Android 4.3 coming to Galaxy S4 in October, Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2 by the end of December, Samsung Gear talk confirms

by: Chris SmithSeptember 26, 2013

Samsung Galaxy Note 3 with Samsung Galaxy Gear

Galaxy Gear “lacks something special” but will work with Galaxy S4, Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2 in coming months, according to the South Korean giant, which means that’s when the new Android 4.3 update will be available for these devices.

Android 4.3 update hinted

Samsung’s Lee Don-joo, the president of strategic marketing for the mobile division, told the Korea Times that the Galaxy S4 will be connected to the Gear “by next month,” with the Galaxy S3 and the Galaxy Note 2 getting Galaxy Gear support by the end of the year:

[quote qtext=”“All functions of the Gear will be connected to the Galaxy S4 smartphone by next month and the connection will be expanded to Galaxy Note2 and Galaxy S3 by the end of December,” said the president.” qperson=”” qsource=”” qposition=”center”]

Why is that statement so important? Well, in order for the Galaxy Gear to connect to other devices than the Galaxy Note 3, these devices are required to run Android 4.3, as the smartwatch uses Bluetooth 4.0 LE to hook up to smartphones and tablets.

Bluetooth 4.0 LE happens to be a new feature of Google’s latest Jelly Bean update, which means the named devices will be upgraded to Android 4.3 in order to be ready to be paired with the Galaxy Gear.

In other words, Samsung has basically confirmed what existing reports have said all along, that the Galaxy S4 Android 4.3 update is coming in October, followed by an Android 4.3 update for the Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2.

That’s definitely important for plenty of Galaxy S4, Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2 users whether they plan to buy a Galaxy Gear smartwatch or not. While we’re still waiting for actual release dates for the update, this time around things are looking better for Android fans that own one of those three Samsung handsets.

Galaxy Gear

Unlike with previous Android updates, Samsung may be very interested to have its Android 4.3 updates out and about as fast as possible, in order to try to pitch its Galaxy Gear to as many Galaxy device owners that don’t intend to buy a Galaxy Note 3 – currently the only Galaxy Gear-compatible handset – but are interested in purchasing a Gear smartwatch to use with their existing Samsung smartphone.

Other Galaxy Gear talk

Discussing the company’s first smartwatch with the Korea Times, an unnamed Samsung official said the company acknowledges that the “Gear lacks something special,” but that the product will get better in time “with more investment for user interface and user experience.”

That’s not exactly the greatest compliment a Samsung exec can pay to one of the company’s most recent creations, but at the same time it’s sort-of in line with some of the criticism the device has received.

To counter the critics, Samsung’s Lee Young-hee, executive vice president for marketing at Samsung Mobile, said that the handset is getting “warm response,” without actually revealing how warm the response was by mentioning pre-order numbers:

[quote qtext=”“The Galaxy Gear is a wow product. It’s a wholly new and must-have accessory,” said the vice president Lee, downplaying growing criticism about the wristwatch. “It only weighs 74 grams and it’s very easy to receive a call or send a text.”” qperson=”” qsource=”” qposition=”center”]

As for an earlier rumor that said a Galaxy Gear 2 model may be in the works for CES 2014 or MWC 2014, the same executive denied that the company is working on a second-generation model.

We’ll be back with more details about Galaxy Gear compatibility – and therefore Android 4.3 updates – in the near future.

  • Lloyd Voyer

    so will S3 receive air gestures?

    • I’d be very surprised. Does the GS3 even have all the necessary hardware for that? I’m not sure how the GS4 does it.

      • Skander

        IR sensor + another screen detection to detect fingers above the screen (test it in “floating touch” when dialling #*0#* in the dialler)

        • nerdboi

          Its a special digitizer they developed with Wacom which can detect the concentrative static using instrectirative triginometry for up to 15mm

          • Skander

            The S3 lacks this, so it won’t get the hovering features.

    • No, because Galaxy S4 have sensors just to do it, and both Galaxy Note 2 and S3 doesn’t. It’s not a question just about software, it’s about hardware.

  • Matt Isaacs

    Where is the updates for the tablets? Note 10.1 and Note 8.0 are still on 4.1.2. If they bail on updates for them, it will be the last time I buy Samsung. I am so tired of being left in the cold. Manufacturers are really starting to show reason why you should only buy a Nexus

    • Amit

      Seriously bro i think the same.. Luv my note 2..But refereshing phones software timely is also important.

  • Abhijeet Mishra
    • Skander

      Partly, and it probably sucks that battery dry with bluetooth low power support.

  • sean parmenter

    Sounds great and all, but how can Samsung “promise” that kind of timeline? Each carrier has to do their own testing and such before we actually see this OS on our respective devices. You’d think with the upcoming holiday shopping season, Samsung would want to get this OS out as fast as possible to get more Gear devices sold, but that means each carrier will need to be as diligent. I’m just wondering, what does each carrier care about selling the Gear devices?

    • Skander

      Most countries in the world have unlocked phones.

    • RaptorOO7

      Agreed, but they may have things in the pipeline already with the carriers.

      • sean parmenter

        That’s what I’m hoping. The carriers might want to roll-out the update in order to sell Galaxy Gear for the holidays. Not only with the new Note 3 sales, but for anyone interested in Galaxy Gear to be compatible with their S4, S3 or Note 2.

