A new report from Forbes suggests that the launch of the Samsung Galaxy S10 might mark the end of fragmented Android updates for owners of the South Korean company’s flagship phones, right in time for the Galaxy series’ 10th anniversary.
In past years, many owners felt that the worst part of owning an Android phone was the process of upgrading the device’s operating system. Not only did updates come sooner for some models than they did for others, they also tended to roll out in phases, which meant waiting a couple of days, or even a week or more, for the rollout to be completed.
The launch of Google’s Android One and Project Treble initiatives worked to change this, as several Android phone makers were onboard with the tech company’s plans to put an end to Android fragmentation. As Forbes pointed out, Samsung has long been a notable outlier as far as both projects are concerned, due to its focus on its user interfaces.
That might change soon with the Samsung Galaxy S10, according to Forbes, as the company appears to be quietly working to make the Android software update process much faster for device owners. This was uncovered by Dutch tech blog GalaxyClub, which cited information from the GFXBench database indicating that Samsung waited less than a month before testing Google’s latest operating system, Android 9.0 Pie, on the Galaxy S9 Plus.
Forbes’ Gordon Kelly wrote that this is an important development because Samsung only started beta testing Android 8.0 Oreo on the Galaxy S8 in November, 2017, three months after the platform’s initial release, and waited until March of this year to roll out the software to Galaxy S8 owners. That, he added, happened one week after Android 9.0 Pie’s first public beta version was released.
As proof of the leak’s legitimacy, Kelly added that the GFXBench’s description of the update as an “invalid Android Samsung ss Edition” was a natural reaction of the benchmarking software to Samsung’s “heavily customized” UI for the Galaxy S9 Plus and other devices.
While Kelly noted that the possibility of fast and prompt Android updates for Samsung Galaxy S10 users represents a major upgrade for the Galaxy S line, he stressed that the company has “little choice” at this point in the game. With Google’s Project Treble working to separate stock Android software from third-party user interfaces and Android One focusing on the rollout of said unadulterated versions of Android and non-staggered software updates, Samsung has reached a juncture where it has to change with the times, especially since Galaxy S9 sales were considerably poorer than usual, as Mashable pointed out in July.
As recapped by Digital Trends, the Samsung Galaxy S10 is expected to come with a variety of selling points and specification upgrades once it launches early next year, most notably, in-display fingerprint readers for all models, a full 3D camera, improved battery life, and 5G support.