When Google announced the newest iteration of its Android OS, the Jelly Bean, we wondered when it would reach devices, considering that the Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS) version hasn't made it to many yet. In fact, when Jelly Bean was launched as Android 4.1 rather than 5.0, it was speculated that manufacturers felt that giving users an ICS upgrade would be redundant as it is just a mere upgrade and not a full-fledged Android version. After the Jelly Bean launch, some major ICS rollout announcements were made, which meant that Google might play the delay game again. Nevertheless, there are now a handful of devices in queue to get Jelly Bean. While many companies are yet to throw out their concrete lists and make those upgrade announcements, this is what we gathered from what’s going on around the web and by speaking with some companies.
There are no brownie points for guessing that the major high-end Samsung brigade will definitely get to taste the Jelly Bean. So far this list is believed to include the newest Samsung Galaxy S3, its predecessor, the Galaxy S2 and the popular Samsung Galaxy Note. The list of Jelly Bean takers will also include Samsung, Google’s Nexus S (not available in India) and Galaxy Nexus. So in case you own any of these devices, there are chances that Jelly Bean is on the way. There is no word as yet on when the Honeycomb and ICS-infused Samsung Tabs will receive the update. Samsung spokesperson refused to confirm when the updates could reach us.
Samsung's power play
Asus brings the first device to taste Google’s Jelly Bean flavour – the Asus Nexus 7. The 7-inch tablet has been making headlines not just for carrying the newest Android flavour but also because it has been neatly priced in the affordable category. Though we expected it to be an under-15K tablet in India, it has been priced at about 17k - a tad disappointing. The company has also announced the Jelly Bean update for Asus Eee Pad Slider, Transformer Prime, Prime Infinity and the Transformer Pad 300. However, only Asus Eee Pad Slider and Transformer Prime are being sold in India.
Though Ice Cream Sandwich entered India through a batch of affordable tablets by Zync, iBerry and not-so-popular but efficient Ainol’s Novo 7 Paladin, it came three months after the OS' announcement. So it was surprising to see Karbonn, a low-end device maker, announce the Smart Tab 1 that came saddled with Jelly Bean within a month of the launch of the newest Android OS version. The pre-booking of the Jelly Bean clad Smart Tab 1 has already begun and it will be reaching markets in the next 20 days, said the spokesperson. Moreover, Smart Tab 1 tablets already available and running on ICS are entitled to get an upgrade as well. Karbonn has cut out a competitive price for the Smart Tab 1 at Rs. 6,990.
Almost 9 months after ICS was announced, HTC dished out its long list of devices to receive the ICS update and maintained its promise by making ICS releases to some devices like the Sensation XE and Incredible S over the past weeks. Surprisingly, HTC launched the Desire VC just last week that runs on ICS. The spokesperson refused to comment on whether the device will get the Jelly Bean update. This also reminds us that reportedly the Desire HD users will not be getting Jelly Bean. It did launch the value for money HTC One V, which we loved, but we’re sure HTC fans anticipated many more devices. However, after the launch of Jelly Bean, HTC didn’t waste time and quickly announced its Jelly Bean adoption plans that include the update coming to devices like HTC One S, HTC One X and One XL soon. On asking about the rollouts, the HTC spokesperson said that they are still in the process and cannot reveal anything so far.
HTC's One Series
Sony did manage to disappoint its users when it announced that none of the 2011 phones would receive Jelly Bean, but were quick enough to call it an error through a blog post. So, some Sony Xperia phones from 2011 will be getting the update after all. The Xperia U, P, S and Sola launched around April and May this year were disappointingly based on Gingerbread, and now some are upgradeable to ICS. Nevertheless, we feel the Arc S is likely to get Jelly Bean. The Sony spokesperson told us that the company plans a meet in Mumbai some time later this month to discuss its plans for the Xperia line-up and could possibly make some announcements about upgrades as well.
As Google has acquired Motorola, we expected some nifty Jelly Bean updates to quickly make it to the Motorola devices. We didn’t come across any concrete announcements about the update from Motorola and the newly launched Defy Mini and few others were launched running on Gingerbread. It did make one quick roll out as the U.S. has already got the Motorola Xoom Wi-Fi version tablet a 79MB Jelly Bean update over the air, but is yet to roll out to other countries. Going by the buzz, Motorola Droid Razr, Razr Maxx and Atrix 2 are potential contenders for the newest upgrade. However, as per reports, users who got the Atrix 2 loaded with ICS were facing some problems and had to switch back to Gingerbread.
First device to flaunt Jelly Bean - Asus nexus 7
LG hasn’t been very prompt at updating its handset line-up with updates. Till now, there is nothing in the queue for India at least.
After receiving flak for ICS not reaching many devices, we hope Google, along with its manufacturers, is quick enough with its Jelly Bean rollout.