Samsung all but guarantees no one will update to Android 40

first_imgUnless you bought a Samsung Galaxy Nexus, you’re either just now enjoying Android 4.0 or waiting for the update to come through on your device. If you’ve purchased a device within the last year, the chances are good you won’t be waiting too much longer.In many cases, the Android 4.0 update will happen “Over The Air”. This means you will get a notification that there is an update available on your phone, and when you tell it to, the phone will download and apply it. Some of us, particularly the owners of the Samsung Galaxy Note or Galaxy S2, aren’t offered this convenience. Samsung is forcing their users to return to their computers in order to gain access to the update.The news came out earlier today from AT&T that several devices on their network were ready for an update. The Samsung Galaxy Note was among them, but it was clear that this update was not going to be delivered automatically. Like the Galaxy S2, in order to get the Android 4.0 update you needed to connect your phone to your computer and use a piece of software downloaded from Samsung. Kies (pronounced “keys”) is a legacy piece of software Samsung has been using for years to allow devices to sync data back and forth with a computer. The bottom line, no matter how Samsung tried to enhance the software, is that this is no longer something users want or need. Nevertheless, if you want the update being offered by Samsung, you have to use Kies.Samsung has been promoting the link (www.samsung.com/us/attgalaxynote/update) as the place to visit for the update. When you go to that link, you are re-directed to a FAQ page covering Android 4.0 update for the Note. The website gives you a page and a half of information about the update, such as features and benefits, before giving you a big blue button that says “Download Samsung Kies”. This button is a link to yet another site, specifically for Kies. At the bottom of this page there is a link in a small blue font that says “Download Kies” for Windows and for Mac. Apparently you are out of luck if you run Linux.At this point you finally start downloading the Kies software. It’s not a terribly large file, but it will take a couple of minutes to download. When finished, you need to complete the install process. This consumes a few more minutes, but ends in a box that allows you to launch the software. When you open Kies for the first time, a notification pops up that warns you there is an update available for Kies. Yeah, an update for that software you just got from Samsung 5 minutes ago. You should always run the latest version of Kies, so you accept the update and wait a few more minutes for the app to restart.Once Kies is actually installed and running the latest version, all you need to do is connect your phone to the computer. Kies should automatically detect the phone and search for an update, at which point you are alerted that Kies would like to download and install Android 4.0 on your phone. When you select OK, the file will download before Kies checks to make sure your phone is ready to be upgraded before proceeding. If your phone currently has less than 50% battery life, the upgrade will stop, and you will be asked to charge your phone. Otherwise, you’ll be ready to install.The installation process for an update via Kies looks pretty strange. The phone will reboot, you’ll see a few screens you have likely never seen before, and the phone will eventually reboot again. When it reboots for the final time you will see a message in a cyan blue color informing you that the apps on your phone are currently being upgraded. Depending on how many apps you have, this will take around five minutes. Once this is complete, you are ready to disconnect your phone and go on with your life.Why did all of this need to happen? There’s no confirmation, but it seems to me that the culprit here is AT&T. If the update were to come Over The Air, there’s a high risk that AT&T’s mobile bandwidth would be used to grab the update. If that’s the case, I don’t know of a single consumer that would be alright with having to pay potential data overages for an update to their phone, so AT&T would have to offer this update out of pocket. By using Kies, users have to download the file using their home Internet connection, and not AT&T’s mobile network. Because of this, I think it is incredibly unlikely that most of Samsung’s AT&T customers will even bother updating their devices.last_img

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