Feb 09 AT 2:04 PM Taylor Wimberly 51 Comments

Nexus S receives update to Android 2.3.3, adds new NFC features, random reboot bug remains

Google just announced that they have begun to push Android 2.3.3 to the Nexus S. The update is described as a small feature release that adds read and write APIs for the near field communications (NFC) chip inside the Nexus S. Other updates include new APIs for Bluetooth, graphics, media framework, and speech recognition.

Mysteriously missing from the Android 2.3.3 Version Notes is any mention of the random reboot bug that is affecting a portion of Nexus S owners. The problem was first identified last year and Google confirmed they were working on a fix, but I guess it is not ready at this time. We were told on January 28th that a fix for the reboot bug would be available within one to two weeks, but it does not appear that will happen.

If you own a Nexus S, look for the over-the-air update to hit your phone in the coming days. We will be on the look for the download link so that you can manually install the update if you do not wish to wait.

Some of the features of the Android 2.3.3 update include:

  • A comprehensive NFC reader/writer API that lets apps read and write to almost any standard NFC tag in use today.
  • Advanced Intent dispatching that gives apps more control over how/when they are launched when an NFC tag comes into range.
  • Some limited support for peer-to-peer connection with other NFC devices.

Via: Android Developer Blog

Source: Android 2.3.3 version notes

Taylor is the founder of Android and Me. He resides in Dallas and carries the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and HTC One as his daily devices. Ask him a question on Twitter or Google+ and he is likely to respond. | Ethics statement

    Most Tweeted This Week


    Not happy at all.. I wanted the random reboot fixed.. SMH


    By the way keep the pressure on them guys :)

  • http://Website Jack

    Where have they announced that they began pushing this out to the Nexus S? All I see is a platform announcement – which of course doesn’t include bug fixes for any partcular device firmware.

    When they do update the Nexus-S firmware to include 2.3.3 platform, they may include other bugfixes to the firmware as well… But, this firmware update is not announced as far as I can tell.

    • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

      I’ve had a couple reports from Nexus S owners who received the update. And the Nexus S is the only Android device with NFC support at this time.

    • http://Website Daniel

      Exactly. The rebooting bug could very well be a Nexus S—specific problem (say, a faulty driver), and that has no place in a platform release.

      • soulashell

        I had that issue with the Nexus One also. It’s not just Nexus S related.

      • http://Website godsfilth

        girlfriend is running cm7 (gingerbread) on her nexus one and has the reboot problem not as often as i on my nexus S do but she still has it

  • http://Website Jim

    Samsung Galaxy S devices are notorious for hardware problems. Don’t be surprised if it comes out that the Nexus S bugs are hardware related.

    My bet… Google will become “unreachable”. Just like they are with 2.3 on the Nexus One.

    • http://Website joe

      Don’t act all conspiratorial, its obvious that the random reboot bug is also why 2.3 isn’t out yet for the nexus one. they can’t update a perfectly good os release (2.2) to one with a major known blocker bug. When that gets fixed expect a release to N1 immanently.

      • http://Website Paul Atreides

        They can keep that buggy Gingerbread, I’m doing quite fine with Froyo. Random reboots are a gigantic fail in my opinion.

        • http://Website saucysauce

          Exactly why I’m staying at 2.1 with my Ally until the bugs are fixed in 2.2.
          It’s much better to have a device that works perfectly fine than a device with “upgraded software” that has constant issues. What sense does it make to have the latest and greatest when it doesn’t work properly?

        • http://Website Paul Atreides

          Wow voted down nine times lol. I’d like some feedback to what I said that was wrong…

  • http://Website ry

    folks with Nexus S are beta testers for us Nexus one owners :P

  • http://Website spamlucal

    I don’t think the reboot bug is a platform bug, so no reason to list it anywhere in the release notes. Also, fixed bugs are not usually there anyway.

    what they announced is a platform release, not a nexus s software update. They are completely separate things.

  • http://Website Nexus Eddie

    3 weeks with my Nexus S and still haven’t experienced a random reboot.

    • http://Website Mocha K

      Same here.

      • http://Website Greg

        Had my Nexus S for 2 weeks now, and it hasn’t randomly rebooted or crashed once.

