Android vs iOS: State of Software Updates

Apple’s rollout of iOS updates is known to be much better than Android, which involves layers of intermediaries  that delay or prevent rollout of new updates. A new chart by highlights the disparity between the time an iPhone and an Android device receive software updates.

The chart shows how even flagship Android devices like the Galaxy S3, the Galaxy Note 2 are many versions behind the latest Android release despite being into just the second year of existence. Similarly, the HTC One X is two major versions behind while the Galaxy S2 is 3 major versions behind in its third year of existence. Notably, just one phone, the Nexus 4, in the chart is green until the end.

This is in stark contrast to the iPhone, which has enjoyed the latest updates for as long as 4 years. Apple dropped support for the 4 year old iPhone 3GS only with iOS 7, and continues to support the 3 year old iPhone 4. Moreover, iOS updates are delivered to everyone at the same time irrespective of country, carrier resulting in high adoption rates as seen shortly after iOS 7 released. Apple does, however, strip many features from older devices to ensure that iOS continues to run smoothly on them.

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Despite many efforts to improve adoptions rates of new Android releases, Google hasn’t succeeded at ensuring Android phones get updates on time, if at all, thanks to the involvement of third-parties like manufacturers and carriers. It has however attempted to address the issue by selling its Nexus and Google Play Edition line of devices, as well as releasing new features as apps to address fragmentation.

Do you think not getting the latest and greatest software update is a deal breaker? Let us know in the comments below.

[Fidlee via 9to5Mac]

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