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Galaxy Nexus owners petition Google's Sundar Pichai over Android 4.4 KitKat

Posted: , by Chris P.

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Galaxy Nexus owners petition Google's Sundar Pichai over Android 4.4 KitKat
If you own a Galaxy Nexus from the not too distant 2011, then it's probably safe to say that you ain't having a lot of fun these last days. Google has officially announced that it's pulling the plug on the gNexus, citing its policy of not supporting devices older than 18 months (really, Google?). Seeing as how the Nexus 5 and its trusty sidekick, Android 4.4 KitKat, have been making headlines these past few weeks, it's only natural to see owners of Sammy's spin of the Nexus disgruntled.

One such owner has taken action onto the web, to ask for support for his petition to Google's Sundar Pichai with the hope that the head of Android will reconsider the finality of his decision and take the Galaxy Nexus for a last dance. The petition in question has received some near 14,000 signatures and over 3,400 comments that Max Duckwitz, the petition organizer, has printed and mailed to Mountain View.

Now, Mr. Pichai should have the petition on his desk in a few short weeks, which will hopefully prompt him to at least give a more merciful explanation as to why the perfectly capable hardware on the Galaxy Nexus won't be getting KitKat. Having said that, and as some of you have probably already come to understand, Android updates are a more complex (and expensive) issue than most of us care to entertain. Just look at US carriers, do you really think they purposefully want you to miss out on the new software, just because?  

Worse yet, the Galaxy Nexus runs on a Texas Instruments OMAP chipset, a platform that TI itself will need to update in order for it to run Android 4.4 KitKat. And you just know that this ain't happening. This means that while we sympathize with Galaxy Nexus owners and their predicament, it's unfortunately likely that Android 4.4 will remain out of reach.

source: Change

86 Comments
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posted on 05 Nov 2013, 04:12 21

1. E34V8 (Posts: 52; Member since: 16 Dec 2011)


Android 4.4 Kit Kat - for everyone... almost.

I like Google, I like Android, but this decision to leave Galaxy Nexus without 4.4 is one of the stupidest they have ever made. This is the hole point of owning a Nexus device. And I had a Galaxy Nexus - it's capable of running 4.4 (HD Screen, 1gig of RAM, capable SoC...).

Just think, the crappy iPhone 4 got iOS7. Yes, some things are missing, but Apple updated it.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 04:31 13

5. LetsBeHonest (Posts: 788; Member since: 04 Jun 2013)


Android Kit Kat is said to run fluid even on phones with low as 512MB Ram.

SO.......??? no excuse Google just update it.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 06:13 6

14. apple4never (Posts: 947; Member since: 08 May 2013)


its called..........................a custom rom............... for those who didnt know

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 06:46 6

23. 1701nino (unregistered)


Yeah,but there are some people that don't know or do not want to risk getting their device bricked.I have an nexus 4 and an ipad,i thought having a "nexus" device will cover me at least 2,5 years.If this is the case with my nexus 4 i'm going back to apple.
P.S. i know how to install a custom rom but i don't whant a custom rom that's why i bought a freakin nexus phone!!!

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:38 8

39. NexusPhan (Posts: 474; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)


The reason you bought an unlocked developer phone was *not* to install a custom ROM. Wait, what?

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:44 1

44. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 5478; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)


I agree that Nexus devices are popular between developers, but not only developers like it since Nexus devices are very nice devices. :) Also not necessarily those who install custom ROMs are developers or even know how to code.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:46 4

46. NexusPhan (Posts: 474; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)


I don't know the first thing about coding. For the Galaxy Nexus you download a program to your computer and click one button and you are rooted and unlocked. Next step, go to the market and download a ROM installer. You now have a customer ROM installed. Yay!

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:59 1

53. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 5478; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)


Do you even read my comment before responding?

