AT&T has turned around their lack of Android updates

When many people think of AT&T, they think of an evil corporation, looking only to make money while ripping customers off. Everyone has a different opinion though, and there are many fanboys to AT&T. It’s a weird mix, as they’ve been known for poor service in high population areas. One of the biggest issues they’ve had is the lack of updates on its Android handsets. This is something I’ve experienced first hand, and I must say it has been quite annoying.

Take the Samsung Captivate for example. It was released in the summer of 2010, and featured high-end specs for the time. Samsung was slow to update its whole Galaxy S line to Android 2.2, but it was especially long for the Captivate. Don’t even get started on the Gingerbread update, as the phone was finally updated in January of this year. Slow to say the least, and we feel that it was mostly AT&T’s fault.

The carrier may finally be changing its ways, as news broke out today that the Ice Cream Sandwich update for the HTC Vivid on AT&T is now available. Surprising, at least to this Android blogger, considering that the Vivid isn’t even AT&T’s most popular Android handset. This means that AT&T has beat other carriers to the punch in being the first to update a handset to Android 4.0 (except the Nexus S on T-Mobile, but it was technically Google updating, not T-Mobile), which is a huge step in the right direction for the US’ second largest carrier.

One of the biggest reasons I think AT&T is changing is due to Andorid’s largest competitor: the iPhone. The iPhone used to be exclusive to AT&T, and was one of the main reasons many people used their network. To them, this meant they didn’t have to focus as much on the other OSes, and Android phones just wouldn’t receive updates when they should have. Last year AT&T lost that exclusivity, and the iPhone was made available on Verizon. AT&T probably felt they should focus more on Android, and released more handsets. Updates still weren’t there, but at least they had the phones. Then something big happened.

The iPhone 4S was revealed this past fall, and it was made available on Sprint, as well as AT&T and Verizon. Three of the four major carriers now have the iPhone, and AT&T realizes they need to stay up to date in order to compete. Android is the most used operating system in the US, so it makes sense to keep the handsets updated, in turn keeping customers satisfied and coming back for more.

Things are looking good for Ma Bell, as they will also be updating the Atrix 4G and Atrix 2 to Android 4.0 in Q3. That’s especially impressive considering the Atrix 4G is an older handset. Something tells me the HTC Inspire 4G will be updated too, as HTC has stated they will be bringing the update to the Desire HD (the Inspire and Desire HD are essentially the same handset). Hopefully the company will keep up, and not play the quiet game like Motorola. Who’s on AT&T? Are you satisfied with their number of updates? Let us know what you think in the comments, or tell me @jlehto43 on Twitter!

image via TmoNews

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