Tuesday , June 5 2018

PSA: Installing the Android 8.1 update on the Pixel C is wiping devices – but Google has fixed it (sort of)

The Pixel C is still a fairly well regarded tablet, though it’s getting on in age. The Pixel C is still receiving Android updates but it seems that the latest update broke it, or at least wiped it for a number of users.

According to users on reddit, the Google Product Forums and at least one Ausdroid reader the Android 8.1 OTA update has factory reset their devices wiping all of their data. The news isn’t great for Google who has been experiencing multiple issues with the update – including for Pixel 2 users who found their update was older than the version installed on their phones.

Still, it seems Google has fixed it – sort of. It appears that it does indeed wipe the device, but Google’s ‘solution’ is that if you reset the device you can choose to restore from your latest backup – that’s not really a ‘fix’. The full statement made by Google Product Forums Community Manager Orrin says:

Hey All,

We’ve fixed the issue that caused this. Resetting your device will let you restore a backup, if your automatic backup feature was on. For instructions for resetting your device, please see this article.

We apologize for the inconvenience.

This to me isn’t really a ‘Fix’ at all, more a workaround. There’s no word yet on whether this has now been fixed, but there are more reports being added to the Google Product Forums page as we speak. If you own a Pixel C, head over and add your displeasure – in a constructive way – so that Google is aware of this issue.

Source: Google Product Forums.
Thanks: DawnStarAU.

Daniel Tyson   Editor

Dan is a die-hard Android fan. Some might even call him a lunatic. He's been an Android user since Android was a thing, and if there's a phone that's run Android, chances are he owns it (his Nexus collection is second-to-none) or has used it.

Dan's dedication to Ausdroid is without question, and he has represented us at some of the biggest international events in our industry including Google I/O, Mobile World Congress, CES and IFA.


  1. I still haven’t seen the OTA at all, so maybe they’ve pulled it?

  2. Well it’s a good thing that those on DP2 (such as myself) haven’t received the final build yet.

  3. That’s an uncharitable reading of Google’s comments methinks. To me it reads: 1 we’ve fixed the problem, 2 here’s what to do if you’ve been affected (before the fix presumably – fingers crossed).

    Nothing is going undo the wipe for affected devices.

    • As a user affected by the reset I think it’s a charitable reading. I’d have used a lot more swear words.

      • I agree that Google could’ve worded their comment better but I agree with Greg as to the intent of the comment (we fixed what was causing this but here’s what to do if you were affected).

    • I was affected too. Google’s comments gloss right over the fact that the bug wiped ALL internal storage. Suggesting the restore from backup isn’t a fix or workaround – that would imply the backup could restore everything lost.

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