tap on Build Number 7 times > Go back to Settings > System > Advanced > Developer Options > Enable USB Debugging and OEM Unlocking.

STEP 4: Boot Google Pixel Devices to Fastboot Mode

  1. Now connect your device to the PC via USB cable. Make sure USB Debugging is enabled.
  2. Then head over to the platform-tools folder, type in CMD in the address bar, and hit Enter. This will launch the Command Prompt.
    command prompt
  3. Type in the following command in the CMD window to boot your device to Fastboot Mode
    adb reboot bootloader

    unlock bootloader pixel 8 pro

  4. To verify the Fastboot connection, type in the below command and you should get back the device ID.
    fastboot devices
    unlock bootloader pixel 7a
  5. If you are not getting any ID, then install Fastboot Drivers on your PC.

STEP 5: Unlock Bootloader on Google Pixel Devices

  1. Finally, type in the following command to unlock the bootloader on your Google Pixel device:
    fastboot flashing unlock

    unlock google pixel devices

  2. You might get a confirmation message on your Pixel device at this point in time. Use the Volume keys to select Unlock the Bootloader option, and the Power key to confirm your decision.
  3. Your device will now reboot to Fastboot Mode, but this time, the Device State will be Unlocked. This verifies that the process stands successfully completed.
    unlock bootloader google pixel devices
  4. You may reboot your device to the system (if that doesn’t happen automatically). For that either press the Power key once or use the below fastboot command:
    fastboot reboot

That is all from this guide on how to unlock the bootloader on your Google Pixel device. If you have any queries regarding the aforementioned steps, do let us know in the comments section below. We will get back to you with a solution as soon as possible.

  • Is there any hope for this phone of mine? The Developer option to unlock OEM Unlock option is grayed out.

    C:\platform-tools>adb devices
    List of devices attached
    XXXXXXXX device

    C:\platform-tools>fastboot devices
    XXXXXXXX fastboot

    C:\platform-tools>fastboot flashing unlock
    FAILED (remote: ‘flashing unlock is not allowed’)
    fastboot: error: Command failed

    • Sadique Hassan

      Hi Mate, could you let me know your device name, and is it carrier locked?

  • Just got a pixel 3 new and try to unlock the bootloader, everything works fine until the command ‘fastboot flashing unlock’ is saying ”. It looks like the connection between the PC and smarphone is lost after the command ‘adb reboot bootloader’. On the smartphone side, there is a menu ‘Fastboot Mode’, secure boot: PRODUCTION, Device state: locked, Enter reason: reboot bootloader. The volume keys show only options: Start, Restart bootloader, Recovery Mode, Bar Code, Power Off. I appreciate if you have any idea what to do at this point. Thanks!

    • Daviidds

      I have exactly the same problem, tell me if the advice with installing drivers helped you? if not, how did you solve this problem?

    • I have exactly the same problem, tell me if the advice with installing drivers helped you? if not, how did you solve this problem?

    • Sadique Hassan

      Hi Oldrin, it seems to be issues with Fastboot Drivers. So please try installing the Google’s Android Bootloader Interface Drivers and then retry with the steps

  • Elieser Juarez

    I got a Pixel 5 google Fi. Won’t take the commands. And I’ve tried all sorts of commands. Is it just a tight bootloader or is it unlockable?

    • Sadique Hassan

      Well Elieser, I don’t have much clue about Pixel 5 Google Fi. But there were similar issues on Google Pixel 3a and 4A on Google Fi. For those set of users, the OEM Unlocking toggle was greyed out so they couldn’t unlock the bootloader. So the best bet is to check and let me know if the OEM Unlocking option under Developer Options is disabled on your device or not. If it’s not, then you shouldn’t have any issues in unlocking the bootloader.