GOOGLE HAS APOLOGISED after remotely enabling Battery Saver Mode on Android Pie handsets without users' consent.
Owners of the Essential Phone and Google's own Pixel devices, the first to receive Android 9.0, flocked to Reddit over the weekend after noticing the feature, which affects the background activity of apps, had been activated on their device.
This meant that some users were unable to receive notifications or to access automatic location-based features.
A Lyft driver, for example, claimed that he was "screwed majorly" by Google's slip-up.
"I drive for Lyft and was in the middle of driving a passenger to his requested drop-off. As expected when battery saver is activated, my GPS became unusable, the Lyft app stopped updating and I ended up looking like a fool with a POS phone, who can't find his way around," he said.
Google has since apologised, saying in a statement posted to the r/PixelCommunity subreddit: "This was an internal experiment to test battery-saving features that was mistakenly rolled out to more users than intended.
"We have now rolled battery saver settings back to default. Please configure to your liking. Sorry for the confusion."
The apology hasn't been well-received by those affected by the so-called experiment, though.
One Reddit user responded: "Yeah the whole 'we'll fix it guys' is not gonna fly on this one. What other changes are being made behind the scenes that may or may not be interfering with users' lives and or / feeding data to Google?"
Another barked: "We are talking about settings. Google is able to change MY settings, MY settings profile, write new MY settings. That's unbelievable. That's too much. I know Google is able to check/read and know my settings but why they can change my settings. Next time Google will turn off my Pixel. I'm very upset about that." µ
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