The Samsung Galaxy S4 arrived with Android 4.2 Jelly Bean and Samsung’s new TouchWiz Nature UX 2.0 on board ushering in a new era of Samsung Android software. The Galaxy S4 won’t be the only one getting these upgrades though. In fact, the Samsung Galaxy S3, Galaxy Note 2 and more will likely be getting outfitted with new software. And while details are a bit scarce, there are still several bits that have surfaced and it’s time to take a deep dive into what we know about Samsung’s upcoming Android 4.2 updates.
All the way back in November of last year, Google announced a brand new piece of Android software dubbed Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, an incremental update to the Android Jelly Bean operating system and one that replaced the previous version, Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. While the software was quick to arrive for Nexus devices like the Nexus 4, the software has been slow to roll out to some of the biggest non-Nexus names.
In fact, Samsung’s Galaxy S4 became one of the first non-Nexus devices to sport Android 4.2 Jelly Bean and its features when it arrived back in April of this year. HTC’s flagship, the HTC One, remains on Android 4.1, a point of contention between HTC and the early adopters of its new Android device.
We know that HTC is preparing to deliver Android 4.2 updates to many of its older devices, including the HTC One, and we also know that Samsung is looking to do the same. Samsung has a great track record when it comes to software updates and while it may not be on par with Apple in terms of keeping devices updated, it’s certainly better than most Android manufacturers.
Samsung. like other Android manufacturers, has kept relatively quiet about upcoming updates. However, we have seen some information emerge about not only Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, but the new TouchWiz that arrived with the Galaxy S4.
In the build up to these software updates, it’s now time to take a close look at how the Samsung Android 4.2 update situation breaks down as we look closely at what we know about the updates for the Galaxy S3, Galaxy Note 2 and more.
Samsung Galaxy Note 2
Maybe the most anticipated Android 4.2 Jelly Bean update of the bunch is the one for the Samsung Galaxy Note 2, a device that arrived shortly before the debut of Android 4.2 with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean stock and on board.
Samsung has not yet announced a release date for the Galaxy Note 2 Android 4.2 Jelly Bean update though rumors originally put the software as being out sometime in May or June. That apparently won’t be happening thanks to the new TouchWiz 2.0 features that Samsung is evidently putting on board the Galaxy Note 2.
Instead, the update is now rumored to be coming out in the third quarter of this year which would mean a release sometime in July, August or September. If Samsung was really intending to release the software in May or June and caught an unforeseen snag, we imagine that July would likely be the best candidate for a roll out.
Android 4.3 is expected to be out in July though it’s looking like Samsung may ultimately upgrade to Android 4.2.2 instead. As for the features that will be coming on board, nothing is for certain though we expect there to be several features taken from the Galaxy S4. The exact features are as of yet, unknown, though we imagine the new camera app and some of the smart features will likely be on board.
Samsung Galaxy Note
The Samsung Galaxy Note, earlier this year, was upgraded with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, the update that Google first released in July of last year. A short time ago, AT&T finally upgraded its Galaxy Note model with Android 4.1 though it neglected to add on some of the best features including the coveted Multi-Window View. A bad sign.
Samsung hasn’t confirmed the Android 4.2 Jelly Bean update for the original Galaxy Note but given that it was only released in 2011, we fully expect the software update to come to the aging phablet. There are rumors that indicate that this will be the case though it appears that the Android 4.2 update will be the last for the Galaxy Note.
New TouchWiz features are a different story. We expect the Galaxy Note to get at least some of the features of the new TouchWiz, again perhaps the new camera app additions, but owners should not expect a significant upgrade.
As for timing, given that the Galaxy Note 2 update is slated for Q3, we may not see the Galaxy Note Android 4.2 update until well into 2013. And for AT&T owners that could mean an arrival in the winter or possibly in 2014. If at all.
Samsung Galaxy S3
Samsung hasn’t announced the Samsung Galaxy S3 Android 4.2 Jelly Bean update but all signs point to the software rolling out around the same time as the Galaxy Note 2 update. Originally, the device was said to be getting the upgrade in May or June like the Galaxy Note 2, though that has now been pushed back to Q3.
That means that it should get it sometime between July and September with July and August being the likely candidates for arrival. Again, the update was said to have been delayed by the new Galaxy S4 TouchWiz features that will be on board when it arrives. Those features are unconfirmed but again, we don’t expect the Galaxy S3 to receive the entire update.
More likely, it will get bits and pieces of the software and already we’ve seen that the new Smart Scroll functionality may be one of the features that arrives along with its upgrade to Android 4.2.
Look for Samsung to stick with updating the Galaxy S3 first with Android 4.2 instead of updating directly to Android 4.3 Jelly Bean.
Samsung Galaxy S2
Samsung surprised a few people when it updated the Galaxy S2 with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. The device has been out for quite awhile now and typically, Android devices lose support when they get close to two years of age. Not the Galaxy S2.
Earlier this year, American carriers began updating the Galaxy S2 with Android 4.1, the most recently being AT&T which updated its model just a few short weeks ago. That leaves Verizon as the last of the big name carriers though we imagine that it should be updating the device in the near future, given that it typically follows AT&T by a few weeks.
As for an Android 4.2 update, the Galaxy S2 is rumored to be getting it at some point though no timing is known. We imagine, given the close proximity of the Galaxy S2 Android 4.1 updates that a roll out is likely far off in the distance if one arrives at all.
If it does, expect it to come with a few features of the new TouchWiz, but not the whole boat as the Galaxy S2 is an aging device and TouchWiz requires a lot of resources.
Obviously, those are just the big name smartphones but there will certainly be other devices that get the update. The three biggest of the bunch are the Samsung Galaxy S2 Plus, Samsung Galaxy S2 Skyrocket and the Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini.
What this means is that Samsung Galaxy Exhibit and Samsung Galaxy Axiom owners in the United States should expect an update to Android 4.2 at some point down the road.
Finally, tablets. Samsung hasn’t talked about any software updates for its tablets but rumors suggest that the Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 and the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 will be getting Android 4.2 at some point.
As for Samsung’s older Galaxy Tab line, it’s hard to say. Samsung was extremely slow at getting out Android 4.1 for a majority of those tablets so owners will want to start tempering their expectations now instead of later.