Nexus 6 gets an OTA update that downgrades its Android version

Hmm. Downgrading Android versions — especially via an over-the-air (OTA) update — isn’t something you see every day. However, this time, Nexus 6 users on Android 7.1.1 Nougat are beginning to receive OTA software updates from Google which would downgrade the smartphone to Android 7.0 Nougat.

And that’s not even the worst part.

Android clearly isn’t an OS that’s designed to be downgraded, that much is evident to anyone who has participated in the Android Beta program but decided to opt out of it. At least, not without a complete wipe.

So, when Nexus 6 users on 7.1.1 started receiving OTA updates (should I call them down-dates?) which pushed their phone back to a previous build of Android Nougat, problems started appearing. Users who installed the “update” began to report app instability issues and frequent crashing.

Here’s what Google had to say about this:

There was a recent OTA update for Android 7.0 that is causing confusion for some Nexus 6 users. For those of you that want to guarantee future OTA updates, you will need to get back on the 7.0 supported track. If you are experiencing issues after accepting the 7.0 update, please factory reset your device to help resolve any problems.

For any Nexus 6 users that want to continue flashing/sideloading future builds, you can stay on 7.1.1 and continue to do so.

It looks like the solution to the instability issues is to wipe your phone. This means that not only are Nexus 6 users forced to downgrade their Android version, but they also have to completely wipe their phone for it to be usable again.

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Google’s Android 7.1.1 Nougat update for the Nexus 6 was riddled with problems. At first, the release was delayed, then there were bugs on the first build and a subsequent build broke Android Pay for the Nexus 6.

Maybe Google finally said screw it and began rolling all their devices back to Android 7.0 Nougat. Either way, Nexus 6 users must be rather disappointed with this latest update especially considering this is the last official Android version the Nexus 6 is getting.