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Pixel Launcher on Pixel 3 and 3a crashing after December security patch for some users

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Google released the December security patch for its Pixel range yesterday while notoriously skipping its newest Pixel 4 duo. Some of the older Pixel 3 and 3a units running the Pixel Launcher have been rendered unresponsive after installing this latest patch. The launcher is repeatedly crashing for the affected users, leaving many with no choice but to hard reset their devices.

It appears to be a widespread issue as Reddit is packed with threads reporting the frequent crashes and discussing a few possible solutions. Our own Zach, whose Pixel 3a XL malfunctioned after the update, wasn’t spared either. Right now, the crashes seem isolated to those using either the Pixel 3 or 3a models running Pixel 4’s launcher with Android 10’s gesture navigation enabled. Folks using Pie’s two-button or the legacy three-button navigation on the same device and launcher setup didn’t face such behavior, though switching to the new gestures did bring the crashes back.

Many resorted to factory resetting their affected devices since the constantly appearing pop-up prevented them from navigating through the OS for a possible alternate fix. For some of the Redditors, uninstalling the launcher’s updates fixed the issue, saving them from having to wipe out their phones entirely. Tapping App info on the pop-up message will take you to the launcher’s settings; from there, you can click on the three-dot menu to uninstall updates. You’ll need to scurry through these steps as the pop-up will reappear in no time, though it’s still doable.

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