Category: Google Pixel

Opinion – Google Pixel Has Only Sold 1 Million Units… Who Cares?

Yesterday, through some estimates made from the downloading of the Pixel Launcher from the Play Store, several reports surfaced on the number of Google Pixel phones that have been sold.  Based on the listing of the launcher in the Store, it is estimated that 1 million units have been sold since the phone launched in October 2016.

On the surface, given the vast number of Android devices in the market, this seems like a low sales number.  And it is frankly.  Samsung has sold some 5 million Galaxy S8 units in just a handful of months while other phones like the Huawei P10 have also pushed well past 1 million units.

But who cares?  While many will get wrapped around the axle on this low number, it is important to keep in mind Google never intended this device to be for the masses.  It is a flagship device with a premium price and I suspect that Google themselves aren’t too flustered over the low numbers.  Neither should you.

Google Further Clarifies End of Support for Nexus & Pixel Devices

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.

Google Pixel Lineup Security Support Ends in October 2019

Following the process set for the last Nexus lineup, Google has updated their Android software update page with information on the Google Pixel lineup.  Major version support for the devices will end next year, October 2018 while Android security updates will end a year later in October 2019.  While Google phrases this as “not guaranteed”, it is pretty much a lock that the devices won’t see updates after these dates.

This shouldn’t be a surprise to Pixel owners.  Google has said they will support phones for 3 years after release or 18 months from when the device was last sold in the Google Store, whichever is longer.  This is the cadence they setup on such updates with the release of the Nexus 6P and 5X although it had been somewhat implied prior to those devices. As an owner of a Pixel XL, I’d love to see support longer but the reality is, for Google, developing an Android build for a 3+ year old device is expensive with little incentive for them to do it.  Remember that they, just like any other manufacture, want you to upgrade at some point.

Verizon Bound Google Pixel and Pixel XL Seeing Nougat 7.1.2 Update

After being released on Monday for the unlocked variants, the Android Nougat 7.1.2 update for the Google Pixel and Pixel XL on Verizon has now been released.  The build for the Verizon Pixels is NHG47K, slightly different than the release for the unlocked devices.  That build was N2G47E.  The update is under 500MB in size but it is a good idea to download via Wi-Fi for speed and data plan savings.  Once downloaded, the update will take about 15 minutes to install and your phone will reboot once it is completed.

Th update for the Verizon variants contain the same updates as the unlocked versions of the Pixel and Pixel XL.  This includes improvements around Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, backup improvements to restore data from 1st-party apps like Calendar, and the April 2017 Android Security Patch.

Android Nougat 7.1.2 Beta 2 Starts Rolling to Testers

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.

Android Nougat 7.1.1 Expected Release is December 5th

Thanks to a leak from Vodafone Australia, it looks like owners of the Nexus 6P and Google Pixel lineup will be seeing the Android Nougat 7.1.1 update starting next Monday, December 5th.  For the Nexus 6P, the updated build will be NMF26F and will bring app shortcuts to the phone as well as the December Android Security Update.  As readers will remember, the 7.1.1 update has been in beta for a few months now and the second and expected to be final Developer Preview dropped last week.  Google has said very early on that the 7.1.1 update would be coming in early December so the December 5th date lines up well with what has been publicly stated from the company.

Today’s Deal – Google Pixel 2013 Chromebook Just $363

Today’s Deal is almost unbelievable.  Right now you can get the Intel i5 powered Google Pixel Chromebook (2013) for just $363.99 on Amazon.  This model retailed for over $1200 when it was the flagship so you are saving a whopping $837 on this sale.  The sales is on Amazon but is being sold by Google.

Don’t remember all the specs of this killer Chromebook?  Here are the highlights:

Google Pixel Chromebook 2013

Google Pixel Chromebook 2013

  • 3:2 Photographic Format Display Designed for Web and Multitouch Capabilities
  • Dual Core 1.8Ghz Intel i5 Processor and 4GB DDR3 RAM
  • Bluetooth 3.0 , Webcam, and Dual Band WiFi Built in
  • Weighs only 3.4 lbs. and measures just 0.6″

Now admittedly, the Bluetooth 3.0 specs are a bit behind given we are now at 4.1 or 4.2, but this is a Google Chromebook!  These are hard to get hold of these days, the 2013 or the 2015 model.

