Samsung issues rare update to old Galaxy phones to improve GPS

Samsung issues rare update to old Galaxy phones to improve GPS

BERLIN: Most Android phones are given just two years of major software updates before falling into neglect, but Samsung is now handing out a rare fix to half a billion Galaxy phones as old as the S5 from 2015 and Galaxy Alpha from 2014.

After an update for the Galaxy J7 at the start of August, Samsung is now following up with updates for other older models, some of which were launched eight years ago, according to tech industry media.

The reason for the update appears to be the GPS module in all phones, which needs a fix to be able to continue correctly identifying the phone’s location. In addition, the updates are supposed to provide further stability improvements.

According to Samsung blog SamMobilethe update is set to be offered to some 500 million old phones.

It’s impossible to tell how many millions will actually install this update. What is certain, however, is that a phone with inaccurate or non-functioning positioning will be binned by its owner sooner rather than later.

While many used Galaxy models are still sold for pocket money, the resale value of older Samsungs would likely plummet without functioning GPS.

Updates are rolling out for Galaxy models S5 Neo, Alpha, S6, S6 Edge, S6 Edge+, A7 (2018), S7, S7 Edge, S8 and S8+.

If you use one of these phones, you’re advised to check the settings for a software update. If nothing shows up, try again in a few days as the rollout is not happening at the same time universally. – dpa

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