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Latest Essential Phone update brings fixes for Spectre and Meltdown

Essential announced that the January security patch, which includes fixes for Spectre and Meltdown, is rolling out to the Essential Phone.
January 6, 2018
  • Essential is rolling out the January security patch for the Essential Phone
  • The patch includes fixes for the Spectre and Meltdown security flaws
  • Essential also confirmed Android Oreo will arrive sometime soon

Andy Rubin’s outfit might have flubbed the Essential Phone‘s launch, but the company has issued numerous updates in an effort to show it’s taking this smartphone thing seriously. As has been a theme, the Essential Phone received another update today with some important and necessary fixes.

First thing’s first: taking to Twitter, Essential confirmed that the update includes the January security patch. The company didn’t say whether it was the January 1 or January 5, but the important point is that it includes fixes for the Spectre and Meltdown security flaws that everyone is worrying about:

We’re rolling out a software update (build NMJ88C) with the January security patches and fixes for the Spectre and Meltdown security flaws.
— Essential (@essential) January 5, 2018

For those not in the know, it was recently unveiled that Intel’s CPUs contain two fundamental security flaws that, when exploited, make it easy for malware to steal sensitive data. What makes it dangerous is that the sensitive data is taken from memory that would normally be off limits.

Intel, ARM, and AMD were notified of the two flaws, ‘Spectre’ and ‘Meltdown,’ though Google said they were patched with the latest security update. The problem is that it will take some time for it to make its way to smartphones, since different smartphone makers have different schedules.

That’s what makes today’s news more noteworthy than usual, seeing how the Essential Phone is one of a few Android devices outside of the Pixel and Nexus circles to have the January patch.

While we’re on the subject of updates, the Essential Phone’s Android Oreo update is still MIA, though the company said it is “getting close to the full release.” The January security patch is rolling out now, so don’t fret if it’s not available for your device just yet.