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Google extends Nexus 5X and 6P security updates until Nov. 2018

Back when Google began separating out security patches from platform updates, it established a cadence for its Nexus line that stands true today: two years for platform updates — in other words, two major releases — and three years for security patches, rolled out monthly.

It appears that, for some reason, Google has decided to extend the security update portion of the Nexus 5X and 6P. As first spotted by Droid Life, both phones will receive security patches until November 2018, two months longer than originally planned. While the extension could be because one of Google's vendor partners — say, Qualcomm — extended its contract, it's also possible that the change is merely because Google can do it, so it is. Neither phone is expected to be upgraded to Android P when it debuts next year, so Google likely wants them to be as stable on Oreo as possible.

What are your thoughts on this change? Will it postpone an upgrade if you were thinking of it? Let us know in the comments below!

Daniel Bader was a former Android Central Editor-in-Chief and Executive Editor for iMore and Windows Central. 

37 Comments
  • A part of me wants to say that this is nice but the other part of me thinks about how Apple does it and it's hard for this to be seen as something awesome. I guess I can say that this is a start...
  • I feel the same way. When Apple supports their phone for several years it's hard to get excited over a 2 month extension. Then again, Pixel phones are the closest thing to great updates in the Android World.
  • And how does apple do it? No very well, they jettisoned features on older hardware and delivery shonky slow badly performing OS "updates' onto hardware that should have been left alone. This is the only mechanism apple have to update system apps. I prefer the android way, namely, sticking with the OS the phone shipped with, delivery of security updates that don't cripple the phones performance and system app updates via the store and is functionality updates via play services. Does this fit the agenda? Hope. Sorry about that, but I really do think Google does updates better
  • This. Apple ruins their older devices with os updates. Every single person who updates has the same complaint; their phones become unusable. Many don't even update because of this.. Google does it best, keep security up to date and don't worry about the os, as long as it's working fine.
  • This applied to iOs8 which was terrible, but almost any 64bit Apple phone or iPad once factory restored fresh works pretty good...
  • That was definitely the case for a long while, but I haven't really heard anyone with a 5S or later complain about updates screwing their phones up. I'm no engineer, but I'm guessing that the introduction of the 64-bit processor has something to do with it.
  • Have a 5s on ios 11 and while it's not the fastest it's not by any means "crippled" you need to actually do research dude
  • I don't know that it can be directly compared to Apple though. Sure, the base security updates are there, but there's a lot more in the iOS update than would be in Android. If Apple has a vulnerability or issue with Safari or the mail app, that's an OS update. On Android, it's just an app update.
  • Yeah, I get that mobile devices can't be supported forever, but now that costs are starting to break the 4-digit threshold, 2 years seems a bit on the low side.
  • Agree 100 percent. Now that people will have to pay over 1000$ for a flagship phone, they prob won't want to update phones every year or two
  • Two months? That's worth a headline? And is it 2 months or 1 month? I thought October was the month for pulling plugs on updates.
  • It was originally September 2018, now it's November. And yes, this is important news for many people.
  • It's something. Why complain?
  • What does "worth a headline" even mean? This isn't a newspaper. Running this post (which, by the way, is significant for a lot of readers on this site) doesn't take away from their ability to run other stories as well.
  • Yeah as said above now phone flagships are touching £1k, 2 years and a extra years security patches is pathetic! Everyone slates Apple and their prices but they support their handsets, Google really needs to sort this.
  • +1
  • From what I hear, it seems a big reason Apple update their older devices is to bog them down and make them so sluggish that an upgrade is necessary... All anecdotal of course lol, wouldn't know personally!
  • People say this but I think it's only true to a point. In my experience, one big update should be fine for a phone released the year before (or earlier in the year, like the SE was) and update two can also be fine too, but possibly with a performance hit. Update three and on, really can slow a device down.
  • Exactly, they can't use the "people don't keep phones more than a year or two" excuse anymore now that ppl have to pay over a 1000$ for a phone
  • I read this as meaning the Pixel 3 is going to be released late Oct or early Nov 2018 rather than the traditional late Sept/early Oct. If this is true then leaving the security update expiry at Sept would mean some people holding out for an upgrade would be left un-protected for a couple of months. This obviously makes it harder for security conscious Nexus owners to wait for the new model. Personally, as a Nexus 5X owner who feels no need to upgrade right now, I am targeting the Pixel 3 as my next and certainly appreciate the additional couple of months of updates as a buffer til I can get my hands on it.
  • sounds like they anticipate to reintroduce nexus level devices in 18'....
  • Cool. Now my bootlooped 6p will get more support. If only that issued was fixed....
  • My wife's LG 5x was out of warranty, bootlooped, LG fixed it for free. Get Google to fix it...
  • I am quite content with the 6p. Three events will drive me to replace it: needing more storage, needing more RAM, and expiration of security updates. So, whichever occurs first. I am currently constrained with the storage availability, but I am dealing with it by uninstalling some apps not used often. However, I will be adding photos and music over time and will eventually hit the wall. As for RAM, I am not sure if I have a problem or not. So, I don't think a short extension in security updates will be the deciding factor in replacing my 6p.
  • Just backup your photos online, reboot your phone before bed, and only install apps you use, don't just horde them.
    The 6p should last till November 2018 unless it dies...
  • Hoard. A horde is a lot of people.
  • I think Google should wait until the April or May to release new phones. That way their new devices could take advantage of any technology that is to be released in the new year. If they begin making their own chips they will have better control of the components like Apple does and then can extend software version updates at least one more year.
  • Seems pointless. Most of these nexus 6P's and 5X's will be bootlooping and useless and without warranty long before that date.
  • I'll take whatever I can get.
  • Can some on here explain to me why these security updates are so important, I've never seen anyone on the forum complaining of a problem because they didn't a security update
  • Then go ahead and buy a Blu phone, don't update it, and maybe...everything is fine...or...don't be a total tool...your choice...
  • They're a big deal for the same reason that seatbelts are a big deal. Sure, there's an overwhelming chance that nothing's going to happen, but in the even that something does happen, you'll be very, very glad that you had the protection.
  • Go on YouTube and search Blue Borne. If your Android device is on any security patch other than September of '17 your phone is vulnerable as is everything on it.
  • Have you ever heard of Stagefright or Blueborne? That is just 2 nasties among a handful in recent years. Just how much of your personal data is on your phone? Yeah your chances of actually being affected are proportionate to your own habits in usage but hey...you are better of off having a helmet than not.
  • Still very happy with my Nexus 6p after 16 months of being my daily driver. Glad Google extended the update period. Just in time for Santa to deliver a new phone.
  • Still don't have Oreo on my Fi 5x...
  • Lucky you - then you probably have the Sept 5 security fix, which I still don't have on 5X Oreo Fi - which btw doesn't seem to make any practical difference besides somewhat slugging down performance.