Google November update is expected to arrive on Pixel phones very soon, providing some relief to a critical bug affecting people with multiple user profiles on their devices. The update – spotted by 9to5Google – contains a fix for an issue “sometimes causing out of space or a reboot loop to appear on devices with multiple users enabled”, which was affecting Pixel 6 phones and later running Android 14. The update will start arriving on Pixel phones starting today, and the rollout will continue over the next week.
This particular bug it was nasty. In some cases, users were unable to access their media storage, while others were completely locked out of their phone during a boot cycle requiring a factory reset of the device. For people having the first problem, it looks like this update should restore access to the device’s media. The news is mixed for people whose phone is stuck in a reboot cycle. An update last week mentioned that the fix Google was working on “may not allow data recovery for devices that reboot repeatedly.” You will be able to use your phone again, but I hope you backed up your data!
The bug affected Pixel phones with multiple user profiles, which Google said include child users, guests, and restricted profiles. It made not assign people using multiple Google accounts as the primary user on a device – which is a good thing because my Pixel 8 review units are connected to both my work and personal Gmail account. It therefore does not seem that the problem is widespread, but it was a real pain for those involved.
Since last week, Google has advised anyone with a Pixel phone running Android 14 not to create or sign in to another user profile. With today’s update, you can probably do this safely now: just back up your data before doing so. In case.