With the Android 11 release creeping closer, we want to take you through everything you should know right now Samsung’s plans for Galaxy phones and tablets.
Earlier this year Google pushed its next operating system, dubbed Android 11, to Pixel users. The company has issued several versions of its Developer Preview but the update will expand to a full blown beta in June.
Google hasn’t outlined the details in full, but we expect devices outside the Pixel family to take part in the beta testing process. The beta will stretch over the course of several weeks culminating with a release for Pixel devices (and perhaps some other Android-powered devices) sometime in the third quarter.
With the Android 11 release getting closer and Samsung’s Android 10 roll out slowing down, Galaxy users are starting to think about the future.
While some Android OEMs are talking about Android 11, Samsung has remained silent. That probably won’t change for a few months.
Samsung is staying quiet, but thanks to rumors and traditions, we can put together an overview for those of you curious about Android 11.
In this guide we’re going to take you through what you should know about Android 11 if you currently own, or if you’re planning to buy a Galaxy S20, Galaxy Note 20, Galaxy Note 10, Galaxy S10, Galaxy Note 9, Galaxy S9, Galaxy S8, Galaxy Note 8, or another Galaxy device.
We’ll take you through what we know about Samsung’s version of Android 11. We’ll take you through what we know about the release date. And we’ll outline which devices will get an upgrade to the new version of Android.
Let’s start with what’s coming out before Android 11. Samsung is still rolling out Android 10 updates and it’s also pushing monthly updates to its stable of Galaxy phones and tablets.
Samsung Galaxy June Update
Samsung’s rolling out its June security update to Galaxy devices.
The update is currently hitting unlocked versions of the Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20+, Galaxy S20 Ultra, Galaxy S10, Galaxy S10+, Galaxy S10e, Galaxy Note 10, and Galaxy Note 10+.
The company hasn’t outlined the contents of the June update yet, but we expect that to change soon.
Samsung Galaxy May Update
Samsung is still rolling out its May security update which includes fixes for 9 critical vulnerabilities in Android, dozens of fixes for high and moderate vulnerabilities, and fixes for 19 Samsung Vulnerabilities and Exposures (SVE).
The software is currently pushing out to the Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20+, Galaxy S20 Ultra, Galaxy Note 10, Galaxy Note 10 Lite, Galaxy Note 10+, Galaxy S10, Galaxy S10+, Galaxy S10e, Galaxy S10 5G, Galaxy S10 Lite, Galaxy Fold, Galaxy Fold 5G, Galaxy Z Flip, Galaxy Note 9, unlocked Galaxy Note 9, Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+, Galaxy S8, Galaxy S8+, Galaxy Note 8, Galaxy J8, Galaxy A30, Galaxy A5 (2017), and the Galaxy A8 (2018).
You can learn more about the update over on Samsung’s security website.
Samsung is also working to bring One UI 2.1 features to the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy Note 9 and we expect those updates to roll out in June.
The Galaxy S9 and Galaxy Note 9 One UI 2.1 updates should come with most features, but at least one change, Bixby Routines, won’t be on board.
Samsung Galaxy Android 11: What’s New
Samsung’s version of Android 11 will look a lot different than the version Google releases for Pixel devices because it will utilize the company’s One UI.
The company is working on a new version of One UI (possibly dubbed One UI 2.5) that will bring support for full-screen gesture navigation in third party launchers. The news was confirmed by a company representative on Samsung’s community forums.
It’s unclear if One UI 2.5 will launch with the Galaxy Note 20 in August or alongside Android 11 later on in the year.
We don’t know a lot about Samsung’s version of Android 11 because it’s in development and early development at that. That said, it should bring a lot of Google’s features with it.
The current list of Android 11 includes:
- Improved Quick Replies.
- Mute notification sounds & vibrations during video capture recording.
- Chat Bubbles.
- Native Screen Recorder.
- Bluetooth improvements for headphones.
- Memory Input/Output improvements.
- Biometric Authentication Strength
- Low Latency support.
- Variable refresh rates.
- Resume on Reboot.
- And a whole lot more.
These Galaxy Devices Should Get Android 11
Samsung typically keeps devices updated with major Android software updates for two years. The company could choose to change this policy for Android 11, but don’t hold your breath.
Mid-range phones and tablets from 2019 should also move from Android 10 to Android 11.
Here is a preliminary list of device we think will get upgraded to Android 11 in 2020 and 2021:
- Galaxy S20
- Galaxy S20+
- Galaxy S20 Ultra
- Galaxy S10
- Galaxy S10 5G
- Galaxy S10+
- Galaxy S10e
- Galaxy S10 Lite
- Galaxy Note 10
- Galaxy Note 10 Lite
- Galaxy Fold
- Galaxy Tab S6
- Galaxy Tab A 10.1 (2019)
- Galaxy Tab A 8 (2019)
- Galaxy Tab A 8 Plus (2019)
These Galaxy Devices Might Not Get Android 11
Any Galaxy device that’s received two major software updates (Android 9 and Android 10) is currently on the fence when it comes to Android 11.
