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The Sad State of the Motorola Droid Bionic Ice Cream Sandwich Update



The Motorola Droid Bionic Ice Cream Sandwich update continues to elude owners who were promised the software in early Q3 but have seen absolutely nothing in the form of software or customer support from either Motorola or Verizon.

At the end of Q2, with all of the Droid Bionic ICS software leaks, it looked like Motorola and Verizon would finally do something good for Droid Bionic owners. After all, Motorola said “early Q3” for the update so many took that to mean July. Unfortunately, we’re now nearing the end of August and Droid Bionic owners have yet to hear anything about the update.

To me, the Droid Bionic Ice Cream Sandwich update situation is the worst in recent memory and there are two main reasons for that.


The Droid Bionic ICS update is floating in no-man’s land.

Read: Droid Bionic Ice Cream Sandwich Update Gets Embarrassing News.

One, the release date window has already passed, owners don’t even have any sort of deadline to look forward to. The timetable is wide open and that’s a terrible thing for an Android update.

And two, Droid Bionic owners have had to watch an assortment of other devices get Ice Cream Sandwich before their device. This, to me, is the worst part.

Relatively unknown Xperia devices have gotten their Ice Cream Sandwich update before the Droid Bionic. Low-end smartphones and pre-paid smartphones have launched with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich on board. And maybe worst of all, several Droid-branded devices have received their ICS updates before the Droid Bionic with the worst offender probably being the little-known Droid Xyboard tablets.

Yes, the Droid Xyboard tablets, that were probably bought by a grand total of seven people have received their ICS updates before the Droid Bionic.

Read: Motorola Screws Droid Bionic Owners Again.

Needless to say, owners are frustrated. I’ve heard from many Droid Bionic owners in recent months and a majority of those owners say that this will be their last Motorola phone.

I love Motorola hardware but I don’t blame them. And if you add in the fact that Motorola decided not to include the Droid Bionic and many other phones in its bootloader program and it’s easy to see why I can’t blame them for wanting to jump ship.

I probably would too.



  1. Richard

    08/23/2012 at 10:00 am

    That’s it for me as far as Motorola and Verizon are concerned. Next up At&t and Samsung S3.

  2. anthony

    08/23/2012 at 10:16 am

    I had tha bionic but tha icecream sandwich update took to long so I jumped two tha samsung galaxy s3 n loved my DROID 1 n bionic but they did me wrong on tha bionic

  3. Jose

    08/23/2012 at 10:28 am

    I sent Motorola an email asking about it. This is the email:

    Dear Jose,

    Thanks for reaching out to Motorola. I’ve reviewed your e-mail and I’m ready to help.

    I understand how you feel and I apologize for the inconvenience.

    Let me do my best to help you.

    The Ice Cream Sandwich for the Droid Bionic will be rolling out anytime of this third quarter of 2012. You can visit for the update schedule.

    Third quarter is not yet over and Motorola is doing its best to continually enhance the system of the phone.

    Motorola could not just release the update without making sure that this will work great on the device.

    Rest assured that everything on our end is documented and recorded so this concern will not be taken for granted.

    We hope that you find this information useful and we look forward to assisting you in the future.

    • Olen

      08/23/2012 at 10:53 am

      Did you correct them by pointing out the fact that this website states “EARLY” Q3?

    • bill

      08/28/2012 at 6:44 am

      Form written answer.another example of no care customer assured it is documented on our latest supply of tp.

  4. brd

    08/23/2012 at 10:32 am

    I will be done with Motorola the bionic is the last time that moto will screw me will go to samsung

  5. Brad

    08/23/2012 at 10:41 am

    Just done with this. I generally like my Bionic and while ICS would be better I have just decided to live without it. That said, this is my last Motorola device ever. It is not just the lack of update, it is the continual lying and disrespect. This company is a joke and will die soon.

    • Thomas

      09/07/2012 at 6:46 am

      you know that they will never die they are owned by google and that you cannot kill

  6. Olen

    08/23/2012 at 10:52 am

    So Adam, what is your reply to the statement that the reason Verizon is being so slow with the Bionic ICS update is because the Bionic came out shortly before the unlimited data plan was no longer available? They are hoping to get as many Bionic owners as possible to upgrade so they get them off the unlimited data plan.

    • sam swari

      09/13/2012 at 7:27 am

      My reply to this is, BS. I have a Bionic and am still on my original Altell plan that has unlimited Data. I can even update the other phones to smart phones on our plan and they get the same unlimited data.

