After nearly three months of silence, Google’s finally spoken. The missing Nexus 7 Android 5.0 Lollipop updates for the cellular versions of the Nexus 7 2012 and Nexus 7 2013 will start rolling out soon and the two models will be getting bumped from Android 4.4 KitKat to Android 5.0.2 Lollipop, Google’s newest update.
In November, Google started rolling out its Android 5.0 Lollipop update for Nexus smartphones and tablets. The company’s initial roll out hit the Nexus 5, Nexus 4, Nexus 7 2012 Wi-Fi, Nexus 7 2013 Wi-Fi, and Nexus 10. The company held off on Android 5.0 Lollipop updates for the cellular versions of the Nexus 7.
Weeks later, Google started pushing out bug fix updates for Android 5.0 Lollipop problems. First it was Android 5.0.1 Lollipop for the Nexus 5, Nexus 4, Nexus 6, Nexus 9, Nexus 10, and Nexus 7 2013 Wi-Fi. A few days later, Google pushed out Android 5.0.2 Lollipop for the Nexus 7 2012 Wi-Fi. In the weeks since, we’ve seen Android 5.0.2 Lollipop push out to the Nexus 10 and Nexus 7 2013 Wi-Fi. Soon, those Android 5.0.2 Lollipop updates will get some company.
The cellular versions of the Nexus 7 are now set to get Android 5.0 Lollipop. Today, Google posted Android 5.0.2 Lollipop factory images for both the Nexus 7 2012 and Nexus 7 2013, a sign that their Android 5.0.2 Lollipop OTAs are close. Google’s Over-the-Air updates typically start pushing out a few hours, or days, after the arrival of factory images so we’re extremely close to a release.
Those who have an unlocked bootloader and ADB set up can download the factory images and install the Android 5.0.2 Lollipop update right now though only veteran Nexus 7 users are advised to proceed. Those who aren’t familiar with the manual installation process should wait for the OTA roll out to begin. It should arrive soon.
Once the OTAs do start rolling out, it should take about a week or so for the updates to complete. Google slow rolls its updates so that it can catch potential issues with the software. So while some Nexus 7 variants will get the update on day one, others will have to wait a week or more for the Android 5.0.2 Lollipop update to arrive.
This is obviously a huge development for owners of the cellular Nexus 7 who have been waiting in the dark since November for their upgrade to Android 5.0 Lollipop. The update for these devices is expected to be similar to the Android 5.0 Lollipop updates that pushed out for Google’s other Nexus smartphones and tablets which means a healthy dose of new features and bug fixes.
Once these updates roll out, Google will have finally bumped all of its Nexus devices up to its new operating system though some Nexus devices like the Nexus 6, Nexus 5 and Nexus 4 remain on Android 5.0.1 Lollipop. It’s still not clear if any of these devices will be making the move to Android 5.0.2 or if they will remain on Android 5.0.1. Google hasn’t confirmed either way.
Nexus 7 users will want to proceed with caution. Android 5.0.1 Lollipop and Android 5.0.2 Lollipop problems have been popping up over the past couple of weeks. Nexus 7 2012 users in particular have been complaining about a drop in performance after getting Android 5.0.2 Lollipop on board the aging former flagship.
Android 5.0.2 Lollipop problems range from typical complaints about battery life and Wi-Fi to massive issues with performance. Some Nexus 7 users claim that Android 5.0.2 made their Nexus 7 unusable.
It’s not clear what’s next for Google. The company isn’t known for rolling out tons of bug fix updates instead relying on a few throughout the year ahead of a major upgrade. Rumors have pointed to the arrival of an Android 5.1 update with bug fixes and enhancements but those rumors have died down in recent weeks.
For now, Nexus users must contend with Android 5.0.1 Lollipop and Android 5.0.2 Lollipop, something owners of the cellular Nexus 7 will probably be able to deal with after a three month wait for Android 5.0.