  • thechillimonster

    My farts smell of chilli con carne , cant be good.

    • Somedude

      Mine smell of French onion soup it’s bad!

    • vengeance

      Mine have a distinct Big Mac essence with just a hint of cranberry & apple.

    • The Whisky Priest

      Chicken Vindaloo farts here , i can even make out the onion salad that came with it.

    • Ghostbuster

      I’m pretty sure mine smell of diesel, not quite sure why but probably best not to light them

      • Byron

        A friend of mine many years ago did that at college , he then spend 4 months in hospital after collapsing in agony as by lighting his fart he apparently caused a flashback that scolded the inside of his lower intestines he has never been the same since .

  • John-Phillip Saayman

    Nobody seems upset that the s3 update moved from next month to somewhere near the end of the year. Me angry

    • Amine Elouakil

      meanwhile in the HTC lands (The One X XL X+ people are enjoying their 4.2.2 :p)

      • skaterjosh98

        4.3 actually. my unlocked one got the update today

        • Amine Elouakil

          I know for the One, I’m just mentioning last year flagships (I forgot about the One S while I’m at it) because they are talking about sammys last year flagships (the S3 and Note 2) didn’t get my 4.3 notification but I live in France so it should take a couple of days as usual

    • Samsung I’m Disappoint…

      We are upset!!, updates for the S3 and Note 2 have been pushed back like 5 times!!
      Seriously I’m leaving Samsung for this horrible service
      Especially since they can update their low end phones but they wont update their flagship!

      • Ankit Kamal

        That shitty galaxy grand crap is running 4.2.2 now lol..

  • DarxideGarrison

    I’ve had the Note 10.1 and GS3 for some time now. While the devices are great, I think its bullshit that they’re still running 4.1! Sammy could have at least given us 4.2! But since I’ve had this Nexus7 2013, I really prefer stock Android over Touchwiz, so I’m getting the new Nexus 5!

  • Diogo Gomes

    I’m seriously thinking about leaving TouchWizz… really pissed waiting for… ever.

    • Christopher James Birch

      Man.. try smart launcher (with the notification addon) It think is awesome.. categorizes your apps so they’re easy to find.. not good for widgets but they suck your battery anyhow.

  • Leif Shantz

    This will be the first and last samsung phone I will buy! By the time that samsung releases the update in Canada (About April or May) Google will release a new update. I will root my S3 and rely on CyanogenMod updates as they are reliable than samsung, until my 3yr contract is up then Bye~bye Samsung! (LG FTW!!!!)

  • SamsungNowSucks

    Can you believe we’ve been waiting 10 months for an update for the Galaxy Note II and Galaxy S3 to a newer android version?, looks like we may have to wait over a year for that update, which may be pushed back even more because of “Christmas”

    That is just shameful, Samsung….

  • S3 User

    Well, this is not new on samsung updates. Im really pissed off. My first and last phone. Thanks for the DISAPPOINTMENT

  • S3 User

    Whats next for “by the end of December” is it “by the end of first quarter of 2014” Oh cmon Samsung

  • galdamita

    It will be better to have an android stock firmware and depend directly from Google not from Samsung, because Sammy always delays the updates…

  • MrWillieMatt

    I will believe it when i see it. I think samsung is playing the delay and then forget about it. If they don’t get it to the carriers by January I doubt I will get it at all on AT&T.

  • Ankit Kamal

    Dear.. Samsuck..
    i have been your loyal consumer for the past 5 years.. Buying flagship devices and waiting for updates… But i am pleased to inform you that the Note 2 which i bought a few months back will be my last samsuck device..!

    Blame yourself for the sales of S4 going down.. Cz its shitty plastic and the OCTA core crap is even shittier.!!

    Kindly respect your consumers and dont concentrate only on money making..

    Once a samsuck fan…

    • ForTehNguyen


  • Blowntoaster

    whine whine whine. I have an S3 and I’ve gotten 3 updates over the last year & a half. and when my region update is not available, I download and flash the most compatible official stock rom that is. what the hell are you moaning about…you’ll get your damn 4.3 update soon, so stop whining (I wanted to get real nasty, but I’ll refrain coz I like AA and don’t wanna be banned) and get on with your lives. or if you’ve got some brains, load a custom rom and shove off.

    • Amine Elouakil

      minor update =/=major update, the phone doesn’t even have a 4.2 update.

  • potanes

    how about the sony xperia phones?

  • Matthew Adams

    Hey, I learned how to get 4G Service, Unlimited Talk & Text with 4gb of Data with T-Mobile for only $29! I practically have the promo code!

  • ForTehNguyen

    I just want Note 3’s software to put on my Note 2

    • Ankit Kamal

      anything else my lord?

  • George Av


  • Acaa Aca

    i think the galaxy gear would make even more sense for tablets with phone capabilities. let’s say you have a tablet inside your backpack, you can just use the gear to make calls or do other minimal phone tasks.

  • Oli72

    nothing like a nexus phone.

  • dhruv
  • dhruv

    in india

  • Leonardo Baez

    wait wait wait… another s3 delay…. at first it was scheduled for october, then for november and now for end of december!…. anyone wants to buy an S3. I am over with samsung