Although the Galaxy S22 series will likely be the first to receive a public One UI 5.0 update based on Android 13, Samsung is testing the upcoming firmware internally on a few other devices. Behind closed doors, the company is running One UI 5.0 tests on the Galaxy S20 and S21 lineups, and new evidence shows that Samsung has also added the Galaxy Z Fold 3 to the mix.
As yet, Galaxy Z Fold 3 owners don’t have a One UI 5.0 beta program to join, but this could change soon. Samsung is testing Android 13-based firmware on the 2021 foldable flagship phone, which means that Galaxy Z Fold 3 customers in select markets might not have to wait much longer before they can take One UI 5.0 out for a test drive.
What does this mean for One UI 4.1.1 and the Galaxy Z Fold 3?
Samsung’s plans for the Galaxy Z Fold 3 aren’t very clear at this point, but one of two things could happen next: either the Galaxy Z Fold 3 gets One UI 4.1.1, or the phone will skip this firmware version and jump straight to One UI 5.0 and Android 13.
But although Samsung can’t offer a concrete timeframe of what’s to come, it’s worth noting that the new Galaxy Z Fold 4 ships with Android 12L and One UI 4.1.1, so there’s a low probability for the older Z Fold 3 to get Android 13 and One UI 5.0 ahead of its sequel.
Fortunately for Galaxy Z Fold 3 customers, One UI 4.1.1 and One UI 5.0 share a few key features, including new multitasking swipe gestures for Pop-Up View and Multi-Window, and integration of Bixby Vision OCR (optical character recognition) with apps like Gallery, Camera, and Samsung Internet. With that in mind, the Galaxy Z Fold 3 should, in theory, benefit from these features regardless of which One UI version gets rolled out first.
As to when Samsung might plan on releasing Android 13, time will tell. Nevertheless, the company might want to hurry up, seeing how competitors like Oppo have also announced their own Android 13-based beta programs with tentative release dates from late-August onward.