Qualcomm’s smartphone for Snapdragon Insiders sets the worst example for software updates
Last year, Qualcomm partnered with ASUS to launch its first-ever smartphone, the Smartphone for Snapdragon Insiders. As the name suggests, the phone was aimed at Snapdragon Insiders, a new community of Snapdragon fans and enthusiasts announced by Qualcomm last year. The phone was designed and manufactured by ASUS, which also oversaw distribution, sales, and software support. From a phone that comes straight from Qualcomm and costs $1,499, you’d definitely have high expectations. At the very least, you expect it to receive timely security updates. But it looks like the phone is no longer a priority for Qualcomm or ASUS.
The smartphone for Snapdragon Insiders hasn’t received a new feature update since March. While that’s bad enough on its own, the situation is even worse when it comes to security updates. It may sound ridiculous, but the phone hasn’t received any security updates since January. It’s as bad as it gets. A high-end flagship from one of the biggest chipmakers, which costs $1,499, by the way, is on a six-month-old security patch. At launch, Qualcomm promised the phone would receive “4 years of regular security updates”, but the chipmaker is already six months behind schedule, less than a year since its launch.
At launch, the smartphone will run Android 11 and Qualcomm will provide 4 years of regular security updates.
— Snapdragon (@Snapdragon) July 9, 2021
The update situation was certainly not so bad at first. Looking at ASUS software, it can be seen that the Smartphone for Snapdragon Insiders had seen a new software update approximately every month between August and January. The last update came in March, and although the changelog mentions an “updated Android security patch”, there were no changes to the security patch, according to Redditor u/hdoublearp. Phone stuck on January 2022 patch.
At this point, it should come as no surprise that the phone is also stuck on the same Android version it shipped with (Android 11). ASUS or Qualcomm do not know when the phone will receive Android 12.
We’re not sure who to blame here, but it certainly seems bad to both Qualcomm and ASUS to leave a high-end flagship without any security updates for months. In response to u/hdoubleharpit’s original Reddit post, a Qualcomm community manager said he would check with the team and “look for an answer.” But we haven’t seen any further updates from them either. We will let you know as soon as Qualcomm or ASUS releases a statement on this.
Qualcomm shares details of next update
Shortly after our report went live, a Qualcomm representative provided a comment on the original Reddit thread to clarify the status of the update. According to the comment, the next security patch will be released on the phone on June 20.
Hi hdoublearp, I spoke to the team and got answers. The next security patch will be released on 6/20, and new ones will be released every 2-3 months thereafter. I hope this helps you.
Going through: Reddit