One of the bummers about buying electronic devices is that you know there will be a point after which the manufacturer will no longer keep the software updated. We usually hope for at least two years when talking about smartphones, though some OEMs barely even reach half that time. One of the benefits to buying Google's phones nowadays is that the company now maintains a page where you can see the end-of-life for those devices. Read More
Google started including the security patch version in the About Phone menu last year in the wake of the Stagefright vulnerability. This is simply a date that tells you which patch level a device runs. As of Android 7.1, that line in the settings is more than just a date. It's also a link to the security bulletins. Read More
We're closing in on the announcement for new hardware that will carry the next version of Android, surely to be labeled 7.1. If you're looking for something to do in the meantime, we've put together some changelogs for the latest security updates, released just yesterday. The changelogs are a compilation of the messages left with each code commit to the Android Open Source Project (AOSP).
So far, five new builds have been posted, all for Android 7.0 Nougat. But the build numbers don't quite match up correctly with many of the firmware images. This could very possibly be a typo where the letters 'B' and 'R' may have been accidentally transposed. Read More
September's security updates have been posted for most of the Nexus family, although a few devices are still mysteriously lagging behind on official Nougat images. The source code for most of the changes has been uploaded to the Android Open Source Project (AOSP) and we've generated a list of those changes for quick and easy viewing. The security bulletin already details most of the issues resolved this month, but there may be additional details lurking behind the code, so feel free to take a look around.
There are currently five new builds posted: three for Marshmallow (MMB30W, MOB31E, MTC20K) and two for Nougat (NRD90R, NRD90S). Read More
Android 7.0 Nougat is now truly official and available to those of us toting around certain Nexus devices. The hardware support will grow soon, and seemingly more quickly than versions in the past. We've already seen much of what 7.0 has to offer, but there's surely much more to discover.
As always, along with the brand new firmware comes some brand new source code. There's entirely too much for one person to look through, so we instead generate a log of the changes from a previous version to make it easier to read. This is how we get some idea of what the developers at Google have been up to while they were behind the curtain. Read More
The odds are pretty good that if you're using a still-supported Nexus device, it's probably running August's security update by now. The factory images became available on Monday of last week and OTAs have been intermittently rolling out since then. The push to AOSP took a little longer and finally included a couple of other tags that were behind schedule. All of the changes have been compiled into their respective lists and the changelogs are ready for perusal.
Google's Android Security Bulletin details the potential vulnerabilities addressed by the August updates, but it's not too rare to see other small bug fixes and adjustments hidden among the changes. Read More
July's security updates went live a couple of days ago for all of the currently supported Nexus devices. The Pixel C is still unaccounted for, but it's not that unusual for it to lag a few days behind. There were some late-breaking updates for hardware drivers this month, which may also contribute to some delay on the Pixel C. In the meantime, there are plenty of changes to check out this month.
There are eight separate changelogs this month, but some of these are empty, created for Google's internal use. I've marked the ones that simply change a build number. As usual, Google's security bulletin contains explanations for most of the changes, but there are probably a couple of subtle bug fixes too. Read More
June's security updates are now available for all of the currently supported Nexus (and Pixel C) devices. As usual, the code changes to go along with this month's new firmware have been uploaded to AOSP and we've got some changelogs to look through. While it's a bit late, Google also uploaded the code changes for N Developer Preview 3. As usual, this isn't a complete release of N, but mostly just the code for projects licensed under the GPL.
Google has already posted the security bulletin, which describes the lion's share of changes. Most of the issues resolved in this version have to do with vulnerabilities in Qualcomm drivers. Read More
If you're curious about what has changed in the latest round of factory images for the Nexus family, there aren't many better ways to see the bare details than to browse through the changes exactly as they are written in the Android Open Source Project. We've generated changelogs from the available code commits from the latest round of updates. So far, this only includes the MOB30G-MOB30J builds, but the rest should be coming soon.
May's changelogs are pretty brief, owing basically all of their contents to the security-related fixes. In fact, of the currently available changelogs, it's only r40 (MOB30G) that contains anything of substance. Read More
The factory images are up–some of them–so it's time to take a peek under the covers to discover any changes made to the Android Open Source Project for April's security updates. To make this a bit easier, we've generated changelogs based on the commit history that was just posted to AOSP last night.
As you might expect, the majority of the changes are going to be related to the issues set forth in the April Security Bulletin. A few others appear to be relatively small bug fixes, but nothing jumps out at me as a change that will directly affect user experience or any particularly noticeable bugs. Read More