My Love/Hate Relationship with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean

Google has yet to announce Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, its features or its release date and I already have a love/hate relationship with it.

The company is widely expected to announced its next version of mobile software at next week’s Google I/O. That piece of software is rumored to be called Android 4.1 Ice Cream Sandwich. The full list of features that will be coming to devices along with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean is currently unknown.

Its release date, which could be soon after its announcement, has yet to be revealed.

And yet, I already have strong opinions about the software that will apparently follow-up Google’s Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich which was announced and released in December of 2011.

I can't decide if I love or hate Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.

Problem is, I can’t decide whether I am going to love or hate Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.

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Let me break down what has gone through my head ever since I found out that Google might actually be releasing Android 4.1 at some point in the near future instead of with the next Nexus.

Why I Love Android 4.1 Jelly Bean

1. It’s going to bring new features and likely, some bug fixes as well: Every major Android update always brings something new and exciting to the table and I have no doubt that Android Jelly Bean is going to do that as well. What exactly remains to be seen but Android owners can rest assured that Google has some nifty features up its sleeve. And while Ice Cream Sandwich is a fantastic piece of software, there is definitely room for improvement and I expect Google will toss in some fixes and enhancements of current features as well.

2. I own a Nexus device: Google is apparently planning to make the HSPA+ Galaxy Nexus the first device with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. How do I know this? Google accidentally leaked that information out. However, I assume that the 4G LTE Galaxy Nexus, you know the one on Verizon that saw its first update five months after launch, won’t be too far behind it which means that I should get Android 4.1 before most people.

3. It might come with a new Nexus tablet: I recently bought an iPad 3. It wasn’t cheap. But as much as I hate to say it, I am interested in a Nexus tablet, especially one running new Android software on a 7-inch display with a price point thought to be $199 or less. The thought of a Nexus tablet coming with some killer tablet features in Android 4.1 Jelly Bean intrigues me. A lot.

Why I Hate Android 4.1 Jelly Bean

1. Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich is still rolling out for crying out loud: Only a small fraction of Android devices have received the upgrade to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich thus far. The update, which was released back in December, has been slow to roll out, especially to devices on American carriers. Phones like the Motorola Droid Bionic, Samsung Galaxy Note and HTC ThunderBolt are still without the update. Rolling it out this soon could cause confusion amongst Android users and alienate them even more than ICS has.  I don’t think anyone wants to keep track of two separate updates rolling out at exactly the same time.

2. I live in America: American carriers are notoriously slow in getting major Android updates pushed to their devices. What this means is that I could be waiting for quite a while before Verizon updates my Samsung Galaxy Nexus which means that those of you who own a non-Nexus smartphone, like the Motorola Droid RAZR or Droid RAZR MAXX for instance, could be waiting quite awhile for an update to arrive.

3. If Android 4.1 is coming soon, what’s arriving on the next Nexus smartphone?: Earlier this week, we saw Google accidentally leak word that the HSPA+ would be the first phone to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. Google releases a new Nexus smartphone every year and that phone is generally running a new piece of software, just like Apple’s iPhone generally launches with the new iOS version. This could mean that we might see another version of Android, possibly Android 5.0, arrive later on this year.

I guess I’ll find out how I really feel once Google I/O kicks off next week.

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How are you Android users feeling about Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and the prospects of it coming out soon?

Comments

  1. Alex Perry says

    Well like you say, I don’t even have 4.0 so it’s almost like I could care less about 4.1 since it will probably be a year before I could use it, unless I root of course, but why should I have to do that?

  2. scott082801 says

    Like the author i have a Galaxy Nexus as well (gsm). Ive owned all 3 Nexus devices and many others as well but having a Nexus device is really the only way to insure new updates Asap. Unless of course your dealing with verizon or any carrier specific device for that matter. My Nexus S i9020A (gsm) or the Sprint Nexus S for that matter got the 4.0.4 in a timely manner. I was rooted and updated it though. People talk about fragmentation and it is true, but the source of this is always carrier involvement having to approve the update even on a Nexus Device if the Carrier sold it ie Sprint or Verizon. The second source fragmentation is HTC and Samsung & anyone else insisting on coding their useless skins (TouchWiz and Sense) on top of stock android. As far as i can tell all samsung and motorola and htc have accomplished is wasting 100s of thousands of dollars paying people to coded these skins over the top of what is already done by google. This slows everything down because the manufactures have to wait on the update from google and then make their crapware work on top of stock android and then submit it to the carrier for review (which takes forever) and then every one who owns a non Nexus phone complains about not getting the update for months and then blames it on Google. I’ve been watching this happen since my Nexus one days. It all has very little to do with google, theyre at the mercy of the carriers and the manufacturers. I very rarely use anything but a nexus but if i do by a phone with a skin the first thing i do is make sure the bootloader is unlockable and Cyanogen Mod is available for it & then root it and put the latest version of an AOSP rom on it and do away with the skin anyway. So basically until the carriers and device makers quit slowing things down & making android worse in an attempt to make it better, this will be an on going issue. Hopefully with Google buying Motorola they will solve this problem themselves.

