[Updated] Android P beta users reporting loss of backed up data

Update (May 28):

Google has fixed the Drive UI issue.

We are happy to inform we pushed a fix when Drive UI wasn’t showing any backups from P, so if you are using Android P beta on your device and you did the backup, it should be showing.

And here’s how they explained the restoration of backup behaviour:

Android backups have never supported restoring from one version of Android onto a device running an earlier version. Your first Android P backup will replace your old Android O backup. If you plan to roll back to Android O after running Android P, you should be aware that you will lose the ability to restore from your Android O backup.

We suggest you only run Android P beta on a device on which you’re happy to lose all device data.

If you’re already running Android P beta and your device has already backed up once, you may prefer to continue to run it through till the production release rather than roll back to O and lose your data

Update (May 14): So the problem is not as big as it seems. At-least a couple of users have confirmed the backups aren’t actually lost – they are still there, just that Google Drive isn’t showing them.

All I had to do was factory reset my phone, and when I got to the welcome screen and selected to restore a backup from the cloud, it found my Android P backup! I went through the whole process and it worked perfectly. All my app data, text messages, everything is back!

Original story follows:

It goes without saying that the entire purpose of rolling out beta version is to test as well fix all possible loopholes in a software before releasing it globally. But in cases where the beta build carries some major bugs, it become worth highlighting, so as to warn other users planning to enroll in such programs.

One such beta release pushed out a couple of days back was Android P beta, and the problem faced by Pixel/Pixel 2 users who enrolled in it is that they have lost all backed up data despite following all steps properly. The complainants have mentioned that the backup settings say the phone has been backed up while the Backups folder in Drive is empty.

Android P Beta erases all device backups from Android

Some of those who opted out of the beta program (i.e. downgraded back to Oreo) have also confirmed (1,2) the loss of their backup.

I recently opted in to the Android Beta, which was fun but enough apps are experiencing issues that I decided to opt out. Reinstalling Oreo will wipe the data from my phone, but I should be able to restore from backup. However, there’s no phone backup showing up on my google drive. According to my phone, my App data, call history, device settings, photos and videos, and SMS messages were all backed up either yesterday or today.

This same thing happened to me today. I’m using a Pixel XL and tried out the Android P Beta. I confirmed a back up was available and now when I went back to Oreo, I lost everything. VERY frustrating.

I have some problems with lose backup in my Google Pixel 2. I lose my backup when i am install android P and after downgrade to last OS Android Oreo 8.1… Now in my phone not working ALL backups, i see one message “Waiting to backup”.

With the proliferating complaints, came a statement from a Google employee (who is also the Community Manager on Pixel help forum) this morning stating the matter is being looked into.


We aren’t sure how severe the situation really is, but Google’s involvement will at least pacify the complainants. Meanwhile, those of you planning to enroll for Android P beta are suggested to wait unless there comes more clarity on the matter, or backup your data somewhere else if you still wish to enrol.

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Dr. Aparajita Sharma

A budding entrepreneur by profession, and a psychologist by education. As a founding member of PiunikaWeb, I am nurturing this firstborn with my sharp-eyed expertise and even journalistic writing when needed.