After the big announcement made In Hong Kong, the Galaxy Nexus and Android 4.0 were officially announced. We were all left wondering if our beloved Android phone would be getting the update to Android 4.0, also known as Ice Cream Sandwich. Well, we have put together a nice list of our predictions of what devices will, what devices might, and what device will not be getting official ICS updates.
With contracts, and over $500-off-contract prices for new phones like the Galaxy Nexus, which is coming next month, we’d like to keep our current phone around as long as possible – right?
Phones that will get ICS
All of these phones, I think will be getting ICS, but the question that remains is when.
Samsung Nexus S
Without a doubt – the Nexus S and all of its brothers on Sprint, T-Mobile and AT&T will be getting the update, because they are “pure Google experiences”. Since this was the phone that ICS was built on and tested on, there’s no doubt in my mind that it will be getting Ice Cream Sandwich. The Nexus S will probably be the first one to be upgraded to ICS.
Motorola Atrix 2
The Atrix 2 is another Motorola phone using an OMAP processor. Motorola choosing to go from Tegra to OMAP right before we saw ICS was not a coincidence. The Atrix 2 does have the specs to be able to handle all that ICS has to offer, but the biggest question that remains is – will it still include MotoBlur? MotoBlur is the skin that Motorola puts on top of the Android OS on most of their phones. I myself don’t really care too much for MotoBlur, but we will have to see what Motorola does with it once they start pushing updates of Ice Cream Sandwich to their Android lineup.
Just announced earlier this week, the RAZR looks to be one of the first to get updated to ICS. We also saw from several other Android sites, as well as ours, mention that ICS will be coming to the RAZR in early 2012. So I am 100% sure the RAZR will get ICS. But like with the Atrix 2, how much will MotoBlur effect this? Will it be discontinued?
Motorola Droid Bionic
The Bionic is one more member of the Droid family using the OMAP chipset. We wondered why Motorola stopped using the Tegra 2 and went to OMAP for the Bionic, but it works on Verizon’s LTE so who cares right? I believe that the Bionic will get its ICS update shortly after the RAZR and Atrix 2 but I could be wrong, I’m sure many of you Bionic owners hope I am wrong.
Motorola Droid 3
The Droid 3 is another in the list from Motorola that I truly believe will be getting the Ice Cream Sandwich update. Motorola’s first to feature an OMAP 4 dual-core CPU. In all honesty any processor will probably work in ICS, the GPU will certainly make a huge difference. With the Droid 3 no longer being the flagship Droid on Verizon, once the RAZR is officially out next month, who knows how long before Verizon and Motorola get around to updating the Droid 3.
The HTC Sensation Family (including Original, 4G, XE and XL)
Now I might be a bit biased when it comes to the Sensation 4G, since that is my phone – but I do think that it will be getting ICS. In all honesty, the Sensations all have the same specs – relatively - as the newly announced Droid RAZR and Galaxy Nexus, so if they are able to get ICS why can’t the Sensations? But here’s the question for HTC phones, what about Sense? I really like Sense, and version 3.0 and 3.5 just make Android look so much more user friendly, in my opinion. Many people think HTC can start to phase out Sense, but we will see what they choose to do.
HTC EVO 3D
I have no doubt that the EVO 3D will be getting their update to ICS, but like with the Sensation family, what is going to happen with Sense? But don’t fear, your beloved EVO 3D, both world and Sprint versions, will see the ICS update. If for no other reason but to keep you with your HTC phone.
HTC Amaze 4G
T-Mobile’s newest Android phone, the Amaze 4G will definitely get the upgrade. The Amaze already has some pretty awesome camera software built in, so now imagine that with what Google showed us earlier this week and there you have possibly the best phone running ICS that is not a Nexus. Amaze owners can be rest assured that T-Mobile and HTC will work to get the Amaze updated, since it is their newest flagship phone for T-Mobile, who was also the first carrier to have an Android device about three years ago.
The Xperia Family
Well this isn’t really my choice, it’s on the list because yesterday Sony Ericsson said that all their 2011 phones would be upgraded to ICS, but like most manufacturers they did not say when. I think it’s fair to say that Sont Ericsson has learned a lot about their users and how anxious they can be for getting updates for their Xperia phones running Android.
