On October 19th when Google announced the next version of Android, codenamed Ice Cream Sandwich, you could feel the panic that HTC, Motorola, Samsung, and others started experiencing. They’d now have to worry about porting Android 4.0 to their existing portfolio of devices, a process that can take months. Any subsequent Android device announced after October 19th that wasn’t running ICS immediately lost our respect, and our reviews reflected that. Huawei and Sony Ericsson were ballsy enough to let their users try out ICS on their devices by issuing demo ROMs, but we all know that such a move was nothing more than a marketing stunt. Back in their respective offices they were both looking at Google’s source code and trying to figure out where they could add some sort of differentiation so that their hardware stands out from everything else on the market. Sad as it may seem, the Galaxy Nexus may very well be the sole device that runs stock Android ICS.
Depressing realization aside, if you’re using an Android smartphone made by Samsung, and chances are it’s the Samsung Galaxy S II or one of the many variants of it, then you’re probably thinking to yourself when am I going to get an update to ICS? Today, Samsung made that abundantly clear on their corporate blog:
Samsung Electronics plan to provide the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update for GALAXY devices. The platform update for GALAXY S II and GALAXY Note will start in the first quarter 2012, and other GALAXY devices will soon follow.
The ICS-upgradable devices are the GALAXY S II, GALAXY S II LTE, GALAXY Note, GALAXY R, GALAXY Tab 10.1, GALAXY Tab 8.9, GALAXY Tab 7.7, and GALAXY Tab 7.0 Plus.
We’ll stay on top of this since something tells us that Samsung isn’t going to use any of the new user interaction models introduced in ICS. Prepare to get your heart broken by the next version of TouchWiz.