Asus has added its own, relatively noncommittal, statement concerning an Android 4.1 Jelly Bean update for its tablets, joining those already issued by Samsung, ZTE and HTC. It will come as a shock to almost nobody to hear that while an upgrade is planned, there’s no exact timeframe at this point.
Owners of the Asus Transformer Pad, the Transformer Pad Prime and the Transformer Pad Infinity are all scheduled to see some Jelly Bean fun in the future, but all Asus can say on when is that it’ll be in the “coming months.”
While this means almost nothing — September is a coming month, both in 2012 and 2013 — it does give the impression that it’ll be this side of Christmas, which when we consider Asus’ exposure to Android 4.1, should certainly be the case.
The Google Nexus 7 tablet is the world’s first device to come with Jelly Bean installed and not upgraded from a previous version, and it was built by Asus. Perhaps this early access to Jelly Bean will mean Asus will be one of the first to provide a legitimate upgrade for its products.
Asus hasn’t swathed Android in a custom UI on its Transformer tablets either, so the minimal reworking can only help, as can the minimal interference from the networks too.
If you don’t own one of the three Asus devices confirmed in the company’s statement, but still want the latest version of Android, don’t lose all hope just yet, as Asus says it’s “still investigating Jelly Bean updates for other devices,” but isn’t prepared to provide any details just yet.
HTC, Samsung and ZTE updates all coming soon
HTC has also announced the first run of its devices to see an update to Android 4.1 — the One X, One XL and One S. These three smartphones all have Android 4.0 as standard, and are therefore prime candidates for an upgrade, although owners shouldn’t expect many visual tweaks to the OS, as it’s obscured by HTC Sense.
Asus’ timeframe for the arrival of Jelly Bean may be vague, but it’s positively precise compared to HTC’s, as all it can do is recommend we “stay tuned” for details on the timing.
Samsung is in a similar situation to Asus, as the Nexus S and Galaxy Nexus will both see an Android 4.1 update, but it has remained quiet on the status of its other devices. Smart money is on the Galaxy S3 being one of the first, along with the Galaxy Note and various Galaxy Tabs.
An “insider” has told SamMobile.com that Android 4.1 for the Galaxy S3 is in the final stages of testing, and it could be ready as soon as August or September; however this hasn’t been confirmed by Samsung, who have probably learned from previous mistakes.
Finally, the company with the most on-the-ball PR department is ZTE, who sent out a press release saying that the China-only N880E is to become the third smartphone in the world to have Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. The CDMA phone has been on sale since May, but new models will now sell with Jelly Bean pre-installed.
Sony, LG and Motorola are all staying quiet on the subject.