Google Pixels may not have Android 12 yet, but they just got their October update | #android | #security


And no functional patch notes for the second month in a row

Today isn’t Android 12 day, sadly, but Google did just push out its anticipated October updates for the Pixel series, including the new Pixel 5a. Unfortunately for us, it looks like Google has decided to drop the functional patch notes again this month, so we can’t tell you what changed or if any specific bugs have been fixed with this release. The OTA should be rolling out soon, promising the latest security patches for the Pixel 3 series, Pixel 3a series, Pixel 4 series, Pixel 4a series, Pixel 5, and Pixel 5a.

The lack of functional patch notes for the last two months in a row is curious, and we’ve reached out to Google to see if that means they’re going away entirely or not. We hope not, because often those notes are the only way to explicitly confirm that Google has fixed a given issue, like the problem with the Pixel 5a’s touchscreen that myself and some other reviewers have run into. We’ll be sure to let you know if we hear back from the company.

Outside potentially device-specific improvements or fixes, this update includes the latest security patches as noted by the October 2021 bulletin with some Pixel-specific tweaks sprinkled on top — sort of like vitamins, it doesn’t matter if you know what that means, it’s good for you (and your security).

The update should be rolling out shortly, though that might vary based on your carrier, etc. Build numbers vary slightly, with the Pixel 5a getting a couple of notably different numbers depending on region compared to the rest of the uniformly built family. If you don’t want to wait for it to land on your phone, you can sideload the OTA files here or download a full factory image.

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