Why is Samsung still stuck on Android

Support-off for Samsung mobile phone: Popular Galaxy smartphone no longer receives updates

Samsung regularly launches new Galaxy smartphones. As a result, older devices also lose support after a few years. With the latest update, it hits a Galaxy phone that is still very popular with users. We'll also show you which Galaxy smartphones are threatened with the end of support and explain Samsung's update policy to you.

Samsung has now established a rough process for security updates for its smartphones: The security updates from Google, which not only protect against malware and the like, but also improve the device balance, will still be available on Galaxy devices for at least three years after they have been released.

Samsung itself says that "no general statement can be made" as to how long devices are supplied with updates. In recent years, however, this rhythm has become established with manufacturers. In view of the regular replenishment of new devices, which of course also have ever stronger hardware under the hood, this handling of the manufacturer is quite understandable.

The security updates are actually a must for smartphone users: If these are not carried out regularly, the chances of falling victim to hacker attacks, data theft or malware increase.

Security updates for Galaxy smartphones: Samsung distinguishes between three device categories

Owners of an older Samsung smartphone usually run into a problem after three years - either they do without the important security patches or they look for a new mobile phone that is regularly updated with updates.

When it comes to security updates, Samsung distinguishes between three device categories:

  • Newly released mid-range models as well as the flagship devices of the Galaxy S and Galaxy Note series just like the Galaxy S20, Note 20 or the Galaxy Fold get a security update every month.
  • Slightly older devices, including the Galaxy S9 (Plus) or the M40 and Tab S6 models, get updates every three months.
  • Devices that are nearing the end of support after three years (for example currently the Galaxy A6 and the Galaxy A8 +) get the updates even less often. The categories are also updated regularly by Samsung - this also means that the cell phones in the last category sooner or later you will drop out of update support altogether.

As a service, Samsung offers users a document in which the supported smartphones are listed. We have summarized the Samsung smartphones that are still supported below.

It is noticeable that a change that is decisive for many users must be noted in the latest version of the document. The popular Galaxy S8 will no longer receive support from now on - so far the device was still in the third category.

Important: Is your device in the list no longer listed, buying a new smartphone is worth considering - if you really want to be on the safe side. Support for this is provided by our mobile phone leaderboard, which uses extensive filter functions to help you find the ideal smartphone.

Alternatively, customers can also take advantage of the "trade-in" offer from Samsung: If you have an old model and want to buy a new one, you can trade in the former. The purchase value of the old device is then deducted directly from the purchase price at the checkout of the Samsung online shop. You can find more information at this address.

If you only need a smartphone for a limited period of time or if you want to test a new device first before you buy it, you can now use Samsung's cell phone loan service. We have summarized all the important details for you under this link.

These Galaxy smartphones are still receiving security updates

1. Samsung smartphones with monthly security updates

  • Galaxy Fold, Galaxy Fold 5G, Galaxy Z Fold2, Galaxy Z Fold2 5G, Galaxy Z Flip, Galaxy Z Flip 5G
  • Galaxy S10, Galaxy S10 +, Galaxy S10e, Galaxy S10 5G, Galaxy S10 Lite
  • Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20 5G, Galaxy S20 +, Galaxy S20 + 5G, Galaxy S20 Ultra, Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G, Galaxy S20 FE, Galaxy S20 FE 5G, Galaxy S21 5G, Galaxy S21 + 5G, Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G
  • Galaxy Note9, Galaxy Note10, Galaxy Note10 5G, Galaxy Note10 +, Galaxy Note10 + 5G, Galaxy Note10 Lite, Galaxy Note20, Galaxy Note20 5G, Galaxy Note20 Ultra, Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G
  • Galaxy A52, Galaxy A52 5G
  • Enterprise models: Galaxy A50, Galaxy XCover4s, Galaxy Xcover FieldPro, Galaxy Xcover Pro, Galaxy Xcover5

