No Android 4.0 update for Galaxy S and first Galaxy Tab

Samsung has had a lot of sales success with the first Galaxy S smartphone and it released one of the first Android-based tablets with the first seven inch version of the Galaxy Tab. Unfortunately, people who own both products are going to have to be satisfied with the Android OS version they have installed on those devices

According to a post on Samsung's Korean web site, and later translated by The Verge, the Galaxy S and the Galaxy Tab simply don't have enough RAM and ROM in their hardware to accommodate the Android 4.0 update. The reason is that both have a lot of software programs that are already installed in the RAM and ROM memory, including things like the TouchWiz software, specific wireless carrier services, video calling software and more.

This is obviously a big disappointment for owners of both products but sometimes you role the dice and take your chances when purchasing a smartphone or tablet hoping that someday there will be a big software upgrade. In these two cases, there won't be any "Ice Cream Sandwich" treat for these "older" Samsung Android products.

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This scares me on why we have not gotten a Gingerbread update for the Samsung Infuse 4g. I have made up my mind that this is my first and last Samsung purchase. I am going back to HTC.

i can understand that they want to ditch those galaxy ace or anything midrange but for the previous flagship phone... they shouldn't.

i dont think that they are not giving a proper commitment for people to get galaxy S II if we all know that eventually it wont get Android 5....

ThePitt said,
they CANT handle it!. Just CANT. Not the RAM but the CPU. Even their lastest phone CANT and it has a dual-core CPU.

You really buy it?

ThePitt said,
they CANT handle it!. Just CANT. Not the RAM but the CPU. Even their lastest phone CANT and it has a dual-core CPU.

Then how comes that it runs fine on the Nexus S with a single core and 512MB?

I don't get why a lot of people are getting worked up talking about fragmentation and how it's stupid that Google or other companies don't support their products. I mean hasn't Google pretty much left Android with open-sourced code? So even if they don't officially launch the OS for a specific phone, isn't there usually someone else who helps make it possible (custom roms such as Cyanogenmod). For something that is open sourced usually means that it's up to the community to make changes possible..

xXgreatestever said,
I don't get why a lot of people are getting worked up talking about fragmentation and how it's stupid that Google or other companies don't support their products. I mean hasn't Google pretty much left Android with open-sourced code? So even if they don't officially launch the OS for a specific phone, isn't there usually someone else who helps make it possible (custom roms such as Cyanogenmod). For something that is open sourced usually means that it's up to the community to make changes possible..

That has nothing to do with the issue at hand. The problem is two fold, firstly the handset vendors fail to merge their code back into the tree in a timely manner so the result is that the battery life and optimisation isn't always equal to what came from the vendor. The second problem is that the phones are locked down so that you can only install a custom ROM if you can hack the phone - why don't these vendors provide unlocked phones? because then customers phones would last longer than 6 months (length of time before they abandon end users) thus actually have to produce something people desire rather than people buying a new one out of desperation.

dagamer34 said,
What's really sad is that the Nexus S has almost the exact same hardware minus the NFC chip. Skins ruin upgrades. =/
It is more likely the suits in management decided to not bother supporting the Galaxy S as it would be more incentive for users to update to the Galaxy S2. Maybe if enough Galaxy S owners kicked a big enough stink about it, Samsung *might* cave (like HTC did with the 2.3 update for the Desire debarkle). Plus there is always XDA, those guys will no doubt release some ICS goodness for the Galaxy S for those brave enough to root and flash their phone.

funkydude said,
Do OEM's feel Android's UI is inadequate that they need to make their own?

No they just won't to avoid the issues Windows Phone has with every phone with the same platform looking identical.

funkydude said,
Do OEM's feel Android's UI is inadequate that they need to make their own?

yes. stock android apps are functionless and ugly. especially dialer, contacts, browser, time, alarm, launcher. and android 4 brings nothing, but just new skin.

thealexweb said,

No they just won't to avoid the issues Windows Phone has with every phone with the same platform looking identical.

Not sure what this has to do with UI customization. Millions of people are satisfied with stock iPhone, stock BlackBerry, and WP has it's own customization apps. I don't see OEM's preloading those apps on WP.

thealexweb said,

No they just won't to avoid the issues Windows Phone has with every phone with the same platform looking identical.

Hardware designers sticking to hardware design?!?!!! WP++;

funkydude said,

Not sure what this has to do with UI customization. Millions of people are satisfied with stock iPhone, stock BlackBerry, and WP has it's own customization apps. I don't see OEM's preloading those apps on WP.

Microsoft won't allow them to. It's part of the contract/license for WP7.

funkydude said,
Do OEM's feel Android's UI is inadequate that they need to make their own?

UI customization has nothing to do with OEMs dropping update support.

Each, 'update', 'fix', 'patch' that comes from Google means the OEM has to fully rebuild aka recompile the ROM for the device and test it, before handing it to the carrier that also often tests it for compatibility with their network and features, etc.

Supporting Android updates is almost as expensive as having your own OS, and requires the same support and development staff to process updates.

This is why Android becomes expensive for OEMs and Carriers rather quickly, and last year was when the 2.x nightmares hit them in the wallet, and thus most devices today are sold with NO PLANNED updates whatsoever.

So you buy an Android phone, the version you bought is the only version you will have access to from most OEMs and Carriers.

