Samsung is updating mobiles from eight years ago that it had abandoned. there are good reasons

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Updates are one of the main weak points of Android. The early abandonment by manufacturers of their terminals has been a constant that has been tried to tackle in numerous ways, without much success. Behind the problem of fragmentation there are many causes.

In the first place, there may be laziness or lack of interest in the face of how unprofitable it is to update devices that are no longer sold. Second, there may be support and driver issues that make support impossible or very difficult. There can always be exceptions and a mood for change, but today doesn’t matter too much.

Samsung is already one of the companies that has promised updates for more years: four, starting with some 2021 models like the Galaxy S21. And yet the companyjust demonstrated that it can (partially) upgrade much older terminals to solve a problem with the GPS.

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Do you remember the Galaxy Alpha? It updates. And the Galaxy S6 and others, too

Galaxy S6

The company has sent an update that corrects a GPS problem to terminals such as the Samsung Galaxy Alpha, the Samsung Galaxy S5 Neo, Galaxy S6, S7, S8 and S9, and even some mid-range such as the 2015 Galaxy J7. Most of all of them have not been problematic terminals with GPS, unlike, for example, the original Galaxy S, which did not locate well due to a physical problem, not a software one.

Seeing the 2014 Samsung Galaxy Alpha update is a milestone. Eight years later, it is a little-remembered terminal, but it laid the foundations for the design on which the entire A family and even the Galaxy Note 4 and others were later built. It was a little sold mobile for its approach to luxury and for really standing out in little, so the fact of seeing it updated is even more surprising, because being from 2014, Samsung only updated it to a version presented that same year, Android Lollipop.

Samsung hasn’t detailed what problem the updates fix, but it’s likely they caused something inconvenient enough for them to decide they have to travel eight years back in time.

Although it seems incredible, it is not something unprecedented on smartphones. For exactly the same reason, to fix a bug related to GPS, Apple distributed updates for iOS 9 and iOS 10 in 2019. Thus, owners of iPad 2 and 3, iPad mini and iPhone 4s received iOS 9.3.6 and owners of Fourth generation iPad and iPhone 5, iOS 10.3.4.

The difference with that case is that, since Apple updates for a longer time, it was only three years since the last time Apple updated the iPhone 4s, for example. What is shared with Samsung is that, in 2019, the iPhone 4s was eight years old.

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If they have been proven to be able to upgrade for many years, why don’t they do it more?

The brand that has shown that it can support a smartphone for more years is Apple, with seven years on iPhone 6s and 6s Plus. The aforementioned case of iOS 9.3.6 or Android in terminals as old as the Galaxy Alpha could lead us to think that not only those from Cupertino with the 6s have managed to give so much time.

And it would be a tremendously wrong thought, because it is great news that a terminal is updated, to improve GPS errors, or to apply a security patch, but it has nothing to do with receiving a major update, as it would be to go from iOS 9 to iOS 10 or Android 11 to Android 12.

A minor update that does not change the version of Android or iOS does not have any complications compared to the others, which involve a lot of development and optimization work

To move from one major version to another, a manufacturer like Samsung must have drivers that allow all components to function correctly in a given version. And counting on them is not so easy.

If all the components are his, he could develop them, but many of his models depend, for example, on Qualcomm. In addition, no matter how well a terminal is optimized, it is unfeasible for hardware from almost a decade ago to run modern versions of Android or iOS well, considering how hardware has evolved since then.

What is certain is that, after updating for the last time, there have been many occasions in which the terminals have stayed forever with bugs and problems, without the manufacturers offering solutions. That kind of update, one that makes the end of support bring good things instead of slowness, is easily distributed if the manufacturer raises it. Y this Samsung case proves it.

Via | Galaxy Club, sammobile

Updates are one of the main weak points of Android. The early abandonment by manufacturers of their terminals has been…

Updates are one of the main weak points of Android. The early abandonment by manufacturers of their terminals has been…

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