Xiaomi has just released a new Android 10 update for Xiaomi Mi A3 with May 2020 security patch. This new update comes with V126.96.36.199.QFQMIXM software build number for the Global variant and V188.8.131.52.QFQEUXM build number for the European variant of the phone. Through this post, you can download the OTA package and fastboot ROM of the latest Xiaomi Mi A3 Android 10 update, followed by instructions on how to manually install the update via stock recovery, TWRP, or fastboot.
When Google released Android 10 last year, several manufacturers quickly jumped in and released the update for their devices, like Essential, Samsung, HMD, Asus, and more. However this time, Xiaomi was way far behind the schedule, even when it came to its Android One lineup, that was expected to get the latest updates at the earliest.
It was back in January that the company released the Android 10 update for the Xiaomi Mi A2 and A2 Lite. Xiaomi did release the source code of Android 10 for the Mi A3 earlier, followed by the stable update in March this year. Ever since then, the phone has received monthly updates based on Android 10, the latest one being the April 2020 security update. The update is currently available over-the-air and you can check for it by going to ‘Settings’ > ‘System’ > ‘System update’ on your phone.
Since OTA updates are rolled out in phases, it could take some time before the update is available for everyone. If you can’t wait and want to upgrade right now, then this article is here to help. Below, you will find download links of the OTA file and Fastboot ROM for the latest Android 10-based May 2020 security update and the instructions to manually install it. Now before you get to that, let’s take a quick look at what new features and changes this update brings.
- 1 Android 10 for Xiaomi Mi A3 – New Features and Changes
- 2 Prerequisites
- 3 Download Xiaomi Mi A3 Android 10 Firmware
- 4 How to Manually Install Android 10 Update on Xiaomi Mi A3
- 5 F.A.Q
Android 10 for Xiaomi Mi A3 – New Features and Changes
Being a major Android version upgrade, Android 10 brings numerous new features to the Mi A3. To begin with, the system-wide dark mode feature turns the complete system UI to a combination of black and dark gray colors. The best part is that Dark Mode further extends to the apps that as well. The dark colors not only cause less strain on the eyes when viewing in low-light environments but also has a slight effect on the battery life since the phone uses an AMOLED display.
Android 9 Pie introduced the concept of gesture navigation, and Android 10 just takes it up a notch by completely getting rid of the navigation bar buttons and relying on swipe and pulls to navigate throughout the OS. Though you still have the option to switch back to 2-button gesture navigation of Android Pie or the traditional 3-button navigation bar.
Moving on, Android 10 puts a lot of focus on users’ privacy. To handle this, there’s a new dedicated privacy control center in the phone’s settings menu that allows you to have granular control over the permissions required by apps and services on your phone.
Not just that, the Mi A3 also gets support for Dynamic System Updates (DSU) with this update. This new feature will allow users to easily boot a live-system image on their phone for testing purposes, without having to replace the current system image. This should really come in handy to developers, as well as to enthusiasts who want to try the latest Android version. For more info on how DSU works and the benefits it offers, go through this detailed article by XDA.
These were just to name a few. Android 10 for Xiaomi Mi A3 brings several more features and enhancements. To know more about them, please visit the official website. This V184.108.40.206.QFQMIXM update in particular aims at bringing the latest May 2020 security patch and bug fixes to the phones.
Screenshots of Android 10 Running on Mi A3
Below are a few screenshots showcasing Android 10 and its major features on the Xiaomi Mi A3 (Click to enlarge).
Update (May 25, 2020): Xiaomi has re-released the Android 10 update with the V220.127.116.11 software build number. This latest update fixes a majority of bugs listed below.
The pleasantries aside, users who have already updated their Mi A3 to Android 10 have run into some issues, as follows:
- The first issue is with the fingerprint on-display. Users have reported that in order for the fingerprint scanner to show up, the Always-on Display feature needs to be enabled, which isn’t convenient for those who don’t want to use AOD in the first place. For those facing this issue after upgrade can head over to a temporary workaround (at the bottom of this post) that will fix the fingerprint problem.
- Second, users have mentioned that Always-on Display also causes an increased battery drain, which shouldn’t normally happen since the Mi A3 uses an AMOLED display.
- Also, there are some visual glitches with the screen corners. You will notice them when opening/closing the Recents App (App switching) screen.
The current issues/bugs with Android 10 are being documented and discussed over at this XDA thread. If you face an issue than the ones mentioned above, please consider reporting it on the thread or provide your feedback directly to Xiaomi.
Before you head to the instructions, make sure you meet all the requirements listed below.
- First, take a full backup of all your important data. Although the provided instructions/method will not erase any data, it’s still strongly recommended, especially when performing manual upgrades. If you need, we also have a detailed guide for this purpose here.
- Charge your Mi A3 to a sufficient battery level. This shall help avoid any sudden shutdowns during the update process.
- For Method 2 and Method 3, your phone’s bootloader must be unlocked.
- For Method 3, you must have TWRP installed on your Mi A3.