Samsung Galaxy S II Series
The Galaxy S II’s all basically have the same specs as the Galaxy Nexus, and they were built by the same manufacturer that built the Galaxy Nexus. So really, the only thing standing in the Galaxy S II’s way is Touchwiz — another skin put on by the manufacturer, like HTC’s Sense and Motorola’s MotoBlur. Although ICS isn’t optimized to play well with Exynos, I think Samsung can get it to work nicely since they worked closely with Google for so long making the last two Nexus phones — Nexus S, and the Galaxy Nexus.
Almost forgot about this one, although it is an LG phone – it should still get updated. History shows us that LG has had trouble updating their Android powered phones in a timely fashion. We are hoping this changes with ICS. With the specs that the G2X has, it should definitely get the update, if not there are always rooting and ROMs to get the update, unofficially of course.
Phones that could get Android 4.0
These are a list of phones I think could get ICS, and could run it pretty well.
LG Optimus 3D/Thrill
In one simple sentence: LG has struggled with software updates. None of their phones really see timely software updates. Of course compared to other platforms, none of these Android phones — excluding the Nexus’s — see timely updates either. HTC, Samsung and Motorola have all gone through it and have gotten better at rolling out more timely updates. Eventually, LG will get it together but I am not sure if they will in time for an ICS update, maybe a Jellybean or Jello update — or whatever Google ends up calling Android 5.0.
myTouch 4G Slide
All the signs are currently pointing to the myTouch getting ICS, but it also has a lot of T-mobile carrier customizations. The myTouch 4G does have very similar specs as the EVO 3D and the Sensation family,, and was made by HTC as well. So there’s a huge possibility of ICS coming for the myTouch 4G Slide. On the down side, T-Mobile and HTC have to work together on this one because of all the carrier customizations built in to the OS, so it may take longer to get the update then most of the other HTC phones on our list.
Samsung Droid Charge
The Droid Charge is one of the few single core devices on this list – but it’s still no slouch. With these kind of specs, why wouldn’t the Charge get ICS? Considering the position that Samsung is in building the newest Nexus, the Galaxy Nexus, we think that it’s possible for the Charge to get it – but it’s likely to come from custom ROM developers more than anything . But the Charge is on the list of “could get ICS” because I think Samsung is going to focus on the Galaxy SII series of phones along with the Nexus S and Galaxy Nexus to get those updated, then maybe the Charge will see some Ice Cream afterwards.
Other HTC Snapdragon Phones
This includes the HTC EVO 4G, Droid Incredible, Desire HD, and the Nexus One. While HTC had the Nexus One as their flagship phone, Google worked hard with it to get Froyo — Android 2.2 — on to the Nexus One. HTC took advantage of that and released a trio of great phones that were ahead of its time which included the Droid Incredible, Desire HD and the EVO 4G, but sadly it looks like there time has come and gone at least for now. The real question is, not about Sense this time, but whether or not HTC will invest their time and money into updating phones that are 18-months-old and at or near end of life. What do you think?
This great looking phone on Virgin Mobile can certainly handle the update, but VM is relatively new to Android so it may take them a while to even decide if they want to upgrade the Triumph. Also, this is not one of Motorola’s flagship phones like the Droid Bionic, RAZR, or the Droid 3. It certainly has the specs, but it is still on Froyo, which gives us a puzzled reaction to whether it’ll get updated or not.
My phone was not on the list? Should I worry?
No, of course not. These predictions could be way off, although I don’t think they are. But where there are so many Android phones, it’s hard to talk about every single phone in one post. But the good thing is that you can always root your device and put on a custom ROM. As soon as the SDK for ICS is public — open sourced — there will be so many ROMs that you can put on to your phone. A lot of ROM developers have worked ROM’s for the majority of the phones not listed, like the Incredible 2/S, Wildfire S, Thunderbolt, Droid X and X2, and the original Galaxy S line.
Of course if your phone isn’t in line to get upgraded don’t get upset, it’ll still work fine. Gingerbread is a great OS, of course ICS is better, and it runs smoothly on most of the phones that got, or are in line to receive the Gingerbread update. So use your phone until it cannot be used anymore, then buy the best phone possible, like the Galaxy Nexus.