It looks like Sprint will beat Verizon in being less sucky on releasing updates for the Nexus devices. Some leaked documents have confirmed that Sprint will start rolling out the Android 4.1.1 Jelly Bean update for the Galaxy Nexus beginning from today. An official Sprint spokesperson also confirmed on Sprint forums that the carrier will be rolling out the Jelly Bean update for the Nexus S 4G from today as well.
Sprint has not started rolling out the OTA update but should do so before the day ends. The official OTA is already available in a .tar form over at XDA forums, for users who are interested in manually installing the update on their handset.
The Jelly Bean update for the Nexus S 4G and Galaxy Nexus will bring with it some major speed enhancements making Android smooth as ‘butter’. There are also some slight UI tweaks, an enhanced keyboard
For a Nexus handset, Sprint Galaxy Nexus owners had to wait nearly two months to get the official OTA update, which is downright disappointing. On the bright side, Sprint managed to beat Verizon in their ‘software testing’ and rolled out the JB update for the GNexus before the big Red.
Even though the Sprint Nexus S 4G sports the ‘Nexus’ branding from Google, it took nearly 4 months for the official Ice Cream Sandwich update to be available for the phone. Thanks to some proprietary WiMAX and CDMA files, the Nexus S 4G was not supported by AOSP (Android Open Source Project). The same stands true for Verizon’s Galaxy Nexus, as Google had clarified earlier this year.
We’ve been able to resolve the issues around Nexus S 4G, and we can now properly distribute its CDMA and WiMAX binaries. That allows Nexus S 4G to work with AOSP just as well as Nexus S.
As a result, we now consider Nexus S 4G to be fully supported in AOSP, with no restrictions. Overall, Nexus S is the preferred platform for AOSP work.
Earlier today, Jean-Baptiste Queru announced that henceforth the Nexus S 4G will be “fully supported in AOSP, with no restrictions”. This means that whenever Google pushed the Jelly Bean source code to AOSP, it will just be a matter of time before fully functional stock Android 4.1 ROMs show up for the handset. No need to wait for Sprint to push the OTA update, if you are comfortable using adb and/or fastboot. This move from Google will definitely be appreciated by a lot of Nexus S 4G owners, who had to wait frustratingly long for the Ice Cream Sandwich update to be available for their phone.
In regards to the Verizon’s Galaxy Nexus being supported by AOSP, Jean said that there are still a lot of proprietary files of GPS, Camera and NFC that break AOSP support for the device. Bad luck VZW Nexus owners!
Last weekend, the folks over at BriefMobile had leaked the official Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich version of the Nexus S 4G. If you own a Nexus S 4G, and have not yet installed the leaked update on your phone until now but are planning on doing so, wait! Beginning from today, Sprint has officially started rolling out the Android 4.0.4 update for the Nexus S 4G.
The NS 4G never got the original Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update, so quite a lot of users will be jumping directly from Android 2.3 to Android 4.0.4. For the unknown, the Android 4.0 update is possibly the biggest update ever in the history of this open-source mobile OS.
The ICS update includes a new and polished UI, GPU rendering, a new launcher with a sliding menu drawer, the ability to monitor data usage of individual apps, Android Beam, Holo theme for apps, a new and enhanced notification bar, new lock screen, a new camera app, an enhanced version of the Contacts app known as the People’s app, a new multi-tasking UI and a magazine like swipe UI throughout the OS.
If you have not already received the OTA update from Sprint on your handset, it should pop-up on your handset in the next few days.
Earlier this month, Engadget got tipped from a source that Google will start rolling out the Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich update for the Nexus S 4G. Last week, Google started rolling out the Android 4.0.4 update for quite a few of its devices including the Galaxy Nexus, Motorola XOOM Wi-Fi edition and the Nexus S. However, none of the Nexus S 4G users reported that they got the update on their handset.
Over the weekend, the folks over at BriefMobile managed to get their hands on the Android 4.0.4 update for the Nexus S 4G. The update includes new WiMAX radios, which supposedly improves the network reception and data transfer speed. Readers can also find a manual installation guide over at BriefMobile.
The Android 4.0.4 update brings with it quite a few changes, including performance and stability improvements, faster camera app and camera quality improvements, smoother animations, a new power menu, bug fixes and more. The whole change-log of the Android 4.0.4 update can be found here.
Back in May, Google announced its Google Wallet service, which as the name suggests makes your Android phone your wallet.
Today, Google has released its Wallet’ app for Sprint’s Nexus S 4G. With the Wallet app, Nexus S 4G owners can use their phone instead of their CitiBank Credit Card to pay their bills. The Wallet app works via the NFC chip found on the Nexus S. Yeah, Google finally found a good use of the NFC chip, which it introduced with the Nexus S nearly 10 months ago.
Below is a video of Google Wallet in action-:
Right now, the Google Wallet service is available for only for CitiBank and MasterCard customers, with Visa, Discover and American Express already supporting the service. As a gesture of thanks to early adopters, Google is also adding $10 free bonus to Google Prepaid card, if Wallet users set it up before this year’s end.
Interested Nexus S 4G owners can find more information about the Google’s Wallet service and app from here.
Nexus S 4G owners will get the Google Wallet app via an OTA update, which will also bump the Android version to 2.3.7.
Remember the software update for the Nexus S 4G, which will fix the radio issues with the phone? Well, Sprint has finally started rolling out the update to all NS 4G owners beginning from today.
The new software update for the Sprint’s Nexus S 4G aims to improve the poor 4G reception and speed, along with an increase in the Wi-Fi performance.
Here is the full official change-log for the software update with version GRJ90 from Sprint :
– Enables NFC (Near Field Communication) Secure Element in preparation to support secure transactions
– Improved WiFi connectivity, speaker phone audio quality, and 4G acquisition and throughput
– Updated signal strength display indicators
– Fixes error code 67 when making account changes
– Adds TTY support
Rumors were that this software update for the Nexus S would bump the Android version to 2.3.5. However, the change-log from Sprint and neither does the thread over at their discussion forum, mention anything about this update being Android 2.3.5.
Sprint will automatically push the update to all NS 4G handsets, and aims to complete the roll-out in the next 3 weeks.