Majority of Android Users Still Stuck on Gingerbread or Older Builds

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Cube

My phone runs 2.2 and I don't really care If i update they should upsate the damn thing but they dont and you can go get the OS and install it like a PC it's a stupid system.

If phone makers made it easy to update the OS as a damn PC I would but I don't have to to find a dcent rom to install and the only one I see is a hack by somebody and the camera don't work if I install it. I should not have to buy a new phone to get it since they phone i got can do it.

My xoom tablet updated to jelly bean by just clicking the button though like it should.

I would rather go out an pay like $50 and get a fricking sdcard with the new android OS on it like I do windows if that is the problem I will put up some damn money.

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Caboose

Um.. What? Android is a simple "one click install" type of upgrade. If you're locked to a specific carrier, you're at their mercy for updates. Depending on your phone, you may not get any updates past that, at which point, turn to the community.

Updates are either OTA or via the manufacturer's software (eg. Kies).

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Exquisite_Dead_Guy

Oof.
Every once in a while I have to boot up my old Galaxy Tab which is on GB and I wonder how I used to use the thing regularly. Spoiled by my S3 I suppose.

Although it was nice to be able to connect to my PC as an external drive and not this MTP shenanigans. I sure did want music file transfers to be severely capped!

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Mayhemm

Part of me wishes I was still on ICS or even GB. My Galaxy S2 does NOT perform well on Jellybean.

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Caboose

I'd look at a rooted ROM. I have an S3, and even through it ran well on stock, I've had much better performance running a different ROM. Tried a few, and I'm now on LiquidSmooth. It's very fast, and has some awesome customizations to it. It's my new favourite, making CM10 #2.

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fattymowmow

I can assure you, the reason why I'm not on JB and stuck on GB is because of my contract with my carrier. If it weren't for that, and being locked in for two years on it, I'd be rockin some JellyBean. I think a majority of those stuck on Gingerbread are in the same boat...

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Caboose

Phones, even on a contract, still only carry a 1yr warranty. If you've had it longer than that, root away. If the phone breaks, buy a new one not on a contract. That's what I did when my SGS died and I got the SGS3. Won't be going on a contract ever again. (next Android phone for me will be a Nexus)

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tony2tonez

You dont have to be. If you buy a phone our right without a contract you can just buy a new phone. Not saying that is the best method. Also you can root your phone and install 98% model of the released OS. And add many more custimizations options that even the offical OS release doenst have.

If most buy a Nexus device they usually always get the Google release. No matter what carrier its on.

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PCLinuxguy

though carriers don't normally support Google phones, (like how they bend over backwards for Apple) and if they do they make sure their bloatware and control is on it (Verizon's version of the Galaxy nexus for example). Not only that but not everyone has the budget for a $600 phone outright to not be as hindered :-( Though rooting seems to be the way to go in that case. If I was in the position to do it, I'd have gotten a Nexus 4 and a straight talk SIM to use their network and save boatloads of money, but my situation right now does not allow me to do that yet. But that's ok, I knew that going into it and have plans for when my contract is done.

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tony2tonez

In planning the same route when my contract is over. I plan on getting the unlocked Sony xperia zl and straight talk. Cant wait to root that phone as well.

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The Mac

Unfortunately, Sprint (really CDMA in general, including Verizon) doesnt allow unlocked phones on their network, so im out of luck.

Its not their fault really, the CMDA technology doesn't allow for anonymous connections.

I really want a Nexus 4.

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tony2tonez

You know i never noticed that about CDMA. I work in the wireless telecom field but never on the CDMA side. Mostly GSM. So i guess I'm biased. Even though i think Verzion has the best network. But i feel GSM is more universal than CDMA. And no one has LTE, all ads are marketing bs.

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The Mac

yeah, its really LTE light, or 0.5.

They are all hybrid anyway, even if you have whats supposedly LTE, you still need 3G.

With regards to CMDA, because of the technology not allowing anonymous connections, all phones MUST be programmed by the carrier before they can connect to the network.

For the carrier i suppose this is great, because they control everything and can load up on the crapware. For the user, it means your stuck with only the phones the carrier provides.

Sprint is pretty pro-android, so im sure they arent particularly happy about this restriction, but they made their bed when they embraced the technology.

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fattymowmow

I can assure you, the reason why I'm not on JB and stuck on GB is because of my contract with my carrier. If it weren't for that, and being locked in for two years on it, I'd be rockin some JellyBean. I think a majority of those stuck on Gingerbread are in the same boat...

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Morete

Well, don't feel bad. It happens to Windows Phone too. First it was Windows Mobile and now it's Windows Phone 7. That's "unacceptable for Windows phone OS's". Android fans have raked Windows Phone over the coals because 7 won't get updated to 8. I guess "Micro$oft" is required to play by a different set of rules than anybody else.

