LineageOS is the most popular custom ROM for Android devices, bringing new OS versions to phones and tablets that have long since been unsupported. The Pixel lineup has mostly been ignored by the project, outside of the original models, but now nearly every Google-made phone is receiving official builds of LineageOS.
Android 11 is here, and we're sure you want to try it out — the only issue is it being limited to the Pixel series and a few beta releases right now. What if you don't have one of those? Well, if the Pixel 4a is still out of your price range, or you're looking for a phone with a bigger screen, you're in luck: Woot has the Pixel 3a XL on sale for just $300.
Lost in yesterday's Android 11 hullabaloo was another bit of news: Security patches for Google's Pixel series were released together as part of the Android 11 update. This month's security-oriented fixes are more numerous than usual, with plenty of "high" and "critical" vulnerabilities included, so be sure to install the Android 11 update sooner rather than later.
The first Developer Preview for Android 11 landed in February of this year, and Google has continued to iterate and add new features across several more Developer Previews and Betas. As revealed earlier this summer at the start of Google's "11 weeks of Android" promotion, the stable version of Android 11 has arrived, ready for public consumption and rolling out to Google Pixel devices.
As part of today's Pixel 4a festivities, Google has also announced a new feature that's coming to older Pixels as well. Remember Google's Live Caption feature that transcribes speech in real-time, on-device, for things like videos? Well, Live Caption will now also work for video and voice calls — more useful than ever in these socially distant times.
IMG is the most common file name for images that come out of cameras, used in many phones and DSLRs, including the Google Pixel lineup. Google is looking to differentiate files created by the Pixel line's excellent cameras, though. Starting with Google Camera version 7.5, currently only available for devices running the Android 11 beta, image file names will start with PXL instead of IMG.
Pixel phones have usually been known more for utilitarian design than flashy looks, but Google's line of fabric cases certainly helps the phones stand out from the crowd while adding some drop protection as well. With the announcement of the new Pixel 4a, the Google Store is cutting prices on fabric case options for the Pixel 3a/3a XL and Pixel 4/4 XL down to just $20, a savings of 50%.
August updates are live for Google's Pixels — notably behind some Samsung devices. The trend of intermittently skipping those "functional patch notes" continues this month, so we can't tell you what sort of user-facing changes or fixes you might see (if there are any at all), but it does include a good number of "high" and "critical" labeled fixes, so you'll want to pull them down sooner rather than later anyway.
In a statement provided to Android Police, Google has confirmed that its Pixel 3a and 3a XL smartphones are now discontinued. No more stock will be made available on the Google store, and the phone will only remain available through a handful of 3rd party retailers as remaining units sell through. Google's full statement, via a Google spokesperson, follows below.