Google's newly announced Android 4.1 Jelly Bean operating system may be making its way to two of the most popular Samsung devices this fall, lining up with Apple's iOS 6 release date.
The Samsung Galaxy S3, which is the company's flagship smartphone of the year, and its Galaxy Note gadget may be getting the upgrade as soon as this autumn, Sam Mobile reports. The news comes from an insider source that has been correct about the Ice Cream Sandwich updates for Galaxy mobile phones and tablets, the website says.
Test firmwares for the Galaxy S3 have passed testing successfully, and the company is now working on a public version of the first Jelly Bean update for this device. The release date for Android 4.1 is waiting for Google's approval to officially roll out, according to Sam Mobile. The situation is the same for the Galaxy Note, and although testing has been successful there is "still no official word" from Samsung.
As for the Galaxy S3's predecessor, the report indicates that the Galaxy S2 is still in the testing phase for the Jelly Bean update. However, the source has said that although no time frame has been specified, the Galaxy S2 will definitely receive the Android 4.1 software since it is still a popular device in the mobile market. If the Jelly Bean rollout for this device somehow falls through, users will receive some type of "value pack," but no details have been mentioned on what this offer will entail.
"If Samsung decides at the last moment not to update the Galaxy S II, all Galaxy S II owners will get a value pack update," the Samsung-themed website wrote. "But so far there is no reason not to update the Galaxy S II to Android 4.1."
Samsung will be unveiling its Galaxy Note 2 "phablet" device on August 29 at a Samsung Unpacked event, similar to the way the Galaxy S3 was revealed. The source that spoke to Sam Mobile said that it is unclear if this device will get Android 4.1 Jelly Bean out of the box or if it will come equipped with Ice Cream Sandwich Android 4.0.
This isn't the first time rumors have sparked about the Galaxy S2 and S3 phones getting the Jelly Bean update. At the end of July, Sam Mobile also reported that these smartphones were in the testing phases for the update, and speculated that the recently announced operating system would roll out in August or September. Previous rumors have also indicated that the Galaxy S2 would not get the Jelly Bean software, but Samsung has said nothing to confirm this statement. A report from early July, just days after Jelly Bean was announced, said that hardware limitations would prevent the S2 from supporting Android 4.1, but cited no sources to back up this claim.
Google unveiled its new "buttery smooth" Jelly Bean operating system at its I/E developer's conference at the end of June, and has since rolled it out to its line of Nexus 7 tablets, the Galaxy Nexus, Galaxy Nexus S and Motorola Xoom. It is expected to launch on other high-end devices in the coming months, but no announcements have been made.
The Jelly Bean software boasts a host of features that were not available on the previous Ice Cream Sandwich operating system, including the following:
Google Now: This is Google's iteration of a digital personal assistant. Google Now draws data about its users, and provides search results before a search is even performed based on previous entries. It will also create cards for users based on weather, traffic, places and more.
Project Butter: The Android 4.1 software is said to offer the smoothest interface of any Android operating system yet, an incentive known as "Project Butter." Scrolling and responsiveness are reportedly faster than in previous treat-themed updates.
Notifications and Widgets: Users can expand notifications and perform social functions such as replying to a tweet or sharing a photo through this drop down menu. Widgets are easier to place on the home screen, as items automatically move to create a space for a new icon. Launching and exiting apps are also quicker due to the smoother performance of the overall operating system.
Camera and Gallery: A slight upgrade allows Jelly Bean users to swipe between the camera and gallery app seamlessly.
Keyboard and Voice Input: The keyboard for Android 4.1 Jelly Bean is more responsive, and users can add shortcuts to their dictionary to create their own shorthand terms. Voice input can be used to dictate notes and messages, and the feature can now be used offline as well.
A recent report has said that with its debut Jelly Bean is present on 0.8 percent of Android devices. This is a decent margin considering it has yet to be rolled out to the flagship Android smartphone on the market. Check out the video below to get a better grasp of what Jelly Bean is like on the Nexus 7 tablet.