Samsung's stable Android 12-based One UI 4.0 update is here for the Galaxy S21 5G series
The day so many hardcore Samsung fans have been waiting for so long is finally here! No, the Galaxy Note family is not being revived out of thin air, and unfortunately, it still looks like there's plenty of time to go before the oft-delayed Galaxy S21 FE 5G will be released at last.
But if you're the proud owner of an existing member of the 5G-enabled S21 lineup, you'll want to check and see if you're eligible for your first major OS promotion. That's right, Android 12 is officially rolling out around the world as we speak, and obviously, this is a stable over-the-air delivery you're looking at here.
Time to rejoice... and stay cautious
As always (in the last few years, at least), this puts Samsung well ahead of the pack in terms of non-Pixel updates, which is made that much more impressive by the company's long list of proprietary One UI tweaks, add-ons, and performance enhancements.
The software overlay is at its fourth big version, aiming to make the Galaxy S21, S21+, and S21 Ultra 5G even smoother, faster, and easier to use than the three early 2021-released powerhouses already are.
Of course, the Android 12-based One UI 4.0 goodie pack may not be perfect right off the bat, despite spending quite a bit of time in a public beta program naturally meant to quash all as many bugs as possible before reaching the masses.
If you can download and install the undoubtedly massive update therefore, you should approach it with caution and maybe not gloat too much. Users in some regions are likely to be luckier than others, and you shouldn't be surprised if Samsung needs several days or even weeks to truly spread the love worldwide as far as unlocked Galaxy S21-series devices are concerned.
What's next and what's One UI 4.0 all about?
The wait could be longer for carrier-locked variants (especially in markets like the US), although things progressed at a pretty incredible pace last year. In case you're wondering, the Galaxy S20 family got its first taste of Android 11-based One UI 3.0 in early December 2021... on Verizon of all places, and very soon after, everyone else joined the party both stateside and around the world.
Obviously, the S21 lineup is just the first of many slated to receive a crucial UI makeover in the near future, with everything from the Galaxy S20 quartet to the Note 20 duo, S10 series, extended Fold portfolio, Z Flip family, and multiple Galaxy A mid-rangers looking at major software updates of their own in the next few months. It remains to be seen how many devices Samsung will be able to upgrade by the end of the year, but if this super-early start is any indication, the company's late 2020 records are about to be broken.
In terms of exactly what you can expect to get under the Christmas tree if you're rocking a new or relatively new Galaxy high-ender, Google's Material You redesign arguably steals the spotlight, with Samsung's take offering deeper than ever customization for basically all visual One UI elements ranging from your phone's home screen to icons, menu, button, background, and of course, widgets.
Samsung's other big One UI 4.0 focus area seems to be the overall security and privacy of your data, which you can keep a closer than ever eye on without making much of an effort. Simply put, Android 12 is all about convenience and customization for the world's largest smartphone vendor, which is clearly a very good thing.