Why are we obsessed with updates?

A quick trawl through any mobile tech forum or website will reveal many users who are angry that they haven’t received the latest update for their Samsung device. But why are people angry in the first place, what is this obsession with updates and is it even justified?

The two-year old Galaxy S2 is a prime example, with apparent controversy surrounding the ‘delayed’ update from Gingerbread to ICS last year and a similar anger with thoughts that they might not support JellyBean (which we now know will be coming in the next few months). In fact – I even get regular messages from people who are annoyed that they’ve not yet received the latest OTA update for their Galaxy S3 or Note 2, and ask to compare firmware versions with me to see who has the latest.

Personally, I fail to see how this whole charade is productive to anyone. I mean… did I miss the meeting where we all signed a contract with Samsung which said that they will always update our phones?? Sure – if there was an update which made my device more secure or stopped it crashing then I would expect to see that fixed – but a major update and overhaul of the OS isn’t something I would expect. Around the same time as the Galaxy S2 launch, I purchased Adobe Creative Suite 5.5… does that mean I should be entitled to a free update to Adobe CS 6 a year later, and CS 7 this year?!

SamMobile is a website dedicated to providing access to the latest Samsung firmwares – having recently topped 1,000,000 members you’d think that Samsung would be rolling out updates left right and centre to cater for the needs of the masses… but this doesn’t seem to be the case!

The truth is, that although it would seem that most people on the internet are fussed about getting the latest update – even with 1,000,000 users, SamMobile registered users are less than 1% of the total sales of Samsung’s flagship “Galaxy S” smartphone range, which recently topped 100,000,000. It just so happens that the (proportionately) few power-users who are annoyed about not having the latest update are the same tech-savvy people who are the most vocal on the internet.

For that majority of people, who perhaps don’t use their smartphone to its full potential (and why should they?), updates can often cause more problems than they solve. After painstakingly teaching my father how to get the most out of his Galaxy SII when it was running on Gingerbread – I showed him how to get the OTA update for Ice Cream Sandwich. Unfortunately this threw him off completely and he stopped trying out new things and useful new apps. He got confused because “nothing is in the same place any more” and everything “happens differently”… so although the changes may be useful if you know what you are doing, perhaps for the majority of smart-phone users a major update is more of a hindrance than something useful.

Although it is clear that the days of “you get the device – take it as it is” are long-gone due to demands and expectations, perhaps we should be a little more patient and a little less greedy when it comes to official software updates. The anonymity of the internet seems to have given people an inflated sense of anger and entitlement which is not really justified (I can think of many things which are far more worthy of the internet’s wrath) especially when all you need to do is head over to the XDA Developer forums and pick up a nice ROM running on the latest version of Android from one of the many excellent developers.

For now, however, if there is an official update – SamMobile will have it ready for you as soon as it’s out!

Opinion 201

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8 months 25 days ago

I totally disagree with the author.
Apple offers upgrades to very old devices.

Samsung produces non premium devices.If Samsung is not improving I will not be surprised if the customer will buy another device from another manufacturer. I have a Galaxy grand 2 and I am waiting since more than 2 years for a stable OS version. I am on 4.4.2 and my devices hangs periodically and reboots. Factory reset is not helping.

2 years 7 months ago

Those IOS updates come until they render the hardware useless ( ie iPhone 3G)

2 years 8 months ago

I totally disagree with the author.
Apple offers upgrades to very old devices.

Samsung produces premium devices.If Samsung is not improving I will not be surprised if the customer will buy another device from another manufacturer. I have a Galaxy S2 and I am waiting since more than 2 years for a stable OS version. I am on 4.0.4 and my devices hangs periodically and reboots. Factory reset is not helping.

I think my next device will be Huaweii that will cost only half of the Samsung device. And I will not be angry if they don’t fix the problems like Samsung.

[...] to this version since begining of this year and according to the post of Sammobile in January, Why are we obsessed with updates?, people already complained a lot on productivity of Samsung and his promised. Now we got it anyway. [...]

2 years 11 months ago

When the device is advertised , it is advertised as upgradeable to ….
Then there is the issue of Samsung releasing it for one country and then the rest of us wait until that version is almost outdated. Software will always improve albeit new bugs may be introduced but overall for the better. People want the latest and why not they pay good money for the hardware. Then is there the app issue … I had a BADA which I am still waiting for an upgrade but the apps require a version which I don’t have yet on same platform. Its the developers that push us to get the latest with everything. Even on PC software we have minimum requirements and if we want that software we upgrade our hardware. Android is currently on KEY LIME version and we have’nt seen the light of day from Samsung as yet but they have from inception of S3 provided us relatively timeous updates with the latest leak at 4.2.1 which by the way is buggy (beta) but awesome nonetheless,its the releasing issue I have a problem with.Its always Europe to get the first updates and Africa hangs on for dear life by then something new is already out.