  3. Thomas Wolf says

    Let me get this straight: you love Android 4.1 for features you don’t yet know about and you hate it for a release date you don’t yet know about? Me thinks you need some help.

  4. Stocklone says

    I also have a serious love hate relationship. I would honestly like for Google to slow their roll. This ecosystem they created has some serious flaws in terms of upgrading. And this will not ever change due to the openness of Android. At this point the only thing I want to see coming out of Google is an obsession with fixing the little thing on the OS at this point. Refinement should be the focus. I don’t want anymore new features for a long while. I want the current features to work better. No wait. I want them to work perfect. And they have Matias Duarte who is more than capable of turning Android into the most well designed mobile OS ever.

  5. Fernando says

    This borders on the ridiculous! With 4.0 not being available for MOST Android phones, rolling out 4.1 is a serious slap in the face.

  6. Fernando says

    This borders on the ridiculous! With 4.0 not being available for MOST Android phones (I own a Galaxy Note), rolling out 4.1 is a serious slap in the face.

  7. Fernando says

    This borders on the ridiculous! With 4.0 not being available for MOST Android phones (I own a Galaxy Note, still officially at 2.3), rolling out 4.1 is a serious slap in the face.

  8. Ant says

    Very valid points. As a nexus device owner I couldn’t be more excited to get jellybean. And while it’s not good for the android ecosystem it will give me a sense of satisfaction over my other android friends.

  9. Bad guy says

    The article lacks anything of real substance. Are you suggesting that Google wait for the carriers to roll out ICS before releasing JB? That’s absurd. If version numbers are too complicated for you, why are you even worried about upgrading your phone? Just stick with what your carrier provides you and let those of us willing to walk the bleeding edge do so. Retarding progress for the sake of the incompetent is not the sane thing to do.

  10. Jon says

    My Galaxy Nexus LTE just got the 4.0.4 update 2 weeks ago by throwing out the frameworks cache. I don’t know if Verizon would have even given yet without the Internet trick I learned by scouring boards. They have made android into too much of a scavenger hunt. It’s time to have a stable release and let developers catch up. Apple really has a better way of keeping users together. I’m sick of being flamed for writing the truth. I bought the nexus in December and it didn’t really work right till 2 weeks ago……all the reviewers that praised ics dumped the nexus. What’s the deal?

  11. Jason says

    This hatelist is a wonderful piece of humor. Let’s take it step by step:
    1) It’s up to the device manufacturers and carriers to do this, or at least to write drivers that will provide compatibility with the hardware. They evidently still don’t have enough coders and QC folks, they’re starting to just say “not coming to $device”. Then again, after Samsung said the Epic 4G wouldn’t get ICS as they couldn’t fit it plus all their shovelware on, I lost any respect for their triage ability.
    2) See 1.
    3) You’re too hung up on this. It’s a reference design with new hardware, some new drivers to make that new hardware play nice with the OS. It doesn’t need a new version of the OS, just some drivers that fit the new hardware.

  12. Ferdinand A. says

    I have a Nexus S with AT&T and have been stuck on Android 2.4 since the beginning. Since it was a Nexus, I expected it to update immediately back in December. I checked for updates every few hours, then every few days, now every few weeks. From what I understand, it’s AT&T’s responsibility to push it out. At this point, I’m not holding my breath to get Jelly Bean. That, and the Nexus brand lost some of it’s mojo with me (although I don’t want bloatware either).

  13. zeondx says

    Also 4.1 android will not support flash or rather adobe flash is dead with updates. 4.0 is the last android update to be supported with flash. sigh,,, another reason to hate updating to 4.1.

  14. edmond baruque says

    i loved my Asus T 300 until it upgraded to JB. it is now slow, unstable, no flash and in genral with an inferior performance than before the upgrade. Shame on me I accepted the upgrade

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