Following the device’s launch date on July 28th, the Google Pixel 6a received its first security update. This patch brought the system from the April 5th update, which is what the phone ships with, to the June update. However, an option to enroll 6a devices in the Android Beta Program was unavailable at launch, leaving some to wonder if 6a owners would have to wait until the final public release to get a taste of Android 13.
However, the situation changed yesterday as the 6a suddenly appeared as an eligible device to receive Android 13 Beta 4.1, which other enrolled Pixel phones received a week ago. This makes Beta 4.1 the first beta build available for the Pixel 6a, which is technically supposed to apply the July security patch, unlike the June version that the firmware states it applies.
According to 9to5Google, the final public build of Android 13 is expected to launch in September, based on notes found in the Android 13 Security Release Notes. This note mentions the existence of a 2022-09-01 security patch level, suggesting that as the date the final version will release. However, this is not set in stone. If that is the case, this means Pixel 6a users who choose to upgrade to the Android 13 beta now will have a month’s worth of experience with the build before it’s released to the masses.
This Android Security Release Notes contains details of security vulnerabilities affecting Android devices which are addressed as part of Android 13. Android 13 devices with a security patch level of 2022-09-01 or later are protected against these issues (Android 13, as released on AOSP, will have a default security patch level of 2022-09-01).Android 13 Security Release Notes
For Pixel 6a users interested in trying out Android 13 now instead of waiting until September, simply sign up for the Android Beta Program and opt in. You can then apply the update by going to Settings > System > System updates, and it should then roll out to your device via OTA (over-the-air) to join the rest of the eligible Pixel devices that are enrolled in the program (Pixel 4, 4a, 5, 5a, 6, and 6 Pro series).