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Aug 13

Upgrading Huawei
Upgrading Huawei’s Honor 8 to EMUI 5 and Android Nougat 7

Upgrading the Huawei Honor 8 to EMUI 5 with Android Nougat 7 is the goal. For some reason, certain Honor 8s from Huawei’s factory were released with a limiting EMUI 3.1 firmware that has Android 5.

Disclaimer: I am a Huawei International Key Opinion Leader. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I have not been compensated for this post. All photos are courtesy of Huawei unless otherwise noted.


Huawei Honor 8 Unboxing

Step one is to identify which country the Honor 8 will be upgraded in. Firmware files may differ from Honor’s website in the following steps.

What I found to have worked is the step by step upgrade to a US firmware. The initial manual firmware upgrade got the Honor 8 to EMUI 4.1 with Android 6 and then to EMUI 5 with Android Nougat 7.

Step two is to visit the Huawei Honor US website. Do this on the Honor 8 that is to be upgraded. Find the Honor 8 EMUI 4.1 firmware file. It should be 4GB in size. Tap the link to download it to the phone.

This download will take a while, be sure to have it plugged into a power source and connected to a speedy Wi-Fi hotspot. Once the file downloads, open the Files app on the Honor 8.

The Files app is one of the most fully functional apps on the phone. It can even connect to SMB enabled NAS drives on a local network. Use this app for the next steps.

Unzip the downloaded file. Move or create a folder named dload. It will have the large upgrade file with .app in its name. Move it to the root directory of the phone’s memory. Instructions from Honor show how to do the following steps assuming a micro SD card is inserted, but it is not necessary.

Once the dload folder is moved with the .app file included within, confirm it is in the root directory one more time. This will make sure you have a successful upgrade on the next boot sequence.

*Upgrading the Honor smartphone to newer firmware should not delete photos or other personal files. However, things can go wrong and it is highly recommended that all files are backed up first.*

Turn off the Honor 8. Hold down the volume up, volume down and power buttons simultaneously. Once you see the Google boot screen remove the finger from the power button only.

The Honor 8 will now search its root directory for the upgrade folder called dload that you moved earlier. If it finds it successfully, an upgrade circle will be displayed. The remaining two fingers can be removed now.

After a few minutes of verifying and installing, the circle will reach 100% and reboot. Another but slightly different optimization circle will appear. Finally, if all went well, the Honor 8 will reboot a final time.

Let it complete its initial boot checks. Swipe down from the top and tap on the settings gear icon. Tap on the Updater option at the bottom. It should find a nearly 900MB security update for the Honor 8. Download and install it.

The Honor 8 should reboot several times, but this time it will take a little longer to complete than the EMUI 4.1 firmware upgrade did.

Go to settings again and tap on the Updater option again. If it does not give you the EMUI 5 upgrade right away, keep checking a few more times. My Honor 8 took five checks before the update appeared.

Once it appears, tap to download the 2.7GB file. It should install just like EMUI 4.1 did with no further interaction required by you. Try checking with the Updater app one more time for additional Android security patches.

Your initial download of the EMUI 4.1 firmware will still be located on your Honor 8, in the root directory. Tap to open the Files app. It is now safe to delete the dload folder. Go to your Downloads folder and delete the 4GB zip file that was initially downloaded.

Congratulations, your Honor 8 is now running the latest EMUI 5 firmware with Android Nougat 7. An added bonus is that the details page under settings will now show you a proper amount of RAM, storage space and model number. Ready my full review of Huawei’s Honor 8.

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