[Updated] Google starts investigating Bluetooth issues plaguing new Pixel 2 smartphones
Update (April 06):
The April security patch carries Bluetooth improvements. More information here.
Update (February 24):
Google says the updates pushed over last few months may have resolved Bluetooth issues for some, and also that the company is actively working to improve Bluetooth functionality. Google employee Orrin recently updated that
There have been a number of bluetooth specific updates that have rolled out over the last few months during the monthly security and 8.1 updates. Hopefully that resolved the problems for many of you. This also remains a big priority for the team who is constantly working on improving bluetooth functionality
Furthermore, those of you still facing Bluetooth issues are suggested to post on the relevant thread (here), as it’s being actively tabbed by the company.
If you are still experiencing bluetooth issues, please post your specific experience here. We’ll keep an eye on these reports, and continue giving feedback to the product teams
Update (December 07):
Google has started rolling out Android 8.1 Oreo, which claims to improve the Bluetooth connectivity with Android Auto. Google employee Orrin took to the official Pixel User community to break the news. More info here
Original story below:
Right after the launch of Android Oreo, Bluetooth troubles encountered on first gen Pixel phones was one of the major issues that caught heat. The problem – which was quite widespread – was not only quickly acknowledged (August 23), but actively investigated by Google as well.
And finally, on October 7, Google called the Bluetooth glitch partially fixed, with some fixes incorporated in the October security update, and others in queue.
Sadly, the problem didn’t limit itself to the first gen Pixel phones, as Pixel 2 users are also reporting the same problem. Recently, we came across some threads on the official Pixel User Community as well as Reddit and XDA, where Pixel 2 XL users facing Bluetooth issues have been chiming in about voice-input failures, and audio drops while streaming music through their device using Bluetooth.
Specifically, what’s being reported is that audio plays fine on phone, but streams intermittently – or fails completely, in some cases – when connected to devices (mostly car speakers) through Bluetooth. On the other hand, voice-inputs are a complete no go, as Assistant fails to hear the voice when the handset is on a Bluetooth connection. For example, if Assistant is asked to make a call in this setup, the command does not even register.
Not only this, there are stray reports about Pixel 2 devices completely dropping Bluetooth pairing as well. So clearly, different users are facing different issues, but there’s a common link, and that’s Bluetooth.
With more user complaints pouring in, Google has finally started investigating the issue, as they are asking users for bug reports. Here’s what Google employee Orrin, who is also the Community Manager at Pixel User Community, said today:
As Oreo update triggered Bluetooth issues on first gen Pixel devices, so it shouldn’t be much of a surprise that the same bug is also affecting Pixel 2 phones, as they too run Android 8.0.
While some may say that it’s just a matter of time the issue gets fixed as the partial solution that was rolled out to first-gen Pixels as part of the October Security update hasn’t reached the Pixel 2 and 2 XL (because they are yet to receive their first security update), we doubt that’s the case, given that Google has just started investigating the problem.
So, it seems more likely that Bluetooth issues on Pixel 2 will require additional work at Google’s end.
Officially, a Google spokesperson recently told Forbes they are aware of the Bluetooth issues affecting new Pixel 2 phones, and revealed that these devices will start receiving fixes next month onwards. Here’s what the company exactly said:
From what Google said, it looks like the security update will not completely eradicate, but only partially fix these issues on Pixel 2 and 2 XL (as is the case with first-gen Pixels currently). In case, you have been facing these Bluletooth-related issues on your Pixel 2 phone, sadly, there are still a few weeks before a fix (even if partial) arrives.