Google is just days away from removing older smartphone users’ access to some of its most popular services.
From September 27, a small number of Android devices will lose access to Google Maps, YouTube, and Gmail, according to Google. Millions of individuals around the world will be shut out of the software unless they update their phones or quickly purchase a new phone. The deadline was mentioned in a brief blog post on Google’s website.
The tech titan said it plans to block users from signing in with their Google Account on devices using Android 2.3. The ageing version of Google’s operating system launched in December 2010. Google said it’s withdrawing support for the platform “as part of our going efforts to keep our users safe”. The California search giant regularly drops support for ageing versions of the Android software as it releases new ones. That’s because older operating systems are significantly more prone to flaws and hackers.
Android 11 is the most recent version, therefore 2.3 is years behind the software seen on today’s Android smartphones. In February 17, Google disabled Google Pay contactless payments on handsets running Android 2.3.
Later this month, anyone using a device running the software will find that they’re unable to log in to their Google account. They’ll get a username and password error, even if they’ve entered the correct credentials. The similar problem will occur if you try to add a Google Calendar or Gmail account to the device’s settings menu. YouTube, Google Play Store, Google Maps, Gmail, Google Calendar, and other popular Google apps will also stop working.
You’ll need to update your smartphone to Android 3.0 to continue using these apps. You can do so by going to System > Advanced > System Update in your device’s settings. However, because not all devices running Android 2.3 will be able to upgrade, some users will be permanently kept out. Smartphones that remain 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.
If you’re unable to upgrade your device, you can always work around the issue by logging into services like YouTube via your browser.