Pixel 6, 6 Pro and 6a with Android 13 doesn’t support roll back to Android 12

The Android 13 stable update was released by Google a few hours back for Pixel devices, and it is currently rolling out to Pixel devices. Google has confirmed that there is no way to go back to Android 12, and Android 13 is a permanent upgrade for owners of the Pixel 6 series.

According to a statement on Google’s developer website where it hosts factory images, a bootloader upgrade prevents you from going back to Android 12 if you want to flash the update onto your Pixel 6, Pixel 6 Pro, or Pixel 6A with the manufacturer’s proprietary Tensor chip.

Keep in mind that most Android upgrades are reversible, allowing you to manually sideload the update to install an earlier version. This always necessitates a phone reset and data loss, although it is a process that is doable.

Although many users won’t typically have a problem with this, it’s still fascinating. It seems plausible to presume that this may have something to do with Google Tensor, given the devices it impacts. Any way you look at it, if you update a Pixel 6 series device to Android 13, you can’t go back.

The reason for the change, which is an unprecedented action by Google, is a new bootloader upgrade that “increments the anti-roll back version.” In general, Google has used this Android security feature for a number of years to stop attacks from older software versions from being used on devices.

Also keep in mind that if you’re in the Android 13 beta test group and want to exit accelerated updates without wiping your smartphone, now is the moment. After updating to the latest version of Android, unsubscribe from Google’s beta site. If you stay in the beta group, you’ll gain early access to Android 13 test builds as Google rolls them sometime in September.

According to Google blog post

The Android 13 update for Pixel 6, Pixel 6 Pro, and the Pixel 6a contains a bootloader update that increments the anti-roll back version. After flashing an Android 13 build on these devices you will not be able to flash older Android 12 builds.