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The Google Pixel is an amazing smartphone. It’s so good that it may just be the best smartphone ever made. Yes, even the iPhone 7 Plus struggles to keep up with the Pixel. However, even the best phones are susceptible to the odd problem here and there, and the Pixel is no exception.

Google launched the Pixel Google Unveils New Pixel Phones, Chromecast Ultra, & More... Google Unveils New Pixel Phones, Chromecast Ultra, & More... Google has unveiled a host of new hardware, including new Pixel phones, the Chromecast Ultra, the Daydream View, Google Home, and Google Wifi. Read More in October 2016. Solid hardware and innovative new features — such as Google Assistant, coming to a smartphone near you soon Google Assistant Is Coming to More Smartphones Google Assistant Is Coming to More Smartphones Google is beginning to roll Google Assistant out to more smartphones. Unfortunately, the majority of Android handsets are not included in this initial rollout thanks to fragmentation. Read More — means it was well-received. Demand is currently outstripping supply, but some Pixel owners are experiencing a slight problem.

Hundreds of Pixel owners have complained on Google’s support pages about one or more of the microphones stopping working. The complaints started in October 2016, and Google launched an investigation in January 2017. Google has now confirmed the problem, and offered an explanation.

Google Explains the Microphone Issue

Brian Rakowski, who is listed simply as a “Google Employee” states that this is “a hardware issue,” meaning software updates will not fix it”. He goes on to say there are “a few known root causes, resulting in similar but different symptoms”.

Rakowski then explains that the “most common problem is a hairline crack in the solder connection on the audio codec. Based on temperature changes or the way you hold the phone, the connection may be temporarily restored and the problems may go away”.

He continues, “The other related problems are due to a faulty microphone. Normally, this shows up as a consistent failure of a single mic. This problem is even rarer, but has very similar symptoms”. All are “the result of a hardware problem, requiring replacement of the device”.

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Google Will Replace Your Broken Pixel

Phones manufactured since January shouldn’t be affected. And Google claims less than 1 percent of phones manufactured before then are affected. Regardless, Google is offering to replace affected handsets, whether purchased directly from the company or from another retailer.

To be fair to Google, hardware problems are hardly uncommon these days. Samsung had that whole thing last year with the Galaxy Note 7 exploding Why the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 Keeps Exploding Why the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 Keeps Exploding Samsung has finally figured out what was causing the Galaxy Note 7 to explode. Now it can focus on salvaging consumer confidence in the Samsung brand. Read More . And Apple has suffered through both Antennagate and Bendgate, and lived to tell the tale. So the Google Pixel will survive.

Do you own a Google Pixel? If so, how highly do you rate it? Have you experienced any issues with the microphones? Or had any other hardware problems? Do you feel Google is handling this in a reasonable manner? Please let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

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  1. Lex
    March 14, 2017 at 10:56 pm

    Now, I can understand about the cold solder joint on the audio codec chip, it makes sense. Although, this microphone problem, is a failure of the microphone. I can't see why they need to replace the whole pixel, unless of course, it's not really a microphone problem at all, they just claim it to be. Replacing a surface mount microphone is easy if you have the right tools and skills.

  2. Christian Cawley
    March 10, 2017 at 12:29 pm

    That's going to frustrate the CIA... ;)

    • Lex
      March 14, 2017 at 10:57 pm

      Never thought about it that way but that's damn funny! Well, to us it is but to them, well, that's a different story.