  7. Jason

    08/23/2012 at 10:58 am

    Ditto. This is my last Motorola phone, and I’ll be leaving Verizon Wireless as soon as I can.

    • Guy Franco

      09/01/2012 at 10:42 pm


  8. ST3

    08/23/2012 at 11:00 am

    The Droid Bionic has become the Red Headed Step Child. We wont get the boot loaders unlocked and possibly be the first device (that I know of) not to get an updated OS loaded on the phone w/o rooting it. Im not against Motorola. All other Motorola devices arent having this much of an issue as the Bionic is. Guess they thought the Bionic wasnt worth the time and effort (lack of advertisement when it finally was released, which every other phone got plenty of publicity) . We just got suckered into the Bionic.

  9. Simon

    08/23/2012 at 11:06 am

    The Bionic ICS leaks are readily available, easy to install using stock Recovery, and massively improve the phone. I’m running .238 and it’s fixed data drops, general stability / performance, and a ton of other issues. It’s really made the Bionic the phone it should have been (and was promised to be) a couple of months after launch.

    Having said that, unless it’s a truly unlocked Nexus that runs pure ASOP (and that I can update with or without Moto’s help), I will never buy another Motorola Mobility product. They do not provide anything remotely resembling an acceptable level of support for current customers.

    For me, it’s Apple or Nexus only in the future, with an outside chance of Samsung, since they appear to actually support their hardware. Maybe even let the Vz contracts lapse, go with a GSM/LTE nexus on AT&T, now that you can’t keep unlimited and subsidized phones.

  10. Rick

    08/23/2012 at 11:07 am

    I think Olen nailed it. I’m tired of constantly having to watch my back from deceptive practices against consumers across the board. If I could find Mr. Motorola, I’d punch him in the nose. And I WILL be taking my business away from verizon as I’m tired of them treating me like a dup. While I still have unlimited, however, I’ll have my sons attempt a Guinness record for monthly data usage from a single phone.

  11. Doug

    08/23/2012 at 11:28 am

    My 4g has yet to work continuously.The updates have not been anything great for me.I am looking forward to the ICS but not expecting more as is being hyped…why?..because my wife has it on her galaxy and it is just ok….appreciated but not spectacular!First chance i get will drop Bionic and maybe Verizon….consumers rebel or take the punches!The money is what talks to these companies…..but I fear we Americans are tuff text responders and wimpy consumers(we continue to purchase their products and services….though we text/talk tough)…So the beat goes on….

  12. Anon

    08/23/2012 at 11:31 am

    Seriously? Everyone needs to calm down. Wouldn’t you rather them wait until it’s ready for launch VS them sending out a buggy update?

    If that happened, then everyone would complain about “It’s buggy so I went with this phone”

    I love my Bionic and I can wait.

    • taylor

      08/23/2012 at 11:36 am

      Glad you love it. However, not sure why you think everyone has to calm down. Are you one of those people that drives 30 miles per hour in a 30 mph speed zone? Sounds like it. And your comment regarding Motorola releasing the update bug-free is irrelevant as I’ve had the leaked ICS on my Bionic for months now and have never had an issue. If a hacker can do it, a multi-million dollar company can too.

      • chris

        08/23/2012 at 10:26 pm

        Word!! I was so offended by “anon’s” and comment I didn’t even know how to respond so when I read yours i was glad someone wrote what the perfect rebuttal!

    • Todd

      09/06/2012 at 10:11 pm

      I do love my bionic. The thing about getting us off unlimited data..I can see that

  13. watch me

    08/23/2012 at 11:32 am

    Thats it! In the car right now driving to verizon. I use to love my bi-vomit now it makes me sick xD###:: / thats puke. If it is just a atemp to make us upgrade out of our unlimited plan because the bi-vomit with ics people wont need a upgrade this phone would be hard to beat and they know that. So instead ill buy a phone at full price keep my unlimited plan but take it over to my nexus or whatever ics phone i pick. Bahahaha evil laugh. Suck it moto and kiss it big red on my way!!!

  14. Jose

    08/23/2012 at 11:47 am

    Actually, on the email I sent them, I let them know about that, but they managed to oversee that.

  15. ram

    08/23/2012 at 11:48 am

    droid bionic owner here and I feel punked by Moto big time.

