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How do OTA updates happen for UK mobiles?

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#1
norko123

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For UK-telco supplied Android mobiles - e.g. Samsung S4 from EE, vodafone, or O2 - how do OTA updates get triggered ?  

 

Would the OS poll for, and retrieve, updates via any old IP network ?  Or does it the phone need the operator's SIM in it, and is this tied to identifying the availability of new updates and attempting to download them?

 

Reason for asking - looking at deploying a few phones for company use and want to know if they can be received from the Telco, unboxed, joined to WiFi and told to search for and apply updates to whatever Android image is on there.   i.e. without supplying a SIM, a Google account, Samsung account etc etc.

 

Its been a while since I've had a 'stock' phone so I can't remember how this worked, and of course it may vary.

 

Thanks in advance !


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#2
glossywhite

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Just get iPhones, and save massive headaches.


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#3
norko123

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<yawn> yeah ok whatever

 

Anybody with knowledge or experience of the actual question ?


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#4
glossywhite

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<yawn> yeah ok whatever

 

Anybody with knowledge or experience of the actual question ?

 

You're speaking to someone with that knowledge; it would behoove you to show a little maturity and decorum.

 

You'll be yawning a great deal more when you've had no sleep trying to work this all out. If you want the best Android phone for updates etc, I'd recommend the Motorola "Moto G", which you can then flash the stock UK retail firmware into, which will then mean that the Moto G *will* be updated in a timely manner once Google release their latest firmware (due to them being recognised as stock retail units, the carrier delay in "approving" the updates won't apply); I have this phone, and for updates and simple migration of media and contacts from another Android phone, it's yet to be beaten.

 

There is no "universal" method across all Android vendors, because Android is a fragmented platform and has no consistent, predictable update strategy which can be assumed to be the case for all the many, many available Android phones. This is precisely why I recommended using iPhone - predictable, consistent and reliable, and updates sync immediately - the carriers have NO SAY in anything software and update related, except the SIM lock (thankfully). If iOS 7.X.X is released for one iOS device, it's released for ALL iOS devices immediately and without delay, and is done OTA.

 

.


Edited by glossywhite, 26 April 2014 - 02:09 PM.

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#5
norko123

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I won't be updating them by hand; there will be at least 2000 of them, and the phone's OS will be whatever the mobile operator ships with them.  Its really an operator question rather than the OEM .  The manufacturer will typically provide the OS to the operators who brand them, crapware etc.   The same operators will (infrequently) send out updates (e.g.upgrade to KitKat)..the question is how the handset detects and retrieves the update.

 

I am well aware of the Android fragmentation problems, and the benefits that iOS offers.  This is happily extended to management APIs, so MDM can be standardised across them, again unlike Android.  But in fact  having automatic updates to the base image is not an advantage in terms of the custom software which will go on them, whether that's Android or iOS.  If any ISV fails to certify and support their product on the latest version of the platform, patching the whole workforce to that version may break some business-critical application.  Control and standardisation for IT servicing trumps what some vendor or operator wishes to foist on the users.


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#6
glossywhite

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I won't be updating them by hand; there will be at least 2000 of them, and the phone's OS will be whatever the mobile operator ships with them.  Its really an operator question rather than the OEM .  The manufacturer will typically provide the OS to the operators who brand them, crapware etc.   The same operators will (infrequently) send out updates (e.g.upgrade to KitKat)..the question is how the handset detects and retrieves the update.

 

I am well aware of the Android fragmentation problems, and the benefits that iOS offers.  This is happily extended to management APIs, so MDM can be standardised across them, again unlike Android.  But in fact  having automatic updates to the base image is not an advantage in terms of the custom software which will go on them, whether that's Android or iOS.  If any ISV fails to certify and support their product on the latest version of the platform, patching the whole workforce to that version may break some business-critical application.  Control and standardisation for IT servicing trumps what some vendor or operator wishes to foist on the users.

I'd be concerned for a company that is relying on you to solve this, and you not offering them the most seamless, simple solution with the best product quality and support in the entire mobile industry, which is iPhone and Apple support. Cheap? No, but who wants that? I don't think cheap gets you anywhere - it's short-sighted to buy cheap kit to say the least. Think of this as them paying to save themselves endless faffing, config and headaches throughout the life cycle of the product.

Android always was, and always will be one GIANT headache, even for just ONE device; do you want to multiply that aggravation and lack of vendor support by 2,000?

Choose wisely.


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