The only way around this is a geek friend that can 'root' the device and install a less optimized custom ROM like Cyanogen. However, these are far from optimized, as they don't the resources to fully optimize the build for each device. This is important especially with the Linux kernel model, as all you get are generic code and drivers using a translation layer. (A lot of OEMs don't optimize or fully optimize the build either, which why there is a lot of variation in performance even on the same class hardware. Which is NOT good, as Android is already a bit heavy and slow in terms of OS models/technologies.
*This is why WP7 devices on 1st gen SnapDragon 1ghz with 512mb of RAM are still faster than an Android tablet with a dual core 1.6ghz processor and 1gb of RAM.

(Funny that when Vista *required* 512mb of RAM and didn't run well unless you had 1gb of RAM, the world called it horrible and slow and bloated. Yet Android, a freaking phone/device OS has the same requirements as Windows 7. Yet people aren't out screaming about the bloated and slow OS that it truly is.)

...and rant off.
*

MS Lose32 said,
Microsoft won't allow them to. It's part of the contract/license for WP7.

Really? This is specific to UI modifications only I guess? Got a link to this somewhere? I'm sceptical as I've seen OEM's bundle any app they want in the past.

thenetavenger said,

...

It's rare to read an informative and educating post, thank you for taking the time to make one!

coth said,

yes. stock android apps are functionless and ugly. especially dialer, contacts, browser, time, alarm, launcher. and android 4 brings nothing, but just new skin.

So you base your evaluation of Android on an old version? you do realise there have been numerous reviews so far with the vanilla installation of ICS and each reviewer has finally said: "wow, this is is the first time you can have a functional phone without additional third party software". Samsung do it for two reasons; political (someone in Samsung wanting to keep their job) and so they can justify refusing to provide support for older phones under the illusion of a 'real technical issue' when in reality it is a manufactured on by Samsung themselves.

funkydude said,
Do OEM's feel Android's UI is inadequate that they need to make their own?
Nope, you fail to understand why they do it. You are aware there is an enormous amount of Android phones out there right? if they all look the same it would be a nightmare. OEMs skin their devices to stand out from the ocean of other Android devices, to give them an edge over everyone else. If you don't like the UI then don't buy from them, it's not like there is only one OEM and if you prefer the default UI there are always the Google experience phones (Nexus range). I really don't understand why people complain so much about this.

thenetavenger said,

The only way around this is a geek friend that can 'root' the device and install a less optimized custom ROM like Cyanogen. However, these are far from optimized, as they don't the resources to fully optimize the build for each device.

For not being optimized it's kinda interesting that custom ROMs' performance beat stock ones from OEMs.
I don't know what kind of optimizations OEMs introduce (other than drivers), and I certainly doubt that carries optimize anything, considering vanilla ROMs work perfectly on their networks.

On the other hand, telling customers that they are delaying a release because of optimizations sounds a lot better than "we are pluging our custom crap software".

thenetavenger said,

(Funny that when Vista *required* 512mb of RAM and didn't run well unless you had 1gb of RAM, the world called it horrible and slow and bloated. Yet Android, a freaking phone/device OS has the same requirements as Windows 7. Yet people aren't out screaming about the bloated and slow OS that it truly is.)
*

Android 4 runs smooth on a device with about the same HW specs as a WP: the Nexus S.
It's not a perfect OS, but I don't get where all the complains about "bloat" come from.

Back in the day we even got the official 2.2 image running on the HTC Magic (a 1.5 device), with the Magic being as underpowered as it gets.

For devices that don't get official updates, custom ROMs run perfectly fine (usually better than the OEM's stock). Maybe that should hint at OEMs being the ones to blame, and not Android.

I always expected that it wouldn't be supported with [official] latest, greatest toys.
Which is why I upgrade a handset to the latest model [for free] when my contract's up for renewal

zeroomegazx said,
ROFL ROFL ROFL

SO..... (looks at his 2 year old iPad1 with iOS 5.01)..... lets talk about fragmentation kids....

Looks at my 12 year old PC with Windows 7 Ultimate... Ya, let us have this talk kiddo...


JnCoKiLLa said,
and this is the main reason Why I will never buy a single Samsung Product....HTC Only For me

And HTC is amazing with their product support. Legend anyone?

Isn't it nice to see Googles Android Update Alliance hard at work?

Oh well, we'll get a ICS in some form, be it CM or another custom rom.


but sometimes you role the dice and take your chances when purchasing a smartphone or tablet hoping that someday there will be a big software upgrade.

That's just it though, you shouldn't have to. These devices are only a bit over a year old and should be updated by Samsung as per the Update Alliance, not that such an agreement should be needed in the first place... There is no reason why these devices couldn't be updated, just a BS excuse from Samsung so they can focus on pushing their next couple of devices out in a month or two from now (At which point the Galaxy Tab 10 and Galaxy S2 is likely abandoned).

Good reason to ditch Touchwiz. After the ICS update Touchwiz is largely irrelevant although Samsung will never ditch Touchwiz.

sam232 said,
Good reason to ditch Touchwiz. After the ICS update Touchwiz is largely irrelevant although Samsung will never ditch Touchwiz.

My thoughts exactly, make it an entirely optional update that makes it clear it doesn't use touchwiz!
And apart from that a huge number of us don't have carrier crapware on our phones at all, why should we suffer?

Waiting for Onecosmics ICS 4.03 final build otherwise.

IINexusII said,
do not worry, there's already CM9 running on Galaxy S

http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1363593

Yes, because of CM I can actually get versions of Android newer than 2.1 on my phone. Thank you CM team for doing what Verizon won't.

I'm waiting for a stable version of CM9 before installing, though I am anxious for a chance to try ICS on my phone before upgrade time comes in a few months. I've heard ICS is a massive improvement over 2.x, but after the miserable experience I've had with 2.x I need to be sure that's the case. Otherwise I'm jumping ship from Android.