With Samsung’s Android Pie roll out slowing down, owners of older devices like the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge are wondering about the future.
Older devices like the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy Note 8 and mid-rangers like the Galaxy A series have made their move to Android Pie, but popular devices like the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge are still stuck on Android Oreo.
Samsung and its carrier partners still haven’t detailed their Android Pie plans in full and that’s left owners of older Galaxy phones and tablets wondering what will happen in the second half of the year.
In particular, Samsung Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge, and Galaxy S7 Active owners want to know if the device will get upgraded to Pie, when the update could arrive, and what will happen to the Galaxy S7 if Samsung decides to keep the devices on Android Oreo.
In this guide we take a look at what you can expect if you own a Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge, or Galaxy S7 Active.
Galaxy S7 Android 8.1 Update
Before we get to Android Pie, we want to address a question we’ve been getting about the Galaxy S7’s Android Oreo update.
A lot of Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge, and Galaxy S7 Active users are curious if the devices will get upgraded to Android 8.1 Oreo, a newer version of Oreo that debuted in 2018 on Samsung’s Galaxy Note 9.
As of right now, we expect all three Galaxy S7 models to stick around on Android 8.0 Oreo and here’s why.
Samsung rolled out Android 8.1, but the new version is only available on newer devices and phones and tablets that moved from Android Nougat to Android Oreo for the first time.
The company could surprise us, but we expect devices currently running Android 8.0 to stay on Android 8.0.
Galaxy S7 Pie Beta
Samsung used to keep its beta program exclusive to flagship Galaxy S models. That changed in 2019.
Instead of limiting the Android Pie beta to the current Galaxy S flagship, in this case the Galaxy S9, the company rolled out a beta to an array of devices including the Galaxy Note 9, Galaxy Note 8, Galaxy S8, and Galaxy A series.
If Samsung does decide to release a Galaxy S7 Android Pie update, there’s a chance it rolls out a beta for the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge given their popularity.
That said, we haven’t heard anything about an imminent Galaxy S7 Android Pie beta and we aren’t expecting a one at this point.
Galaxy S7 Pie Update
Samsung typically keeps Galaxy phones and tablets updated with major Android software updates for two years before killing off support.
The Galaxy S7 started on Android Marshmallow and got bumped up to Android Nougat and Android Oreo. Unless Samsung decides to change its policy, the Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge, and Galaxy S7 Active will stick around on Android Oreo.
One of the advantages Apple’s iPhone has over Galaxy devices is that it gets four plus years of continuous software support. For example the company’s iPhone 5s, a device that started on iOS 7, was upgraded to Apple’s iOS 12 operating system in September, 2018.
There’s a chance (albeit a small one) Samsung decides to change its policy, but Galaxy S7 users shouldn’t hold their breath.
We’ve seen several Android Pie roadmaps emerge and none of them list the Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge or Galaxy S7 Active. This doesn’t rule these updates out, but it certainly doesn’t bode well for the future.
Up to this point, Samsung hasn’t been testing the Galaxy S7 Android Pie update behind the scenes which means an official update is extremely unlikely.
Galaxy S7 Pie Release Date
If Samsung decides to release Android Pie for the Galaxy S7, and that’s a huge if, the official release probably isn’t coming anytime soon.
Samsung’s pushed Android Pie to devices like the Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+, Galaxy Note 9, Galaxy Note 8, Galaxy S8, Galaxy S8+, Galaxy A series, Galaxy J series, and Galaxy Tab, but some users are still waiting for their upgrade.
Again, official Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge certifications with Pie on board are still nowhere to be found. This doesn’t rule a Galaxy S7 Android Pie update out, but it means the release, if there is one, is still a long way out.
If Samsung decides not to bring Android Pie to the Galaxy S7, software support won’t stop.
The Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge, and Galaxy S7 Active are still on Samsung’s list for “Quarterly Security Updates”. They’ll no longer get monthly updates, but Samsung still supports them.
It’s worth noting that Samsung recently moved them from “Regular Security Updates” back to quarterly. It’s unclear why the company made the change.
These updates are typically focused on plugging up potential exploits, but they sometimes bring bug fixes and new features as well.
Samsung recently pushed the October security update to the Galaxy S7. The update is based on Android 8.0 Oreo.
If you want to move off Android Oreo you can root your Samsung Galaxy S7 and get some of the features from Android Pie and Samsung’s new One UI. The Galaxy S7 development community is still active and developers have already ported Pie over to the Galaxy S7.
Perhaps your best option is a ROM dubbed “BlackDiamond” from XDA member Kill-Switch. Unfortunately, it’s only for the Exynos-powered models. It’s also in beta which means there are several issues with it right now. These include problems with mobile hotspot and Wi-Fi.
If you haven’t explored the world of rooting and custom ROMs, it might be a good idea to do so because it will probably be the only way to get Android Pie on board your phone.
The Samsung Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge, and Galaxy S7 Active probably won’t get Android Pie which means they almost certainly won’t get Android 10.
Google’s new operating system is chock full of new features and enhancements including expanded location controls, multitasking bubbles, and more.
Samsung’s also tacked on improvements to its One UI interface and One UI 2.0 comes with some big changes including an updated Camera UI.
For more on Samsung’s version of Android 10, take a look at our guide.
Install Android 10 for Better Security
If security is important to you (and it should be) you should think about installing the Galaxy S10 Android 10 update soon after it arrives for your phone.
Samsung continues to push important security patches to the Galaxy S10 series and your Android 10 update will bring the latest patches from Samsung, and Google, to your device.
The Galaxy S10 Android 10 update brings Samsung's latest security updates and we expect upcoming versions of Android 10 to come with newer security patches. Remember, Samsung releases critical patches every month.
If you're curious about Samsung's security updates, you can read more about the changes on Samsung's website.
If you failed to download an older security update from a previous month, you'll get those patches when you go to install Android 10 on your phone.
Android 10 also brings several improvements to device security and you can read about those right here in Google's change log.
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