Google recommends anyone with signal issues to factory reset their Pixel 6 and 6 Pro to the previous version.
What you need to know
- The Pixel Drop in December caused serious mobile connection problems for some Pixel 6 users.
- Google has “identified a fix” but will not deliver it to users until late January.
- The next update will include all previous bug fixes.
- If you have already downloaded the update, your only way is to use the Android Flash tool to revert to the previous version.
Google’s December update fixes various Pixel 6 bugs that have plagued phones since its release. Unfortunately, it also introduced a more serious bug that hindered the Pixel 6’s network connection. Some users were unable to connect to networks in areas with large coverage and reported frequent signal dropouts.
Google said on December 17 that it was investigating the issue and suspended the rollout of the update. Now, nearly two weeks later, a Pixel support page indicates that Google has found a solution to the problem. Unfortunately, they will not roll out the fix until “late January”, which means that anyone with the current update will have to endure another month of poor reception.
“If you received the December software update on Pixel 6 or Pixel 6 Pro, but still have mobile connection issues, you can use the Android Flash Tool (flash.android.com) and perform a factory reset to restore to the previous software Version,” the post explained.
If you do not experience any signal problems, you can continue to use the current version. However, if you did not receive the update in the first place, you must wait an extra month to get all bug fixes and new features related to it.
There are several obvious problems with this solution. One, it requires people to back up their phones and go through a manual update process, rather than Google fixing the problem through OTA; many Pixel 6 users may never see this option. Second, reverting to the previous version will reintroduce all bugs fixed by Google developers and roll back security patches.
Obviously, this Pixel 6 error is not something developers can quickly fix, otherwise they will fix it. We have seen other bugs, such as Microsoft Teams blocking 911 calls, to be fixed in days instead of weeks.
Nevertheless, it is disappointing that Google’s first attempt to use its SoC Tensor has led to such a bad experience. Although we think Pixel 6 is one of the best Android phones with the best hardware quality, it turns out that for many users, the software experience is not ideal.
With the launch of new phones such as Samsung Galaxy S22 and OnePlus 10 in early 2022, it will be interesting to see if some Pixel users will switch jobs before Google corrects them.