Samsung has begun rolling out Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean to SIM-free editions of the original Galaxy Note, adding some smart features tailor-made for larger-screen-toting devices.
According to Sam Mobile, Samsung is making the update available to Galaxy Note phones bought off-contract on region-by-region basis, which means we may have to wait a while to get our hands on Jelly Bean in the UK.
However, when it does arrive it promises to be well worth the wait.
Leading the field of welcome additions is the Samsung-only multi-window feature that debuted on the Galaxy Note 2 and enables you use two apps simultaneously and, for the sake of example, watch a video in one winddow while composing an email in the other.
And you’ve got the so-called Page Buddy function to look forward to as well. This fires up germane apps when the Note detects you’ve pulled out your S-Pen or when you plug in headphones.
Upping the Note’s credentials as a media device, meanwhile, is the inclusion of Smart Stay.
Often described as an intelligent sleep mode, by us anyway, this uses the Note's front-facing camera to detect eye movements and more accurately determine if the handset is in use. It’s actually something of a boon when watching video to not have to keep pressing the screen to ensure your handset doesn’t shut up shop.
On top of that little lot you‘ve got everything that makes Jelly Bean great coming your way too. Think: the Project Butter suite of performance enhancements, options to customise your notifications bar and the voice activated, location-sensitive search functionality of Google Now.
Sounds good, no? Doesn’t it just? But there is a caveat. If you’re the owner of a Note bought on a monthly contract, you’ll likely face a substantial delay for the update while your carrier ensures the new OS works with its proprietary services.
We’ve approached networks to find out about their plans to push out Jelly Bean to the Note, though. So keep ‘em peeled for updates and we’ll do our best to keep you in the loop.