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:46 5

47. 1701nino (unregistered)


First of all nexus isn't just a "developer" why would be only that,it's for all people who want a great spec phone with VANILLA android for an OK price.And plus all of that google "should" update the nexus line first.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 08:42 3

60. ayephoner (Posts: 837; Member since: 09 Jun 2009)


i would say this is not indicative of the nexus experience. the gnex was a flop, especially the carrier branded ones. i think google learned a lot from what they did wrong with the gnex and fixed that with the N4. you can see in the article that one big hurdle is working with TI and getting them to support a processor that is 2 years old.

which is another great point here. buy brand new phones and don't expect them to last much longer than 2 years.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 15:46

77. noteseries (Posts: 76; Member since: 29 Oct 2013)


i agree

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:45

45. NexusPhan (Posts: 474; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)


You know nothing about what is required for Google to update the Galaxy Nexus. Hint. It's has nothing to do with Google.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:51 1

50. 1701nino (unregistered)


Don't be a fanboy,don't believe to everthing they say, if TI doesn't wana update the drivers for gnexus then google with all of their resources should make the freakin drivers.Customers don't wan't excuses,they wan't solutions.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 10:51 5

67. caustictoast (Posts: 26; Member since: 07 Aug 2012)


Google probably doesn't have access to the drivers. They're probably proprietary and can't be touched by another company without jumping through a lot of hoops. It's not and excuse when they say these things. There's almost always a reason behind it

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 13:58 1

76. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 4015; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)


Companies can't keep up with all their products. Google has to maintain the Nexus 4 & now the Nexus 5. The Galaxy Nexus had a GREAT run but it's now time to move on up & get a more current model.

The phone is over 2 years old now. It's DEFINITELY showing it's age now. What should Google keep the Nexus S going also? Where do we draw the line?!? It's more than fair I think.

+1

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 06:33 5

19. tiara6918 (Posts: 1402; Member since: 26 Apr 2012)


Instead of manufacturers copying some features from Apple, why don't they copy Apple's strategy of giving out updates. That's what I hate with android, they stop giving support after some time and your device becomes obsolete while iPhones are very future proof although there is fragmentation, you get the new ui, etc

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 11:41

72. god996 (Posts: 11; Member since: 27 Oct 2013)


You know, it's much easier for Apple to update their phones, because they don't have lots of them. It'd be just stupid if they wouldn't.
Android market is spammed with cheap phones and it's no surprise that manufacturers don't update them because it would take lots of time.
But still I have to agree with you,they should better make less cheap phones and focus more on updating existing ones.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 06:53 1

28. lyndon420 (Posts: 1737; Member since: 11 Jul 2012)


If our phones have seen at least one major update, that should be good enough. You buy a Volkswagen, and had it updated to a BMW (and all was well in the land). Now KitKat comes out and everyone isn't happy again, so now you people expect your BMW to be upgraded to a Ferrari? Go BUY your damn Ferrari and try supporting some OEM's for once. Geez people...

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:08 1

30. 1701nino (unregistered)


We wouldn't be dissapointed if google hadn't specificly told everyone that kit kat is an OS that is supposed to work with a broad range of devices as little as 512 MB of RAM.I know that RAM isn't the whole story here,there is the SoC,GPU and sofort but common google galaxy nexus is a "nexus" device,and a capable one to.Everybody is trashing Apple now cause it's the cool thing to do,but my ipad 2 got ios7 and it works great.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:20

33. Ninetysix (Posts: 1588; Member since: 08 Oct 2012)


You're jelly some BMW owners from Apple got free Ferrari parts and features even if they are 3+ years old?

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:39 3

41. NexusPhan (Posts: 474; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)


No they didn't. They got a VW beetle with a Ferrari paint job and a Ferrari logo and were told it was a Ferrari and exactly the same as all the other Ferraris. It's not.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:53 1

51. 1701nino (unregistered)


Go tell that to all gnexus customers who are never going to buy an android phone again.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 09:30

64. JunitoNH (Posts: 895; Member since: 15 Feb 2012)


@1701NINO

You are 100% correct, screw Google.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 19:53

80. Zero0 (Posts: 583; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)


No.

