Android updates can be a sensitive topic for Android users across the board. In past, we’ve seen flagship-class devices behind left behind for reasons unknown and some entry level devices don’t even make it into the update plans. However, in recent years, efforts by Android owner, Google, have made sure that devices see updates for a predetermined duration of time. More often than nought, this has led to devices being guaranteed updates for at least the first two years of their existence. The only thing that has been a little bit of a wild card has been the time it takes for each of the manufacturers to release their updates. We’ve seen companies like Moto (sic Lenovo) say that they will be releasing the security updates every quarter instead of Google’s monthly frequency.
So what’s the update situation like this past month?
The South Korean company has reviewed the manuals for their 2016 flagship, the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge in preparation for the rollout of the Android Nougat (7.1.1) update later this month. The update and review come after Samsung’s Galaxy Beta program which wrapped up its open beta test towards the end of last December after a series of beta releases. In fact, Samsung has confirmed that the update will be coming later this month. However, the timeline we’re talking about seems to apply to their release in the U.S.. That said, we should be seeing the release for Asia and other regions in the weeks following the U.S. rollout for unlocked devices. Some devices have already been receiving the update.
The need for Samsung to rewrite its manuals seems to point to the updating of information for the update. While the contents of the updates aren’t clear as of yet, it looks like the update was mainly to include the many features in Nougat which include an AI assistant (Google Assistant) and other new features such as Daydream VR and the like.
In addition to this major update, it looks like the January Security patch is already making its way to Samsung’s “major flagship devices” likely the Galaxy S7, S7edge and Note5. This patch not only includes the update bulletin by Google but also patches for 28 vulnerabilities unique to Samsung devices.
Sony has already rolling out its update for Android Nougat 7.0 to its lineup of devices including the Sony Xperia X. However, Nougat 7.1.1 is well on its way to the devices as well. The new update which was released for daredevil users who want the latest and greatest even in beta under the Xperia Concept program. The new update carrying the build number 38.3.A.0.41 brings features which Sony loyalists will have been waiting for. This includes a faster camera application, a restart button in the power menu and Remote Play for the PS4 in addition to the December Security Update. Remote Play apparently has no support for the Dual Shock controllers as of yet.
With Sony’s recently improved update schedule, we can expect the Xperia series to get the Nougat 7.1.1 update in the coming weeks.
Moto (Lenovo) announced that Android 7.0 Nougat will be coming to the Moto G (4th Gen), Moto G Play (4th Gen), Moto G Plus (4th Gen), Moto X Pure Edition (3rd Gen), Moto X Style, Moto X Play, Moto X Force, Droid Turbo 2, Droid Maxx 2, Moto Z, Moto Z Droid, Moto Z Force Droid, Moto Z Play, Moto Z Play Droid and Nexus 6.
Initial rollouts have begun for the Moto G4 Plus in Brazil while the official rollout announcement for the Moto Z family globally was made on November 22, 2016.
Google’s Pixel flagships have already received the 7.1.1 Nougat update for over a month. However, one device which was notably left out of their update then is now getting the much-awaited update. The Motorola made Nexus 6, is finally getting the update which was released to other, more current Nexus and Pixel devices. The update should be coming to users via over the air (OTA) update or you can opt to download the update package from Google’s Android Developers website and install via the Android recovery system.
In addition to the 7.1.1 update for the Nexus 6, Google has begun rolling out their January Security Bulletin for the Pixel, Pixel XL, Pixel C, Nexus 6P, Nexus 5X, Nexus Player and Nexus 9 (Wi-Fi).
HTC devices have already been receiving the Nougat update. According to the Vice-President of HTC USA, Mo Versi’s Twitter, the update has been available since Thanksgiving (November 2016) for the HTC 10. The HTC One M9’s update has been available since December 9th.
Happy Thanksgiving! HTC 10 unlocked owners will receive Nougat OS update tomorrow morning! Enjoy!
— Mo Versi (@moversi) November 24, 2016
Huawei & Honor
Huawei will be rolling out the Android 7.0 Nougat update in a major update to their skin, Emotion UI (EMUI). EMUI 5.0 will bring a new artificial intelligence engine which will learn your app usage habits and optimise the Kirin processors to load the apps faster and allow them to run smoother and more efficiently. In addition, Huawei has overhauled the power and battery management system of EMUI.
Huawei has announced the major update for the Huawei Mate 8, Huawei P9, Huawei P9 Plus, Huawei P9 Lite, Huawei Nova and Huawei Nove Plus. Expect the update to begin its rollout sometime in Q1 (January – March) 2017.
Honor, on the other hand, has only officially announced the update for the Honor 8 and the Honor 6X. The former will receive the update in February while the latter is set for a Q2 (April – June) 2017 release. There have been reports of the Honor 5C’s beta programme rolling out to beta testers in India.
The Android 7.0 Nougat update has been deployed to the LG G5. There have been no word on other LG devices getting the update.