2. Samsung smartphones with quarterly security updates

  • Galaxy S8 Active, Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9 +
  • Galaxy Note8
  • Galaxy A10e, Galaxy A10s, Galaxy A20e, Galaxy A20s, Galaxy A30s, Galaxy A40, Galaxy A50s, Galaxy A60, Galaxy A70, Galaxy A70s, Galaxy A80, Galaxy A90 5G
  • Galaxy A01, Galaxy A01 Core, Galaxy A11, Galaxy A21, Galaxy A21s, Galaxy A31, Galaxy A41, Galaxy A51, Galaxy A51 5G, Galaxy A71, Galaxy A71 5G
  • Galaxy A02, Galaxy A02s, Galaxy A12, Galaxy A32, Galaxy A32 5G, Galaxy A42 5G, Galaxy A72, Galaxy A82 5G
  • Galaxy M10s, Galaxy M30s, Galaxy M40
  • Galaxy M01, Galaxy M11, Galaxy M21, Galaxy M31, Galaxy M31s, Galaxy M51, Galaxy M12
  • Galaxy F62
  • Galaxy Tab A 8 (2019), Galaxy Tab A 8.4 (2020), Galaxy Tab A7, Galaxy Tab Active2, Galaxy Tab Active Pro, Galaxy Tab Active3
  • Galaxy Tab S6, Galaxy Tab S6 5G, Galaxy Tab S6 Lite, Galaxy Tab S7, Galaxy Tab S7 +, Galaxy View2
  • W20 5G, W21 5G
  • Enterprise models: Galaxy A8 (2018)

3. Samsung smartphones with isolated security updatess

  • Galaxy S8 Lite, Galaxy Note FE
  • Galaxy A6, Galaxy A6 +, Galaxy A7 (2018), Galaxy A8 + (2018), Galaxy A8 Star, Galaxy A8s, Galaxy A9 (2018), Galaxy A2 Core, Galaxy A10, Galaxy A20, Galaxy A30
  • Galaxy J2 Core, Galaxy J3 (2017), Galaxy J3 Top, Galaxy J4, Galaxy J4 +, Galaxy J4 Core, Galaxy J5 (2017), Galaxy J6, Galaxy J6 +, Galaxy J7 (2017), Galaxy J7 Duo, Galaxy J7 Prime2, Galaxy J7 Top, Galaxy J7 Max, Galaxy J7 Neo, Galaxy J7 +, Galaxy J8
  • Galaxy M10, Galaxy M20, Galaxy M30
  • Galaxy Tab A (2017), Galaxy Tab A 10.5 (2018), Galaxy Tab S4, Galaxy Tab E 8 Refresh, Galaxy Tab A 10.1 (2019), Galaxy Tab A with S pen, Galaxy Tab S5e

(Listed via Samsung)

If you have activated the automatic update on your Samsung mobile phone, your system will automatically inform you when a new update is available for your mobile phone. If you prefer to keep full control of the updates, you can of course do this manually via the device settings. In doing so, you run the risk of missing important security improvements - this is why it is worthwhile to check the manual settings regularly to find out about any updates.

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The example of the Samsung Galaxy S8 shows that the 3-year rule is not set in stone

Using the example of the Samsung Galaxy S8 and the Galaxy A7, it is easy to understand that Samsung's system with the 3-year cycle described above follows a rough plan, but this one is not set in stone: Both models came on the market in 2017 - but the Galaxy S8 received monthly updates until April 2020 (now quarterly) around 3 years later, while the Galaxy A7 was already listed in the last category. Both models are no longer provided with updates.

The difference is in the details: While the Galaxy S series represents the company's high-end models, the A series is in the middle class, which of course is also reflected in the retail price. Probably because of this, the S models (as well as the Note series) longer with regular updates provided.

The Galaxy S7 (release date 2016) was also listed in the second category (quarterly updates) up to around a year ago, although according to the actual rhythm it should not have received any updates at all. With the Galaxy S6, which appeared in 2015, support was discontinued after almost exactly three years (2018). It is easy to imagine that Samsung will ultimately also make the procedure dependent on the number of active users.

By the way: Samsung has announced that it will grant its own high-end smartphones such as the Galaxy Note 20 series at least three major Android updates in the future - previously it was limited to two versions. You'll find more about it here.

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