Google said that this update can make an old Volkswagon run like a Porsche. If this is possible, then new Volkswagon owners should expect to see an update to the Porsche, even after getting updated to Audi.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:21 4

34. akki20892 (Posts: 3444; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)


Google want you to upgrade galaxy nexus to Nexus 5 that's why they didn't give android kitkat 4.4 for galaxy nexus. it calls monopoly.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 08:58 2

61. Knicknevin (Posts: 135; Member since: 18 Mar 2011)


I have a Gnex, and I would love it to be updated. but its a matter of efficient use of resources.
I don't hold it against google for this. the Gnex is an old device, 2 years old! that's nearly ancient for tech. we'll probably get some portions through the app updates, but I don't expect to see 4.4.

Then again, I'm on verizon and still haven't seen 4.3.
*note to self, root*

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 11:27 2

70. NexusKoolaid (Posts: 293; Member since: 24 Oct 2011)


Before you start crying foul and criticizing their decision making on this consider that this may not have been an arbitrary decision. I tend to think that if it were entirely up to them. Consider the case of the HTC One-S. HTC promised a software update for the phone but then backtracked. People flung all kinds of hate and anger at HTC, only for it to come out later that it was Qualcomm that pulled the plug...

http://androidandme.com/2013/07/news/lack-of-support-from-qualcomm-forced-htc-to-pull-one-s-android-4-2-update/

Having said that, I believe the company that made the Google's chipset has left the market segment, so the situation for the Galaxy Nexus may be the same. TBO that's purely speculation on my part - nothing official has been released. Point is that until something official is said it may be unfair to be pointing fingers.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 11:33

71. MobileNico (Posts: 52; Member since: 26 Aug 2012)


If Apple is the only alternative in order to get updates for 2+ years, I'm sticking with Google. What matters more? Having the latest features (of which the iPhone 4 is missing most) or having an OS that does what you want? What other company has a 2011 device on 4.2 or 4.3, let alone plans for 4.4? It's not as simple as just releasing the update for our phones, because I'm running a source-built KitKat ROM right now. Trust me, there are problems that Google would have to sort out before releasing it, most notably the OpenGL issue (little graphical glitches during transitions and animations), which without TI's cooperation, may prove difficult. It's not the RAM, the phone can surely handle it. It's the drivers/optimization. Which costs money to make happen. Google has lots of it I know. I'm just sure they would rather spend it making new awesome phones for half the price of their competition. Dude, I'm just as sad about this as the next GNex user. I'd rather have official KitKat than the custom ROM I'm running, but I understand that it's not just Google involved here.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 04:13 5

2. Sniggly (Posts: 7000; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


For once an article discussing the lack of an update to a phone points out the biggest problem: the effort and expense, especially for carrier versions, of issuing a software update.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 04:26 2

3. splus (Posts: 28; Member since: 26 Nov 2011)


As a Gnex owner and someone who was thinking of getting a Nexus 5 I can only say that I'm not going to get another Nexus ever again.
I got a Nexus BECAUSE of early and long lasting updates!
Being dumped after only 18 months on a Nexus is like a knife in my back. If my phone can't handle the new version then perfectly OK, but it perfectly can.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 08:35 6

59. terabyteRouser (Posts: 419; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)


The Galaxy Nexus was officially released October 19th, 2011. It has been longer than 18 months—actually roughly 2 years.

