Google has already announced that Android 7.1.2 Nougat beta is now available for download. According to the release notes, the recent build is for early adopters, which means those who are enrolled in the Android Beta Program.
Those of you who want to get a slice of the new Nougat goodness, however, could still get it after Google posted its factory images. Just download the files and you can manually flash them to your device. These "images" are the files necessary to manually restore or update Google phones beginning with the Nexus line.
Flash Images Compatibility
Before any of you get too excited, remember that there is a very limited number of supported devices. At this point, the factory images are only compatible to the Pixel C, Nexus Player, Google Pixel, and Pixel XL.
Some sources stated that the Nexus 5X is supposed to be included in the initial batch of compatible devices. The list of downloadable files, however, still does not reflect any 5X image.
The same goes for the Nexus 6P, there are no factory image files available for the handset yet. This is not really surprising because Google reportedly said that it will get its own factory images later than the previously identified phones.
The world is still currently wrapping its head around the android 7.1.1 update so the latest beta build came as a surprise. It was not widely reported and Google itself is not very detailed in its description.
What we know, however, is that it is a minor upgrade and it will not come with earth-shaking changes or new features. It seems to be designed mainly to improve performance and introduce bug fixes.
Just a tip: while you can download and install the open beta factory images, it is still recommended that you enroll your device to the Android Beta program. This way, the handset will automatically get the over-the-air (OTA) updates of all milestone builds for the 7.1.2 Beta. You can save time doing fresh installations whenever new updates to the factory images are released. In addition, your device will automatically get the final build upon its release.
Know that installing the new beta build could cause some stability, battery, or performance issues. If you are determined to install the 7.1.2 factory images, however, you need to do a full back up of your files. Unlike a factory reset, flashing a new system or a custom ROM will completely wipe all your data.
Make sure that your battery is also fully charged to avoid any disruption. Finally, it is important to follow the exact installation instruction that Google has provided.