Old Android phones around the world are losing access to Maps, YouTube, Gmail, and other popular Google apps today.
Users of a ten-year-old version of the Android operating system are being pushed out of the US search giant’s ecosystem. Here’s how to update your device to make sure you avoid the choppy water.
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How to update your Android smartphone
To check if your Android device will be affected, go to your gadget’s settings app. Tap Advanced System> System Update.
Check your “Android version”. If it’s above Android 2.3, then you’re safe.
Chances are, your device won’t be affected by the lockup, unless you’ve been neglecting Android software updates for the past decade or so.
Most people have their mobile device to automatically download updates as soon as they are released.
This means that you are more likely than not to be using a newer version of Android that is not affected by closing the Google app.
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Which Android phones will be blocked in Google apps?
Google announced the shutdown of the app in a short article on its website.
The tech titan said it plans to block users from signing in with their Google accounts on devices running Android 2.3.
The aging version of Google’s operating system was released in December 2010.
The ban goes into effect on September 27.
Unless users update their phones, they will be permanently blocked from software on that mobile.
The problem is that some old mobiles cannot update to something newer than Android 2.3.
Smartphones that get stuck with Android 2.3 include Sony Xperia Advance, Lenovo K800, Sony Xperia Go, Vodafone Smart II, Samsung Galaxy S2, Sony Xperia P, LG Spectrum, Sony Xperia S, LG Prada 3.0, HTC Velocity, HTC Evo 4G, Motorola Fire and Motorola XT532.
Google app shutdown explained
Google said it was withdrawing support for the platform “as part of our ongoing efforts to keep our users safe.”
The California search giant regularly drops support for aging versions of Android software as it releases new ones.
This is because older versions of operating systems are much more vulnerable to bugs and hackers.
The latest version of Android is Android 11, which is 2.3 miles behind the software running on most Android smartphones today.
In February 2017, Google suspended contactless payments from Google Pay on phones running Android 2.3.
Starting September 27, anyone using a device running the software will find that they will not be able to sign in to their Google Account.
They will receive a username and password error even though they have logged in the correct credentials.
Trying to add a Google Calendar or Gmail account to the device settings menu will result in the same error.
Other popular Google apps will also stop working, including YouTube, Google Play Store, Google Maps, Gmail, Google Calendar, etc.
To continue using these apps, you need to upgrade your smartphone to Android 3.0 or later.
If you are unable to upgrade your device, you can still work around the problem by signing in to services like YouTube through your browser.
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In other news, every grave and memorial in England’s 19,000 cemeteries is mapped as part of a new project called “Google Maps for Graves”.
TikTok had to ban a dangerous viral “milk crate challenge”.
WhatsApp is working on a feature that could see your messages disappear after 90 days.
And Twitter is due to make changes to its app redesign after users complained of headaches and migraines.
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