[Update: Pixel 7 too] Pixel 6 & 6a pocket-dialing or opening random apps when in pocket intensifies Pocket mode requests (workaround inside)
New updates are being added at the bottom of this story…….
Original story (published on September 14, 2022) follows:
While every Android version brings plenty of new features and changes, the initial build also carries some bugs and issues. And the same is true for Google’s latest Android 13 OS.
All Pixel phones have been plagued by various issues after the Android 13 update and you can check all of them in our dedicated Android 13 bug tracker.
Having said that, a new issue has recently popped-up for some Pixel 6, 6 Pro, and 6a owners that is further deteriorating their user experience.
Pixel 6 & 6a pocket-dialing & opening random apps
As per reports doing rounds on different social media platforms (1, 2, 3, 4), Pixel 6 and 6a users are facing an issue where the smartphones are pocket-dialing or automatically opening random apps when in the pocket.
And that’s not all, these phones are also doing stuffs like automatically turning on some random quick settings such as Airplane mode, DND mode, etc., making emergency calls, and turning on flashlight when in pocket.
Moreover, a user even reported that their Pixel 6 gets unlocked by itself in the pocket and even sends a message on WhatsApp to a random contact, makes a video call or plays music.
Here are some reports for reference:
Pixel 6a with Android 13. Phone calls my wife at least once a day from my pocket. I have the emergency contact on the lock screen disabled. How is it doing this?
Additionally, what is up with the notification shade on the lock screen. If I don’t disable notifications, it allows the shade to open in my pocket and randomly push any of the quick settings. This phone does more shit in my pocket than it does out. (Source)
So my P6P does something in my pocket maybe 1/3 of time. Screen activates, emergency contact is dialled, all sorts of quick setting icons are clicked, and so forth. What can I do about it? It is extremely annoying.
I put the phone in my pocket after shutting off the screen. I’ve got a pattern to open the lock screen. (Source)
According to those affected, this problem started happening after they upgraded to Android 13, while others have experienced it on Android 12. Furthermore, some Pixel 5 users have also reported the same issue.
And given that many users are reporting this problem lately, it certainly is a serious issue that needs immediate attention from Google. But unfortunately, the company hasn’t yet acknowledged it.
However, there is a potential workaround that can help you resolve this glitch. A Redditor has suggested turning off ‘Tap to wake’ functionality. And perhaps, you can use ‘Lift to wake’ instead, until the issue gets resolved.
Pocket mode is the solution
While other OEMs such as Samsung, Xiaomi, and OnePlus provide Pocket mode that prevents accidental touches on devices when in the pocket, Google does not offer anything related.
And thus, those affected are now requesting the tech giant to add ‘Pocket mode’ to Pixel phones. Hopefully, someone at Google is listening.
Rest assured, we will keep an eye out on the latest developments regarding this issue and update the article if and when we come across anything noteworthy.
Update 1 (October 17, 2022)
15:30 pm (IST): It appears that the Pixel 7 series devices also face a similar issue where the screen stays on for about a second even after pressing the power button.
This could be the reason behind problems related to pocket-dialing or apps randomly opening after unlocking the device.
I was wondering how I ended up in apps I wasn’t in after I unlocked the Pixel 7 Pro. Turns out the screen remains on for several milliseconds after you lock it.
Note: To keep up with the latest software updates and bugs on Pixel 6 & 6a, be sure to follow our dedicated tracker.
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