The Google Pixel Chromebook is in stock at Amazon and includes free standard shipping.  This sale is not Amazon Prime eligible so keep that in mind as you shop.

This deal is likely to go very quickly so if you are wanting a powerhouse of a Chromebook at an insane price, head over to Amazon now and get your order in on it.

Google Pixel Chromebook 2013 – $363 – Amazon

 

Unauthorized Google Pixel Resellers Banned by Google

Nearly 200 Google users have found themselves banned and suspended from Google after making a clear violation of their terms of service.  The users purchased a Google Pixel through Project Fi and then had those phones shipped to a 3rd party in New Hampshire.  Those phones were then resold and the profits split between the 3rd party company and the original buyer of the phone.  While it is perfectly legal for you to resell your phone, it is equally clear in the Project Fi and Google Store terms that you cannot do this or you will have your account suspended.  That is exactly what has happened and this is no small deal.  A suspended Google account means you can’t access anything associated with that account:  Gmail, Calendar, Google Photos, Google Docs, etc.  It is a complete shutdown.

At the time of this post, none of the accounts that have been suspended have been re-enabled.  While owners of these accounts can appeal to Google, it is a question if they will ever get back into those accounts.  So the question is this:  Is this too draconian by Google?

Google To Restock The Really Blue Pixel Phones

For those of you who were really wanting one of the Really Blue Pixel phones, there is good news for you this morning.  Google has confirmed to Android Police that the limited color variant of both the Pixel and the Pixel XL will be restocked at some point in the future.  The question is when and how many will actually be available.  That part of the equation is not known but if you are really wanting to get your hands on a Really Blue Pixel, it is suggested that you use the Google Store’s waitlist function to get in line.

Google Pixel in Really Blue

Google Pixel in Really Blue

Functionally, as readers likely know, there is no difference in performance between the various color variants.  The Really Blue color however was immediately sought after as it was unique in this world of mostly black, silver (aluminum) and gold phones on the market.

If you want to join the waitlist for the phone, go to the Google Store and sign up to be notified on when it is back in stock.  Obviously there is no guarantee they will be there if you delay once you are notified.  These will go very, very fast (translation:  within minutes if not sooner).  If you want one, be prepared to pay the day they hit the store.

Good Luck!

Google Releases The Factory Images for Google Pixel Lineup

With orders now starting to arrive to those who ordered the new Google Pixel or Pixel XL, Google has posted both the factory images and the OTA updates for both phones on the Android Developer website.  This follows the trend that the company has had the last two device rounds (Nexus 5X/6P and Marshmallow & Nexus 6/Lollipop).  This means that, like the Nexus lineup before it, the Pixel lineup will have images that those who want to manually update their devices can use as soon as the images are released instead of waiting for the standard over-the-air updates.

Download The Goggle Pixel Stock Wallpaper

As is often the case with new phones, the question is always “how can I get that wallpaper?”.  The Google Pixel and Pixel XL are no exception to this question and now you can get it.  Thanks to some engineering folks who have extracted it from the phone’s ROM, you can now download it and put it on your current device.

The wallpaper measures 2154 x 2560 so you can use it on your current Android phone or tablet and likely on most laptops without much pixelization.  I have added to below the break for those interested and you can download it along with hundreds of other wallpapers on the Wallpaper page here on the site.

Verizon’s Google Pixel Will Have A Locked Bootloader

For those Verizon customers who are looking to pick up the one of the new Google Pixel phones, be aware that the bootloader will be locked to the carrier.  To this point, Google has kept their Nexus devices with an unlocked bootloader.  For those who aren’t familiar with what a bootloader is exactly, it is the first thing that runs when you power up an Android phone.  It is the boot sequence of the device and the loading of the Operating System.  Carriers generally like these locked because the do not want someone loading a custom ROM on the device to bypass their software or other settings.