    I bought the droid one on day one and was in love.
    I held my upgrade off as newer phones came out, I knew I wanted 4g and dual core.
    Moto announced the Bionic at CES and said it was due to be out very soon..
    I waited and waited
    and waited some more
    Finally released in September I ran out and bought it on day one.
    I paid $299
    Less than a month later the RAZR was out and I felt betrayed;
    1. the RAZR was better in every way and Moto knew the Bionic was already outdated by then but still released it knowing the RAZR would be right around the corner.
    2. the RAZR was only $199

    I suffered through signal issues, in fact I am on my third bionic as the first two just wouldn’t hold a signal.

    Almost a year later and now I see many Moto devices (RAZR and Droid4) released after mine getting ICS and nothing for me.

    I love Moto products. if I had gotten the Bionic back in spring of 2011 when it was due out I probably wouldn’t be nearly as mad. Moto should have never released the Bionic.

    My wife just used her last upgrade and we got the S3 because I won’t buy another moto

    • Guy Franco

      09/01/2012 at 10:45 pm

      Same here

  16. Rick

    08/23/2012 at 11:58 am

    It’s not a matter of being patient and waiting until its ready for launch. The issue is it SHOULD have been ready for launch long ago and probably was. 4g is great, when its working every other minute. I got into the the bionic when they started the same bs with the X. This is a business model on both verizon’s and motorola’s part. Verizon to push people into their “revised” pricing tiers and Motorola to push people into newer phones. Total lack of customer loyalty on both their parts. Late to them both.

  17. Mike

    08/23/2012 at 1:18 pm

    I agree with most everyone (except “Anon”. Really? Tell people to happily wait in patience while a company bypasses those who invested the initial large price tag to get the “Best” phone possible? Wow… Troll anyone?)
    Everyone with a valid comment is correct, the problem is we aren’t going to make a difference to Moto or Ver-Grifton by threatening to take our business or phones elsewhere. And unfortunately the “Bionic Owners Group” is too small to make a dent in the massive profits both companies are enjoying from our generosity. They both have plenty of suckers lining up to take the fid in the dark place.
    I was fortunate to snap a Bionic up when Vergrifton was “giving” them away free, bought the LapDock for $50 and kept my Unlimited Plan with the 4G upgrade at the same price. I feel fortunate that I got a very solid and great phone and accessories for a great price, and GingerBread was what I was used to on my Incredible. I would have been content to stay on GB IF VERGRIFTON AND MOTO DIDN’T MAKE A COMMITMENT TO PROVIDE ICS!!!!!! Therein lies the crux of the current outrage. A promise was made, timelines were published and now instead of the promised goods being delivered we are left in the dark. I know that there is plenty of weasel lawyer language buried in the update pages for both companies that covers the “possible revisions to this timeline”, but even with weasel language it feels like a breach of contract. I’m not a lawyer, but if a lawyer were to weigh in on the possibility of filing a Class Action Suit against the companies I would opt in. Big, expensive lawsuits would make a dent in their profits and generate far more negative publicity that we ever could on forums.
    I am still in love with my Bionic. It operates great on GingerBread, and going from 3G to 4G is awesome and quite a powerful upgrade. I just want Moto and Vergrifton to either deliver the upgrade promised or provide a clear response to Bionic owners answering: When will we get it, What is the cause of delay, Who is responsible (and both companies blaming each other is not acceptable for an answer) and How are they going to compensate/make it up to Bionic owners for their inability to fulfill the promise made.

  18. Ed

    08/23/2012 at 1:39 pm

    This situation is ridiculous and totally un-professional. Droid Bionic owners were promised the ICS upadate and now we do not know if we will ever recieve it. This will be my last Motorola device and Verizon contract.

  19. Beastetius

    08/23/2012 at 5:18 pm

    Despite my disappointment over the whole ICS ordeal, I am still satisfied with my Bionic. It is truly a solid phone for my purposes: calendar sync, email, text messaging, GPS navigation (I have car dock), G+ and web browsing, and the occasional phone call or two.

    I totally understand why people are upset re: data connectivity sucking on this phone; however, for me, I primarily connect via wifi at work and home because I am not on the unlimited data plan. The only time I get flustered is when I go outside for a smoke break at work & would love nothing more than surf the net for a few minutes. If I don’t stand in the same exact spot every day for this, I cannot hold a connection. I work near a State Capitol, so it is not a lack of VZW coverage — my Bionic apparently just can’t connect very well.

    For that reason, I would love to see the ICS upgrade roll out. While the other little things are great, such as a different interface, etc., I am a more practical person. I value function more than beauty. The Bionic functions perfectly (minus data connectivity!)

