If we had a dime for each time we have now talked about and praised how Samsung’s software program replace coverage leave everyone else in the Android space in the dust, we might, effectively, have lots of dimes.
And may you blame us? Along with promising 4 years of OS upgrades for some units, Samsung has additionally been channelling its inner Usain Bolt this yr with the rollout of the Android 13 and One UI 5.0 replace. It’s all been mighty spectacular and made us marvel the place Samsung might go from right here.
Overlook third-party producers – Samsung has a stronger replace coverage than even Google, which makes the core working system. Google solely ensures three main Android OS updates for Pixel smartphones whereas Samsung guarantees four, and on paper, the latter is the clear winner.
However is Samsung’s replace coverage all the time stronger than Google’s, particularly in terms of each firms’ flagship smartphones? Properly, the reply is not any, at the least for flagship Galaxy smartphones launched within the second half of every yr.
Because the Galaxy Observe collection received canned, Samsung has been launching new Galaxy Z Fold and Galaxy Z Flip flagships within the second half of every yr. And because the 4 years of OS upgrades solely apply to flagship Galaxy telephones (and a few mid-rangers) launched in 2021 and later, Samsung’s simply getting began.
However because it stands proper now, Google’s Pixel smartphones don’t precisely fall behind simply because the corporate guarantees one much less yr of main Android updates. And the reason being easy: Google’s Pixel flagships launch with the newest model of Android annually, whereas Samsung launches its foldable flagships with an year-old model of the working system.
Pixel telephones launch with the newest Android model, which is a vital element
The Pixel 7 and the Galaxy Z Fold 4, for instance, will each finish their life on Android 16. Why? As a result of the Pixel 7 comes with Android 13 out of the field and the Galaxy Z Fold 4 comes with Android 12. The previous will get three main OS updates and the latter will get 4, and also you don’t want superior math expertise to understand that the top end result shall be the truth that each smartphones shall be operating Android 16 as soon as correct software program assist for them ends.
It mainly boils right down to one thing we’ve complained about earlier than: Samsung wants to begin placing the newest model of Android on flagships launched within the again half of the yr, as a substitute of the identical model that it makes use of within the first half.
Proper now, that isn’t the case. Solely the Galaxy S line correctly advantages from Samsung’s replace coverage when in comparison with the newest high-end Pixel smartphone obtainable available on the market when a brand new Galaxy S flagship is launched. The foldables, or no matter Samsung decides to launch within the closing few months, find yourself getting the identical degree of assist, although Samsung’s coverage sounds higher on paper.
Actually, one might argue that relying on while you purchase a brand new smartphone, the distinction in long-term software program assist between Galaxy S and Pixel units as effectively. For instance, the Galaxy S23 will come operating Android 13 out of the field whereas the subsequent Pixel lineup shall be operating Android 14 on day one, so all of them could have the identical Android model as soon as they cease getting main OS updates.
Fortunately, Samsung’s function rely is usually a step forward of inventory Android
There’s, nonetheless, a shiny aspect: Samsung telephones might not technically get extra OS updates than Google’s Pixel units, however the additions the Korean large makes to Android via its One UI pores and skin imply that Galaxy flagships all the time have extra options the person can make the most of.
Many options even debut on Samsung units first. Take the system-wide darkish mode, for instance. Samsung introduced it to Galaxy smartphones and tablets with Android 9 Pie; Google, alternatively, introduced a system-wide darkish mode with Android 10.
So, yeah, Samsung’s received a transparent benefit in terms of the variety of built-in software program options. And let’s not overlook that whereas Samsung might not beat Google on the subject of updates, it does have a lead in opposition to different Android cellphone producers, and I might say that’s triumph sufficient.