Samsung’s upcoming Galaxy S23 may be the first Galaxy to seamlessly install updates in the background. Google requires this function for phones that appear on the market with Android 13.
Galaxy S23 with seamless updates
Wait, wait, wait! Seamless updates in Android? Hasn’t that been a thing for years? Well or not, the Android operating system itself has been able to do this since version 7.1, say: two thousand sixteen. But not all phone makers took over the function in their own versions of the Android OS. The vast majority of phones without this feature were sold with Samsung’s logo in recent years. But next year that may really change – with the Galaxy S23 as the main candidate.
It seems very likely that Google finally wants to require the use of seamless updates. Phones that immediately appear on the market with Android 13 should be able to do the trick. And because the Galaxy S23 will be one of the first – if not the first – Galaxy to come out with this software version, it may also be the first Galaxy to indeed install updates seamlessly in the background.
More precisely, it is the function where an Android phone can divide the storage into two partitions. A device can then download and perform an update on one partition in the background, while normal activities on the other partition continue.
The main reason that phone makers like Samsung have not implemented the option until now has to do with the complexity of these partitions. Or rather: to let the update process do its work live on a system that is active, causes quite a few snags. Google is said to have removed many snags from the seamless update process in recent years. Therefore, now would finally be the time to make the feature mandatory for OEMs like Samsung.
If you want to know exactly how, what, and why, the above-linked article by Mishaal Rahman is highly recommended.
What does this mean in practice?
In practice, the seamless updates mean that you can update your phone without having to restart it in a process that is sometimes short, but sometimes 10 minutes or longer. You can just WhatsApp or Youtube or whatever during the update process. Of course you cannot assume that the heaviest games will run optimally during download, unpacking and installation. The phone simply needs quite a bit of computing power to process new software. But doing nothing at all is no longer necessary.
Of course you have to realize that the idea that the Galaxy S23 is available on this trick comes from Google’s obligation. Samsung itself, nor Google, have mentioned the S23 as an example. So we’re not quite sure yet. In addition, Google also wanted to require the use of seamless updates with Android 11. That turned out not to have happened after all. So also applies to the Galaxy S23: first see, then believe.
So not for existing devices
By the way, just to be clear: existing devices will not get the function with the Android 13 update anyway. So as handy as it sounds, the Galaxy S22 won’t get it – nor will all other Samsung phones that get Android 13.