Google’s Ice Cream Sandwich is a sore talking point for millions of Android device owners across the world at the moment – Google’s plan to get all handsets running on the same software has been quite a ride. Well, we’re here to help – we’ll run through all the manufacturers who have promised ICS and see how they have faired on the “first-quarter” promises.
Ice Cream Sandwich was actually release in 2011 – three months later and the rollout is only really now getting into top gear. Given the sheer number of tablet and handsets, it was always going to be a difficult job to get everyone singing from the same digital hymn sheet.
Based on their own publicly shared plans, here’s how the different Android manufacturers have performed in 2012 thus far.
Acer announced that their entire Iconia Tablets line would be getting some Ice Cream love. They’ve stuck to their word and managed to push the update out to their A200. But those of you with the A100 or A500 are likely to see the new OS “mid-April’.
Media experts Archos also faired a lot better than the competition. The company said it’d bring Android 4.0 to its G9 tablet line in the first quarter, and sure enough, it delivered. Archos sent ICS to both its Archos 80 G9 and Archos 101 G9 in early March.
From the get-go, Asus have been one of shining lights when it comes to amazing tablets running the best hardware and software. To show the competition how it’s done: they had ICS out the door in January and achieved the accolade of first tablet to receive ICS. They beat the Google-managed Motorola Xoom in the ICS upgrade race.
Those of you who bought last year’s Transformer tablet will be glad to know the update quickly followed the Prime’s rollout and has been available since February.
Asus has continued to rollout update after update to address problems and improve performance.
HTC promised the world with their ICS update plans and to fair they have pretty much delivered – but with such a variety of handsets to handle some have been left by the way-side.
They promised the HTC Sensation, Sensation XE and 4G by “the end of March”. Upgrade have begun to rollout for the Sensation and XE – but the 4G device has yet to see anyform of Ice Cream love.
Other handsets that are expected to get the upgrade includce the Amaze 4G, EVO 3D, EVO Design 4G, Rezound and Sensation XL. At the time of writing no specific dates have been given.
On the plus side, HTC did make Android 4.0 available to its AT&T-based HTC Vivid and the phone’s Australian equivalent, the HTC Velocity 4G, in late March.
Chinese unpronounceable Huawei said at CES in January that their MediaPad tablet would receive ICS “by the first quarter of 2012.” Unfortunately they haven’t been able to stick to their promise as we’ve seen nothing.
A spokesperson declined to answer questions directly and told us that Huawei was “continuing to work with the carriers on this”.
LG promised ICS for a number of handsets, but all of them are expected to schedule the update in either the second or third quarter of 2012. As soon as we get more details we’ll be sure to let you know.
Lenovo says its ThinkPad Tablet will get Ice Cream Sandwich sometime in the second quarter. Like LG, the company is essentially sitting this first quarter out when it comes to ICS deliveries.
Motorola’s ICS plans as clear as we’d like but their handset upgrades are expected for the second or third quarter of the year. One odd decision is not to support their flagship Droid Razr/Motorola phone.
Some versions of the Motorola Xoom did receive Ice Cream Sandwich this quarter, but the tablet is a “Google experience” device and consequently has its software upgrades managed directly by Google – not Motorola.
Notion Ink proclaimed they would get ICS to their Adam tablet in November, and, quite frankly no one took them seriously. Obviosly it didn’t happen: the company has released alpha and beta builds but made no further mention of when its official final version will become available.
Samsung like most manufacturers promised a first-quarter ICS rollout for the Galaxy Note and Galaxy S2. And they have begun to send ICS to some S2’s – while it’s not the full-fat version we were expecting – it’s better than nothing.
The have also promised the same for the heavily marketed Note before the end of Q1, telling customers last week that it was “proud to announce” a second-quarter ICS rollout for the device.
Samsung has given no specific time estimates for any of its other ICS-confirmed devices, including the Galaxy R, Galaxy S II Skyrocket, and various Galaxy Tab models.
Sony has one of the largest selections of Android phone around, so getting all these handsets (Xperia Active, Xperia Arc, Xperia Arc S, Xperia Mini, Xperia Mini Pro, Xperia Pro) all on ICS is not going to be easy.
All the info points to an ICS upgrade window that extends well past the first quarter of the year. Most of the devices are slated for upgrades in a late-April-to-early-May.
A few Sony phones — the Xperia Arc S, Xperia Neo V, and Xperia Ray — are down to be upgraded in “late March or early April,” so while they should be seeing ICS very soon, Sony still has a bit more time to fulfill its promise and consequently gets a not-yet-in-the-game grade for Q1.
Toshiba has said it’s targeting the “end of spring” to upgrade its Toshiba Thrive tablet; it’s provided a similar “spring 2012″ time frame for its new Excite 10 LE tablet as well. Spring officially runs through June 19 this year, so the big T has plenty of time remaining.