Google has released the January security patch for Android, which will fix known issues and optimize performance of devices.
Just last year, researchers found an Android vulnerability calledStagefright, which affected nearly all Android devices. With the bug, attackers could hijack an Android phone by simply sending an MMS. The Stagefright bug threatened more than a billion Android devices in the wild.
Google patched Stagefright, and starting August 2015 the company also started issuing security patches every month to address vulnerabilities or glitches in Android. The latest Android security patch was issued on Monday.
“We have released a security update to Nexus devices through an over-the-air (OTA) update as part of our Android Security Bulletin Monthly Release process,” says Android.
According to the changelog, the software update addresses five critical, two high and five moderate severity issues. It is likely that the update will also fix some other bugs that are not security related.
The January security patch includes Nexus devices that are running on Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow, namely the Nexus 6P, Nexus 5X, Nexus 5, Nexus 6, Nexus 7, Nexus 9 and Nexus Player. Other non-Nexus Android devices should also get software update sooner than later.
Google also shared factory firmware images for Nexus devices at the Google Developers site, which gives detailed instructions on how to flash a Nexus device with one of the firmware images.
The Mountain View-based company has not made any changes to the OS version, which means that following the software update, the Nexus devices will still be on Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow. Internet security experts recommend that even though users will not see any new features after installing the update, they should still update their device with the latest security patch to prevent hackers from attacking their devices.
In the same vein, Verizon also updated its support page for the Nexus 6 to confirm the latest software update.
“Verizon Wireless is pleased to announce a software update for your device. This software update has been tested to help optimize device performance, resolve known issues and apply the latest security patches,” says Verizon.
The Sprint support page for the Nexus 5 has also been updated to reflect the new security patch for Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow.
“Software updates may be released in stages and can take several days for delivery,” says Sprint. “If prompted that an update is available, follow the onscreen instructions to complete the installation.”
The size of the security patch is not known, but experts recommend that customers who get the update on their device should be connected to a Wi-Fi network while installing the update. The devices receiving the software update should have at least 50 percent battery charge to install the patch without hassle.