The Google Nexus 6P, manufactured by Huawei and released a little more than a year ago, has been a well-received smartphone in general. It sports front-facing stereo speakers, an awesome camera, a massive screen, supports all US carriers, and doesn't allow the infamous Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 to hamper its performance in the slightest.
However, the past couple of months have seen a sudden increase in Nexus 6P battery complaints, with many users reporting that their phones suddenly shut down, even though there was plenty of battery life remaining. It was initially thought to be an issue with the recent Android Nougat update, but that no longer appears to be the case. In all, it's a perplexing problem, and one that's frustrating many users, so we'll delve in a bit deeper and discuss possible solutions below.
The problem is rather simple to understand: If you're among those affected, your phone will randomly shut down and completely die, even though your battery indicator might have said you had plenty of juice left. It's not a simple system crash, because your phone will stay dead until you connect it to a charger.
We've seen reports of the battery dying from a charge as high as 67% to as low as 15% on both Android Marshmallow and Android Nougat. So it's not a problem with the recent Android update, and it's not as simple as the battery meter just being off by a few percentage points.
We reached out to Huawei and Google for a comment, but have yet to receive a response. There are currently over 1,800 users who have starred the issue on the AOSP Issue Tracker that was created last month, so it's certainly a widespread problem. Almost 700 users have shared their experiences, screenshots, and thoughts on the problem, but the Google employee assigned to investigate this case has classified it as a "Small priority issue."
The most common speculation floating around right now is that the Nexus 6P's battery is severely degrading after only a year of usage. It's possible that once the device reaches a certain age, its battery capacity drops off a cliff, and the phone is simply not capable of holding a significant amount of charge anymore.
XDA user rbrenart spoke to Google support, and their answer seems to back up this theory. Once he explained the issue to the support agent, rbrenart was told that the problem is the result of a faulty battery.
While we wait for Huawei and Google to take action, there are a couple of options that you can try that could potentially resolve the issue. First, if your device is still under warranty, you can contact Google and ask for a replacement phone. You'll have to explain the issue thoroughly, and you might need to provide evidence of the battery bug, but it's definitely your best option if your device was purchased within the last 12 months.
However, the Nexus 6P was released more than a year ago, so if you purchased your device on launch day or shortly thereafter, Google's 12-month warranty has likely expired. If that's the case, you might want to contact your local smartphone repair shop to schedule a battery replacement, which can usually be done for less than $75. Alternatively, if you're up for the task, you can purchase a replacement battery and install it yourself to save a few bucks.