The State of Android 10 This Year

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Samsung Android 10 roadmap
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Google announced a beta version for its latest mobile operating system, Android 10(at that time it went with Android Q) in March last year. The final beta release was announced at Google’s I/0 2019 was slated for 21 phones from 13 manufacturers including a newcomer – TECNO Spark 3 Pro.

Android 10 brought system-wide dark mode, Focus mode(a compliment to Digital Wellbeing), new gesture navigation systems, boosted privacy, security and notifications (Grouped silent notifications)controls, better location permissions, Google Assistant “handles”, native screen recording, native desktop mode, QR codes to connect to Wi-Fi plus more features.

Here’s how Android 10 has been rolled out so far.



Pixel phones

Android 10 went out to all Google’s Pixel phones including the Pixel, Pixel XLPixel 2, Pixel 2XLPixel 3, Pixel 3XL, Pixel 3a. The Pixel 4 and the Pixel 4XL came out with Android 10 already baked in. The Rumoured Pixel 4a will also ship with Android 10.

Asus phones

So far, the Zenfone 5Z got the Android 10 update via ZenUI 6. Asus Zenfone 6 got it as well. The ROG 2 is set to get it and you can sign up here to be a tester.

Blackberry Mobile

2019 ended without a Blackberry device being launched. The closest device was the BlackBerry 2 and is yet to even get Android 9 Pie so Android 10 isn’t a question. The phone has however been getting timely security updates.

Essential

Android 10 is rolling out to Essential Phone but on select open markets

HTC

HTC had a terrible 2018 and 2019. HTC reported revenue of 10,015 million TWD ($333 million) in 2019, down 57.8% from 23,741 million TWD ($789 million) it posted in 2018 courtesy of the company scaling back its smartphone business.

The company is still hoping to get into the smartphone business but is it a little too late?

When it comes to updates, the Taiwanese firm has been really slow and recently delivered Android 9 Pie to just one of its smartphones – the HTC U12 Plus.

However, the Android One-powered HTC U11 Life will probably get Android 10.

Huawei/Honor

Huawei recently launched EMUI 10 that brings the Android 10 update to some of its devices. EMUI 10 offers a freshly designed interface such as more rounded icons and animations. Just like Android 10’s system-wide dark mode, EMUI also comes with it. EMUI 10 also comes with Huawei’s improved EROFS file system and GPU Turbo 3.0 promises fast performance when you’re either multitasking or gaming.

The Mate 30 series were the first Huawei device that came with Android 10 and EMUI 10 baked in. However, the flagship device shipped with missing Google services.

Android 10 update is set to hit(or already has) these Huawei and Honor devices via EMUI 10 and Magic UI 3.0 respectively

LG

Just like HTC, LG has been slow to bring Android 10 update to its devices. The G8 ThinQ got it in South Korea and the G7 One got in North America. Hopefully, this rollout spreads to other regions and to more devices this year.

Motorola

So far, Motorola is rolling out the Android 10 Update to the Motorola One Power.

Nokia

Nokia has been swift with the Android 10 update and monthly security updates thanks to the company running Android One for most of its devices.

Nokia 8.1(Full review) already got the update. Both the Nokia 9 Pureview(Full Review) and Nokia 7.1(Full Review) are now receiving the stable version of Android 10. The recently launched Nokia 6.2 and Nokia 7.2 are next in line too.

The Nokia 4.1, Nokia 3.1 Plus(Full Review), Nokia 3.2, Nokia 2.2 will get the update early this year. HMD will also update the entry-level Nokia 1 Plus, the forgotten Nokia 8 Sirocco and 5.1 Plus.

Nokia 6.1 Plus and the Nokia 7 plus got their Android 10 update too.

During Q2 2020, Nokia will update the Nokia 2.1, Nokia 3.1, Nokia 5.1 and Nokia 1.

The yet-to-be-released Nokia 8.2 is also slated to launch with Android 10 already baked in.

OnePlus

OnePlus comes close to Pixel phones when it comes to Android updates.  They were the first smartphone manufacturers to launch devices with Android 10 already baked in even before Google launched the Pixel 4 series. OnePlus 7T Pro and OnePlus 7T ship with Android 10 already.

