Samsung Galaxy Note 4 has just appeared in benchmarks with Android 7.0 Nougat installed, prompting suggestions that the phone could be updated to the new OS at some point in future.
The phone was released in October 2014, which means it’s now over two years old. In fact, the Galaxy Note 4 will be three years in less than three months’ time. Unlike Google, Samsung has not made it clear with how it conducts business on the software update side of things. Usually, Google releases major Android updates for devices that are less than two years. To put it clearer, Google phones are entitled to at least two major software upgrades before they are discontinued.
In the case of Samsung, this cannot be confirmed, but looking at previous patterns, it’s easy to say that the Korean company follows the same structure as Google, at least for its high-end Galaxy S and Note handsets. The most recent ones are the Galaxy S6 and Note 5 devices. These were released in 2015 with Android Lollipop and so far, they’ve been updated to Android 7.0 Nougat, which is definitely their last major OS upgrade.
With this structure in mind, the question that still begs an answer is will Samsung Galaxy Note 4 receive the update to Android 7.0 Nougat? To better respond to this, here’s a brief look into the Note 4 and related software updates.
As noted, the Galaxy Note 4 was released in October 2014 and it came pre-installed with Android 4.4.4 KitKat. So far, the phablet has gone through two major OS upgrades in the shape of Android 5.0 Lollipop and Android 6.0 Marshmallow. If we were to assume that Samsung only rolls out two major software updates to its flagship phones, our answer to the begging question would be obvious – that the Note 4 won’t receive an update to Android 7.0 Nougat.
But looking at it from another angle, many will agree that Samsung Galaxy Note 4 deserves an update to Nougat, at least for the sake of the fans. The phone definitely meets the hardware conditions required to run the OS smoothly.
Since it’s a high-end phone, it came with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 SoC mated with 3GB RAM, but other units had an Exynos 5433 SoC running the show. This is the same package found on the Google Nexus 6, a phone that was released in November 2014 and has already been upgraded to Android 7.1.1 Nougat.
So, why isn’t Samsung Galaxy Note 4 receiving the update to Nougat while the Nexus 6, a phone that has the same hardware configuration and was also released at the same time as the former has the new OS on board?
The only reason that Nexus 6 has Nougat and the Note 4 is still stuck on Marshmallow is that the update to Nougat was actually the former’s second major OS upgrade. In case you didn’t know, the Nexus 6 came with Android 5.0 Lollipop out of the box, which made the update to Nougat its second and final update, as per Google’s structure.
Even though the Galaxy Note 4 has capable hardware to run Android 7.0 Nougat, the fact that it had already received two major OS upgrades before Nougat came out means that Samsung probably won’t be rolling out any further OS versions to the phablet.
As noted, a Nougat-powered Galaxy Note 4 has been spotted on Geekbench, something that has led to speculations that the phone could be updated to the new OS. Well, it’s possible that this is just a Nougat-based ROM installed on the Note 4 and it’s nothing from Samsung itself. So don’t get your hopes too high as far as the official Galaxy Note 4 Nougat update is concerned.