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Android Gingerbread Coming Soon for Samsung Galaxy Devices

Samsung has announced that it is bringing the latest smartphone iteration of Android to its Galaxy line of devices. Sometime within the next month or so users around the globe will be able to put Gingerbread on to their Galaxy S and Galaxy Tab devices along with Galaxy Ace/Gio/Fit and Mini devices.

Samsung’s press release says that the upgrades will start in the United Kingdom and Nordic countries (Sweden, Finland, Norway presumably) in mid-May and spread from there. Samsung Galaxy S owners in the U.S. fought tooth and nail to get Samsung and the cellular carriers to rollout an upgrade from Éclair to Froyo so it is no sure thing that Gingerbread will be ready in a timely fashion state side.

Samsung promises faster performance as multimedia content will have a lower CPU consumption rate. It will have an “improved” interface “enabling faster access and control and a more intuitive user experience. An improved copy-and-paste function is also promised.

One thing that may spur Gingerbread for users in the U.S. is that the upgrade is being issued via Samsung’s Kies software update platform. The use of Kies means that Gingerbread will not be an over-the-air update, which can be expensive for both carrier and original equipment manufacturer.

It also means that Gingerbread will be a bit frustrating to upload. Kies is only available to Windows users and has no Mac or Linux support at this time. People who know their way around the bootloader of a phone will have no trouble uploading Gingerbread (and probably already have from leaked versions for Galaxy devices), but that does not help the average consumer. It is a four to five step process that, if messed up, means restarting the phone multiple times and waiting anywhere from an hour to two until the upgrade takes and the system is rebooted. It is not too hard once you get the hang of it, but Mom may have a touch of trouble with it.

When it comes to software updates, Samsung and the U.S. carriers have never been on the same page. Each blames the other side for dragging its feet. It has now come to the point that an Android OTA update from Samsung is pretty much out of the question, unless it is a minor bug fix to an existing build. Samsung’s device service Twitter account said it would not speculate on when Gingerbread will be available in the U.S.

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