Google, Samsung, HTC, Sony and LG
Update: The latest figures show June was a good month for people upgrading to Android Marshmallow, but it’s still not a great adoption rate for Google. Only 13.3% of Android users are running the up-to-date software, so don’t be too disappointed if your phone it yet to get the update.
Android Marshmallow is here. There are battery life improvements, greater app permission controls, standardized support for fingerprint scanners, more granular volume controls, USB-C support and new Google Now features, which are all part of a mix that makes this an exciting upgrade for users. But is your phone actually going to get it?
The release process for Android updates is more complicated than Apple’s iOS updates, and just because an update has been launched that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll have access to it.
In fact, you probably won’t have Marshmallow yet. So far only 13% of devices are running Marshmallow – that’s not a great adoption rate for Google. It’s down to device manufacturers, and in some countries the carriers too, who spend quite a bit of time with the new software before releasing it to their devices.
If you own a Nexus device you’re in luck, as not surprisingly Google’s new software has landed on those first – and manufacturers like Motorola are generally better at getting updates out quickly. But other manufacturers are a little less predictable.
While many phones are still waiting on Marshmallow, we are already seeing the gentle roll out of the Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow update, with new emojis and a few little bug fixes bundled in for good measure.
To make the latest Android update less of a mystery, here’s our constantly updated information on when it’s likely to land on your phone.
Disclaimer: This article includes information for the rollout of Android Marshmallow software, but depending on region, mobile operator and carrier it can take longer than expected.
Google and Nexus
Google has updated its Nexus range of products to Android Marshmallow. It includes the Nexus 5, Nexus 6, Nexus 7 (2013), Nexus 9, Nexus Player, Pixel C and the whole range of Android One devices. The Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P both launched with Android 6 on board.
The developers preview for Android 7 N is already out and you can download it on all the previously mentioned devices – apart from the Nexus 5. If you’re rocking a Nexus 4, Nexus 7 (2012) or Nexus 10 you might want to consider an upgrade, as you won’t be getting Marshmallow.
Samsung did a pretty good job of getting Android Lollipop on to its phones rapidly, but it slowed things down considerably for the Marshmallow launch. That said, almost all of the major handsets now feature the latest software.
The Samsung Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 Edge, Galaxy S5, Galaxy Note Edge and Galaxy Note 4 now have the update in most regions and both the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge launched with Marshmallow pre-installed.
The Samsung Galaxy Note 5 has been updated too in the US, but only on certain networks. Samsung’s Galaxy S6 Active is also getting the update to Marshmallow now.
The Galaxy S6 Edge+ is getting the update in some markets now as well, but there’s no guarantee it’ll be on your version yet. Some versions of the Samsung Galaxy S5 Neo are now also receiving Marshmallow across the UK and Europe. There’s still no word from Samsung on whether the Galaxy S4, Samsung Galaxy Alpha and Galaxy Note 3 will get the update.
As for tablets, the Galaxy Tab S2 is currently receiving the update to Android Marshmallow in both its 9.7 and 8.0-inch sizes. We expect the Galaxy Tab S and Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 will get the Marshmallow software too, but there’s no official word yet.
The HTC 10 launched with Android 6, and the Marshmallow update has also widely rolled out to the HTC One M9 and HTC One M8, as well as the One A9 and the One E9.
There are reports of the HTC Desire 820, HTC Desire 816 and HTC Desire Eye also getting the update in some regions, while the HTC One M8 Eye could start to benefit soon, as users in India have begun seeing Marshmallow appear on their phones.
HTC also confirmed that it will be updating the HTC One M8s, HTC One M9+, HTC One ME, HTC One E8, HTC Butterfly 3 and HTC Desire 826. It has taken a long time so far though and HTC hasn’t commented on when it’ll be coming either.
Sony is faring much better, with the Xperia Z5, Xperia Z5 Compact, Xperia Z5 Premium, Xperia Z4 Tablet, Xperia Z3+, Xperia Z3, Xperia Z3 Compact, Xperia Z2 Tablet, Xperia Z2 all seeing the Android 6 Marshmallow update.
Sony has also begun rolling the update out to the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact and confirmed that it plans to bring Marshmallow to the Xperia M5, Xperia C5 Ultra, Xperia M4 Aqua and Xperia C4.
