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Sprint Galaxy S III reportedly has universal search removed in OTA update

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A recent update to the Galaxy S III on Sprint has reportedly removed universal search from the device in what could be a preventative move in the wake of one of Apple and Samsung's infringement lawsuits.

Samsung Galaxy S III Sprint (1024px)
Samsung Galaxy S III Sprint (1024px)

In the wake of the Galaxy Nexus legal battle with Apple, Google and Samsung have been working together on a software patch that would remove universal search from the device. That update hasn't surfaced just yet, but it appears Samsung may have made a defensive move with the Galaxy S III on Sprint: a recent update has reportedly removed universal search from the phone altogether. Android Central reports that the over-the-air update — billed as a security update — removed local, on-device search results from the phone when using the homescreen search bar, and that searching with that method now returns only web-based results. It's the exact same functionality change we were told Google was prepping for the Nexus. We're in the process of confirming the change on our own devices, and have reached out to Sprint and Samsung in the meantime. We'll update you with any new information as it becomes available.