Today Bloomberg has published a report stating that Google has been tracking the amount of time it takes for Android OEMs to push the latest Android OS updates, and that’s awesome. Even better though, Bloomberg further reports that Google is preparing to publish that information publicly, and that would be AMAZING.
The report further says that Google wants to use this list to put more pressure on OEMs to get these updates out faster for sake of keeping users up to date, but also for the sake of security. Right now people don’t really know who is behind and who is ahead here, well, at least the average consumer doesn’t. So by publishing these results, Google could help put a lot more pressure on OEMs since anyone could know just how bad they are at updating their phones.
Recent examples of how bad this has all gotten are all too many. AT&T’s Galaxy S6 is a great example. It got updated to Marshmallow just last week, but the update went public on Nexus devices all the way back in September of 2015. That’s 9 months for one update. Now of course, OEMs are going to need a bit of time to get the update ready, but LG kicked that off 8 months ago. Even for the unlocked S6 variants, Marshmallow didn’t roll out for those until February. Come on, can that really be justified? Even though there’s a lot that goes on behind the scenes of a new update, the amount of time it takes these OEMs and carriers to push an update is absolutely ridiculous.
Will Google actually start pushing these numbers? We simply don’t know, but the company has tried a lot of ways to get updates out faster and so far, nothing has worked. Will public humiliation do the trick? We’ll see, hopefully.