One of the biggest criticisms of Android OEMs and carriers is the fact that many of them are slow with Android updates — both security updates and to new versions. If you want to be guaranteed to get the latest updates, your best option is the Google Pixel line of phones. With Android P just around the corner, there are many smartphones that are still on Nougat, while some are finally getting Oreo.
Over the weekend, my daughter’s LG Nexus 5X succumbed to the infamous boot loop of death (BLOD). After messing around with it for awhile, I opted not to go the route of the kernel fix due to the potential side effect of device slowdown. Not to mention the basket of spare phones we have kicking around.
My wife has been enjoying the Moto Z2 Play, so I reached in and grabbed the first-gen Moto Z Play — a phone that is nearly two years old. It had been a few months since I even turned it on and was immediately prompted to download and install the August 2017 security update. Once I did that and the phone rebooted, almost immediately I was notified there was another update, this time the Android 7.1.1 update (it was previously running 7.0). I updated that and, again, another update.
This process repeated for September, October, November, and December 2017 as well as the February 2018 security updates. Then another notification, this time for Android 8.0/April 2018 security update which was released near the end of May. While it is currently July, that was the last update currently available. So while the Moto Z Play updates seemed to be coming about a month after, it’s still much better than many other OEMs out there.
Even though it was a pain in the butt to download, reboot, and install six updates (you’d think there’d be a cumulative update option), I was rather surprised to see Moto keeping up with updates on the Moto Z Play as well as they have. As a side note, the Moto Z2 Play seems to be getting monthly updates as well and is currently sitting on Android 7.1.1 and the February 2018 security patch. It’s odd the Moto Z Play received Oreo first, so here’s hoping the Moto Z2 Play will be getting it as well in short order. Reports do indicate that the Moto Z2 Play received Oreo in early May as well so it’s likely the hold up is on the carrier end for the Z2 Play in our case.
Other OEMs and carriers should be taking a page out of Moto’s handbook and expediting updates for their devices. Not only does this ensure security for end users, it also offers a more uniform Android experience (OEM launchers aside) for users as they upgrade to new devices. While many OEMs promise updates for a couple years, there are more than a couple that don’t provide monthly or even new version updates.
I should note that I’m not saying Moto is the only OEM that seems to be keeping up with updates but from recent experience, it’s one I’ve experienced firsthand. As such, feel free to let us know if your 1 1/2 to 2-year-old device is still getting monthly security updates and version updates on a regular basis!
Do you have a Moto Z device and if so, what do you think about their updates so far? If not, when was the last time your OEM or carrier updated your Android smartphone? Let us know in the comments below or on Google+, Twitter, or Facebook.