Samsung will not upgrade 3G Galaxy S3 or Galaxy S3 Mini past Jelly Bean



Some unfortunate news for those of you who might own the 3G-only version of the Samsung Galaxy S3 and Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini. The South Korean company has announced that the devices will not be receiving KitKat, as their 1GB of RAM isn’t enough to provide a quality user experience with the latest software.

Many folks will no doubt be quick to point to Google’s proclamation that KitKat can run just fine on a device with just 512MB of RAM, but Google wasn’t talking about firmware that had tons of carrier and OEM customization sitting on top. As we all know, TouchWiz is one of the heaviest skins out there and all the changes made in the most recent upgrades are likely too much for 1GB of RAM to handle.

To be clear, this is only affecting those with the 3G versions of the Samsung Galaxy S3 and S3 Mini, as the LTE version came equipped with 2GB of RAM and is still in line for a KitKat upgrade of its own.

Those are the breaks of sticking with older hardware. You can either upgrade, or look to the after-market development community to get your phone up to speed with the latest Android has to offer (there’s a pretty big treasure trove of stuff waiting for you at the root section of AndroidForums.com). Let us know if any of you are affected by this in the comments below!

[via Unwired View]

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. I just upgraded mine the other day, no rom. Oh wait, Sprint.

  2. The 3G versions are mainly on prepaid and regional carriers.

    1. As in the International version, which accounts for the majority of Galaxy S3 produced and sold globally.

  3. The S3 Mini is stuck on 4.1.1 anyway… I have the misfortune to have one for work. Hooray for my personal Nexus 5!

    1. I have a S3 Mini for work too. I’ll take this phone over my other choice: iPhone 4S.

  4. I’m assuming the T999 for Tmo is safely scheduled to be updated, as it had 1.5GB of Ram, and HSPA+ was considered a 4G technology in the end.

  5. I think stuff like this is completely fair. Android gets a bad rap all too often for bad performance on some devices. Forcing software on a device that can’t handle it is a stupid idea so it’s much better that they go performance > features.

    For the arguments about the carriers and mfg’s wanting us to upgrade, look at the newer phones and tell me what’s so different about them? If you’re going to look at the hardware differences, of course you’d have to upgrade to get that but software? Not much changes. For just about everything the MFGs add in their custom ROMs there’s an App out there you can download to replicate that feature, even if it’s not as robust.

    1. I agree for technical reasons to not upgrade a phone. The problem is the Galaxy S3 doesn’t fit into this criteria. It is a very capable phone. They aren’t upgrading hoping you buy a new S4 or S5. The fragmentation is horrendous and it’s Googles fault for not putting more pressure on the MFg to upgrade. Even themselves don’t upgrade phones like the Galaxy Nexus because it’s 2 years old. KitKat 4.4 would run great on a lot of phones. Let’s hope a ROM comes out.

  6. time to change the phone to another brand, it is a joke that the high-end phones are so short support, and people make fun of Apple and MS … here you have to laugh at Samsung and the like. Now they think they are great, but Nokia also once thought so …

    1. I don’t think that is the case with the GS3. it started with 4.0 to 4.1.1 to skipping 4.2.2 to now 4.3 those with 2GB ram will well see it into 4.4…..that is not bad a for a 2 year old flagship… just saying…

  7. It’s Kit Kat that sucks. Samsung builds devices with microSD cards. PC World just reported three new Android laptop PCs from Asus – all built on Jelly Bean. CEO of Sprint was on Bloomberg bragging about the coming HTC “Harmon Kardon” phone supporting large lossless audio files to be kept on 128gb microSD – not on Kit Kat it won’t. Kit Kat is going to be a major stupid blip in the evolution of Android that Google will want to forget – like Windows Millenium Edition and Vista and Windows 8.0. Google went evil, crippled its OS for ulterior motives, and will lose OEMs.

    1. Micro SD cards work just fine on my S4 running broodplank1337’s aosp 4.4.2 rom.

    2. By using the built in file manager on my s3 on stock kk, I can interact perfectly with my micro sd

  8. Time to upgrade cheapos. Wow people are still rocking GS3’s ?

    1. Not everyone needs to upgrade their phone e-peen like you

    2. I know plenty of people that still have & are happy with their SGS2 phones!

      SGS3 is still the standard company-issued phone where I work, so I often forget that the SGS4 is/was the “current model”.

  9. Nexus and One plus One.

  10. It is just because of bloat ware in Samsung Galaxy S3 that covers up most of the RAM, we
    are not able to update the latest version of Android that is 4.4 KitKat. Once it gets removed from the device, you will get enough RAM to run the version smoothly. Well, I already updated it in my phone. One thing more, the battery of phone must be fully charged on wireless charging pad before starting the procedure otherwise it would get drained soon.

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