Don't clear framework data to force Android 4.4 KitKat update, advises Google engineer

While some may be getting impatient while waiting for the Android 4.4 KitKat update to hit their Nexus 4s, methods popped up...

While some may be getting impatient while waiting for the Android 4.4 KitKat update to hit their Nexus 4, methods have popped up that seemingly force the smartphone to fetch the updated. The method involves clearing Google Service Framework data and hitting the Update button. Android engineer Dan Morill has taken to Reddit to explain why doing this may not be the best idea in the world.

According to Morill, clearing the Google Service Framework data changes the primary ID by which Google recognises your device. The company's servers essentially think that the smartphone was factory reset, and this leads to a bunch of side effects, the biggest one being that it invalidates tokens used by apps using Google Cloud Messaging (GCM). All of Google's own apps, along with quite a few third-party apps use GCM, which handles push notifications across devices.

Android KitKat

Calm down, people!


"How apps react to GCM IDs changing varies by app," writes Morill. "With Play Store you have to log out and log back in, I think Gmail usually handles it transparently eventually but won't get new mail notifications for a while, etc." Some apps need users to clear data in order to recover. Overall, all apps will stop getting push-messages from GCM until they get a new GCM ID. Morill also explained how the OTA update is rolled out to devices in a staggered manner to keep track of any bugs that may be affecting the software. The slow rollout means Google can start working on fixes, if any, even though not all devices have received the update.

The good news here is that clearing the framework won’t exactly destroy your device. It will, however, cause a ton of nuisance, especially if you heavily depend on apps getting push-messages from GCM, which is almost every app with a notification system. The moral of the story here is that being patient is more likely to get your phone updated without screwing it up.

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.