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Android M rumored to include update guarantees for supported devices

With Google I/O less than a week away, the rumors are coming thick and fast about what we can expect from Android M, the next leap forward for Google’s mobile operating system. The latest whisper from behind the scenes addresses one of the platform’s biggest problems: device updates and fragmentation.

The rumor comes courtesy of Android Police, one of the more reliable tipster sites out there: Apparently Nexus devices with Android M installed are going to be guaranteed to get major system updates for two years and security patches for three years. That means if you buy a Nexus with Android M, you know you’ll get all system updates for 24 months.

Related: A slip-up may have revealed Android M as the next major release of Google’s mobile OS

It applies to older Nexus devices too, so the Nexus 4, Nexus 10 and Nexus 7 (2012) won’t get the Android M update, but they will get security patches for a little while longer. For those purchasing a Nexus device from Google, it offers some peace of mind about how long it’s going to be supported for.

As an alternative to the three-year window mentioned above, security patches will be guaranteed up to 18 months after a device is purchased from Google Play — whichever period lasts longest. In other words, if you buy a 2-year-old Android M device, you’ll get security patches for another 18 months rather than 12.

Android Police seems fairly confident of its sources but it’s not certain whether the new rules will get announced at Google I/O this year or when the next Nexus device officially rolls into view. If it does become official, it’s another reason to choose Google’s branded handsets over the competition.