OnePlus rolled out Android 10 update to the OnePlus 7 and the OnePlus 7 Pro. The company also announced that every OnePlus device from the OnePlus 5 forward will receive a stable version of Android 10.

Other devices in the timeline include:

  • Q1 2020: OnePlus 7 Pro 5G
  • Q2 2020: OnePlus 5, OnePlus 5T(Full Review)

OnePlus phones set to get Google’s latest operating system that you can purchase in Kenya(PhonePlace Kenya) include OnePlus 7 and OnePlus 6T.

OPPO

The only device we know for sure that is getting Android 10 is the OPPO Reno 10x Zoom(Full Review). Presumably, the recently launched OPPO A9 2020 and A5 2020 will also get the update. Read our review of the OPPO A9 2020 here.

Other OPPO devices slated to get Android 10 and ColorOS 7 include the OPPO F11, the OPPO F11 Pro and the OPPO F11 Pro Avengers Edition.

Read our first impressionsdesign reviewcamera reviewcomparison review with Nokia 8.1(close shave) and a full review of the OPPO F11 Pro.

Xiaomi

Xiaomi has started rolling out MIUI 11 with the Android 10 update for several devices together with a roadmap.

  • Poco F1, Redmi K20, Redmi Y3, Redmi 7, Redmi Note 7, Redmi Note 7s and Redmi Note 7 Pro.
  • Redmi K20 Pro(Xiaomi Mi 9T) Redmi 6 Pro, Redmi 6A, Redmi Note 5, Redmi Note 5 Pro, Redmi 5, Redmi 5A, Redmi Note 4, Redmi Y1, Redmi Y1 lite, Redmi Y2, Redmi 4, Mi Mix 2 and Mi Max 2
  • Redmi Note 6 Pro, Redmi 7A, Redmi 8, Redmi 8A and Redmi Note 8
  • Redmi Note 8 Pro

Vivo

The only device we know for sure that is getting Android 10 is the Vivo X27 series as it was part of the Android 10 beta.

Other phones we expect to get the Android 10 update include the Vivo Nex S and the Vivo Nex A.

Hopefully, Vivo announces that the Vivo V17 Pro gets the update too. It was recently launched in Kenya and you can read our review here.

It is worth noting that Funtouch OS 9 comes with some Android 10 features such as the dark mode toggle.

Vivo V17 Pro Dark Mode
Vivo V17 Pro Dark Mode toggle

The recently launched Vivo X30 and Vivo X30 Pro come with Funtouch OS 10(comes with a huge focus on visual polish) alongside Android 9 Pie. It is unknown if they’re on the line to get Android 10.

Vivo phones getting FunTouch OS 10 starting next month(February) include:

  • First batch: Vivo Nex 3, Vivo Nex 3 5G, Vivo X27, Vivo X27 Pro, Vivo X27 8+128GB, Vivo Nex, Vivo Nex Screen Fingerprint, Vivo Nex Dual Display Edition, and Vivo S5
  • Second batch: Vivo Z5, Vivo Z5i, Vivo Z5x, Vivo S1, and Vivo S1 Pro
  • Third patch: Vivo X21s, Vivo X23, Vivo X23 Symphony Edition, Vivo Z3, Vivo Z3i, and Vivo Z3i Standard Edition

Realme

Realme devices getting the Android 10 update this year include:

  • January: Realme 3 Pro and Realme XT
  • February: Realme X and Realme 5 Pro
  • March: Realme X2 Pro
  • April: Realme 3 and Realme 3i
  • May: Realme 5 and Realme 5S
  • June” Realme 2 Pro
  • Q3 2020: Realme C2

Devices that will miss out on the Android 10 Update include the Realme 1, Realme U1, Realme C1 and the Realme 2.

Samsung

Samsung has surprisingly been quick with updates. They also launched new devices that ship with Android 10 even before this year’s flagship S series. Samsung’s latest mid-range devices – the Samsung Galaxy A51 and Samsung Galaxy A71 ship with Android 10 baked in.

Also, right before CES 2020 commenced, the South Korean tech giant announced the Galaxy Note 10 Lite and the S10 Lite that launched with Android 10 and One UI 2. The devices are on display at Samsung’s CES Stand.

