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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

In what could be seen as an attempt to catch up to Apple's legacy software support for older iOS devices, Samsung is now promising Galaxy users that they'll receive security software updates for "at least four years" after a device's initial release.


Samsung and Android have long had a reputation of being a fragmented ecosystem when it comes to OS updates. Samsung, unlike Apple, has multiple lines of smartphone devices, making it significantly harder to maintain all of them with frequent software updates.

Apple software releases typically support a range of older devices that have been superseded by newer models and are no longer sold by the company. For example, iOS 14 supports iPhone 6S models, which were released in 2015. On average, Apple tends to support devices with major iOS updates for at least five years after their launch.

It's important to note that Samsung's new commitment only targets security updates, not Android OS updates. Apple usually bundles security improvements and new features in a single update, however, it does occasionally release updates solely focused on security patches. In November of 2020, Apple released an update focused on patching major security issues for devices as old as the iPhone 5S, released in 2013.

Samsung's new four-year promise for security updates will only apply to devices launched after 2019. Any devices launched before then are still under Samsung's old policy. Samsung previously provided updates for its devices for at least two years after it initially launched, so the new announcement effectively doubles the timeframe.

As The Verge rightfully points out, Samsung says devices will receive "regular updates," which is the lowest tier of update frequency. The tier is typically only reserved for devices that Samsung no longer supports, but still receives updates, without a fixed time schedule. In contrast, Google only promises "at least three years" of security updates for its Pixel phones.

Last year, Samsung did promise to provide some of its devices with "three generations" of Android updates after their initial launch, but only for its S, N, and Z series. The A series, its low-end family of Galaxy devices, will receive software updates "until hardware allows," according to a statement provided to The Verge.

Article Link: Samsung Promises 'At Least Four Years' of Security Software Updates for Recent Galaxy Devices
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macrumors 65816
Aug 12, 2008
Steve Jobs in 2010:
"Many Android OEMs install proprietary user-interfaces to differentiate themselves from the commodity Android experience. The user is left to figure it all out. Compare this with iPhone where every handset works the same."

"We think the open vs closed is just a smokescreen to try and hide the real issue, which is: What's best for the customer? Fragmented vs. integrated. We think Android is very very fragmented and becoming more fragmented by the day."

He was right then and it’s still right 11 years later.

Khaleesi Kendall

macrumors regular
Mar 31, 2020
Well - lets be honest - cheap prices and premium updates is not compatible. You shame samsung here - but cheer Apple because they do and overcharge you - that’s a bit strange!
Apple isn’t overcharging me. The $829 I paid for an iPhone 12 that technically could last me at least until 2027 if not longer vs buying whatever galaxy was relevant in 2018 at the same price or higher and it’s already eol in 2021

I’ll take being “overcharged” for the sake not using a crap Os from an oem who can’t even properly support the devices it releases
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macrumors regular
Mar 11, 2011
I don't know how Android phone manufacturers get away with this kind of planned obsolescence. I think if someone tested it out with trading standards law they would fall foul on the basis that a device should be expected to function safely under normal use for 6 years (in the UK at least). The case would just have to argue that security is an integral part of functionality.
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Oct 18, 2020
samsung promised me that they will give me charger in the box and together(me with samsung) mock Apples decision..but now...i am a fool that i trusted my beloved company with whom i smiled at Apple so many times but we came out as hypocrites
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macrumors 6502
Mar 21, 2016
Citadel Island
samsung promised me that they will give me charger in the box and together(me with samsung) mock Apples decision..but now...i am a fool that i trusted my beloved company with whom i smiled at Apple so many times but we came out as hypocrites

Did you not learn from the removal of the headphone jack ?!

Samsung love to mock Apple for something then do the exact same in the next couple of product cycles....


macrumors 68030
Sep 9, 2015
Switched to iPhone after 10 years with Android (and a fair few with Samsung).
At least Apple is serious when it comes to iOS device support, its security and privacy. This this the 'Apple tax' I am happy to absorb for such things.
Very good point. I think an often missed feature that those who accuse Apple of being behind hardware than Android is no matter how cool Android hardware can be, it doesn’t run iOS, therefore all the benefits of being in the iOS and Apple ecosystem.
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