(Pocket-lint) – Samsung has been testing and teasing Samsung One UI 3 for some time, eagerly anticipated by Samsung device owners because it also signals the company’s move to Android 11 on many devices.
Samsung had previously promised that the Galaxy S20 would be the first beneficiary of the update and on schedule, the company has delivered. Starting December, the roll-out commenced for the Galaxy S20, S20+ and S20 Ultra in Korea, the US and many European countries. There’s currently no reference to the Galaxy S20 FE.
The next in line will be the Note 20, Z Fold 2, Z Flip, Note 10, Fold and older Galaxy S10 devices. Samsung said on 3 December that would happen in the “coming weeks”, noting that it often lands in different markets at a slightly different time.
Samsung’s Galaxy A devices will get updates in the first half of 2021, which while appetising, does encompass the next 6 months, so will likely see some devices replaced by new models before the older are moved to the latest software.
Android – and Samsung in particular – has long been criticised for its apparently slow update process. Apple tend to update all its devices on a single day and that’s been used as a yard stick with which to beat the rival platform, although the realities aren’t so simple. Samsung has, compared to previous years, been faster to push updates in this latest iteration.
Samsung has many more product variations in the market, as well as a full layer of customisation that sits over the Android software which takes time to adapt. It’s also true that Android version don’t make huge differences in many cases, because so much of the functionality of the software is unbundled, able to be updated piecemeal through the year, rather than needing a big software dump like iOS.
Android 11 isn’t hugely different to Android 10, but that’s where One UI 3 looks to enhance the experience for Samsung owners. There’s a visual overhaul, freshly designed widgets, smoother motion and animation, to make daily use better.
There are tweaks and changes across the software, so if you’re a Samsung device user, now is the time to update. You can find the schedule of updates in the Samsung Members app, available on the Galaxy Store if you’re wondering when you might get it.
Writing by Chris Hall.