Download Xiaomi Mi A3 Android 10 Firmware
The Android 10 firmware for the Mi A3 is available in two different types – (1) OTA package and (2) Fastboot ROM. The former can be installed via the stock recovery or TWRP recovery. On the other hand, the latter can be installed by flashing via fastboot.
Note: The fastboot image isn’t the official one as normally provided by Xiaomi. I personally took the liberty to extract the payload.bin to get the partition image files and packaged it together for manual flashing. I have also added the ADB/Fastboot binaries to the package so that you wouldn’t need to set it up separately.
So, download the firmware file according to the method you choose to install it.
Note: At the time of publishing this post, the Xiaomi Mi A3 Android 10 firmware is only available for the Global variant. Although users with the European variant of the phone can install it. Available now!
For Global Variant
1. V18.104.22.168.QFQMIXM (May 2020 Security Update)
- OTA Package: 3844defb89d798fab1edb535e3481af222280d41.zip
- Unofficial Fastboot Image (Credits: XDA Senior member edwaine): laurel_sprout_global_images_V22.214.171.124.QFQMIXM_10.0.rar
- Official OTA Package: 935d7c7259037b861c8c4192631b33bd987a259f.zip
- Unofficial Fastboot Image: laurel_sprout_global_V126.96.36.199.QFQMIXM_fastboot_unofficial.7z
- Official OTA Package: miui_LAURELSPROUTGlobal_V188.8.131.52.QFQMIXM_79d650b0da_10.0.zip
- Unofficial Fastboot Image: laurel_sprout_global_V184.108.40.206.QFQMIXM_fastboot_unofficial.7z
This was the initial stable update that was recalled later due to bugs. Please download the re-released latest update.
- Official OTA package: miui_LAURELSPROUTGlobal_V220.127.116.11.QFQMIXM_e4332e88a7_10.0.zip
- Unofficial Fastboot Image: laurel_sprout_global_V18.104.22.168.QFQMIXM_fastboot_unofficial.zip
For European Variant
- Official OTA package: 85b3711367760725552a716df4e9a057ac4cd8ff.zip
- Official Fastboot ROM: laurel_sprout_eea_global_images_V22.214.171.124.QFQEUXM_20200424.0000.00_10.0_9c5f95ef79.tgz
How to Manually Install Android 10 Update on Xiaomi Mi A3
Now, there are three different methods/ways to manually install the latest Android 10 update on your phone.
- Method 1 is for users who have their phone unrooted with the stock recovery installed. This method guides you to sideload the OTA package via the stock recovery, either directly from the internal storage or by using ADB sideload.
- Note: The stock recovery installation will only work if you have a previous Android 10 update installed. If you still have Android Pie installed, this method will not work.
- Method 2 is for users who have TWRP recovery installed on their phones. This is the best method if you further want to maintain root and keep TWRP installed on your phone even after updating.
- Method 3 is for users who want to completely restore unrooted stock Android 10 firmware on their phones.
So, follow the method according to your device’s current state and what you want to do with it further.
Method 1: Installing Android 10 OTA via Stock Recovery
The stock recovery includes two different options for installing OTA updates – (1) Via the external SD card or (2) via ADB Sideload. The former is the easiest and doesn’t require a PC at all, however, it will only work if you have an external SD card installed on your phone. If you have it, then please follow the instructions in this guide – How to Manually Install OTA Updates using Stock Recovery on Android
If no, then please use ADB sideload in the stock recovery as demonstrated by the instructions below. In order to use ADB, you will need to install the Android SDK platform-tools on your PC. Simply download the latest version of the tools from here and extract the downloaded file to get the ‘platform-tools‘ folder containing the required tools. Then move the extracted folder to the C:\ drive of your PC so that it’s easily accessible.
- Download the Android 10 OTA zip package on your PC.
- Copy the downloaded file to C:\platform-tools on your PC.
- Hold the SHIFT key of the keyboard and right-click on any empty space inside the folder.
- Select ‘Open PowerShell window here‘ from the contextual menu that appears. The blue-colored PowerShell window will open on your PC.
- Now, power off your Mi A3 and boot it into the stock recovery mode. To do this, hold the Volume Up and Power keys together until you see an Android bot on the screen with ‘No command‘.
- When on this screen, hold the Power key and tap the Volume Up key once to enter the stock recovery mode.
- Use the volume keys to move the selector to ‘Apply update from ADB‘ and press the power key to confirm the selection. Your phone should now accept sideloading of OTA updates from the PC.
- Connect your Mi A3 to the PC via the USB cable now.
- Enter the following command in the PowerShell window to start sideloading the Android 10 OTA on your Mi A3:
.\adb sideload ota-filename.zip
- Replace “ota-filename.zip” with the full filename of the OTA file you have downloaded. For instance, if you have downloaded the V126.96.36.199.QFQMIXM OTA, then the command should be:
.\adb sideload 3844defb89d798fab1edb535e3481af222280d41.zip
- As soon as you enter the command, the OTA installation will begin on your phone and you would see the installation process at the bottom of the screen. It could take a couple of minutes, so leave the connection undisturbed.
