I’ve covered Samsung long enough to recall a time when its Android update track record was dismal. Samsung has often been the last of all Android OEMs to roll out major software updates. Even if they did arrive, users in select markets, particularly the US with carrier-locked units, would have to wait much longer than anyone else.
It wasn’t an ideal situation and it didn’t really reflect well on the company. It begged the question why a company like Samsung, which has incredible talent and resources, couldn’t just pull together when it comes to updates. Yes, there were some bottlenecks that Samsung had little control over, but it was evident that there was significant room for improvement in the company’s processes.
In recent years, Samsung has shown incredible commitment to solving these problems. Gone are the days when users around the world had to wait an unreasonably long time for updates to arrive. Ever since monthly security updates were introduced for Android devices, Samsung has been ahead of the game, often releasing the upcoming month’s patches before it even happens.
We just got another example of this today. Samsung has already released the August 2022 security patch for the Galaxy S22, Galaxy S21 and Galaxy S20 series. So far, no other Android OEM has managed to do this. We’ve seen such an impressive pace from Samsung on multiple occasions over the past few years that now it’s not even surprising. As a Samsung fan, it makes me proud to see how Samsung turned this around.
At this speed, Samsung does an even better job than Google at sending out Android updates. That’s ironic considering Google owns Android. On the other hand, we’ve also explained in the past how Samsung has gotten used to it Out Androiding Google. Obviously, if you care about security for your mobile device, you should rock a Samsung phone. No other OEM will be as proactive with security updates.
It’s not the only way Samsung stands out from the rest of the Android pack. The company promises four years of Android OS upgrades for select flagship and mid-range Galaxy A devices. These devices also receive security patches for five years. The vast majority of Android smartphone manufacturers offer only two years of operating system upgrades. Even Google’s current Pixel phones don’t have this level of software support.
The smartphone industry has been largely rectified. Most phones feel the same and have similar hardware. While Samsung is pushing the envelope with its foldable smartphones, it has also used a very smart strategy to differentiate its phones from the competition in a very crowded market.
If you tend not to change phones every two years, which the vast majority of people are, you obviously want a phone that will continue to receive major Android OS upgrades. While a phone from another manufacturer is a bit cheaper, it doesn’t give you longer access to new features that a Samsung phone offers.
That’s not to say that there isn’t a Samsung phone for every price segment. Samsung’s range of smartphones offers enough depth to support all types of customers. Even though Samsung’s phones are a bit more expensive than the competition, at least that extra cash will make a big difference when it comes to software support.
This is particularly evident when comparing Samsung phones to its Chinese competitors. For years they have tried and failed to eliminate Samsung’s dominance. Even years of aggressively undercutting Samsung on pricing hasn’t worked. The Korean juggernaut has used its superb consumer knowledge to stay ahead of the relentless competition.
Samsung had a point to prove, given its undesirable history with software updates. He did it spectacularly. There is no other company that can claim to have fully mastered the process. Samsung has become a shining example of how an OEM should go about providing software support. As of today, there is no doubt that the company will grow stronger, so there is absolutely no doubt who is the king of Android updates.
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