Common Google Pixel 6a problems and how to fix them

Google’s Pixel 6a has been on the shelf for a few weeks now and has managed to garner rave reviews for the value it offers. However, this is still a phone like any other, which means there are plenty of issues in the first few days after launch.

We’ve been tracking down the most prevalent pain points that Pixel 6a users have encountered so far. If you have Google’s latest mid-ranger in your pocket and are having issues, here are some suggestions on how to fix them.

Pixel 6a fingerprint unlock

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Fingerprint sensor issues

One of the most common The issues that Pixel 6a buyers have been complaining about have to do with its in-display fingerprint sensor. For some users, the fingerprint sensor has been unusually slow or simply not recognizing their registered fingerprint to unlock the device.

A more serious problem that Pixel 6a owners have reported lately is that the device also unlocks with someone else’s unregistered fingerprints. We haven’t been able to replicate it on the Pixel 6a units used by three members of the Digital Trends team, but the accuracy is definitely hit or miss. Sometimes it takes a good couple of seconds to unlock the device and sometimes it just refuses to identify the registered fingerprint.

So far, Google hasn’t officially acknowledged the issue and doesn’t say whether it will be fixed via a software update, in the same way that it resolved a similar issue on the Pixel 6 and its Pro variant. However, users have come up with some tricks to fix it. solve the problem.

If you’re having trouble with slow or failed fingerprint recognition on your Pixel 6a, try a new registration process or add a new fingerprint of the same digit. To do so, you must delete the existing fingerprint and re-register. For that, just follow this path:

Step 1: Open the Settings app on your Pixel 6a and tap the Security option.

Step 2: About him Security page, scroll down and select the option that says Fingerprint Unlock.

Step 3: Once you hit the Fingerprint Unlock option, you will see a prompt to enter the device PIN.

Step 4: After entering the PIN and reaching the next page, touch the add fingerprint option to register another fingerprint. If you want to register a new impression, touch the button Compartment next to the original fingerprint labeled “Finger 1” by default.

This may sound strange, but it works. At Digital Trends, we’ve seen some improvements following this approach.

Android 13 logo on a Google Pixel 6a.

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The conundrum of the Android 13 update

Some users are also reporting that the Android 13 stable update, which started rolling out in August, also improved the fingerprint sensor experience. The speed hasn’t increased drastically, but the cases where the sensor doesn’t recognize registered fingerprints have definitely toned down.

However, speaking of updates, some users are noticing that instead of seeing the Android 13 update notification, they get a prompt to download the Android 12 update even though the phone is already running the latest version. Of course, don’t hit the install button when you encounter this unexplained error after performing a system update check.

But there is a trick to get Android 13 stable update on your Pixel 6a in a few minutes. To do so, just follow these steps:

Step 1: Go to the Android beta sign up page in your phone’s web browser.

Step 2: On the Android Beta for Pixel page, tap the Devices at the top and scroll down to see your device(s) in a box.

Step 3: touch the blue opt in below the name and image of your eligible Pixel phone.

Step 4: Now, go to the system update page by following this path: Settings > System > Upgrade system > Search for updates.

Step 5: You should now see an update available for Android 13. Tap the Download and install button.

Step 6: Once the update has been installed, head over to the Android Beta page linked above and tap the Opt out button below your phone’s name. Your phone is now on the stable version of Android 13.

Adaptive battery on the Pixel 6a

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Heating and battery discharge

Some users on Reddit have shared that the Pixel 6a it gets hot even with regular use and the battery is also discharging at a faster rate than usual. We did notice that the Pixel 6a gets hot during casual use in our full review, but that hasn’t been the case for everyone at Digital Trends with the 6a. Regarding the battery issue, idle battery consumption increased after installing the Android 13 update. We’ve reached out to Google support for an explanation and will update this section if we hear back.

For now, it seems like a lot of system and app level optimizations are taking place in the background after installing the new OS update. Unless your phone is getting hot, it’s worth waiting a few days for a corrective update to arrive or for Google to suggest a fix. In the meantime, if the battery drain is too severe, try restricting access and background activity for apps you rarely use.

If you are experiencing severe battery drain, try enabling the adaptive battery system by following these steps:

Step 1: On your Pixel 6a, open the Settings app and tap the Drums option.

Step 2: About him Drums page, select adaptive preferences.

Step 3: Upon landing on the adaptive preferences page, flip the switch that says adaptive battery. This should reduce idle battery drain, but note that this does not necessarily solve the heating issue.

common google pixel 6a problems how to fix touch sensitivity

Nadeem Sarwar/Digital Trends

Touch screen issues

if you face Touchscreen issues on the Pixel 6a, especially after installing the Android 13 update, you’re not alone. For some users, applying a screen saver was the source of the problem. If you’re looking for a less frustrating experience but don’t necessarily want to throw away the protection of a screen saver, try increasing the screen’s sensitivity. This is how you can do it:

Step 1: Open the Settings app on your phone and tap Display.

Step 2: About him Display settings page, scroll down to find the option that says Increase touch sensitivity under the Other screen controls header.

Step 3: Flip the switch next to the Increase touch sensitivity option to notice a visible improvement.

Reset options on Pixel 6a

Nadeem Sarwar/Digital Trends

connectivity issues

There are some Pixel 6a user complaints on Reddit detailing issues with cellular connectivity and faulty Wi-Fi network switching. Again, the Google support forum does not have any concrete solutions for the mentioned problem, but it is worth resetting the wireless connectivity settings. This is how you can achieve it in a jiffy:

Step 1: On your Pixel 6a, open the Settings app and scroll down to find the System option.

Step 2: About him System page, you will see reboot options. Tap on it and go to the next page.

Step 3: Tap the option at the top that says Reset Wi-Fi, mobile and Bluetooth. Once you do that, you will land on the next page, where you need to tap on the pill shape reset settings button.

Android phone game board


A vanishing game panel

With Android 12, Google introduced a neat Game Dashboard tool. It offers features like screenshot of gaming session, live streaming to YouTube, checking FPS numbers, and notification minimization, among others. In early August, Google began shipping the Game Dashboard to Play Services, and in doing so, finally brought it to the Pixel 6a.

However, the release of a stable Android 13 update for Pixel phones a few days later appears to have removed the Game Dashboard. Google says that users need version 22.30 of Play Services to access the Game Dashboard. If you are concerned about the feature missing, you should check and update to the latest version of Play Services. This is how you can do it:

Step 1: Open the Settings app on your Pixel 6a.

Step 2: in the main Settings page, find the Applications option and tap on it to land on the app center.

Step 3: About him Applications page, tap on the See all apps option.

Google Play Services

Nadeem Sarwar/Digital Trends

Step 4: Scroll down and tap on Google Play Services.

Step 5: You will now land on the app information page. Scroll down and tap on Details of the application. This will take you to the Play Store listing, where a green pill-shaped button will tell you if an update is available.

Step 6: If you see a new version available, go ahead and install it.

However, if an update is not available, try clearing the cache of Google Play Services and the Play Store. To clear the Play Services cache on your Pixel 6a, follow this path: Settings > Applications > See all apps > Google Play Services > Storage and cache > clear cache.

Clear data from Google Plkay Store

Nadeem Sarwar/Digital Trends

Step 7: Similarly, you can also try clearing cached data for the main Play Store app to make way for updated builds of Google services. You can do it by following this path: Settings > Applications > See all apps > google play store > Storage and cache > clear cache.

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