I don't think Google is being unreasonable by not updating the Galaxy Nexus. CPU technology generally has a life cycle of about 2 years due to Moore's Law.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 09:20 5

62. PBXtech (Posts: 977; Member since: 21 Oct 2013)


GNex saw every update from 4.0 to 4.3, two years worth of support. I'm not really sure why people can say it wasn't supported properly. The biggest issue was Verizon, which Google wasn't happy about either, so blaming this on Google is ridiculous.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 09:29 3

63. stillthisguy (Posts: 10; Member since: 06 Oct 2011)


You say the GN can perfectly handle 4.4, but fail to do your research. There are a few 4.4 roms out for the GN and they all suffer with issues of glitch video. The SoC drivers would need to be updated from TI to work with 4.4 OS, so no, the GN in it's current state, cannot handle 4.4 perfectly.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 04:29 3

4. boosook (Posts: 992; Member since: 19 Nov 2012)


The decision is stupid mainly because it is now clear that even the Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 could face the same destiny and be abandoned after only 18 months.
Since updates are the major selling point of the Nexus line, it's a very stupid move from Google.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 04:44 3

6. Jason2k13 (Posts: 642; Member since: 28 Mar 2013)


meanwhile probably 90% of the people who owns a galaxy nexus, allready has a new phone after 2 years, and just wants this update for the sake of just wanting to update their old phones.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 04:47 7

7. gofmarat (Posts: 6; Member since: 05 Nov 2013)


To be honest, I think that Google should have updated not only the Galaxy Nexus but the Nexus S which has 512MB of Ram when one of the main features of 4.4 is the support for lower end/lower memory devices. I know that these things do cost money for Google, but this move would have made THE biggest point to the support of 512MB devices argument, it would have also made Android users more loyal to the echo-system hence increase revenue for Google and would decrease the feelings of inferiority Android users have over the Iphone 4 getting IOS7.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 06:40 4

21. NexusPhan (Posts: 474; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)


No. The point of support 512MB phones is not to support old phones. It's to support cheap future phones. Google shouldn't waste their resources on an unlocked developer phone that can, with extreme ease, get 4.4 with a custom ROM.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 06:46 1

24. AfterShock (Posts: 2800; Member since: 02 Nov 2012)


I think you're bang on with that assessment.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:11 3

31. NexusPhan (Posts: 474; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)


Thanks. I know it gives Google a 'bad image' seemingly abandoning the Galaxy Nexus but, come on guys. Google has a finite amount of resources and the developer support for this phone is insanely good. I haven't run stock Google software on my GNex for 16 months. I'm already on 4.4 Google would be wasting their time and money.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:48

49. cult67 (Posts: 2; Member since: 15 Oct 2013)


How much did it cost to develop the custom ROM you are running on your GNex?

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:55

52. 1701nino (unregistered)


Yeah,an early build of 4.4 with lots of crashes.

posted on 06 Nov 2013, 10:03

85. gofmarat (Posts: 6; Member since: 05 Nov 2013)


I think that you are wrong, Google does have an infinite amount of resources, did you see their quarterly report?
It is just a matter of decision. It will not be a waste of resources but an investment in the Google/Android image. Running custom roms is nice and I say kudos to all the developers but it is not close to the power that the Google developer team has.

posted on 07 Nov 2013, 01:39

86. a_alec (Posts: 1; Member since: 07 Nov 2013)


I agree with your oppinion very stongly! I have been one who bought 18 month ago the Google Nexus S phone and I got the updates, indeed up to the 4.1.2
Unfortunally, this updated made the phone work worse then witht he 4.0 and now is used my the wife with a lot of lagg and is a pitty since I remember it worked fine.
Myself jumped in the Apple iOS enviroment since then and the fact that Nexus S didn't received the 4.2 or 4.3 update weighed much in this decision.
So you are right, frustration made me buy Apple.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 04:50 1

8. mio15 (Posts: 27; Member since: 21 Mar 2011)


Hi,

i was always and still am absolutely happy with all Nexus devices i own. Even after getting no microSD support or a non removable battery. But if this is their last word on the totally capable Galaxy Nexus, i will sadly stop being a fan and totally satisfied customer of Google/Nexus.

No offense here.

