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November 2019 Android security update now available for Pixel phones, but not the original Pixel

Teaser
The November 2019 security updates for Android are now available for the Pixel 2, Pixel 2 XL, Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL, Pixel 3a, Pixel 3a XL, Pixel 4, Pixel 4 XL, and the Essential Phone. Noticeably absent from this list are the original Pixel and Pixel XL, which are no longer supported by Google. This security update includes several feature improvements, including at least part of the promised fix for the Pixel 4's 90 Hz display woes.
Sam Medley,
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It’s a new month, which means new security updates for Android… unless you have an original Pixel or Pixel XL

Google is rolling out the November 2019 security updates for the Pixel 2, Pixel 2 XL, Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL, Pixel 3a, Pixel 3a XL, Pixel 4, Pixel 4 XL, and the Essential Phone. Notably absent is the Pixel and Pixel XL, which ended their monthly security patch schedule with last month’s update. 

There are a handful of feature improvements in this update, including some tweaks that should make the Google Assistant Hotword feature of the Pixel 2 and Pixel 3 families better, improvements for the Pixel 3’s bottom speaker quality, and some stability improvements.

One update that sticks out is for the Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL. Labelled “Smooth Display improvements,” this may be a part of the patch Google discussed concerning the controversial 90 Hz display used in the Pixel 4 family of handsets. Eagle-eyed users noticed that the Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL would downclock the refresh rate of their displays to 60 Hz (or even 30 Hz) when certain apps were open. Similarly, others cried foul upon discovering the display would drop to 60 Hz at brightness levels of 75% or less

After being called out, Google promised a fix that would allow users to force 90 Hz mode without diving into developer settings. It looks like this security update includes at least part of that fix.

Essential also began pushing the security update to the PH-1 handsets still in use. Say what you will about the Essential Phone, but the company’s dedication to software updates this long after launch is admirable.

If you own a Pixel device or Essential Phone, have you received the latest software update? If you have a Pixel 4, are you able to force 90 Hz mode? Let us know in the comments below.

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Sam Medley
Sam Medley - Senior Tech Writer - 1125 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2016
I've been a computer geek my entire life. After graduating college with a degree in Mathematics, I worked in finance and banking a few years before taking a job as a database administrator. I started working with Notebookcheck in October of 2016 and have enjoyed writing news and reviews. I've also written for other outlets including UltrabookReview and GeeksWorldWide, focusing on consumer guidance and video gaming. My areas of interest include the business side of technology, retro gaming, Linux, and innovative gadgets. When I'm not writing on electronics or tinkering with a device, I'm either outside with my family, enjoying a decade-old video game, or playing drums or piano.
contact me via: @samuel_medley
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2019 11 > November 2019 Android security update now available for Pixel phones, but not the original Pixel
Sam Medley, 2019-11- 4 (Update: 2019-11- 4)