Both the Xperia Z1 and Xperia Z1 Compact will be missing out this time though.
LG hasn’t been clear with its Marshmallow update plans, but the LG G4, LG G4c, LG G3 and LG V10 all have Android 6 software now. The LG G5 launched with the software already installed and we’d expect the LG G Flex 2 might get Marshmallow, but there’s no official word yet. At the lower end Marshmallow is also now making its way to the LG Magna and LG Spirit.
Motorola, OnePlus, Huawei, Asus and ZTE
Motorola is updating the Moto X Style, Moto X Play, Moto X Force, Moto G 2015, Moto G 2014, Moto E (2nd gen), Moto X 2014, Moto X Pure Edition (2015), Droid Turbo 2, Droid Maxx 2 and Nexus 6.
Marshmallow will also come to the 2014 version of the Moto X Pure Edition, the 2014 Moto G and Moto G with 4G LTE, the Moto MAXX, Moto Turbo, and Droid Turbo.
The Huawei P9 and Huawei P9 Plus have both landed with Android Marshmallow. The company has also confirmed that in China the Huawei P8, Huawei P8 Max, Mate S, Ascend Mate 7, P8 Youth Edition, G7, G7 Plus, X2, 4X and Play 4C will be getting Android 6.0 at some point, though it’s uncertain whether they’ll all get updated to it elsewhere in the world.
The OnePlus One has received its own version of Android 6 Marshmallow in the form of Cyanogen OS 13, while the OnePlus 2 is also getting it as part of an OxygenOS 3.0.2 software update. The OnePlus 3 launched with Android Marshmallow software already on board.
It was originally thought the OnePlus X will also be receiving the Android 6 update, but the company hasn’t given an update on when it’ll arrive. Some are even speculating it may skip the Android 6 update and go straight onto Android N instead.
The BlackBerry Priv was the first phone from the Canadian manufacturer to feature Android software, and it’s now been treated to the sweet taste of Android Marshmallow.
Version 6.0 has rolled out to BlackBerry’s first ever Android phone, bringing with it a host of additional security controls, improved battery life and an enhanced keyboard.
Asus is another company which often isn’t particularly speedy with its updates. It has now given updates to the ZenFone 2, ZenFone 2 Deluxe, ZenFone 2 Deluxe Special Edition and the ZenFone 2 Laser. Now the ZenFone Selfie and ZenFone Zoom are getting the update too.
Asus has confirmed to TechRadar the PadFone S and ZenFone Max are all set to get the update to Android 6 and we’re hopeful it will launch very soon.
Honor has revealed its update schedule for Marshmallow and it’s not going to be long now. The Honor 7 is already getting the update, while Honor 6 users in India are also receiving it. Honor has released the update for Honor 5X, but it’s just in the US for now.
It’s expected the Honor 6 Plus and Honor 4X will get the update before long, but right now it’s not certain.
ZTE doesn’t always bother to update its phones, so if you have one you may have to make do without Android Marshmallow. The ZTE Axon Pro is getting the Marshmallow update, but that seems to be it.
The Nvidia Shield Tablet ATV has already received the Android 6 Marshmallow update. The Shield Tablet K1 and the original Shield tablet have also started getting it.
Nextbit currently has one phone, the Nextbit Robin, and while it launched in February with Android Lollipop it has now been updated to Android Marshmallow.
What do you get with Android 6.0 Marshmallow?
While you’re waiting to get Android 6.0 Marshmallow, you’d probably like to know more about the new features it incorporates. We’ve been playing around with the operating system, and here are some of our favorite features.
It’s not a big design-based update like Lollipop was. Material Design is still intact here, and most of the focus is on new features and bug fixes.
Technically you can use Android Pay without the Marshmallow software, but having the latest OS is certainly a big help.
The update to Marshmallow brings with it fingerprint sensor functionality for the first time, so you don’t even need to open up an app – you can just unlock your phone with your finger and place it on the contactless payment terminal.
Third-party apps are also supported within Marshmallow, making it much easier to buy stuff directly in your Android phone.
