Android 4.2 Deletes December, Other Bugs Reported

    November 20, 2012

Android 4.2 is the latest release of Google’s mobile OS, but the company is still calling it Jelly Bean. It’s not widely available just yet as people are still upgrading to the previous incarnation of Jelly Bean – Android 4.1. That’s a good thing too as you may want to hold off on upgrading to 4.2 until Google fixes the numerous problems plaguing the OS.

PC Magazine reports that the entire month of December is gone from the People app in Android 4.2. It’s not a “huge” problem unless you have a friend whose birthday is in December. At that point, you may want to bust out an old fashioned paper calendar and jot it down until Google fixes the issue.

The missing December may be getting the most media play, but 4.2 is proving that it could have used a bit more work before Google released it. Android Police has a great breakdown of all the bugs and issues currently affecting Android 4.2.

First up, there’s an auto-brightness bug in Google’s Nexus 7 and Nexus 10 devices after upgrading to 4.2. The bug makes it so that the screen brightness randomly readjusts itself when set to auto-brightness. The only solution is to manually set the brightness until Google can issue a fix.

Unfortunately, the rest of the bugs aren’t as “harmless” as randomly readjusting brightness levels. At last that can be addressed with other options, but Android 4.2 has some critical bugs that Google needs to take care of ASAP.

For instance, Android Police reports that Bluetooth is broken after the Android 4.2 update on the Nexus 10, Nexus 7 and Galaxy Nexus. Audio streaming via Bluetooth “works,” but it’s reportedly choppy and leads to a subpar experience. Even worse, apps that connect the device to Bluetooth enabled devices like game controllers don’t even work.

The same three devices are also randomly rebooting and experiencing major instability problems in Android 4.2. There are reports that the Nexus 7 and Nexus 10 are experiencing the worst of it with the entire system locking up and rebooting in the middle of some inane task like opening a Web page in Chrome or watching a video via YouTube. Google may want to address this issue first as consumers are unlikely to tolerate a randomly rebooting device.

Finally, it seems that Android 4.2 has led to device batteries draining faster than usual. Even worse, it seems that batteries are also charging slower than usual. The culprit appears to be Google Play services as they eat into the battery more than anything else after the update.

Google will need to get on these issues quickly before more people start buying Nexus devices for the holidays. The Nexus 7 and Nexus 10 are both generating quite a lot of interest, and the devices could be Google’s ticket to becoming a major player this holiday season. These bugs, however, could lead to a lot of returns and unhappy customers that give up on Android. Google can’t afford for that to happen so here’s hoping the folks on the Android team are working on some fixes.