How I Bricked My Moto G

It’s been a few months now that I have been using a Moto G – the primary reason why I bought it being a privileged user to get the latest OTA updates soon after Nexus devices and for two years. While Moto G users received an Android 5.0 update before Nexus could, my excitement of upgrading my device increased two fold.

The Android 5.0 Upgrade

Thanks to that excitement, I decided to flash the soak test Android 5.0 ROM onto my Asian Moto G. Since the Brazilian version supports dual SIM, I did not see any issues coming my way. To accomplish this, I flashed a Brazilian Android 4.4.4 ROM which was required to flash the soak test ROM. All went well and I flashed the OTA zip which was directly pulled from the /cache directory of a Brazilian Moto G.

Issues with Brazilian Android 5.0 Soak Test ROM

Up next, I explored all the new features Android 5.0 had to offer me. After a few days of playing around with the Android 5.0 update on my device, I realized that the GSM signal on my first SIM would disappear for a few seconds after which it came back to normal. This disturbed the default settings used in apps like Motorola Alert which started sending SMS using the second SIM WITHOUT my knowledge.

While that was a serious issue the ROM had, I didn’t seem to like the notification drawer. I was used to pulling down from right to access toggles and pulling down from left to access my notifications. CyanogenMod always handles notification-toggles switching smartly by showing toggles only when there were no dismissable notifications. Android 5.0 isn’t smart enough for such switching by a CyanogenMod 11 ROM does that well. If you’re on Android 5.0, you need to pull down the notification bar twice to access toggles which don’t seem to be placed neatly on the screen.

Using Android Runtime (ART) instead of Dalvik also seemed to slow down the switching between apps and resulted in home screen re-draws most of the times. Probably this could be an issue with the soak test ROM and not the original Android 5.0.1 ROM that is being rolled out to Moto G currently.

The Unsuccessful Rollback

Okay, I was done with Android 5.0, I needed my KitKat back. The best way to roll back was to flash the Android 4.4 ROM through the bootloader which has always seemed to work whenever my phone was potentially bricked. I made 5 unsuccessful attempts to flash a Brazilian/Asian Android 4.4 stock ROMs when my phone never went past the Unlocked Bootloader warning screen.

After some research, I discovered that I could flash a GPE ROM first and then roll back to a Brazilian or Asian ROM. Without any hesitation, I gave it a try and it worked! I had a Moto G running Android 4.4.2 but with one SIM functional.

Soon after my phone booted, I received an OTA update notification which upgrades the OS to Android 4.4.4. I decided to install it. This was the last time my phone worked. The OTA update seemed to flash something on the phone via the recovery mode after which the phone went dead.

The Aftermath

Moto G Bricked

It has been more than 24 hours and my phone is still dead. It did not react to any button combinations or plug-ins for the first 5 hours, after which its white LED started blinking when I connected a 3A Huawei MediaPad charger and it still blinks. This happens probably the batter’s voltage becomes very low before the phone shuts down. As of now, it looks like the phone is not accepting the battery. People on XDA forums suggest me to wait for a day leaving the phone aside, but I don’t think any magic would make the phone work.

Have you ever bricked your Moto G this way? If yes, do comment below about what you did to make it work.