For several weeks now, Google’s Android 4.4.3 KitKat update and Android 4.4.4 KitKat update have both been rolling out to Android users all over the globe. With both roll outs pushing out at an increasing rate of speed, we want to take a look at what we expect from the Android 4.4.3 KitKat and Android 4.4.4 KitKat updates moving forward.
Back in June, Google pushed out three new Android updates. One, the Android L update, is currently in beta form and is only available to users with the Nexus 7 or Nexus 5. Its release will be coming sometime later this year. The other two were Android 4.4 KitKat updates in the forms of Android 4.4.3 KitKat and Android 4.4.4 KitKat, two updates aimed at solving Android 4.4.2 KitKat problems.
Android 4.4.3 KitKat pushed out on June 4th while the Android 4.4.4 KitKat rolled out just a few weeks later. For Nexus users, Android 4.4.4 KitKat delivered but one security patch for an OpenSSL vulnerability. For other users, it delivered Android 4.4.3 KitKat bug fixes on top of that security fix. Both are extremely important updates so it hasn’t been surprising to see Android users starving for information.
Fortunately, we’ve seen a ton of Android 4.4.3 KitKat and Android 4.4.4 KitKat update details emerge in the past few weeks as companies work to upgrade their devices. We’ve also seen some companies remain silent about the prospects of Android 4.4.3 KitKat and Android 4.4.4 KitKat. Unsurprisingly, we’ve been getting tons of Android 4.4 KitKat questions from friends, family and readers alike.
With all of that in mind, we want to take a look at how we expect the Android 4.4.3 KitKat and Android 4.4.4 KitKat update processes to play out. Here, we make some Android 4.4.3 KitKat and Android 4.4.4 KitKat predictions based on concrete information, based on rumors and based on a lengthy history covering Android updates across various manufacturers.
Nexus 7 LTE Android 4.4.4 Update
The Nexus 7 LTE remains behind on Android 4.4.3 KitKat. It’s a little odd given that every other Nexus devices running Android 4.4 KitKat is on Android 4.4.4 KitKat. Google still hasn’t announced whether or not it will offer Android 4.4.4 KitKat to the Nexus 7 LTE but we expect the update to roll out.
It would be extremely strange to see one Nexus device left behind on an older Android update, especially when that Android update (Android 4.4.4 KitKat) delivers a crucial security fix.
The Nexus 7 LTE’s Android 4.4.3 KitKat update was three weeks behind the rest of the pack and it’s been five weeks since Android 4.4.4 KitKat rolled out. It’s hard to make a prediction about the timing, it’s almost always random, but we would not be surprised if Google delivered in the near future. That is of course unless Android L is closer than we think.
HTC One Android 4.4.3 KitKat Push This Month
We expect a widespread Android 4.4.3 KitKat push from HTC this month.
For those that don’t know, Android 4.4.3 KitKat is HTC’s Android 4.4.4 KitKat update. It comes with Android 4.4.3′s bug fixes with Android 4.4.4 KitKat’s security patch. It’s currently rolling out to the HTC One M8 in Europe, the HTC One M8 Developer Edition, HTC One M7 Developer Edition, and it landed for Sprint’s HTC One M8 just a few short weeks ago.
As we’ve pointed out, several carriers have outlined plans to get their HTC One M8 and HTC One M7 updates out in the near future. And with HTC confirming HTC One M8 Android 4.4.3 KitKat upgrades for the U.S. sometime this month and HTC One M7 rumors pointing to August as well, we’re expecting a massive push ahead of the Android L update later this year.
We expect big things from HTC this month.
Other HTC Devices to Hold On Android 4.4.2 KitKat
At this point, given that we’ve heard nothing about Android 4.4.3 KitKat updates for HTC’s other devices, devices like the HTC One Max, we aren’t expecting them to get the bump up to Android 4.4.3 any time soon, if at all.
HTC’s still in the dumps financially, these devices aren’t widely adopted, and I just don’t see HTC investing the resources into Android 4.4.3 KitKat upgrades for these devices. Especially with the Android L update on the horizon.
Anything is possible but if I were an HTC One Max or HTC One Mini user, I would expect to skip from Android 4.4.2 KitKat to Android L at some point in 2014 or 2015. Probably 2015 if Android L comes out in November.
HTC One Android L Update to Come Next
Don’t expect any other HTC One Android updates between Android 4.4.3 KitKat and Android L. HTC itself has confirmed that both the HTC One M8 and HTC One M7 will shift from KitKat to Android L within 90 days of the HTC One’s release.
LG To Remain Silent
HTC has been doing a great job communicating with its customers. Other companies like LG continue to remain silent about their Android 4.4.3 KitKat and Android 4.4.4 KitKat updates. We expect that to continue.
LG has simply never done what HTC and Motorola are doing when it comes to Android update communication. The Korea-based company rarely announces updates ahead of time and when it does, it usually announces them for Korean versions of the device.
If you own an LG device in the United States, don’t expect to be in the loop ahead of time. Silence will most likely reign.
If LG Does Roll Out Android 4.4.3/Android 4.4.4 KitKat…
It will likely come out of the blue. We also expect that the update would only arrive for flagship devices like the LG G3, LG G2 and maybe even the LG G Pad 8.3 if users are lucky. Verizon just rolled out the LG G Pad 8.3′s Android 4.4.2 KitKat update so if an update is on the way, it’s likely weeks away.
