Google Pixel 8a already gets a great free software upgrade

The affordable Android phone has only been on the market for a few days and it's already getting a boost

Google Pixel 8a
(Image credit: Future / Mike Lowe)
Quick Summary

The Google Pixel 8a was only released last week – but it already has an update.

Users have just got a nifty AI-powered feature, as well as some added security benefits.

One of the best things about the Android phone market is the sheer volume of different models on offer. Everything from the no expense spared to the budget friendly is available, with specs from the top end stuff trickling down to the more affordable models.

On the budget end, we recently saw the introduction of the Google Pixel 8a. That's the latest new model from the Californian company, bringing a host of their top tech into a more wallet-friendly package.

Now – just over a week after the handset was released – there's an update for the  device. That's an obscenely fast turn around, meaning users can already get their hands on some new features.

Most notably, the new update brings the Google AI-powered wallpaper generator to the handset. That allows users to create a unique wallpaper from a text-based prompt, putting their own stamp of personality on the new handset.

That's a great feature to have. The Pixel 8a is already a remarkably similar device to the flagship Google Pixel 8 Pro. Users will find the same Tensor G3 processor inside, while the display has also been updated to the Actua technology.

Adding this takes that one step further. The suite of AI-powered features include things like Magic Editor, Best Take and Audio Magic Eraser.

It's not just the wallpaper generator which users get access too, either. The update brings the May 2024 Android security patch to the device. That should help to ensure the handsets are kept as secure as possible.

That's something which users should get used to. The Pixel 8a enjoys the same seven-year security and feature update promise as the other Google Pixel 8 models, which will keep users in new goodies for a while.

If you're keen to get this on your device, you'll need to head into the Settings menu, followed by System and Software Update. The new file should be there to download onto your handset. Don't panic if you don't see it right away, either – these updates often roll out in batches to different users, so you may just have to be patient.

Sam Cross
Staff Writer

Online news writer at, Sam has five years of experience in online and print journalism, with work featured in publications like Metro and Last Word on Sports. After years writing about music and football, Sam now turns his hand to bringing you news about new phones, smart home products, smart watches, laptops and TVs. Sam is a longtime fan and user of Apple products, including iPhones, MacBooks and Apple Watches.He’s also T3’s resident football expert, bringing you everything you need to know about the big games, including how to watch them. In his spare time, Sam is a keen guitarist, watch lover and (very) amateur golfer.