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TL;DR
  • Samsung has further clarified the security update timeline for its devices.
  • Some phones eligible for four years of security updates will get them less frequently than others.
  • There’s also a new category for devices that’ll get only biannual security updates.

Samsung is currently doing a great job of offering timely software updates to its devices. After announcing four years of security updates for all Samsung devices released in 2019 or later, the company has further clarified the timeline for these updates.

Samsung now breaks down its phones and tablets under monthly, quarterly, and biannual categories for receiving the latest Android security patches.

It’ll push out monthly security updates to high-end devices like the Galaxy S21 series, foldables, previous flagships, and some enterprise phones like the Galaxy XCover 5.

A few years into their launch, devices will get less frequent quarterly updates. The current list for quarterly security updates includes phones like the Galaxy S8, Note 8, a large chunk of Galaxy A series devices, Galaxy M series, and more. So even though some of these devices are eligible for four years of security updates, they’ll only get them once every three months.

Meanwhile, less relevant devices are categorized under the new biannual update plan. The update timeline for these phones was previously undefined, but now it’s clear that Samsung will update devices in it at least twice a year. That’s not great, but it’s definitely better than getting no security patches at all.

Devices eligible for biannual updates currently include the Galaxy S8 Lite, Galaxy A9 (2018), several Galaxy J series phones, and older tablets like Galaxy Tab S4, Tab S3, and more.

You can see Samsung’s complete security update schedule here.

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