The Samsung Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat update has been rolling out since mid-February but the release is still far from complete. With many users still waiting for the Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat update to arrive, we want to take a close look at the latest details and offer up a look at what we expect in the future.
Believe it or not, it has almost been a year since Google first announced Android 4.4 KitKat. The update was first announced in September, right around the time that Apple debuted its iPhone 5s and final iOS 7 update. The announcement though came several weeks ahead of its official release. The update arrived in November alongside the Nexus 5.
Since then, we’ve seen the update roll out for a great number of devices including the Samsung Galaxy S4, Samsung’s former Galaxy S flagship and a device that remains in the hands of millions of consumers around the world.
The Samsung Galaxy S4’s Android 4.4 KitKat update has been rolling out since mid-February and its started to pick up the pace in recent weeks as it heads to new variants and new regions around the world. Like many of Samsung’s Android updates, the Galaxy S4 has been moving at an extremely slow pace and there are still a number of carriers that have yet to roll out their version of Android 4.4. And unfortunately most carries remain mum about Android updates.
With Android 4.4.3 and now Android 4.4.4 KitKat now available for a number of devices, Galaxy S4 users are looking for answers. In an effort to provide as much clarity as we can to Galaxy S4 owners in the United States and around the world, we want to detail everything we know about the Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat update and breakdown the important details that all Galaxy S4 owners need to know about right now in late June.
Galaxy S4 Android 4.4.2 KitKat Roll Out Continues
In June, we’ve seen the Galaxy S4 land for a number of different models in a number of different regions. The GT-i9500 Galaxy S4 Android 4.4.2 KitKat update recently hit users in Ukraine, Pakistan, Tunisia, and Uzbekistan. These all rolled out within the past two weeks or so.
As for the Galaxy S4 GT-i9505, it recently landed for users in Germany, for users in Russia, and for users on O2 in Ireland. These updates are part of a pretty massive push to this variant in June.
We’ve also seen the Galaxy S4 mini Android 4.4.2 KitKat update start pushing in the United States. Sprint is currently the only carrier offering the Galaxy S4 mini update in the United States though we suspect that other carriers including AT&T will work to deliver their version of Android 4.4 KitKat to owners down the road.
Finally, the update has landed for a number of Galaxy S4 Active variants around the world with the latest updates landing for users in Austria, Singapore, and the Philippines.
The fact that Samsung continues to push Android 4.4.2 KitKat is of note. Even with Android 4.4.3 KitKat and Android 4.4.4 KitKat out, it appears that Samsung and its carrier partners are content with getting Android 4.4.2 KitKat out now rather than waiting on testing for Android 4.4.3 or Android 4.4.4. Motorola recently announced that Android 4.4.4 KitKat’s arrival pushed its arrival times back a month or more.
Missing Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat Updates
There are still a number of Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat updates that remain missing in action. MetroPCS and C Spire both offer the Galaxy S4 and both are expected to deliver the Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat update at some point in the future. But, for whatever reason, both carriers are lagging behind the rest of the pack.
As we’ve pointed out, C Spire’s Samsung Galaxy S4 is listed as running Android 4.4 KitKat on Samsung’s product page though that doesn’t mean that a release is imminent.
Stragglers like Vodafone Australia still expect to push the update out in June though Optus, another Australian carriers says that its Galaxy S4 users will have to wait until mid-July or so before the Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat update appears. It’s not clear if the update will be Android 4.4.2 KitKat or if it will be Android 4.4.3 or Android 4.4.4. Galaxy S4 users on these carriers should expect Android 4.4.2 but hope for Android 4.4.3 KitKat or Android 4.4.4 KitKat because they tackle a number of problems.
Of course, their outlook fares much better than Telstra’s. The Australian carrier still hasn’t released any kind of a time table for the update which means that it could arrive even later than July. The carrier experienced issues with the Galaxy S4 Android 4.3 so there is a chance that it will be well behind its rivals.
As for the Galaxy S4 mini Android 4.4 update, details are a little more scarce. U.S. carriers not called Sprint remain mum about the release. Optus, one of the few carriers talking about the update, says that it plans to push the update live in late July. As of right now, Sprint and users in Belgium appear to be the only users with Android 4.4.2 on board.
Android 4.4.3 KitKat & Android 4.4.4 KitKat
Android 4.4.4 KitKat recently replaced Android 4.4.3 KitKat as Google’s latest update to Android 4.4. As of right now, the update is only available on the company’s Nexus line of phones and tablets and it’s unclear if it will be headed anywhere else.
Rumors have pointed to an Android 4.4.3 KitKat release for the Samsung Galaxy S4 LTE-A model, a device that is only available in select areas. A recent leak from Android Geeks states that the model should get the update in July after a roll out for the Galaxy S5. It’s not clear how Android 4.4.4 KitKat might affect Samsung’s plans.
Rumors have also hinted at an Android ‘L’ 4.5 or Android 5.0 release, possibly alongside a new Nexus 8 tablet from HTC. Android ‘L’ rumors point to an arrival in Q3 or Q4 though dates haven’t been narrowed down. Google says that it will show off Android ‘L’ at Google I/O this week but a release date may not be imminent.
While nothing is confirmed, the Galaxy S4 will almost certainly get whatever is next from Google though it’s still unclear whether or not Android 4.4.4 or Android 4.4.3 KitKat will arrive first.