O.K., so you can’t really turn your Nexus 6P into a Google Pixel XL… but if you’re one of the unfortunate few who purchased your 6P from the Google Store and are suffering from the bootlooping/battery issues, you may be able to exchange it for a Google Pixel XL.
UPDATED (09/15/2017 10:30 AM ET): We can confirm that 32GB Nexus 6P devices are being replaced with 32GB Pixel XL devices in Canada.
A reddit post has surfaced that indicates that some owners from the U.S., Canada, and even the UK are getting Pixel XLs as replacements for their defective 6Ps. Even those users whose devices are out of warranty have been successful in getting replacements. Our very own Justin Jelinek’s Nexus 6P has been affected by the battery issues and yesterday he was successful in starting the process for replacing his 128GB 6P for a 128GB Pixel XL.
The reddit thread has a full FAQ of what you can expect, as there are a couple caveats and hoops you might have to jump through.
Is this only if I bought from the Google Store?
Yes. This is only being offered from Google at this time. If you bought the phone elsewhere then Google will refuse to do anything.
Does it matter if I am out of warranty?
No. Google has been RMAing phones even well outside of warranty.
So ALL 6P’s are getting Pixel XL’s?
New or Refurbished Pixel XL’s?
Seems like everyone is getting new Pixels, including the charger/manual/cable. If your order doesn’t explicitly say refurbished, you can assume it will be new.
UK/USA/Canada are all getting Pixels (UK is hit or miss) though not everyone is getting the same kind of upgrade. (Canadian 64GB 6P users get 32GB Pixel XL’s while everyone else with 64GB 6P’s get 128GB pixel XL’s.) Australians seem to still be getting 6P’s.
Update: It seems like some in the UK are getting 6P’s again.
Can I send my phone in first to avoid the authorization charge?
Oddly enough Google has been denying people this option. You will have an authorization card on your payment method when they ship you your phone, and will take the charge off when they receive your phone. It IS an option that is available if you can get a CS rep to look into it for you.
My authorization charge dropped off but I still have my phone! Can I keep it?”
No. Authorization charges on credit cards always drop off. You will get emailed repeatedly if you get close to the deadline and they don’t receive your phone, and then a new charge will come (and stick as a sale) if you miss the deadline. Stop being silly.
Will Google deny me a RMA for screen/water damage?
Yes. Never hurts to send a picture in and they will assess whether or not they will accept it anyway.
What if I’m on the Google FI financing plan and haven’t paid off my phone yet?
(Per Google CS) For Fi users that are utilizing the Financing Plan, your payments will continue as scheduled until the balance is paid off, just as if you were to keep the 6P. No additional charges or anything like that. After your payments are all finished, you own the phone.
Justin offered some insights into his experience with Google Support:
Google Support was very helpful and friendly, though they may ask you to go through several troubleshooting steps prior to authorizing the RMA. I’d previously tried all of the steps they requested, and generally know my way around my phones, but support still asked that I perform a full factory data reset. Support was very patient, scheduling times to call back to allow me time to backup/reset my phone.
On my third call (I hadn’t finished backing everything up when they called back the second time) my phone actually died — at around 14% displayed, significantly lower than the 30 – 40% I was usually seeing — while I was talking to support on another line. The RMA was approved pretty quickly after that. Google definitely recognizes that this is a problem, and will almost certainly authorize an RMA for your Nexus 6P, just be prepared to go through their troubleshooting tips first if asked.