Greetings

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 05:31 3

9. scriptwriter (Posts: 396; Member since: 13 Nov 2012)


At first, i was sad. But then my Nexus 5 arrived so all is well.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 05:33 5

10. promise7 (Posts: 412; Member since: 03 Jul 2013)


To the users saying they will leave the Nexus brand, I'm just curious, what brand would you move to? Because looking at the November 2011 release date and using the Galaxy S2 as a comparison because it was released in April 2011 and I don't think that is getting Kit Kat either, though I'm not positive.

Which Android brands are updating phones to Kit Kat that were released in 2011?

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 05:48 1

11. ilia1986 (unregistered)


So much hatred... just install a custom rom. I belive I already saw one available to the gnex already.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 05:56 1

12. gallabk (Posts: 16; Member since: 06 Oct 2013)


I sold my Nexus One the moment I heard Ginger Bread is the last update from Google. I loved that phone. With google this always happens.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 06:12 1

13. AfterShock (Posts: 2800; Member since: 02 Nov 2012)


No Omap support=no kit Kat.

My N4 has no S800 so I don't get always listening mode, so to suggest that the GN hardware is perfectly capable is not entirely true.
Sounds like iphone4 and 5 owners complaints in a odd way, older hardware eventually is left behind as most true smartphone users after two years.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 06:13

15. AfterShock (Posts: 2800; Member since: 02 Nov 2012)


Update*

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 06:15 3

16. jellmoo (Posts: 666; Member since: 31 Oct 2011)


If the TI chipset is the real issue, I find it understandable. I just think that Google should come out and say it.

That being said, the notion of supporting a phone for only 18 months, especially a Nexus device, is ridiculous. People on a 2 year contract shouldn't be satisfied with missing out on device support. Heck, here in Canada people with a Galaxy Nexus likely got it on a 3 year contract. Should they be satisfied with official support for only half the length of their contract?

A little honesty and transparency from Google here would do a great deal of good for their user base.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 06:18 5

17. alekos21 (Posts: 2; Member since: 05 Nov 2013)


my wife owns an iphone 4 and got ios7 my gnex the developer tool for android stops taking updates. Google you kill yourself !!!

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 06:42 7

22. NexusPhan (Posts: 474; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)


She did not get iOS 7. She got a stripped down iOS 7 that, for the iphone 4, changed nothing but the icons. Literally nothing but the icons changed. You want that with your Genx? Download an icon pack.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 06:52 1

27. alekos21 (Posts: 2; Member since: 05 Nov 2013)


icon pack with 500mb update? hello earth is calling!

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:32 3

38. NexusPhan (Posts: 474; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)


That's the entire iOS 7. Not an update. iOS 6 was about 600MB.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:12 1

32. Ninetysix (Posts: 1588; Member since: 08 Oct 2012)


http://cdn.theapplelounge.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/iOS-7-Comparison-Chart-definitivo-1.jpg

New icon pack = green.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 07:28 5

36. NexusPhan (Posts: 474; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)


Deceptive. iPhone 4 multitasking did not change from iOS6 to iOS7. As in, it's not real multitasking like it is on the iPhone 5S. iTunes radio is just an app that isn't really part of iOS7. The camera already had filters and the iPhone 4 with iOS7 doesn't have the live filters like the other iPhones get.
So basically you get control center and icons. And that 500MB is not an update. It's the entire iOS7 software package.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 06:18 2

18. marchels14 (unregistered)


Google is talking how 4.4 is for low spec fones but it doesn't want to support its older nexus devices. Smart thing Google.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 06:33 6

20. lyndon420 (Posts: 1737; Member since: 11 Jul 2012)


What a bunch of whiners. You can't keep going through life getting stuff for free. If you want your bmw to become a Ferrari...buy a Ferrari.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 16:22 1

78. Dingy_cellar_dweller (Posts: 185; Member since: 16 Mar 2013)


I don't know about you, but I paid good money for my outright Gnex and part of the deal was updates included in the price, not free included.

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