  20. Dan

    08/23/2012 at 6:57 pm

    Overall, I do like my bionic … but have been so thoroughly disgusted by this ICS upgrade fiasco that not only is it making me a firm “anti-motorola” customer, sadly it’s also making me reconsider my customer loyalty for android. It’s so fragmented with different devices running the operating system differently from others and updates not coming out for everyone if at all. I’ve been a staunch opponent of all things iOS, but now I’m starting to believe the iPhone 5 will be my next smartphone.

  21. Justin

    08/23/2012 at 11:31 pm

    It’s the same story from all the impatient owners of this device as all the impatient owners of my other device the Motorola Droid RAZR maxx, but Bionic owners have even less of a reason to be so frustrated, except for the fact that the RAZR and RAZR maxx used questionable marketing techniques to help sell (ICS Upgrade Ready listed on all documentation). People got very very upset that the update took so long, and some more were upset when it finally rolled out and surprise: it’s not that different. Sure it fixes things and makes some improvements, but all in all it is still the same device so the idea that a software update will all of a sudden make the device top tier is just inflated. The fact that they are even still working on an update rather than trying to push people towards newer devices should speak more than the fact that the update hasn’t come out yet. If anyone with knowledge took the time to try out some of the leaks rather than just complaining that they can’t have their ice cream yet they would see that there are obvious bugs, and the cause for delay is that each device reacts differently to the software and they need to be sure that when they roll it out to the masses that the phones will still work and work correctly. People should be happy that they would rather get it right then put out garbage.

  22. Sonny

    08/24/2012 at 6:43 am

    So glad that Adam loves his iPhone, iPad and Nexus….how much is he really invested into truly forming a logical opinion about Motorola’s products? I think he creates these useless and tiresome posts solely in order to show up in searches on Google. I could write a blog like this as well…Day 1 – Droid Bionic ICS update delayed. Day 2- Droid Bionic ICS updated is still delayed. Day 3 – Bionic owners tired and contemplating suicide because their ICS update is delayed…..Day 50 – Droid Bionic ICS update is delayed and Owners are extra upset because Nexus 7 revealed…Day 100 – Bionic ICS update delayed and Owners accept waiting another day


  23. Wolf

    08/24/2012 at 10:19 am

    Maybe Motorola made a typo and meant to say ‘early Q4’ on the update schedule.

  24. kitt0420

    08/24/2012 at 2:55 pm

    I’m as upset as the rest of you, though I can temper this with some understanding of the tech world and their timelines.

    The best thing Motorola can do at this point is skip this phone ahead to jellybean. There’s about .05% chance of that happening…but it would go a long way to cooling customer sentiment. At this point, Motorola is just a division of Google…when this phone launched, it wasn’t. Make it right Google!

  25. Marc

    08/24/2012 at 5:17 pm

    The Bionic has always had connectivity issues and I suspect that these issues are at the heart of the delay in getting ICS out. Perhaps it’s related to something in the hardware that isn’t present in all the other phones. If that’s the case then ICS may not even fix the connectivity issue when and if it does come out.

  26. Todd Couvillon

    08/25/2012 at 4:05 am

    ICS IS IN THE WAY. I was encountering an issue with no service account (I just recently rooted) and last night while working on it I found that an ICS update was ready for download OTA. So I began to prepare made a fresh recovery backup then went to download poof it was gone. But this is a sure sign that ICS is close. Verizon is working on it. Wild rather have a delayed update than one that messes up my phone.
    The Couv

    • Mark Menditto

      08/25/2012 at 7:13 am

      You actually saw an ICS OS OTA notice through your phone settings (about phone / check for systems update)?

      • Todd Couvillon

        08/25/2012 at 7:17 am

        Yes. I don’t remember the numbers but it was ICS

        • Ron

          08/25/2012 at 6:07 pm

          Uh, that doesn’t sound like ICS, which is Android 4.0 (and generally phones getting it are getting 4.0.4). It wouldn’t even say ICS

  27. jim

    08/25/2012 at 8:43 pm

    I got tired of waiting and just downloaded off the internet and put it on my phone, and its stable so i dont understand what the hold up is. I’m running ics 4.04 version 6.7.232 if you go to .235 you cant go back to earlier versions. There is also the original .2233 i think that one had few minor bugs. You have to be on .905 before you upgrade

  28. Richard

    08/25/2012 at 8:51 pm

    Dear Valued Customer,

    Thanks for your response.

