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  Reply # 1042187 12-May-2014 12:28
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*Nope, I'm an idiot. It's been confirmed.

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  Reply # 1042219 12-May-2014 12:52
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Don't know about Samsung, but I do know it's possible to convert some HTC phones (so far, HTC One M7 and M8 I think) into GPE version, although it would be a technically challenged procedure for majority of the users.

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  Reply # 1042350 12-May-2014 14:42
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Not all S3's in NZ have been updated to 4.3. I unfortunately have the i9305 LTE version and am still stuck on 4.1. I'm glad to see Samsung will (eventually) update this phone to 4.4 but I wouldn't put any money on seeing it this side of Xmas.

Samsung phones were bought so that we would have replacement handsets available for the 3 year life of the phone contract. Try buying a new HTC One X now (equivalent phone that was available when we were testing). So they get points for maintaining a reasonable model life. But I will be recommending a different manufacturer in 18 months based on the speed of software updates. Pity we can't get GPE phones in NZ.

Note: It's a work phone so installing custom ROMs is verboten.

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  Reply # 1042541 12-May-2014 18:04
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mckenndk: Updates is a sore point with Android when you have Carriers in the way, Wish every manufacture would just go the Apple/Google way and push updates out without the need for the middleman or middleman bloatware.

It's not just the carriers. The proliferation of low-cost phones made by the likes of Samsung are a huge support overhead, because each one is different in some way and requires its own development, testing, etc.

The slowness of updates is also a risk for phone owners. A large proportion of Android phones contain some version of OpenSSL, and any device released the last year or 2 probably has a version that's affected by the Heartbleed bug. The bug works both ways, so a malicious server could read all sorts of info from the memory of the app making the connection. This bug can only be fixed by a software update, which means that millions of devices are probably susceptible.

siyuan: Don't know about Samsung, but I do know it's possible to convert some HTC phones (so far, HTC One M7 and M8 I think) into GPE version, although it would be a technically challenged procedure for majority of the users.

Samsung's S4 can definitely be changed to a GPE version, and I believe that it's an easier process than with HTC. All you need are Samsung's USB drivers, a copy of Odin (Samsung's own firmware flashing tool), and the correct firmware. The only possible problem is a locked bootloader, but all phones sold new in NZ (even parallel imports) come with the bootloader unlocked.

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  Reply # 1042967 13-May-2014 12:28
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I wonder how many people even know or actually care about lack of updates?  I mentioned to a guy here at work with an S3 mini and his response was it works fine as it is.  I suspect that would cover the vast majority. 

 

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  Reply # 1043014 13-May-2014 13:29
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I think it is mainly a geek thing. Most people buy a phone and use it as is. IOS has soured us on phones that don't get updateslaughing.




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  Reply # 1043096 13-May-2014 15:42

One of the factors to consider here is that updates are more than just the ability for the hardware to support it. The entrenched userbase does not expect to have to factory reset their devices every time an update is released, nor do they expect to lose features for the sake of an OS version boost that may not be important to them. It's a shame that the i9300's 1GB of RAM seems to be the crunch point as the 2GB i9305 is still on track.

If it is indeed not possible to retain the existing user experience with a Kitkat update for a device with four cores & 1GB of RAM (Even after they reclaimed some of the RAM reserved for the camera in previous kernel changes), then quietly releasing an update package savvy users can sideload with a factory reset would be a nice option for those interested in Kitkat. Sony did this for a few devices with Ice Cream Sandwich, if memory serves.


mckenndk:
Updates is a sore point with Android when you have Carriers in the way, Wish every manufacture would just go the Apple/Google way and push updates out without the need for the middleman or middleman bloatware.

With the Google Edition phones are they just the US models as i have not seen them available outside of the states so there might be problems with some frequencies here, especially 4G?


This is a bit of a misconception driven by the primarily US-based tech media, and not generally true outside of embedded markets like the US, Japan, & Korea where networks have custom handsets/hardware due to their relatively unique/obscure frequencies.

Operator testing takes all of a week, if that - after this, it's down to the manufacturer to push the updates. It's not operators standing in the way of rollouts, at least not in the NZ market. :)

As for the GPE devices, aside from the Moto G, they are all US market hardware which = a bad time on local networks for 3G support & no joy whatsoever with 4G support (Although that may not be the case for the GPE M8 - but the US variant does not support band 28 for future-proofing depending on how important that is to you).




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  Reply # 1044916 14-May-2014 16:43
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Here's a custom 4.4 ROM for S3 - not suitable for daily use yet. XDA link. This will void your warranty.




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  Reply # 1044986 14-May-2014 17:47
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timmmay: Here's a custom 4.4 ROM for S3 - not suitable for daily use yet. XDA link. This will void your warranty.


It wont void your warranty any more then any other rom or rooting would :) remember the s3 doesnt have knox

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  Reply # 1045005 14-May-2014 18:00
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Yeah, shouldn't void a hardware warranty, but if you root and flash a rom you'd have more trouble getting support unless it was a simple "power button doesn't work" type fault.




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  Reply # 1047368 18-May-2014 10:02
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Glad to see 4.3 came out yesterday for the VNZ i9305.

I agree that the people who watch the updates are in the minority of phone users. Most of the people at work just want the phones to not crash or drop calls (these would be the two most common complaints at work). But I was asked about a Galaxy Gear watch and had to explain it wouldn't work with that version on the S3 as it hadn't been updated yet. That was what he cared about, using new features, rather than what version of android was on his phone. Are there any features in 4.4 that i9300 owners will miss out on?

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  Reply # 1047435 18-May-2014 14:01
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NotReally: Glad to see 4.3 came out yesterday for the VNZ i9305.

I agree that the people who watch the updates are in the minority of phone users. Most of the people at work just want the phones to not crash or drop calls (these would be the two most common complaints at work). But I was asked about a Galaxy Gear watch and had to explain it wouldn't work with that version on the S3 as it hadn't been updated yet. That was what he cared about, using new features, rather than what version of android was on his phone. Are there any features in 4.4 that i9300 owners will miss out on?


you make some good points especially about the Gear. As has been said many times Android is always going to be an issue with updates and to a degree you can see the dilemma manufacturers have in supporting older devices. Samsung are in a worse position because of how many they produce which is quite annoying.

I don't have those issues as I've always flashed the latest custom Roms' but understand issues with business's doing that however maybe its about having people that understand and control the flashing of the phones so you can flash the latest stock Rom at least but I'm sure there is something that people won't like about that. 




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