        Still waiting for my ota update to 2.3.3 though, my other phone (nexus 1) already has it, so starting to get inpatient as my nexus s is still on the old 2.3.1.

        Comparing the two versions of the os, 2.3.3 gives better battery life, and the browser speed is much faster.

        As soon as I get the ota update I’ll be much happier, hurry up Google :)

    • goNoles22

      I haven’t experienced the random reboot issue on my 2nd Nexus S. Buy my first one was rebooting every hour before I returned it because the power button malfunctioned.

  • Gone

    If I am not mistaken that is just a change log that shows what is different in 2.3 VS 2.3.3, it has nothing to do with what is coming in the Nexus S 2.3.3 update!!

  • http://Website Al

    This article is very misleading. The sdk version notes have _never_ mentioned bug fixes for specific devices, they always give a high level overview of changes to the android _platform_ aimed at _developers_.

    • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

      Thanks for the input Al. The reboot bug has not been confirmed as fixed by Google, so I don’t feel the headline is misleading.

      • http://Website Al

        Have you received confirmation from Google the issue isn’t fixed yet? If they’ve started pushing out an update, then it falls in line with their previous statement from 28th Jan. they will push out an update in the next 1-2 weeks to fix the reboot issue.

        All I’m saying is until Google confirms either way, it’s misleading to mention the reboot issue, which is a device issue, in the same article as the platform update.

        • http://Website Al

          Confirmation as in email/comment/statement from Google in the last few hours

          • http://Website Josh

            Sadly, I’m inclined to believe the headline is misleading as fixed bugs has never been showcased in change logs by Google. Google is just announcing the new features this SDK brings and seeing as how the update hasn’t rolled out to anyone yet and Google hasn’t commented whether or not the random reboot bug in gingerbread has been fixed, I think it’s irresponsible to post the headline that you used.

          • http://Website Daniel

            Also, not once they mentioned the Nexus S. There’s no confirmation they are pushing an update just yet.

        • http://Website Josh

          The reboot issue is not just a device issue as certain roms based off of 2.3 have had random reboots. The bug lies within the gingerbread update itself, which I think is a large reason Google hasn’t released gingerbread to the nexus one as of yet.

        • http://Website Dags

          It hasn’t been marked as released in the bug tracker so it seems as though the issue is unresolved:


  • http://Website tom

    I returned the Nexus S because of the 16gb limitation. Get rid of the stupid NFC, and add an SD card slot and I will buy it again tomorrow. It’s the nicest phine I have ever seen- I just can’t be stuck with the memory limitation, sorry Samsung/ Google.

  • http://Website Mouoiyt

    What random reboot? Never even heard about it. My Nexus S works perfectly fine since the day one I bought it and that was the day it was released in US.

    • http://Website 7

      Nexus S is shit, nobody wants it in my city!

  • http://Website Nexus S-licker

    does it reboot?

  • http://Website Melinda

    My iPhone 3G is working flawlessly. It does not have these serious androidbugs.
    Glad i didnt buy these faulty, mediocre samsung phones!

  • http://Website Maximus

    I will be waiting for the DL link to manually Update the firmware

    Random reboots are few and far Between with that only happening 4 times that i can remember

    NFC at the Moment is Useless although its a great feature to have once its readily available through various Services

  • http://Website I switched to Verizon iPhone 4

    gingerbread is awfully buggy it seems….

  • http://Website anthony

    Wow I have a nexus s and its in the box right now back to my nexus one. The issue I have is the phone completely looses data /network I get a big x. I have to power off then on and hope it works. The phone for some strange reason switches from gsm/cdma to either wcdma preferred or get this unknown. I know the google forum has many like myself as well as xda site. I find it troublesome that google or samsung has yet to answer this thread. Tmobile says all well on their end
    Taylor please please check this for us

  • http://Website Dr. Samsung (Fail disease doctor)

    random reboot bug remains…THANKS for NOT fixing this!!!!!!

  • http://Website ihatefanboys

    yes, lets just call them “nexus S-uckers” i really think the S just means Samsung or theyre trying to get the whole “S” thing going. galaxy S in other words. but if it means nexus samsung, then that would be equivalent to having an “audi-pinto” its hardware related people, crappy samsung hardware.

