The storage issue, which appeared to affect mainly Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro owners at first, turned out to be a major one with severe consequences. The software appeared to lock users out of their phone’s local storage, rendering them unusable, after updating to the latest Android 14 software, which was released in early October for Pixel phones.
While some users were able to access their home screens, others were not so fortunate, as the Android 14 upgrade put their phones in a constant reboot loop (also known as a bootloop). More than a month later, Google started rolling out a patch that it claims will address the problem, but it’s not as simple as it appears.
According to ArsTechnica, the issue, which is similar to “ransomware,” would only save the initial group of users who can still turn on and access their devices. Such users will be able to download and install the most recent security patch, as well as recover any local data stored on their phones that was previously inaccessible due to the problem.
This is not the case for people whose handsets are in a bootloop, since such a device must be entirely erased and updated with the current firmware to avoid falling back into a situation like this. This also means that users facing the bootloop will be unable to get back their local data, which will be lost forever.
The storage bug affects a number of phones, including the Pixel 6, Pixel 6a, Pixel 6 Pro, Pixel 7, Pixel 7 Pro, Pixel 7a, Pixel Tablet, Pixel Fold, and even Google’s latest Pixel 8, Pixel 8 Pro devices, according to the security update patch note.
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According to the report, Google was still seeding the same bug-ridden Android 14 upgrade until a few days ago, which is unusual because Google normally pulls the plug on defective releases. This is usually the reason for the staggered release of all updates.
The storage bug will leave a lot of Pixel owners furious about how the brand has left them stranded, with Google themselves unable to find a viable solution to the problem they helped create. Further, it all leads to the fact that smartphone data backups are critical, especially if you store a lot of data both on the cloud and on your smartphone, or if you simply want to have things that way.