Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge are the 2015 flagships from Samsung sporting the remarkable Exynos 7420 chipset. Samsung announced the flagships in March 2015 at MWC 2015. The Galaxy S6 Edge+ was launched on August 2015 with massive 5.7 inch display.
These well-popular flagships received updates upto Android 7.0 Nougat and completed two year cycle. Back in November some rumours have flown that Samsung extend the support cycle upto three years for these flagships. Now a famous US carrier AT&T confirmed these rumours and updated the support pages for these devices.
According to T-Mobile support pages, both the carrier and device manufacturer have agreed to develop the Oreo update. So in coming days, Samsung’s 2015 flagships will receive the latest flavour of Android as well as the new Samsung Experience UI.
The update for Galaxy S6, S6 Edge and S6 Edge+ probably come with the following key features.
The new features of Android 8.0 are PiP (Picture in Picture Mode), Battery saving through background limits, Smart text selection through improved Machine learning, Notification channels and Dots. Fluid like user experience is one of the improvements of Android Oreo.
Google implemented strict background limits for apps to reduce the unnecessary drain of battery by apps. These limits don’t affect the foreground processes, so they are not visible to the user. The execution limits of Android Oreo only limit the resources consumed by background services and broadcasts. These restrictions only apply for the apps that target Android 8.0 API level 26 or later.
To apply these restrictions for the older apps which target API level below 26, Google implemented an option in the Android Oreo. Users can restrict background processes for apps through Settings>Apps & Notifications>App Info>(Pick any app from the list)>Battery and in the options toggle off the Background activity option. So Galaxy S6 users can save a lot of battery juice through the Android Oreo background execution limits feature.
The Picture in Picture (PiP) mode is one of the most exciting features of Android 8.0 Oreo. This is an enhancement to the Multi-window feature arrived with Nougat, last year. In Android Nougat, there was no special multi-window feature for video playing and video calling apps. Now with PiP of Oreo, S6 and S6 Edge users can play YouTube videos at the corner of the screen and also chat or browse web in the remaining screen real estate. Users can play, pause, enlarge or close the PiP Window with controls.
Currently, limited apps are supporting the PiP feature of Oreo. The list of apps include Chrome, Google Duo, Whatsapp, Google Play Movies, YouTube and so on. The list may further enriched by more apps in the future.
Till now, no news about the release dates of Android Oreo for Galaxy S6 series has came out. According to some tech analysts, the Samsung S6 series flagships might receive the update in H2 of 2018.
The Notification dots are one of the remarkable features coming with the Android 8.0 Oreo update. Apple iOS got them a long time back, now they have arrived to Android with Oreo. After updating to Android 8.0, on the home screen of Galaxy S6, apps will show small blobs on the corner of the icons when any new notifications arrived for them.
The number of Notifications also shown in the blob of the Icon. When user tapped on the dot, then brief forms of the arrived notifications will be displayed, which gives the overview. User can tap on the interested notification to see it in full form.
We will update this post soon with latest news about Android Oreo update for Galaxy S6 series devices.
Update on 3/4/2018 :
Finally, Samsung removed Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge devices from the monthly Android Security updates list. The support for these devices has come to an end. So it seems that there will be no Oreo update for these devices as rumoured earlier. The Galaxy S6 Edge+ and S6 Active devices are still in the list as these devices were unveiled some time after Galaxy S6. According to analysts, Samsung may end support for these devices too in coming months. More details about the updates for S6 series will be revealed in coming days.