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wolfing

That's not really the problem. We have that issue too in the PC world, like half the people using Windows still use Windows XP or Vista. The problem is that in the case of phones, there is a third party that doesn't exist for PCs... the carriers. They are the real culprits, as people have to wait months or more to update their phone's OS because it has to come from their carrier (after they add and 'test' their crap-ware added to the stock OS).

As a Galaxy S3 owner, I'll probably jailbreak it when the next release of the OS comes out, as then my phone will probably be 2 OS 'generations' behind.

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Caboose

First, in Android it's called rooting (Android runs Unix based OS, root is full control, this rooting). Second, the next "OS" is 4.2.2, some carriers have it, others don't.

I'd just root and get it over with. You won't be stuck with the Samsung and carrier bloat, updates will be more frequent, you'll be on the current OS release, plus your phone will run smoother (YRMV).

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tony2tonez

"As a Galaxy S3 owner, I'll probably jailbreak it when the next release of the OS comes out, as then my phone will probably be 2 OS 'generations' behind."

Learn the correct method before telling others.

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DJConan

I have the Nexus 7 tablet and Nexus 4 phone. I get OTA's when they become available. I'm happy.

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tony2tonez

thats cause they are so called 'pure' android devices. Hence why they usually get the updates first.

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jgottberg

From an outsiders perspective (I was a Blackbberry guy for 11 years and was "forced" into an iPhone), it seems like it's planned obsolescence. Basically forcing users to buy a new phone in order for it to have the latest OS build.

IMO, it's insane that Google keeps releasing new OS builds that only a very small fraction of users will get while say 80 percent of users are stuck - forever - on an old build for a phone they JUST purchased.

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vrmlbasic

I know. The upgrades aren't even regular:Jelly Bean has been out for ages but I only got it on my Motorola phone a few weeks ago. Same thing with Gingerbread->ICS.

Especially when each version of Android, while gaining features, also loses useful features. Google Docs and Gmail keep doing the same thing in each iteration; I still haven't found how to do a bulleted list in an email with Gmail's new "compose" screen. On the "old" screen it was an obvious button but now it is not.

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Caboose

"he upgrades aren't even regular:Jelly Bean has been out for ages but I only got it on my Motorola phone a few weeks ago"

This, you can blame the carrier and the phone manufacturer. Google releases the OS to everyone, then it is up to the manufacturer to screw it all up for the devices that they choose. Then release that update to the carriers for them to do even more damage, and then finally release it to you, the consumer, if they decide.

Nexus devices get their updates from Google, right away.
Rooted ROMs, get their updates almost as fast as Nexus devices.

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jgottberg

Ugh... Sounds like a MAJOR headache...

I guess I also don't understand why certain carriers release an OS but not others?

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tony2tonez

Because when a new release from Google comes out, the carrier test and then add their crap to new update. Its probably cost beneficial to have people buy new phones with 2 years plans than it is to update everyone of the phones the carrier provides.

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jgottberg

Wow, that seems crazy to me. I guess it would never cross my mind that carriers customize the OS to such an extent that they can't just "re-skin" the new version of Android. Like I said though, I never really had to worry about it with Blackberry and most recently, my iPhone.

And you are right - I'm sure carriers love the fact that they don't have to update the OS. If users are desperate enough to get the new OS, they will just buy a new phone to get it. Which again, I think it is crazy for a consumer to have to do that to get an OS that is compatible with their device but can't update it.

No wonder people root them so that can use on any carrier. I would.

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vrmlbasic

Even though Motorola is owned by Google the upgrade to JB on my phone broke their MotoCast app (which comes baked in to the OS). It is stripped of functionality, any and all, and the only fix (which isn't guaranteed to be successful) is to go through an arcane phone reset procedure. So much for testing being the reason for the delay.

On a related issue, Firefox was just upgraded on Android. They promise a slew of bug fixes and performance boosts, but they stripped out the Quit button. Hilariously they recommend using a 3rd party plugin to restore this as they consider using the JB task list to be the "superior" method to exit firefox.

Google's curse seems to be that basic, essential functionality of software must devolve so that the software can "evolve", and now 3rd parties that develop for Android are affected.

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jgottberg

Wow, after reading your issues with Android-based devices, I'm really glad I didn't go that route. That, and the fact that I have seen/heard a rise in malware and virus's for the platform. I don't want to have to micro-manage my phone like a PC. I have enough to worry about.

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legionera

Let's don't forget that back in the 90's we did not have any choice; you buy a device and you are stuck with it. No updates, no shit.

Yet, 15 years later, no progress. Android devices flooded the market and the final result is apparent; thousand of barely supported devices. This is sad.

I am not saying this because I feel lucky that I did not pay for a device that needs to be charged 3/4 of the time in a day or that it is overhyped and it is meant for sophisticated use but because those are the facts.

