Computer World: Verizon, HTC Provide Most & Fastest Updates of All Carriers, Manufacturers in the US

Computer World recently crunched some numbers and came up with some interesting stats regarding Android updates and which carriers and manufacturers were fastest in their cycles. As far as carriers go, Verizon edged out the pack with a third of their devices receiving Android 2.2 within 6 months of the software’s release. Sprint came in second at nearly 30% which was helped along by how fast they were able to deliver upgrades for the HTC EVO 4G – their flagship device, at the moment.

Unfortunately, phones like the Samsung Intercept who took forever to receive their updates dragged their days average down to about 100, nearly doubling Verizon. T-Mobile came in third, with AT&T getting that fourth slot wrapped up (unsurprisingly).

As for hardware manufacturers, we saw this coming too: HTC was the best OEM in terms of software upgrades as 50% of their phones received Android 2.2 in 2010 with an average cycle of 56 days from time of OS release to the time an update was delivered. These numbers are that much more impressive when you consider just how many HTC phones there are on the market.

Motorola came in second, undoubtedly helped along by Verizon’s DROID brand usually getting upgrade love faster than most. Samsung was third beating the likes of Dell, Sony, and LG, though Samsung had relatively less to offer. (They had only nine phones in the US, and only the Intercept received Froyo.)

For Computer World’s full breakdown and for the details on how they came up with these numbers, make your way to their site now. Here for the carrier breakdowns, and here for OEMs. [via Droid-Life]

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  • http://None update_me

    Nice write-up. I’m looking to switch carriers and this information is important to me. Thanks!

  • Brad

    WOW this is really pathetic. It takes over two to almost 3 month to get an update for your phone??? I mean if Samsung knows that there will be Froyo coming out they should be working on it for there phones that are already out. SO when it does come out they can update there phones. Same goes for all of the other phone companies. It should not take more then a week new a new update comes out that you will have the update for your phone. Just lazy manufactures not doing there job!!!

  • saltorio

    Hey, I’d still prefer 3 months wait for an update over NEVER getting one like the Xperia X10. I feel sorry for AT&T customers, as they haven’t even gotten 2.1 (and I thought Rogers was bad).

  • mike

    I miss the days of early G1. We were constantly getting updates it seemed. Now my slide has been without the froyo update for 6 months

  • SoKal26

    If i’m not mistaking, I belive Sprint was the first to dish out froyo…and it went to the Evo 4G. I’m just sayin…

  • hotmann

    What’s really sad is guys like cyanogen push out updates really fast and they are just doing it for fun. The guys at xda, modaco, and other similar sites are proof that the phone manufacturers and carriers simply dont give a crap about updates (or are trying to milk as much money from customers as possible as in the latest samsung rumor).

  • SODIQ AWOKOYA

    Nope it went to HTC, Google branded Nexus One. Then The EVO got it.

    Sidenote

    NEVER BUY A SAMSUNG DEVICE IF YOU LIKE THE FEELING OF UPDATES.

  • Steve

    They still get their asses handed to them by XDA devs, Team Douche and all the other guys just doing this in their free time

  • Whap

    @hotmann and that is why you have to love android!

  • lost

    @Brad: Unless a manufacturer is working on a “Google phone”,they don’t get a preview of new Android… they get it when Google releases the source code.. usually a couple of weeks after the phone is released. Manufacturers then may start working on on the updates. I agree with you that 3 months to get an upgrade is ridiculous. Updates to phones, at least in th US anyways, thanks to carriers that like to install and lot of superfluous stuff (I call it crap, but some may use their software)take a while. The carrier has also to update their software.
    I disagree with your comment that it shouldn’t take more then a week. Depends on what the updates do, there may be new frameworks to deal with. Also, most of us wouldn’t be happy if say HTC releases an update 3 days after with buggy code that freezes the phone or causes reboots.

  • ROM the Spaceknight

    @hotmann, It’s easy to push updates if you don’t have to be responsible for anything. If an OEM pushed an update and it wasn’t nigh-perfect, they’d be tarred and feathered. If a hackshop pushes and update and it’s not right, no worry, we’ll drop a (hopefully) good one tomorrow. They don’t worry about major in-house testing, or carrier testing. They just push because they can. That doesn’t make them better, it just makes them fast. Too fast comes with risks that OEMs can’t take. Worship at the altar of the hackshop if you want, but try talking out of your mouth instead of someplace farther from your brain.

  • Jonathan Drake

    Amazing that T-Mobile is so bad at updates. You would think the fact that they have the crappiest little network would mean that they have more man hours for planning software updates.