Samsung also announced that its Unpacked event will take place next month(February 11) where they’ll launch the Samsung Galaxy S11(S20) presumably in three sizes as well as Samsung Fold 2. The two devices will launch with Android 10 plus One UI 2.

Here are Samsung devices that are set to get Android 10. One UI brought Android 9 Pie and One UI 2.0 will bring the Android 10 update.

  • Note Series: Note 10/10+Note 9
  • S series: S9/S9+S10/10+/S10e
  • A series: A90 5G, A80, A70 A60, A50/50s, A40, A30/30s, A20//20e, A10/10s/10e, A9 Pro 2019, A9, A7, A6/6+, A8/A9 Star, A8/A9 Star Lite
  • J series: J8, J6/J6+, J4/J4+, J7 Duo, J7/J5/J3 2018
  • M series: M40, M30/ M30s, M20, M10
  • Galaxy Tab series: Tab S5e, Tab S4, Tab A 2019

This is list is preliminary and we’ll keep updating it with new information.

Samsung is reportedly planning to axe the Note series and merge it with the S series – this means that probably from next year, they won’t be a Note series as the focus shifts to its foldable phone, the Samsung Galaxy Fold.

SONY

SONY Xperia 1 and Xperia 5 got Android 10 in December last year. In January, they extended the rollout to four more devices including the Sony Xperia XZ3, XZ2, XZ2 Compact, and XZ2 Premium.

Even with this update, SONY users will not have access to Android 10 features such as gesture-based navigation, the new recent apps/multitasking window and the Google Search bar will still be light even in dark mode.

TECNO/Infinix

TECNO and Infinix were slated to push Android 10 updates to their phones late last year. So far, the TECNO Spark 3 Pro got the Android 10 update.

We expect TECNO and Infinix to launch new devices running Android 10 out of the box this year. Google recently required new devices to launch with Android 10 already baked in after January 31, 2020. The two companies are slated to launch pop-up selfie camera smartphones this year.

What to expect this year in terms of Android 10

By the time Android 10 was launching, Android 9 Pie had been installed on nearly a quarter of all Android devices(22.6% of all devices). It’s not as bad especially when put against earlier Android versions, Android 7 and 8, Android 9 update rate is twice as good(Android Oreo accounted for 8.9% of all Android devices just before Android Pie was released)  but that’s a very small number considering that iOS 13 is running on over half of all iPhones introduced in the last four years.

Google patted itself on the back saying how its Project Treble technology has made it easier to update devices to the recent Android version. The tech giant made Android 10 beta available to relatively more devices – 18  phone models from 12 different companies compared to Android 9 Pie beta which only had 7 phone models form 7 different companies.

Google going all authoritarian

To help increase the adoption rates of Android 10 before launching Android 11,  Google is requiring all new devices to launch with Android 10 already baked in if approved after this month. This means smartphone manufacturers planning to release new phones this year to launch with Android 10 instead of Android 9 Pie.

Google is also requiring that Digital Wellbeing be installed on all new devices plus giving number priority to its own gesture navigation forcing OEMs to hide their customized gesture navigation systems.

Smartphone manufacturers have quickly taken up to themselves to start providing Android 10 updates to their current respective devices too.

Google will also rely on Project Mainline which it introduced during last year’s Google I/O that distributes “important code changes” to specific internal OS components directly via Google Play Store to fasten Android 10’s update improvements.

“Project Mainline is to the core of the Android OS what Project Treble is to its foundation. It is a dramatic improvement in the velocity of updates of the OS components that fall under its umbrella.”

The company set new default Google apps that will ship on new phones that will run on Android 10 and Android 10(Go Edition).

Android 10

  • Google Play Store
  • Google Photos
  • Google Search
  • Google Play Movies
  • Google Play Music(Will be replaced by YouTube Music)
  • Google Drive
  • Google Duo
  • Chrome Browser
  • Gmail
  • Maps
  • YouTube
  • Android Auto

Android 10(Go Edition)

  • YouTube Go (or YouTube if allowed in the country)
  • Gboard (lightweight version for Go)
  • Gallery Go
  • Google Go
  • Chrome
  • Maps Go
  • Google Play Store
  • Assistant Go
  • Gmail Go

Conclusion

We can’t wait to see progress on Android 10’s adoption with Project Treble and Project Mainline this year.

Keep up with all things Android here.

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