The Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and Samsung Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat updates have been rolling out for several weeks now, landing for many users in the United States and around the globe. As we get closer to the finish line and the end of both Android 4.4 KitKat roll outs, we want to take a look at some of the more recent details that Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy S4 owners need to know about.
In January, Samsung started pushing out the Galaxy Note 3 Android 4.4 KitKat update. The update came without warning and it come to only a few devices in a few select regions. Those in Russia and Poland were the first to get the Galaxy Note 3 Android 4.4 KitKat update back in January but they were certainly not the last.
Since that day, the Galaxy Note 3 KitKat update has spread to users across the planet. And while the update has certainly been making headway, there is still some devices that remain on Android 4.3 Jelly Bean. Same goes for the Samsung Galaxy S4.
Samsung started pushing out the Galaxy S4’s Android 4.4 KitKat update in February and since then, it too has landed for a great number of devices around the world. Like the Galaxy Note 3 Android 4.4 KitKat update roll out, the Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 release has slowed down considerably since February and March.
While we’re no longer seeing a rapid deployment, there are still plenty of Galaxy S4 owners who are still waiting for the Samsung Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat update to arrive.
With that in mind, we want to take another close look at both the Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat roll outs and detail the most important things that users need to know.
Verizon Galaxy S4, Galaxy Note 3 Android 4.4 KitKat Updates Still MIA
The Verizon Galaxy S4 and Verizon Galaxy Note 3 Android 4.4 KitKat updates remain missing in action. The Verizon Galaxy Note 3 Android 4.4 update will be the final Galaxy Note 3 KitKat update in the U.S. while the Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat update will certainly be among the last to roll out.
Verizon owners need to know that they’ll likely be waiting in the dark for these updates to arrive. Verizon typically does not confirm release dates ahead of time and we typically see it acknowledge new Android updates on the day of their release.
Those who are looking for more details will want to take a look at our expectations for the Verizon Galaxy Note 3 and Verizon Galaxy Note S4 Android 4.4 KitKat updates. They will provide users with some clarity that Verizon refuses to offer.
One of the reasons Verizon refuses to offer release date information early is because it doesn’t want to set consumer expectations. The Android testing process can be difficult and many times we’ve seen carriers get burned when they announce release information early. Take Australian carrier Optus for example.
In early March, the carrier announced that it was planning to offer the Galaxy Note 3 Android 4.4 KitKat update in early-to-mid April. It’s now April 5th and the carrier still hasn’t offered any kind of an update to its Galaxy Note 3 users. In fact, the carrier still hasn’t confirmed whether or not it has received the update from Samsung.
The testing process will likely take a couple of weeks at least so Galaxy Note 3 owners on Optus may encounter a slight delay. We’ve seen Optus delay updates in the past so it wouldn’t be unusual.
Roll Outs Will Take Several More Weeks
The Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat updates will be rolling out for several more weeks, at least. We know this because carriers that have released their update schedules are still weeks away from their releases.
Optus, for example, still hasn’t issued an ETA for its Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat update that it originally said would arrive in April. Vodafone Australia says that while its Galaxy Note 3 Android 4.4 KitKat update is incoming, it’s still waiting for Samsung to submit the software. Once the software arrives, it typically is a few weeks before it’s ready to roll out.
The carrier also just rolled out Android 4.3 Jelly Bean for the Galaxy S4 and says that both of its Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat updates are awaiting software submissions.
Australian carrier Telstra still hasn’t confirmed either update and it released an updated schedule just a few short days ago. In fact, things look especially bleak for Galaxy S4 users because Telstra and Samsung were forced to halt the Android 4.3 Jelly Bean roll out due to major issues on board.
French carrier SFR still hasn’t rolled out its Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat update either despite showing off the update several weeks ago.
There are likely countless other updates that are weeks away but their prognoses remain hidden in the shadows because like Verizon, they refuses to offer information to the public.
Features Will Be Similar
Those holding out hope for Galaxy S5 software features need to temper expectations. They aren’t coming. Yes, the Galaxy S5 is about to be released and yes it would be fantastic if Samsung issued Galaxy S5 features with some of these lagging updates but it’s simply not going to happen.
It would be unfair to those that have already received Android 4.4 KitKat and it would mean longer waits for Android 4.4 KitKat due to the extensive testing Samsung would have to perform. TouchWiz is often problematic for Samsung and it’s going to need some time to get Galaxy S5 features ready for these devices, assuming it plans to release new features at all.
So, know that all of these upcoming Galaxy S4 and Galaxy Note 3 Android 4.4 KitKat updates will likely be similar to each other with a few variations thanks to carrier enhancements and fixes.
Android 4.4.3 KitKat Isn’t Imminent
There are Android 4.4.3 KitKat rumors flying around and they probably have Galaxy S4 and Galaxy Note 3 owners excited. Don’t be.
Samsung isn’t going to magically switch over to Google’s brand new unreleased Android 4.4 KitKat update. It will stick with Android 4.4.2 until these roll outs are complete. Nexus devices always receive new updates months ahead of the rest of the pack. Just look at the Android 4.4.2 KitKat roll out. Nexus devices got it in November, the Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy S4 got it starting in January and February.
Furthermore, updates appears to be geared toward Nexus smartphones and tablets and possibly Google Play Edition devices as well. There is no talk about a release for devices beyond those devices at this point.
Android 4.4.3 could emerge at some point down the road but know that it won’t be any time soon.