So, does it really matter? This is really what happens with technology and new devices come and go very fast. The best solution is to spend money on a low powered, cheap device that suffice the basic needs without sucking energy as much as an Xbox. Thus, you do not spend tons of cash on something that you will regret purchasing, and you will be able to use the device to its full potential.

... and all those of you who say that they are satisfied, are actually raging inside that they can't afford the newer device.

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Caboose

Wow, where'd you get those "facts" from? I plug my phone in to charge at night, when I'm not using it. Why? So that I have a full battery the next day. I use my phone for a lot, so it's nice having a full charge.

Overhyped? That's all devices, from all manufacturers. Apple overhypes the most. Samsung, second.

Sophisticated use? What do you mean? I read and post to Facebook and Twitter. I text my wife, and talk to my friends from back home via either text, or What's App. I'll play games, or check the weather. All those things are very basic and simple to do. Anyone, even someone with little experience with such a device, can do easily.

If I'm doing maintenance on a WAP at work, I'll use the "Wifi Analyzer" app to check signal strength, or if I need to boot to UBCD or some other recovery tool, I use my phone. Those, while advanced, are hardly sophisticated. You're talking like you need a degree in electrical engineering and computer sciences to use a smart phone.

You don't need to buy a super fancy, expensive and powerful device to be able to unlock your phone's potential. Buy one that meets your needs, and are comfortable with.

You seem to hate change. Are you 80 or something?

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majorsuave

Well, most Canadian operators have a low cost Android phone for sale and they are almost all third tier devices that would run very poorly should their maker decided to push ICS or later on them.

Add to this the plethora of no name 99$ tablets that come pre equipped with eclair or froyo and the nondescript TV keys and you get a whole lot of legacy devices sold every day.

The thing is, there is also a LOT of new devices sold. The oldest Android device is what? 4 years old? It still can do much of what you might want to do with it.

My old LG is still in use by my kids despite it rockling 2.3.3, my current phone is on Jelly Bean though.

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vrmlbasic

I'm not sure that I can agree with this. My older phone, a Droid Eris by HTC, cannot do most anything that I wish it to. Even Opera Mini has lag issues running on it, I can type whole sentences before they actually appear on the screen in one lag-filled letter explosion, to say nothing of the apps that only get slower when they upgrade like Netflix or Firefox.

Any phone that is equipped with a single-core processor w/Android is obsolete IMO.

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Chronologist

I don't think this is as big of an issue as this article frames it. Android's biggest advantage is the open nature of its operating system, and the healthy community of devs for the plethora of Android devices. Sure it'd be nice to have official support, but it's very easy to grab those features, and then some through custom roms.

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Granite

shrug...

Doesn't bother me. I have an old Motorola phone...2.2...and I pay $25/month for cell service. It does what little I ask of it.

And then, I have my Asus tablet that started out with ICS and has gotten regular updates from Asus. It's now at 4.2.

I can't complain.

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Opm2

Love my asus tablet. They are johnny on the spot with updates.

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Caboose

I'm not happy with my TF300. I find it slows down like snot in a snowstorm when I do any sort of "multitasking".

If it's installing updates, everything is really slow, and it lags like hell. It's on the latest update from Asus. I'm debating rooting it and installing a custom ROM. But I might just try (again) to sell it and get a Nexus 7.

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callo82

welcome to android world!!!

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The Mac

My evo 3d is on ICS.

I doubt HTC wil update to JB before my contract is up in october.

HTC one, here i come....

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rruscio

My Droid Inc still works, does what I want, and shows hardly any wear.

I'm not 'stuck'. Cheap, maybe, but not stuck.

rr

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bautrey

I have a Droid Incredible also, but I have CyanogenMod 7.2.0 ROM installed which has android version 2.3.7. I haven't had any problems with it so far (except for the low battery). I'll get a new phone probably at the end of this year, or until this one breaks. I've had mine for 3 years now.

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Paul_Lilly

"Stuck" in the sense that there's no official update available. Barring a negative performance impact, I think the majority of people running ICS or a previous build would install Jelly Bean if it were made available via an OTA update.

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vrmlbasic

If it didn't take away Sleep mode, sure. I miss sleep mode now that I have Jelly Bean.

With ICS we lost the ability to have the Android device hooked to a PC via USB and only have it charge. ICS also took away proper HDMI out, something that Jelly Bean only made worse.

I also miss the iPhone-esque "go directly to camera without typing the passcode into the phone first" option. Now if my phone is locked I have to unlock it, which has cost me some impromptu "Kodak Moments".

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tony2tonez

I wonder if that only happened on the official releases. I run custom roms and never had any of the issues you mentioned.

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The Mac

same here, i have none of those issues on ICS...

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Satchboy

My Sony xperia T is running 4.1.2 while my Samsung Tab 8.9 LTE is running 3.2.

They both are doing what I want them to do so I really don't mind if they are not as up to date as they could be.

That is unless I'm missing some cool feature like the eye tracking stuff Samsung was showing off recently.

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