  • http://Website ihatefanboys

    its silly to think that its an issue in android 2.3, i dont see google putting out software without thoroughly testing it. if that was the case my G1 would have been somewhat buggy just for the fact that it was the first software version of android. guess what ? it was perfect. problems with gingerbread also dont explain the multitude of other problems across all samsung mobile phones. stop defending samsung people, simply because something is blessed with your precious “nexus” name.

    • http://Website Alan

      And what do you think they tested Android 2.3 on?

  • http://twitter.com/grimmy_efg Grimmy

    Why would the SDK API version notes include any mention of the reboot bug?

    This is to allow programmers to know what application calls have changed or in this case have been added since the previous release.

    It doesn’t list any bug fixes because these would only be relevant if they fixed a bug in the API.

    Hopefully the fix will be included in 2.3.3. We know that Google are working of a fix. What we don’t know right now is which version/OTA will include the fix.

  • http://Website Tso

    My nexus s had no issues whatsoever! I think you guys are jealous…i still have my nexus one but gingerbread is definitely better than froyo. Stop making excuses when u dont even have the phone. The nexus S is first now.

  • http://Website Koro

    I started getting the random reboots after upgrading to 2.3.2. Usually it’s not much of a problem, as I’m not using the phone at that time. However, there have been a few instances where it’s been quite annoying.

  • http://Website Wade

    Apparently Samsung needs to hire a new translator, because it seems when they say “1-2 Weeks” they actually mean “1-2 Months.”

  • http://Website knome

    Haven’t experienced this random reboot issue as described on this site since getting my phone in release day. Thought it was a widespread problem because I primarily check this site for my android news but after venturing around other android centric sites it doesn’t seem like the pandemic I was lead to believe it to be. I’ve had gadget lemons before so I can understand how annoying it can be, but so far this is the nicest android handset I’ve ever used. Can’t wait for my old nexus one to get 2.3 too.

  • http://www.androiddoes.net SNS

    I’ve had the “reboot bug” crawl around during three or four calls since I’ve had the SNS. That’s been a little over four weeks.

    I also tend to agree with most of the posters here. The platform update has nothing to do with the Nexus S getting an update for this specific bug. It’s merely an update to the SDK. According to your post, only two people have confirmed it has been released as an OTA? No. Sorry.

  • http://Website Ergo

    I have a Nexus S, and it is still on 2.3.2 as of 4.30pm local time on the 17th of Feb. I have had the reboot problem 3 times in my month of ownership but as I seem to mainly use it as an email and sms platform, or mobile server I’m not really put out!

  • http://Website David

    1 month here, 1 update later (2.3.2) and not a single reboot. Ever. Had an ip4 and sold for the sns. Buying a google phone was the best thing to do. Great phone amazing system.

  • http://Website Phil

    Still not yet get my 2.3.3 on Nexus S with China Unicom, anyone else?

    But in passed 1 month, i only faced one time reboot… sorry buddies.

  • http://Website Untyuiop

    I have no clue what you people are talking about. Not a single issue with my Nexus S and I have since the day one it was released at Best Buy US. Not a single reboot, and I have 3 other friends at the office with same device, and none of them experienced those reboots you are mentioning here. I believe most of you reporting these “issues” are jealous iPhone users, nothing else.

  • http://Website MagicMike

    The author should have done a little more research before stating the reboot bug remains without hard proof. Here is a quote from Google employee “Ry Guy” on the Google Android forums:

    I’m very glad we can finally provide an OTA update to address the reboot issue. The team worked really hard to get this and a bunch of other stuff fixed (while adding some cool new NFC capabilities). Thanks for gutting this one out with us, your patience is very much appreciated.

    If you experience any problems with Android 2.3.3, please post the issue to a separate thread.

    -Ry Guy

    (scroll down about 3/4 of the page)

  • http://Website Jeff

    I don’t think they’ve pushed out 2.3.3 yet, because its crap and they’ve realized that. Give them some cradit for not forcing it down our throats. I did the manual upgrade to test it out myself. I swear the first thing I noticed when the phone booted up was the washed out colors of my wallpaper. Every else seems ok so far, but the colors are messed. I never really had any problems with 2.3.2 so I’m going to try and revert back to it.