That means popular devices like the Galaxy Note 9 and Galaxy S9 series are in danger of getting left behind on Android 10.
Here are a few Samsung Galaxy devices that could stick around on Android 10:
- Galaxy S9
- Galaxy S9+
- Galaxy Note 9
- Galaxy A9 (2018)
- Galaxy A8 (2018)
- Galaxy A8+ (2018)
- Galaxy A7 (2018)
- Galaxy A6 (2018)
- Galaxy A6+ (2018)
- Galaxy Tab A 10.5 (2018)
Samsung Galaxy Android 11 Beta
Google’s Android 10 beta program featured 23 devices though none of them were Samsung devices. Devices that participated in the beta included:
- Pixel XL
- Pixel 2
- Pixel 2 XL
- Pixel 3
- Pixel 3 XL
- Pixel 3a
- Pixel 3a XL
- Asus Zenfone 5z
- Essential PH-1
- Nokia 8.1
- Huawei Mate 20 Pro
- LG G8
- OnePlus 6T
- Oppo Reno
- Realme 3 Pro
- Sony Xperia XZ3
- Tecno Spark 3 Pro
- Vivo X27
- Vivo NEX S
- Vivo NEX A
- Xiaomi Mi 9
- Xiaomi Mi MIX 3 5G
We expect to see newer models take part in Google’s Android 11 beta this year and you can expect to learn more in June. Google says it plans to launch the first Android 11 beta in June.
After that, you can expect Google to launch Beta 2 in July followed by a Beta 3 release in August. The third phase will include release candidate builds for final testing.
There’s a chance Samsung takes part in Google’s beta program, but odds are good the company goes it alone.
While we don’t have any inside information about Samsung’s plans, the company typically holds a public beta ahead of an official release. It did so with Android Nougat, Android Oreo, Android Pie, and Android 10 and there’s no reason to expect a change with Android 11 right now.
- Stunning 13.3-inch Retina display with True Tone technology
- Backlit Magic Keyboard and Touch ID
- Tenth-generation Intel Core i3 processor
- Intel Iris Plus Graphics
- Fast SSD storage
Back in the day, Samsung used to keep its Android betas exclusive to its Galaxy S flagship models. In 2016, the Android Nougat beta was exclusive to Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge users. In 2017, Samsung limited the Android Oreo beta to the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+.
It took a different approach with Android Pie. Instead of keeping it limited to Galaxy S flagships, Samsung expanded the Android Pie/One UI beta to former flagships and mid-range devices.
The Android 10 beta reverted back to the old days with a far more limited release.
While we don’t know how the Android 11 beta will work exactly, you can expect the Galaxy S20 and upcoming Galaxy Note 20 to take part. We also expect a release for Galaxy S10 and Galaxy Note 10 models.
Samsung’s betas are usually limited to select regions. Big markets like the United States are always on the list, but smaller markets are typically left out.
Samsung Galaxy Android 11 Release Date
So when will Samsung release its first Android 11 update? Let’s start with what we know.
The company is reportedly testing Android 11 on the Galaxy S10+. The device recently showed up in a Geekbench benchmark. This is much earlier than usual and that means we could see a faster beta.
Last year, Samsung pushed its first Android 10 beta in October, or, several weeks after Google pushed the official version of Android 10 to Pixel devices.
If Samsung gets its Android 11 beta out in September or October, the first official Android 11 updates would probably arrive in November or December after weeks of testing.
We expect flagships like the Galaxy S20 to get upgraded first followed by older models like the Galaxy S10 and Galaxy Note 10.
And while a lot of Galaxy models will probably get Android 11 in the second half 2020, many others will have to wait until 2021. Samsung’s Android roll outs typically span across several months.
We’ll continue to update this post with new information as the year goes on so make sure to check back in with us.
Install Android 10 for Improved Security
If you keep sensitive data on your Galaxy S9 or Galaxy S9+ you should think about installing the Android 10 update shortly after it arrives for your phone.
You can expect upcoming versions of Android 10 to come with newer security patches. Remember, Google and Samsung release critical patches every month of the year.
If you're curious about Samsung's security updates, you can read more about all of the changes on Samsung's website.
If you failed to download an update from a previous month, you should also get those patches when you go to install Android 10 on Galaxy S9 or Galaxy S9+.
Android 10 also brings several improvements to device security and you can read about those here in Google's full change log.
Last update on 2020-06-02. This post may contain affiliate links. Click here to read our disclosure policy for more details. Images via Amazon API
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