- Google and Qualcomm to extend Android updates for Snapdragon-powered phones
- Future phones will receive four years of OS updates starting with Snapdragon 888
- However, OEM’s will decide whether to provide three or four years of updates
OnePlus delivers three years of software updates to its phones. This year, Samsung also joined the bandwagon to offer three major OS updates for its flagship models. Now, all Android users have something to look forward to. Google is teaming up with chipmaker Qualcomm to guarantee four OS versions and years of security updates and make it the norm.
Currently, Android phones offer two to three years of software updates depending on the smartphone maker. According to Android Police, the Google announced that all of Qualcomm’s future chipsets starting with the Snapdragon 888 will support three years of OS updates and four years of security patches.
Future Snapdragon-powered phones to support four years of Android updates
The latest development means that upcoming smartphones will receive an extra year of software updates before losing support, although this is up to the OEMs. Three years ago, Google had announced Project Treble to speed up software updates but it made things difficult for chipset manufacturers since they had to make processors ready for the next version of Android.
Google’s announcement will simplify Android updates for Snapdragon devices and significantly extend the length of the smartphone.
Cupertino-based Apple has the upper hand in terms of software updates compared to Android. The former allows iPhones to continue receiving iOS updates until the hardware can no longer take advantage of it. On the other hand, Google ends Android support for phones after three years. This is in stark contrast to iPhone users receiving iOS updates for at least five years.
The changes announced today will apply to future Qualcomm-powered devices starting with Snapdragon 888 chipset. It is likely that older hardware won’t be supported. So buyers may need to purchase high-end devices to take advantage of this. We expect budget smartphones to get similar support later. The final decision to provide three years of OS updates and four years of security patches also rests on the smartphone manufacturers.