- Once the installation finishes, select ‘Reboot System Now’ in stock recovery to reboot your phone into the updated Android 10 OS.
Method 2: Flashing OTA Package using TWRP
If you have TWRP installed, then the easiest way to upgrade your Mi A3 to Android 10 is by flashing the OTA package. You can further flash the TWRP installer and Magisk ZIP files to retain both of them after the update. The instructions for the same are as follows:
- Download the Xiaomi Mi A3 Android 10 OTA package.
- Also, download the latest TWRP installer and Magisk ZIP files.
- If you have downloaded the files on your PC, then transfer them to your phone’s internal storage.
- Now, power off your Mi A3 completely and boot it into TWRP recovery mode by holding the Volume Up and Power buttons together.
- (Optional: If you have a custom ROM installed) Go to the ‘Wipe’ > ‘Advanced Wipe’ and wipe the ‘system’, ‘data’, and ‘cache’ partitions.
- Tap on the ‘Install’ button in TWRP and select the Android 10 OTA package (e.g. miui_LAURELSPROUTGlobal_V188.8.131.52.QFQMIXM_79d650b0da_10.0.zip).
- Now swipe the button on the screen to flash the OTA file and install the Android 10 update on your Mi A3.
- Once flashed, go back to the TWRP main menu and tap on ‘Install’ again.
- Select the TWRP installer zip file (twrp_3.1.1-0_installer_laurel_sprout_unofficial.zip), then tap on ‘Add more Zips’ and select the Magisk ZIP file (e.g. Magisk-v20.4.zip) to add it to the flashing queue.
- Once both the files have been added, swipe the button on the screen to flash them.
- After the flashing process finishes, press the ‘Reboot System’ button.
Your Mi A3 will now boot into the updated Android 10 OS, along with TWRP and Magisk root.
Method 3: By Flashing Fastboot ROM
This method is great for those who want to restore the complete stock firmware on their Mi A3. It doesn’t matter if your phone is rooted, unrooted, have stock recovery installed, or TWRP; this method will work given that your phone’s bootloader is unlocked.
First off, download the Android 10 fastboot ROM for Xiaomi Mi 3 on your PC. Then extract the downloaded ZIP/RAR file to an easily accessible location on your PC using an archive tool like 7-Zip. The extracted folder should contain firmware’s partition image files and the required flash scripts.
Now power off your phone completely and boot it into Fastboot Mode. Once your phone is in Fastboot mode, connect it to your PC using a USB cable.
Finally, double-click the flash script batch file (e.g. flash_all.bat, flash_all_except_storage.bat, etc) to start flashing the Android 10 fastboot ROM on your Mi A3. As soon as the file is executed, you should see a command prompt window showing the progress.
After the flashing process finishes, your phone will automatically reboot into the updated Android 10 OS. Although this method won’t erase any data stored on the phone, it’s strongly recommended to perform a factory data reset via the stock recovery to ensure that you do not face any unusual bugs/issues.
Apart from re-releasing the Android 10 update for the Mi A3, Xiaomi also dived in to answer some of the frequently asked questions that users had or might have about Android 10.
Q1. Why does activating the system-wide Dark mode in Android 10 turns the UI to dark grey, instead of black?
- The black color implementation of dark mode by Google is specific to the Google Pixel series. Since the Android One series of Xiaomi runs the stock AOSP software, it defaults the colors to dark grey, which is exactly what the AOSP code offers.
Q2. Does the dark grey Dark Mode on Mi A3 still save some battery life?
- Yes, since the Mi A3 is equipped with an AMOLED display panel, the dark grey colors can potentially aid towards a slightly increased battery life. When compared to the black color dark mode on Pixel devices, the battery consumption is only increased by 0.3% overall. That’s because, with black colors, the phone’s pixels are completely off, as compared to dark colors.
Q3. After upgrading to Android 10, the Gesture Navigation is buggy?
- Gesture Navigation in Android 10 relies on the launcher for the most part. So, Xiaomi recommends using the stock in-built launcher to get the smoothest experience, instead of third-party launchers.
Q4. Will the features included in Google’s Pixel Drop come to Mi A3 as well?
- No. The Pixel Drop, as the name suggests is only for the Google Pixel devices. It does not expand to Android One phones like the Mi A3 in this case.
Q5. After updating to Android 10, apps are constantly crashing/force-closing on my Mi A3, what do I do?
- The initial Android 10 updates (V184.108.40.206 and V220.127.116.11) had several bugs. If you upgrade your phone to it and then moved on to the V18.104.22.168 update or above, then it’s possible that certain bugs were carried over and made the system unstable. For a much smoother and bug-free experience, please consider performing a factory reset after the upgrading, or you might also consider re-installing the V22.214.171.124 update via fastboot.
While not a proper solution, this will surely help fix the problem for users who have already upgraded their phones to Android 10. According to an online report, Xiaomi will re-release the update with fixes
So there you go! You have just downloaded and installed the latest Android 10-based monthly security update on your Mi A3. If you have any questions regarding the update instructions mentioned here, please feel free to post a comment and let us know.