Android 4.1 Jelly Bean to land... god knows when

Android 4.1 Jelly Bean to land... god knows whenIn the years I've been reading about these things and analysing phone trends, I have to say there has never been a Google OS launch as underwhelming as Jelly Bean.

I'm trying to cast my mind back - the first launch brought us the G1 (whoop), subsequent launches gave us things we craved like on-screen keyboards, flash internet and so on. Yet, Jelly Bean (and this is not a criticism of the latest version of Android itself, just the impact made by its arrival) has really failed to catch the imagination of a lot of the blogosphere.

And it would look like handset manufacturers are feeling pretty much the same. While the world went nuts over Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich when it was announced last October, this time around it seems the most popular comment among Android device makers is in fact "no comment".

That's what The Verge found when it took the temperature of Android OEMs earlier in the week, suggesting that far from Jelly Bean improving on the typical confused mess that seems to be inevitable when a new version of Android surfaces, if anything Jelly Bean's rollout will be more chaotic than ever.

What we do know - from Google itself - is that the Motorola Xoom, the Samsung Galaxy Nexus and the Google Nexus S will get a bump up this month. And that's it for now.

In fact, when asked Acer, Asus, LG and Motorola had nothing at all to say on the subject with Samsung only offering a slight crumb of hope with "Samsung will soon announce which additional devices are eligible for the Jelly Bean update. Samsung has delivered the most Nexus-branded lead OS devices and we are pleased that Google will be bringing Samsung Galaxy Nexus and Nexus S customers the first experiences of Jelly Bean on a handheld device".

Although there are unofficial ways of getting Jelly Bean already, they're hardly ideal. XDA has ROMs to download but they're flaky at best and most are reporting that they're far from ideal for everyday use on a handset.

Which means that this is one of those areas where Apple unquestionably has the edge. Yes, Android's diversity may give it strength in numbers - but it also means fragmentation is all but impossible to avoid. Consumers hear about a potential update for their handset and know it's coming, but genuinely have no idea when. They're at the mercy of the manufacturers and that is an annoying place to be.

There is a Platform Development Kit available to devs prior to the release of an update to allow them to get a head start. But Google has only given this to a few partners. Presumably because it didn't want details of Jelly Bean leaking out before it had the chance to make the announcement itself.

If you've downloaded Jelly Bean yet from an unofficial source, let us know what you think of it in the Comments below.

Read more about: Android

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9 comments

hicks12  Jul. 5, 2012 at 11:56

Well id call that a bit of a silly note... Google knew jelly bean wasnt a major step from ICS (ICS was HUGE compared to GB/HC) and so they named it appropriately i.e android 4.1 not doing a silly move playing the numbers game and calling it android 5.0 when the changes are certainly decent and overall a better experience but it isnt as much as ICS, i see Apple did less than google this time round yet still had the balls to say its 6.0... integrating facebook well done apple.


JB has a host of improvements across the board, GUI is much smoother and things like Google Now just improve upon an already solid experience. I think you are looking way to far into this, JB was only announced a week ago and the actual hardware design side is going along as the PDK was released a week ago or in a weeks time as its been in beta. Once that is actually out properly it wont be to long to see JB devices (launching straight with JB) however we missed the new launches from major OEMS (Samsung/LG/HTC etc) so we will simply be waiting for them to upgrade their current handsets.

Upgrading from 4.0 to 4.1 is going to be a pretty simple task compared to GB --> ICS etc, so it shant be to long compared to that! Certain devices wont get it and thats good because i think people forget that having the best OS on an old system will result in a slow system, like putting vista/7 on a pc that was just about ok with XP it will now crawl to a hault... same happens with Apple, i dont see their OS updates improving performance of the old devices it just simply makes them worse :P.

OEMs seem to be doing better for Android now... LG was terrible (partly due to stupid fing Nvidia) but they have been turning around recently, ICS has been released on the prada 3.0 already and the O2x is finally in testing (or so they say :D) along with other LG phones like the optimus 3d(ahead of schedule!).

Its down to the OEMs and SoC manufactureres that are to blame for the slow update progress of Android and fragmentation is going to improve, within a year we will see that ICS value grow significantly as old devices are brought out of GB and into ICS/JB. It wont be long till Android finally gets to a normal level of fragmentation!.

Pondlife  Jul. 5, 2012 at 12:17

Wow it's been a week with no source codes and xda hasn't got fully functional jelly bean roms coming out of it's ears. Well duh you don't say. Anyone looking at such roms right now would expect them to be flaky, give them a bloody chance.

The comparison to ios is just as mad, erm ios6 announced with big showy presentation of broadly nowt much and no one gets it for months, yet this is different some how?

ADay  Jul. 5, 2012 at 14:08

This is a terrible article.

First, Jelly Bean is supposed to be a minor upgrade from ICS, hence the version number only bumping to 4.1.

Second, it was announced only a week ago, and Google hasn't even released the source. Of course hardware manufacturers will have no comment.

Third, I am running stock Jelly Bean on my Galaxy Nexus from an XDA-developed ROM and EVERYTHING works, perfectly.

Your article is very misleading.

AOKPBasedGod  Jul. 5, 2012 at 22:14

There are a whack of great new features in Jelly Bean. Of course there is no decent build of Jellybean, there's no source, its all ports....fail, just a fail....

phillavelle  Jul. 6, 2012 at 09:49

I'm so glad this site encourages a nice healthy debate. Thank you so much to you all for taking the time to sit down and pen your responses. Not that I'm going to get into an argument as I have better things to do but thanks for your comments. Mine still stand.

hellanwell  Jul. 7, 2012 at 08:14

I'm so glad this site encourages a nice healthy debate. Thank you so much to you all for taking the time to sit down and pen your responses. Not that I'm going to get into an argument as I have better things to do but thanks for your comments. Mine still stand.

Cheers then. If you are the author of the article and that's your attitude stop writing articles.
In answer to what you have written if you want to get the latest Android quickest without using an official rom you buy a nexus phone. I have nexus s and will get the 'jelly bean' ota. If I didn't want to worry about it and was not fussed then I would buy any old Android from any carrier but if I was fussed I choose the best solution.

Pondlife  Jul. 7, 2012 at 11:18

Article writer out of his depth in a puddle

Pondlife  Jul. 7, 2012 at 11:23

Cheers then. If you are the author of the article and that's your attitude stop writing articles.
In answer to what you have written if you want to get the latest Android quickest without using an official rom you buy a nexus phone. I have nexus s and will get the 'jelly bean' ota. If I didn't want to worry about it and was not fussed then I would buy any old Android from any carrier but if I was fussed I choose the best solution.


Seems to be what the site wants, guessing it's just at the need people to look at it so trolling articles just for a response, suppose it's an easy way to do things. As most of the articles barely get a response maybe they need to work harder at that too.

hellanwell  Jul. 7, 2012 at 17:17



In answer to what you have written if you want to get the latest Android quickest without using an official rom you buy a nexus phone.


Of course I meant unofficial rom....

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