2 years 11 months ago

anyone plz help what is the meaning and what is the use of kernel source code ????
kindly reply

2 years 11 months ago

I hated apple products, but now… :ssssss “Thank you” samsung. (N)

2 years 11 months ago

My link was moderated before publishing (from drippler.com). “Jelly Bean update for Galaxy S2 and Galaxy Note coming in March, says Samsung Ukraine” I think that the other contries will get the firmware the same way (or more later?????). A little bit scandalous is it. This is not support, this is a bad joke from samsung. (N)(N)(N)(N)(N)(N)(N)(N)

3 years 7 days ago

It’s a question of expectations. Google released Jelly Bean in the Summer of 2012, and, incidentally, released it a month early to vendors to give them time to prepare. It’s now February 2012, and Samsung seems to having problems in updating that we as users don’t understand

My view at the moment is that you shouldn’t by any new Samsungs, because once you have, you’re neglected in favour of the buyers of the next model. In that respect, even Apple seems to be the better vendor. Maybe we should all dump our Sammies and go for Apple instead.

3 years 17 days ago

Great. After the “splendid begining” (3 ROMs: 1 for Spain, 2 for China) the row has ended “for a while”.

3 years 19 days ago

As per ANDROID UPDATE ALLIANCE, samsung has to update its smartphones to the latest android version (if they can be updated) for atleast 18 months….

3 years 22 days ago

Spain? I9100XWLS8-I9100FOPLS3

Wonderful and thx. But we are still waiting for our official firmware (via KIES) and for everyone.

3 years 22 days ago

Hello ,on this forum on firmware jelly bean is available on spain for GALAXY S2

3 years 23 days ago

but now a days all that samsung cares about is $$$$$$$$$ , €€€€€€€€ and ₤₤₤₤₤₤₤

3 years 23 days ago

to DannyD
Completely agree with you.
Samsung has carried on updating its phone. It’s the reason why I bought SII and seeing so much of long run of updates (from Gingerbread to ICS and now I hope to JB) I bought SIII to get the same long run support.
Even though I am not an advocate of samsung, I am going to use samsung mobile because of the support it is giving for updates.
but as a costumers point of view we want the most out of the phone. :)

3 years 23 days ago

to Menosferato and all other who think us so called “Obsessed people”

whom are you calling haters ??? I guess most of the commenters on this post are enthusiast of android OS or like it someway.

Because of guys like codeworkx, teamhack Sung , google community and others developers android is prospering and has developed so much in such a small time.
do you mean these developers should stop updating Android, stop making it better?
And from users perspective, do you mean we should stop flashing our phones?

3 years 23 days ago

1. Had to believe such article was posted here. As SamMobile wants to be a Samsung mobile enthusiasts USERS portal. Samsung is taking care of themselves for their self-image.

2. All iSheeps are praising “bitten fruit” for their support. Wants Samsung to get the crown and be close to that legendary support?

3. Samsung approach of conquering market is bit different: they flood users with countless derivatives of the same hardware: xxx-mini, -maxi, -super, -plus, -“minus”, etc. But on their flagship devices as SGS2, SGS3 they should keep their customers as happy as possible. The people who are paying that much for these models are the users who keep the vibe high for Samsung phones. Plus so good devs working mainly on these top devices.
Samsung many times proudly trumpet how many SGS3 they sold, and how SGS2 made actually the turn in their favor among mobile savvy users. It was not the lower cost devices which actually made all aware of Samsung as #1 aspiring in the mobile market.

4. The author of this article got it all wrong for users of Samsung phones and members of this site. It still happened. And comparing top device OS support with piece of software upgrade policy? Really?!?

3 years 24 days ago

@author – i hope you know the difference between “obsessed” and support……

3 years 24 days ago

Author you are crazy – i remember you for exynos-bug and brick-bug….where are bugfixes????
i never see a statement or bugfix from samsung and you call us “obsessed” – you are wrong !!!!

3 years 24 days ago

>> The anonymity of the internet seems to have given people an inflated sense of anger and entitlement

Very true, my friend.
I’m also an owner of a SGS2 and I’m awaiting for the new 4.1.x or 4.2.x which MAY give me new features/fixes/etc, but I’m not complaining to any one, since I work with software development and I know how painful it is.

So, a message to the haters… keep hating. Your hate makes to difference to anyone, except for yourself.

Thanks for SamMobile for all you updates.

3 years 24 days ago

From where I am at: I spend a lot of money on these electronic toys. I expect them to be supported and updated to the best software available. 1 1/2 years old is not outdated and I expect attention. How a company treats software updates is now something I look at when buying. Message to Samsung: Hurry up with the updates and get them right!

3 years 24 days ago

i agree @codeworkx.

Samsung, directing end users to the new devices. The new devices means a source of money for Samsung and announces a device every three months. Each time a new device, but I’m not have to buy.

I am using SII. I don’t think to get a new device. But Samsung dont forget to SII users!!!

3 years 24 days ago

A new device in no way has to means new updates for your current device, if you don’t like the device then don’t buy it.

3 years 24 days ago

to Dom A

My quick background, I wouldn’t have bought an Android phone if Android OS was like iOS i.e., lazy updates..
Question to you: why you bought your relative an Android phone? iPhone has the most easiest user friendly interface.

why are you guys updating your websites with new product launch??? Every day I see there is rumors that Samsung may be launching this samsung will lunch that. Guys from samsung launch new products so often, literally, more often than the new ROM updates in XDA-forum.
Then how is it wrong that we being obsessed with updates??

3 years 24 days ago

If this was the case, companies like Samsung would have to optimize software for more handsets everytime they release something new. You buy a device for what it is, if something comes along in 6 months with newer software you should not expect to be entitled to receive that on your device.