LG still hasn’t announced its Android L update plans yet but we imagine that it will probably be the company’s focus as we head deeper into the year, away from the Android 4.4 KitKat update.
Missing Moto X Android 4.4.4 KitKat Updates to Hit U.S. Within Weeks
Earlier this week, Verizon pushed out its Moto X Android 4.4.4 KitKat update. The update arrived shortly after Motorola pushed out the Moto X Android 4.4.4 KitKat update in several other regions including India.
Verizon’s Moto X update almost certainly will not be the only Android 4.4.4 KitKat update to land for the Moto X in the United States and we fully expect carriers like U.S. Cellular, AT&T and T-Mobile to push out their own versions of the update with the same enhancements on board.
The Moto X update is more than just a bug fix update. Camera performance in odd lighting or HDR modes has improved and the update also introduced a pause while recording function for Moto X owners. It’s a key update for Moto X users and one that comes just about a year after the Moto X was first released on shelves.
Don’t expect Android 4.4 KitKat to be the Moto X’s last Android update. There’s a very good chance that Android L will make an appearance down the line as well.
Samsung to Remain Silent
Like LG, Samsung remains silent about Android 4.4.3 KitKat and Android 4.4.4 KitKat. (And Android L for that matter.) And like LG, Samsung is notorious for waiting until its ready to inform its customers about important Android update roll outs. We fully expect the silence to continue as we head deeper into the year. And given that Android 4.4.3 and Android 4.4.4 are incremental updates, we wouldn’t be surprised if Samsung skips one of its usual press releases announcing the upgrade.
Carriers Will Confirm
If Samsung does decide to roll out either update, it was rumored to have Android 4.4.3 KitKat in the works before Android 4.4.4 arrived, expect carriers to do the talking for it. Carriers like SFR France and Optus Australia announce Android updates weeks in advance and often days before the manufacturer can officially announce them.
I’d expect one of those carriers to spill the beans early if Samsung is truly committed to rolling out new Android 4.4 KitKat updates. Keep an eye on them in the weeks ahead.
Galaxy Android 4.4.2 KitKat Roll Outs to Continue
At this point, don’t expect Samsung to halt any of its Android 4.4.2 KitKat roll outs to start rolling out Android 4.4.3 or Android 4.4.4 KitKat instead. The Galaxy Note 3, Galaxy S4, and Galaxy Note 2 Android 4.4 KitKat update are too far a long for that to occur. The Galaxy S3 LTE Android 4.4 KitKat update is MIA in most regions but users should not count on Samsung to skip Android 4.4.2.
At this point, if you own a Galaxy S4, Galaxy Note 3, Galaxy S4, Galaxy S3, or any other Galaxy smartphone or tablet that’s in the process of getting Android 4.4.2 KitKat, expect Android 4.4.2 KitKat.
If Samsung Galaxy Android 4.4.3/Android 4.4.4 KitKat Updates Do Roll Out…
Should Samsung decide to roll out Android 4.4.3 or Android 4.4.4 KitKat, we expect top flight devices like Galaxy S5 to be first in line. Samsung always pushes new updates to its latest devices first before moving on to other older and less popular smartphones and tablets.
Furthermore, if the update does roll out to Samsung’s devices, we’d expect devices like the Galaxy S3 to remain on Android 4.4.3 KitKat or Android 4.4.4 KitKat. The Galaxy S3 is one of a few Samsung Galaxy devices that sits in a gray area when it comes to Android updates. That is to say, it’s hovering around its second birthday.
Samsung typically updates devices for 24 months before kicking them to the curb. Google recommends 18. Other devices like the Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy S4 will almost certainly skip on to Android L.
Sony: Strong Android 4.4.4 KitKat Push in August
Like HTC, we expect Sony to make a strong Android 4.4.4 KitKat push in the month of August. The company is currently rolling out the Android 4.4.4 KitKat update to the Xperia Z1, Xperia Z1 Compact, and Xperia Z Ultra and several carriers have chimed in with their plans to push these updates out in the relatively near future.
No Android 4.4.5 KitKat Update
At this point, do not expect an Android 4.4.5 KitKat update. Google typically rolls out just a few bug fix updates for its Android software. Android 4.4.3 KitKat, for example rolled out just about five months after the release of Android 4.4.2 KitKat.
Despite the complaints about Android 4.4.4 KitKat, we haven’t seen any Android 4.4.5 KitKat rumors pop up and we haven’t seen Google confirm any upcoming updates on its Nexus Product Forum. At this point, Android 4.4.4 KitKat users will want to temper their expectations. Expect your next update to be Android L.
Android 4.4.4 KitKat Problems Solved by Android L
Android 4.4.4 KitKat problems may not get fixed by an Android 4.4.5 KitKat update but many of them will likely be tackled by Google’s upcoming Android L update. Android L comes packed with a number of new features including changes to the look and feel of Android but it will also likely come with some bug fixes of its own.
We’ve detailed one of those changes (a Nexus 5 battery life fix) already but we expect there to be some other enhancements and fixes on board the update as well.
Android L is rumored to be coming out in the fourth quarter though a specific date for the update’s arrival remains unclear.
Android 4.4.4 KitKat Problems Linger
Android L will likely solve Android 4.4.4 KitKat problems but there are always problems that linger around, even after a major Android 4.4.4 KitKat update. In other words, don’t sit around and expect Android L to solve your problems. Be proactive about squashing your Android 4.4.4 KitKat or Android 4.4.3 KitKat problems ahead of the Android L release.