January 2022 Android security update now available for Pixel 6 series
Google has had a bit of trouble with software updates on the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro recently. The December 2021 security update (which also doubled as a Pixel Feature Drop on Google’s phones) never fully rolled out to the Pixel 6 series, after many people experienced software bugs after updating, and Google promised a fixed version would arrive sometime in late January. Thankfully, that update has now arrived.
Google published new OTA files and factory images for the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro on Friday, with the build numbers “SQ1D.220105.007” and “SQ1D.220105.007,” respectively. This update finally brings the January security patch to both phones for the first time, and includes everything from the December update (including some Pixel-specific new features), but hopefully with fewer bugs.
The January security update includes a system-level fix for the bug that allowed Microsoft Teams to break emergency calling, known as CVE-2021-39659. Microsoft already rolled out a fix for Teams, but this fix prevents any other applications from causing the same problem. It also patches a loophole in Android 12 that allowed third-party applications with shell access to change the colors and dimensions of certain system elements, which in turn permitted some system customization without root access or other device modifications. Finally, there’s the usual mix of security fixes for the Android operating system and various low-level driver components. The full Android Security Update Bulletin is available on the official Android site, if you want to read through all the changes.
If you don’t want to wait for Google to push the update to you, you can manually flash it to your device using either the OTA files (if you’re on the previous update already) or the factory images (if you’re behind on updates, or want to switch back to the stock ROM).