Update 1 (January 23, 2024)

10.40 am (IST): A Google spokesperson has acknowledged the problem, stating that the team is aware and working on a solution. But there’s no word on when the fix will arrive, so the best you can do is avoid installing the new update if you haven’t already.

We’re aware of this issue and are looking into it.

Original article follows:

Just when Pixel users thought they’d escaped the clutches of the dreaded internal storage bug, reports are surfacing of a resurgence after the recent January Google Play System update. Following its initial appearance in October 2023, the glitch caused havoc, rendering local files inaccessible and trapping devices in a nightmarish bootloop. Though Google patched the issue through a software update, it seems history may be repeating itself.

Reports on Reddit and the Pixel community forum paint a chilling picture. Users across various Pixel models are encountering the same unsettling symptoms as before: files vanishing into thin air, apps refusing to launch, and the ever-present threat of the phone spontaneously rebooting into an agonizing loop.

“All of sudden, I am Unable to access camera, not able to save screenshot ,unable to install new apps, unable to receive media messages in WhatsApp, in the files app, everything except apps is displayed as 0 and internal storage is less than 3.9 gb,” lamented one user in the Pixel community. “I received the January 5th Security Update a while back and not had any problems, but today I received the January 1st Google Play System Update and it has wreaked havoc on my Pixel 7a,” added another frustrated user on another thread.


The January Google Play System update started rolling out last week but we don’t have it yet on our Pixel units, which could explain why the matter hasn’t blown up. However, the growing number of reports on Reddit (1,2) suggests more Pixel owners are beginning to experience problems with internal storage bug after this update. The bug was linked to having multiple profiles back when it first surfaced, something some of those affected have pointed out as well.

Adding fuel to the fire is the apparent absence of any official response from Google. Despite the growing chorus of frustrated users, the tech giant remains mum on the issue. This lack of communication is only intensifying anxieties, leaving Pixel owners with a difficult choice: risk the potential storage meltdown by updating, or hold off and hope for a fix.

The safest course of action for Pixel users for now is to hold off on installing the latest Play System update until the company acknowledges the issue and provides a solution. As for those affected, we’ll keep an eye and let you know when there’s an official response from Google.

Hillary Keverenge
2132 Posts

Tech has been my playground for over a decade. While the Android journey began early, it truly took flight with the revolutionary Lollipop update. Since then, it's been a parade of Android devices (with a sprinkle of iOS), culminating in a mostly happy marriage with Google's smart home ecosystem. Expect insightful articles and explorations of the ever-evolving world of Android and Google products coupled with occasional rants on the Nest smart home ecosystem.

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