Google Extends Security Support on Latest Nexus Phones

Android Oreo on Nexus 6P

Without any notification or explanation, Google has extended the security update support for the Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P an additional two months.  Both phones will now receive minor software patches until November 2018.

The change is reflected in an update to the Nexus Android version page on Google Support and appears to be the only changes to the schedule which the company adopted in 2016.

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Check for Update Really Works in Oreo on Nexus & Pixel Devices

System Updates in Android Oreo

So here’s a concept:  A button that actually does something.  For years, the “Check for update” button in Android pretty much did nothing.  Sure you could hit it but the odds of you getting an update were pretty slim.  Why?  Because manufactures like Google, Samsung and others as well as carriers phase updates out to their customers.  The result?  The “Check for update” button was, by-and-large, useless.

That’s changing under Android Oreo, specifically for the Google Nexus and Pixel devices.  Now when you tap that button in Settings>System>System Updates, it actually, really goes out to Google’s servers and download the latest OTA update.  No waiting on phasing.

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Google Further Clarifies End of Support for Nexus & Pixel Devices

Google Pixel XL

Google has once again updated their support matrix for the Nexus and Pixel lineup of devices.  Previously the company had outlined dates of when major updates and minor security updates would cease for the devices.  There is nothing new here in that regard.  What is new is the dates for the end of online and phone support for the devices.  The good news, or at least the non-confusing news, is that online & phone support ends when security updates end on the devices.

Take the Nexus 6 for example.  There are no guaranteed Android updates to the device since October 2016.  No, Android O is not coming to the Nexus 6.  Sorry, I loved it too.  In October 2017, guaranteed security updates end and that is also when online and phone support ends for the device.  Other devices follow this same timing.

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Android Nougat 7.1.2 Beta 2 Starts Rolling to Testers

Android Nougat

The 2nd and likely the last beta of Android Nougat 7.1.2 has begun rolling out to those enrolled in the Android Beta program.  The update brings additional bug fixes and refinements to the first beta which, on the whole, is a bug fix and refinement release for Nougat.  While there is no official word on when the general public will see 7.1.2, it is likely not far away.  Generally the first beta was solid and this second appears to be smoothing out a few rough edges.  It feels complete at this point.

While the focus is on bug fixes and refinements, this beta does bring a few new things to the table.  First, for those of you with a Nexus 6P, you finally get the fingerprint scanner swipe action that has been on the Nexus 5X since the first beta.  If you remember, the first beta for the 6P was delayed by about three weeks and didn’t come with the ability to swipe down and read notifications.  That seems to have been addressed in this second beta.

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LineageOS Builds for Several Phones Now Available

Lineage OS Builds for The Nexus 6P

LineageOS has started posting several experimental and nightly builds for various devices, including the Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P.  The posting of the new software builds came as promised by the Lineage team and ironically keep Cyanogen elements in their versioning and naming conventions.  Right now the downloads page has builds for the two Nexus’ but also for the Nextbit Robin, Motorola G4/G4 Plus and the Xiaomi Redmi 1S.  Each build has the devices code name as part of the build name (Angler for the Nexus 6P for example) and the version numbering is what Cyanogen was using prior to their demise.  Builds 14.1 in LineageOS are Android Nougat 7.1.

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Developer Preview of Android Nougat 7.1.1 Released – What’s New

The Android team at Google has released the first Developer Preview of Android Nougat and with it comes a host of changes and improvements.  The version is indicated as Nougat 7.1.1 with a build number of NFP10C and right now it is only available for the Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P and the Pixel C.  As you know, Nougat 7.1.1 will be shipping on the Google Pixel devices so this is very much a catch-up build for the Nexus devices and Pixel C.  The good news is that there are a lot of changes and improvements in this build of Nougat.  While Nexus devices won’t get the Pixel Launcher – for now at least – the changes that are in 7.1.1 do bring some of the Pixel features to these devices and it is well worth considering joining the beta program so you can get a sneak peak.

Android Nougat 7.1.1 InstallThat said, it is beta.  That means that you could run into issues with apps or other things with your phone if you do decide to install it.  I’m far more comfortable in recommending this install however because it is an evolution of Nougat, not the wholesale version change from Marshmallow to Nougat.  I’ve been running it on my Nexus 6P for about 24 hours now and haven’t run into any issues.  If you decide to install it, the download is about 1.3GB so you’ll for sure want to make sure you are on Wi-Fi to avoid data usage.

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Nexus 5X 32GB Once Again Down to $239 on eBay

Last month eBay had the Nexus 5X down to $239.99 and it has returned at this great price.  Currently the 32GB model of the Nexus 5X is down to $239.99, a savings of about 40% over what you can pick it up from Google directly. Right now both the Carbon and Quartz colors are in stock.

Obviously with the new Marlin and Sailfish Nexus devices on their way, we can expect to see the prices starting to drop on the 5X and 6P but these are still solid devices.  Plus, as you probably already know, the 5X is upgradable to Android Nougat.

As a reminder, the specs of the Nexus 5X are pretty impressive.

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