Like clockwork, Google has commenced the rollout of Android's November 2018 security update bringing with it a few improvements and critical bug fixes. It not only brings the Google Assistant shortcut to the Pixel Launcher on the Pixel 2 series, the update also fixes picture-in-picture performance, notification stability, and a specific set of Pixel-related software fixes as well. The security patch fixes include few critical and high vulnerability fixes as well. Also, Google fixes the slow wireless charging issue on the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL while using third-party charger, with the new November security patch update.
Google has published the OTA files and factory images for the November security patch on its developers' website. At the time of writing, all supported Pixel and Nexus devices have their download links live, except for the 2016 Pixel and Pixel XL devices. Therefore, it looks like the old phone users may have to wait a bit before they see the November update. The list of compatible devices for the November Android security update includes Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL, Pixel 2, Pixel 2 XL, Pixel, Pixel XL, Pixel C, Nexus 5X, and Nexus 6P.
As mentioned, the new update brings in a handful of fixes surrounding notifications, picture-in-picture mode, and Pixel-specific fixes as well. It also, as mentioned, fixed the wireless charging issue plaguing Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL users. For some reason, the company was limiting third-party Qi chargers from reaching top speeds on the Pixel 3 lineup. This essentially means that if you want to use a third-party charger you will have to be content with 5W charging speeds. However, if you buy the Rs. 6,900 Pixel Stand, the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL will be able to get wirelessly charged at 10W. This issue has now been fixed, reports Android Police.
Lastly, the November security patch also introduced the Google Assistant shortcut to Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL. Launched with the Pixel 3 series, this shortcut allows users to activate Assistant quickly. 9to5Google reports that Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL users can now squeeze Active Edge to invoke Assistant, apart from the traditional method of long pressing the Home Button. The Assistant button is now a permanent part of the search field, and the 'G' logo has also become multi-coloured, and doesn't change based on the smartphone's theme.
You can check the availability of the security update on your eligible Nexus or Pixel device by going to Settings > System updates. You can install the factory images to flash your devices with the latest update. This deletes all data on the smartphone. Therefore, you need to back up your data first.
Alternatively, you can download the OTA Zip files that help you install the update on your device via the unlocked bootloader. The OTA Zip files can be sideloaded on top of the existing software. Moreover, the devices need to run the latest Android Oreo version to receive the latest security update. It is recommended that you back up your data before beginning the installation process.