Google allowing Pixel 6, Pixel 6a, and Pixel 6 Pro users to return to Android 12

Due to a security flaw, Android 13 for the Pixel 6, 6 Pro, and 6a prevents you from reverting to Android 12. For users, nothing has changed, but Google is now giving developers a way to test their apps on Android 12 on the Pixel 6.

As we discussed previously:

The previous bootloader on the Pixel 6 series has a security flaw, and Android 13 prevents users from reinstalling the vulnerable version linked to Android 12.

For sustained app testing, developers have good reasons to switch back to Android 12 on their development Pixel 6 devices. As a result, Google today made Android 12 Developer Support images for Pixel available (through Android Police ). The goal of these builds is to deliver a system and app experience that behaves as closely as possible to Android 12 running on a normal user’s device.

Developer Support Images are system images that are based on stable, released versions of Android 12 (API level 31) and the 12L feature drop (API level 32), as well as an updated bootloader with security updates and an increased anti-rollback counter.

Google stresses that Developer Support builds are intended primarily for developers and are not intended for general use. Only the bootloader has received security updates that include security patches and an increased anti-rollback counter. There will be no OTA security updates and no other security patches. Additionally:

Although they have not yet undergone Compatibility Test Suite (CTS) approval, Developer Support builds offer a solid set of APIs for developers. Android 12 Developer Support builds might not function properly for apps that rely on CTS-approved builds or use SafetyNet APIs.

flash manually or the Android Flash Tool are both options:

As a result, installing or updating to the most recent version of Android 13 stable will cause a complete device reset that erases all user data from the device.

For the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro, Google offers Android 12 (API level 31, February 2022 security patch) and 12L feature drop (API level 32, July 2022). The Pixel 6a just receives the 12L feature reduction (API level 32, Jun 2022).

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