  • Pimpstrong

    Tmobile would have sold a gazillion times more Vibrants if it was actually the Nexus S. Could you imagine if TMO was smart enough to seek out a bunch of stock Android phones?? I most certainly would have saved my $499 and put it towards a Nexus S if I knew it was coming out.

  • Bobbin

    @SODIQ AWOKOYA Unless its a nexus s

  • Chahk

    @ROM: your point about testing is a valid one, but at some point the customers will ask themselves whether “perfect” is the enemy of “good”. If a giant corporation like Apple can release incremental patches and fixes to iPhones, I’m sure manufacturers can too without much worries.

    And of course let’s not forget Samsung Behold 2 and Sony Ericson Xperia X10 that were denied upgrades altogether, even though there was nothing hardware-wise preventing them from running whichever OS version their respective manufacturer lied about working on.

  • Chris

    Verizon should be first considering the way they rape their customers wallets…..

  • DrizzyGadget

    I feel so sorry for Samsung Galaxy S users who arent rooted.

  • mudrock1000

    HTC, though can have irritating customer support at times, does right by its customers. Always have treated me well in the past.

  • anon

    Thanks Computer World. This is great info to have before making a frigging 2 year commitment to a carrier. It would be nice if Google maintained this data on their mobile site. I’d settle for getting it from any site though.

  • jdog25

    I like that the clock starts ticking after my phone gets the newest update, I got 2.2 in May and Evo got it in July :P

  • JR

    IT SHOULD GO TO ALL PHONE THAT SUPPORT THE HARDWARE!!! AT THE SAMETIME!!! TAKE OFF THE OEM SKIN GOOGLE!! HAVE OEM MAKE THERE SKIN LIKE LAUNCHER PRO ADW PROBLEM SOLVE

  • thehornedone

    A 56 day average for HTC Android version updates is impressive regardless. I will never purchase another Samsung device. They and AT&T have given me enough reasons to abandon their wares and services. I’m going to put my barely used Captivate on Ebay, still running Eclair after 6 months of waiting for Froyo? Enough is enough. After a full year, my Nexus One is still my goto phone. At least HTC really cares about their users. Also switching from AT&T’s shitty-ass network to Verizon.

  • Hank

    @ROM the Spaceknight Wow…thanks for reminding me that there are still reasonable people on the internet. I was reading the comments thinking…have these people ever had to design, build, and test a product? People severely underestimate how hard it is to deliver good software (it’s easy to deliver buggy software).

  • Gekko

    VZW? didn’t the EVO get Froyo long before the Incredible despite the fact that the Incredible was launched first?

    seems like HTC + Sprint wins.

  • Adrian

    definitely Vodafone in the UK. Coincidentally they own 50% of Verizon… connected? proly not but still.
    I think the HTC Wildfire 2.2 update, once pushed out by HTC was out on Vodafone in 2 minutes…

  • ohboy

    Yeah, I wish this article had been written BEFORE I bought the Epic 4G. I could be on an EVO running froyo, if somebody had told me that samsung’s track record here was utter crap. Peace out, Samsung. I’m rollin’ with HTC forever more.

  • Patchy the Pirate

    Motorola in second?? Must be all the droids they updated and hence the verizon high score as well. Ask owners of the cliq, who just got 2.1 in November, how long they were waiting to get updated from an os hopelessly out of date (1.5) to a slightly out of date one (2.1).

    Or better yet, ask the owners of the Cliq XT how long they waited for 2.1 — Oh yeah, motorola still has not updated the cliq from 1.5 to 2.1.

    So the moral of this story, is buy an android phone without bloatware blur (i.e., Droid 1) and on Verizon and you are good. Buy an android on another network with BLUR and you are gonna wait a long time, if ever to get an update.

  • http://www.mensahwatts.com MensahWatts

    I find this funny cause somanny buttpickle s talk about how slow Verizon is with updates…shows you how people just talk out of there bum holes at times

  • tkeith

    Yeah right, tell that to my 10 month old eris permanently stuck on 2.1. The others just have more lower end phones so that’s how they got the win. Motorola may take longer, but at least they don’t drop support on phones before they are even a year old.

  • Todd

    I’m appalled that LG is below Dell and Sony considering that Dell and Sony launch with 1.6 when 2.2 is already available. And anyone who takes longer than Samsung should bow their head in shame and leave the market (just Android phones). Just like Al Gore and John Kerry should have left politics when they got beat by Bush. (It shouldn’t have been close enough for Bush to “steal” the election, for those who want to argue.)

  • denis

    Thats why i switched to HTC….i had the motorola cliq, it took a year for it to recieve the 2.1 update