The unveiling of the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 has prompted Samsung to discuss several of its older devices and whether they will receive an update to Android 4.3 Jelly Bean.
While the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 will introduce the Android 4.3 operating system to Samsung, many owners have been anxious to know when their devices will see an update from older versions of Android Jelly Bean.
Following the Galaxy Note 3 unveiling, Samsung announced that the Samsung Galaxy S4 and Samsung Galaxy S3 will receive Android 4.3 updates in October. The Korean manufacturer was not specific about its plans for the Samsung Galaxy Note 2, but it did mention during its Unpacked event on Wednesday that the support software for older devices including the Galaxy S4, Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2 for the newly unveiled Galaxy Gear smart watch will soon roll out.
Since Android 4.3 Jelly Bean includes Bluetooth Low Energy connectivity, which allows handsets to connect to external accessories, many expect that all of these older devices will need Android 4.3 in order to be compatible with Galaxy Gear. This indicates that the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 should also be in the running for an Android 4.3 update, especially considering that it still runs the same software it released with in September 2012.
Samsung Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2 owners have been especially anxious to see their handsets update to a new Android version. Both devices run various iterations of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. Rumors have proposed that the Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2 would skip Android 4.2.2 in favor of Android 4.3, and several clues from mobile carriers have backed up these claims. Many argue that both Android 4.2.2 and Android 4.3 are such minor device updates that it makes sense to update older devices directly to Android 4.3 in order to roll out a more substantial update. HTC has notably announced that its HTC One will update directly to Android 4.3 from Android 4.1 for this very reason.
The Samsung Galaxy S4, running Android 4.2.2, was the first Samsung device to ship with that system. On the market since late April, Samsung Galaxy S4 may be the first of the three devices to see Android 4.3. The Google Edition Samsung Galaxy S4 currently runs Android 4.3, which some think could speed up the system’s rollout onto standard Galaxy S4 handsets, since Samsung has been working with the OS for some time.
While the Samsung Galaxy S4 and Galaxy S3 should update in October, many also note that the international models of those devices will likely receive Android 4.3 first, while brand-specific U.S. handsets may see the update much later.
Android 4.3 Jelly Bean enhancements include restricted user profiles, Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy connectivity, OpenGL 3.0 support, a T9 dialer and updates to the notification system.
Do you think the Samsung Galaxy S4, Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2 will receive updates to Android 4.3 Jelly Bean any time soon? Let us know in the comments below.
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Fionna Agomuoh is a Technology Reporter for the International Business Times, a vegan foodie, and a lover of Electric Dance Music.