However, Android Pay is only available in the US and UK right now, and there are no clear plans for when it’ll be rolling out around the rest of the world.
Android Marshmallow fingerprint support
We’ve seen some smartphone manufacturers already include fingerprint scanners in their devices, but with Android Marshmallow Google is standardizing support across the platform.
You can use a fingerprint scanner to unlock your device and pay for media from the Google Play Store, and the fingerprint scanning tech is also open to developers. That means devs can build it into their own applications, enabling you to sign into them without a password and pay for goods using Android Pay.
Android Marshmallow voice controls
Android 6.0 opens the way for improved voice control features thanks to the new Voice Interaction API, which will enable app developers to build voice control directly into their apps.
This means owners of Android Marshmallow devices will soon be able to speak to their apps – and the apps will even talk back.
One of the examples Google has detailed is the TuneIn app. A user can say "OK Google, listen to music on TuneIn", and the TuneIn app will not only load, but will then ask "What genre of music would you like to listen to?".
The user can then reply with their favourite genre. This natural way of speaking to our smartphone and the apps installed on it could revolutionize the way we interact with our devices.
Google has released a video to demonstrate the potential of Voice Interaction API, which you can view below.
YouTube : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OW1A4XFRuyc&feature=youtu.be
Android Marshmallow battery life
Google has done a lot of work in the areas of battery life and power in Android Marshmallow, which will be music to many users’ ears.
First up Google has developed the Doze feature. Your device will use motion sensors to detect when it hasn’t been moved for an extended period of time, and will switch to a deeper sleep mode that consumes much less power.
Your device won’t be completely useless in this mode, however, as Doze still allows for alarms to go off and key notifications to come through.
Google says it took two Nexus 9 tablets, one running Lollipop and the other Android Marshmallow, loaded the same apps and settings on both, and then tested the standby power drain on the two.
Apparently, the Nexus 9 running Android Marshmallow lasted up to two times longer than its Lollipop counterpart. It sounds impressive, and we’re hoping it translates to noticeably better battery life for our devices.
Android Marshmallow Now on Tap
With Android Marshmallow comes an intelligent new assistant feature called Now on Tap. An enhancement to Google Now, Now on Tap enables users to access information anywhere on their Android Marshmallow device, no matter what they’re doing.
Users can simply tap and hold the home button to pull up a query without leaving the app or website they’re in. If a friend emails you about seeing a movie, for example, Now on Tap could pull up info such as ratings or the trailer, or even enable you to buy tickets.
You can also look at other apps on your phone, like Yelp or OpenTable, to book a dinner reservation or read reviews about a restaurant a friend has suggested.
And Now on Tap isn’t just for basic info – you can also use voice searches for more specific queries, such as finding out who sings a particular song.
Android Marshmallow permissions
App permissions are more intuitive in Marshmallow, giving users the option to allow or deny specific permissions within an app, rather than having to accept all permissions at once.
On Lollipop you have to accept permissions when you download an app, but with Android Marshmallow you won’t be asked to grant access to features until you come to use them for the first time in the app.
That means, for example, that you can give WhatsApp access to your camera, but not to your microphone if you wish. You can even revoke access for a particular permission by diving into the settings if you’ve accidentally allowed it.
More new features on Android 6.0 Marshmallow
Google has simplified volume controls once again with the Android Marshmallow update, with more granular control over the various audio settings on your device, from ringtones and alarms to music playback and voice calls.
Word selection has been made easier too, with Android Marshmallow highlighting text more intuitively, and a floating menu offers controls such as cut, copy and paste at your fingertips, rather than in the toolbar at the top of the display.
Fire up the Chrome web browser on Android Marshmallow and you’ll benefit from Chrome Custom Tabs, which enables websites to customize the toolbar and menu of the Chrome tab to provide dedicated buttons and options.
An example shown on stage at Google IO was Pinterest, which was able to add a ‘Pin’ button to the toolbar on certain pages.
App linking has been vastly improved in Android Marshmallow, with Google’s software now more adept at working out whether a link should be opened in a browser or a compatible app. That means fewer ‘Open with’ pop up boxes flashing up on screen and generally getting in the way.
Now it’s just a case of sitting back and waiting for your device to get the Android Marshmallow update.