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Older Pixel phones are having serious camera issues, according to owners

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Recent one-star Play Store reviews mention camera failures in older Pixel phones

Google’s Pixel 2
The issue appears to affect the Pixel 2 series, but may be spreading to newer phones.
Photo by James Bareham / The Verge

Some owners of previous-generation Pixel phones are having serious trouble with their cameras. Android Police has noticed a recent increase in one-star Play Store reviews for the camera app used by the Pixel, with frustrated owners saying the camera often crashes upon opening or no longer works at all. A thread in Google’s Pixel support forum features similar complaints. The Pixel 2 XL seems to be cited most often for experiencing the problem, but some posters say they’re having trouble with devices as recent as the 3 or 4A.

It’s not an entirely new problem. Android Police has been tracking camera issues that have plagued Pixel 2 phones primarily over the last year, and it notes more devices seem to be affected now. Owners say that Google’s suggested fixes don’t remedy the problem and that they experience the same problem when using third-party camera apps. The Pixel 2 series recently got its last security update, but there’s no logical reason why the camera should stop functioning as a result.

It’s an unfortunate bug, especially considering that many folks chose a Pixel phone because of its high-quality camera. While Pixel image quality has fallen behind other flagship competition recently, budget devices like the 4A and 4A 5G offer some of the best cameras in their class. But the best camera is the one that keeps functioning when you need it, so we hope to see Google address these user concerns. We’ve reached out to Google asking for confirmation of the issue and if a fix is on the way and will update this article with any information we get.