    I am very sorry about any confusion. I have already escalated the concern regarding the incorrect information on the website.

    Be assured that we are doing our best to be able to release the update the soonest time possible.

    We hope that you find this information useful and we look forward to assisting you in the future.

    For information about Motorola products and services, please visit us at

    Thank you for contacting Motorola e-mail support.

    Best Regards, Jingky Customer By Email (Valued Customer) 08/25/2012 04:27 PM Then why does ur web site say early q3 this is not early q3 now it is almost the end of q3 please get ur facts straight. On Aug 25,2012 4:56 PM,”Motorola Global Reply” wrote:

  29. chowrunner

    08/25/2012 at 10:56 pm

    Thank you Motorola, for being professional on Droid Bionic’s update to Ice Cream Sandwich!!! It sad to see Motorola leaving their customers in the dark!! I have been patiently waiting for the update, but now I am upset!!!!!!!!!! I am never buying another Motorola smartphone again!! Google made a mistake in purchasing Motorola!

  30. jdowns06

    08/28/2012 at 12:40 pm

    As a Droid Bionic owner, I am frustrated as well. However, with Google’s acquisition of Motorola, I’m not jumping ship yet. Google has promised that Motorola will now be releasing significantly fewer devices, which should mean better support for each one as well as very timely updates since Google also owns Android. With all 3 in one family, the quality should skyrocket.

    • BMC

      09/01/2012 at 10:41 am

      Agreed, jdowns06…

  31. Matthew

    09/01/2012 at 10:34 am

    I like my bionic, been using it a lot, but when I get jerked around and feel like I’m stuck with the ‘redheaded stepchild’ yeah, I’m going to be looking elsewhere next year.

  32. bill

    09/01/2012 at 8:36 pm

    it will take google a lot of time to undue the damage motorola and verizon have caused. both names are off my list. next upgrade will not be with either. have been loyal to motorola and verizon for over 20 years. continual lies make me lose all trust and loyalty.

  33. chuck

    09/02/2012 at 7:05 pm

    This is the reason I got rid of my HTC Thunderbolt. I thought I was getting a better phone with better support. What I got was a better phone with the same sorry support that angered me when I was an HTC customer. I’ll be switching to Windows Phone 8 in the next couple of months. I am just sick of Android fragmentation period.

  34. Rob

    09/03/2012 at 9:57 am

    This will for sure be my last Motorola device, been waiting for this update forever. With the iphone coming out, might be time to think seriously about a change.

  35. Marvin Moonbeam

    09/03/2012 at 10:16 am

    I suspect you’ve got it all wrong. As we speak, there is probably a room of panicked developers slaving in a room, working overtime to get this release to you thankless brats. You should be applauding Verizon for having the integrity to wait until the bugs are fixed instead of caving into you whining twits. It should be obvious that they have encountered unanticipated technical hurdles that are not easy to overcome. The update will be ready when it’s ready. Why would you possibly expect them to announce another unrealistic target date. Take a deep breath. Have a cup of tea. Take a nice long walk in the country. Read a book (if you still know how). These are dark times, but humanity will overcome. Be strong, mobile warriors!

    • Richard

      09/03/2012 at 1:03 pm

      Blow it out ur ass ass hole. Verizon is a bunch of fucking ass holes that don’t give a damn about the people who buy there damn phones.

  36. Sam T Snerd

    09/04/2012 at 5:41 am

    Richard – you have a way with words. Real nice! I’ve had my Bionic for about a year with no real issues… and not sure why ICS would make it SO MUCH better than it is now, which is pretty f’ing good by the way! Of course I wouldn’t mind having ICS soon but it aint gonna kill me or ruin my life if I have to wait a while longer. So Richard, keep your stupid insults to yourself!

  37. Darko

    09/04/2012 at 6:57 am

    Well I have had the same data drop problems since day one. This phone is not what was promised by Verizon and Motorola. Each time I complained Verizon assured me the fix was coming soon. Meanwhile we are paying our bill for inadequate service chasing that dangling carrot. They are the guilty party in this dispute period. Take care of your clients before they are plaintiffs!

  38. Robert Brown Sr.

    09/07/2012 at 2:47 pm

    motorola and verizon should be shame of themselves, they don’t care. i’ve bought all Motorola phones, but no, I’m going to tell all my friends not to anything to with both companies a i will put this statement on Youtube

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