With Samsung’s Android Pie roll out picking up speed, owners of older devices like the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge are wondering about the future.
Samsung’s released the official version of Android Pie for the Galaxy S9, Galaxy Note 9, Galaxy S8, Galaxy Note 8, Galaxy A series, Galaxy J series, Galaxy Tab series and many other devices with more upgrades planned in the weeks ahead.
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 or get bumped up to Android 9.0 Pie and Samsung’s One UI experience.
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.
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 this year with Android Pie, 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.
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 many users are still waiting for their upgrade.
We expect Pie updates to roll out in July, August, and September as Samsung and its carrier partners work through testing behind the scenes.
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 long way out.
Samsung’s Android Pie roadmaps also list Android release dates through the end of the year and Galaxy S7 models aren’t listed anywhere.
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 “Other Regular Security Updates”. They no longer get quarterly updates, but Samsung still supports them.
These updates are typically focused on plugging up potential exploits, but they sometimes bring bug fixes and new features as well.
Samsung recently rolled out the July security update to the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge 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 Q.
Android Q is the newest version of Android and it’s heading to Google’s Pixel devices and devices from various Android OEMs later on this year.
The new operating system is chock full of new features and enhancements including a system-wide Dark Theme, expanded location controls, multitasking bubbles, and more.
For more on Android Q, take a look at our guide.
Wait Until August
The Galaxy Tab S6 launch probably won't take place in July so you’ll probably have to wade through a few more weeks of rumors and speculation before Samsung takes the stage and shows it off.
A launch date isn’t rumored yet, but there's a chance the company debuts it in early August alongside the Galaxy Note 10.
The Note 10 launch is confirmed for August 7th and there's a good chance the Galaxy Tab S6 joins the new phone on stage during the show.
A report from CashKaro claims the Galaxy Tab S6 will arrive sometime in the third quarter of 2019. Q3 spans from July to September.
Samsung announced the Galaxy Tab S4 in early August back in 2018, ahead of the Note 9 launch, so the timing makes sense.
The LTE version of the Galaxy Tab S6 recently picked up an important Wi-Fi certification which means the official release is getting close.
If you don’t have time to sit through a few more weeks of rumors, or your budget won’t allow you to wait much longer, you should start looking at other devices.
However, if you're interested in a top-of-the-line Android tablet, you might want to hang around until early August.
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