The Android 11 Beta is now official, and the era of Developer Previews are over. While Android 11 isn't "done," the switch to betas is a sort of milestone for stability as we approach a final release. There are still risks, but Google's transition to a beta branding means you probably shouldn't run into any serious deal-breaking bugs — though there's still some risk. Part of this change also means you don't need to manually install Android 11 via ADB, like you had to with prior Developer Preview releases. In fact, getting it on your Pixel phone is a snap, and here's how to do it.
Google's monthly Pixel software update is now rolling out, including June 2020's security patches and changes announced as part of this quarter's Pixel Feature Drop. The OTA should be rolling out in the traditional sense shortly, but in the meantime, you can sideload the update yourself, or peruse the huge list of Pixel functional patches — they're almost all just fixes, but there's a ton of them.
Google's third Pixel Feature Drop update has been announced with a handful of new features and tweaks for the company's line of phones. While we might yet find more minor changes hiding inside when it rolls out, we're told there are four broad categories of new features Pixel owners can look forward to: New Adaptive Battery tweaks to stretch out battery life, Recorder app integration with the Google Assistant and Google Docs, tools to better manage your sleep, and new personal safety features including crisis alerts and a "safety check" feature that notifies emergency contacts if you don't respond to a scheduled check-in.
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For some reason, Pixel phones tend to exhibit the strangestbugs, and we might have just run into yet another weird one. Pixel 2 and 2 XL owners have been reporting for more than two years that some images available through the Google Wallpapers app make their SystemUI crash repeatedly to the point of a device shutdown. With no chance to change the wallpaper in that timeframe, they have to factory reset their devices to make them functional again.
May security patches for Google's Pixels are now available, though Samsung beat Google to the punch this month. For some reason, Google has elected not to publish functional patch notes for its Pixels as part of this month's updates, but images are available and the update should be rolling out via traditional channels soon.
Google is rolling out its April security patches/updates for its Pixel phones. Although functional notes this time around simply state a handful of fixes related to Bluetooth and keyboard lag, this update also delivers an anticipated "eyes open" requirement for the Pixel 4's face unlock, which first debuted with the recent Android 11 Developer Preview 2.
Google is handling the Android 11 Developer Previews a bit differently than it did with previous Android betas. Each major Preview so far has been accompanied by at least one bugfix update, and now another minor OTA is rolling out.
According to a recent set of benchmarks conducted by the folks at Android Authority, Google’s latest Pixels suffer a bit of a problem with file transfer speed over USB Type-C. Although Google bills the port as supporting USB 3.0 transfer speeds, something about the phone’s configuration results in nearly half the speed compared to other recent phones, like the OnePlus 7T Pro and Galaxy S10e.
Google has posted images for the March Pixel update to the usual spots for manual installation, if you're too impatient to see it roll out via the traditional means. However, although this month's update is supposed to correspond to the latest Pixel Feature Drop, some of the new features don't seem to be live in the March update just yet. As we noted in our prior coverage, some things may require app updates or server-side changes before they work. (Update: Though they're almost all live for me as of around two hours later.)