Samsung has committed to providing monthly security updates for unlocked Galaxy smartphones in the United States, according to ZDNet. That will result in a more frequent release cycle compared to the quarterly patches the company has issued in recent months. The carrier-branded Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge phones have been updated to Android 7.0 Nougat, while the unlocked S7s haven’t seen the major upgrade — and remain months behind on security releases. Even AT&T’s Galaxy S7 Active is getting Nougat before the unlocked variants.
That’s the opposite of how things usually work with Android devices; typically manufacturers can roll out software faster when carriers aren’t deeply involved in the process.
“We have now resolved the challenges,” Samsung’s security team wrote in an email to ZDNet. “We are committed to releasing security updates for those devices on a monthly basis." Companies saying this type of thing is very different from actually following through; aside from Pixel and Nexus hardware, few Android partners aside from BlackBerry can really lay claim to a spotless security patch record.