Verizon has clarified that it will roll out security updates to its Google Pixel smartphones at the same time with the unlocked models. The announcement came after Google said that Verizon would be in charge of rolling out system updates for their Pixel smartphones.
There was some confusion last week on how software and security updates would be rolled out to Pixel smartphones from Verizon. Google originally stated that monthly security updates would come directly from them, while system updates (future versions of Android) would be “managed by Verizon for Verizon models,” the company told 9To5Google last Friday. In simpler terms, Google will still make the updates, but Verizon will be responsible for when it’s released to its customers.
The statement disappointed a lot of users who were planning on getting the Pixel and Pixel XL from Verizon as everyone thought that picking up the Google-made phone would mean they would get timely software updates. One of the major complaints about Android devices from carriers is that they push out updates weeks or even months after they've been released by Google.
Since the statement from Google from last week may have stirred some negative feedback from consumers, Verizon made it crystal clear earlier today that all updates for its Pixel smartphones will arrive the same time with Google’s unlocked phones.
“First and foremost, all operating system and security updates to the Pixel devices will happen in partnership with Google. In other words, when Google releases an update, Verizon phones will receive the same update at the same time (much like iOS updates),” a Verizon spokesperson told Ars Technica. “Verizon will not stand in the way of any major updates and users will get all updates at the same time as Google.” Google also followed up by corroborating the Verizon spokesperson’s statements.
The spokesperson also said that the Pixel and Pixel XL from Verizon will be carrier unlocked and will only have three of its own apps pre-installed, namely: Go90, My Verizon and Verizon Messages. All three Verizon apps can be uninstalled by the user as well.
This recent announcement would surely bring a lot of relief to Verizon customers. The mobile carrier has a not-so-great reputation when it comes to pushing out timely updates and selling phones with unremovable, pre-installed apps. This might actually be the first time that Verizon will be pushing out updates to its new Android phones at the same time as Google, as pointed out by Engadget.