EMUI 9.0 will begin its global rollout on November 10

A new version of Android means it’s once again time to peer into my crystal ball.

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November 6, 2018 — EMUI 9.0 will begin its global rollout on November 10

EMUI 9.0 is Huawei’s custom Android skin that’s based on Android 9 Pie, and according to a post from the company on Chinese social network Weibo, the update will begin rolling out to select Huawei and Honor phones starting on November 10.

Once November 10 rolls around, the following phones will start to receive EMUI 9.0 around the world:

  • Huawei Mate 10
  • Huawei Mate 10 Pro
  • Huawei Mate 10 Porsche Design
  • Huawei Mate RS Porsche Design
  • Huawei P20
  • Huawei P20 Pro
  • Honor 10
  • Honor View 10
  • Honor Play

In addition to the regular Pie goodies, EMUI 9.0 also comes with improved smoothness/responsiveness and a GPU Turbo 2.0 mode that delivers increased performance when playing games.

October 17, 2018 — Xperia XZ Premium, XZ1, and XZ1 Compact getting Android 9 Pie on Oct 26

Earlier in the month, Sony began rolling out Android 9 Pie to the XZ2 and XZ2 Compact. Now, we have official dates for when Pie will make its way to the company’s other handsets.

Starting first with the Xperia XZ Premium, XZ1, and XZ1 Compact, these phones will receive their update on October 26. The XZ2 Premium will follow them on November 7, and if you have an Xperia XA2, XA2 Ultra, or XA2 Plus, you can expect Pie to land on March 4, 2019.

October 12, 2018 — Android 9 Pie rolling out to Sony Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact

On October 12, reports started coming in to show that Pie is making its way to Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact handsets. The update changes the build number from 51.1.A.11.51 to 52.0.A.3.27 on both phones and weighs in at around 1.059 GB. In addition to the usual Pie goodies, there’s also a new camera app and the October 2018 security patch.

The full roundup

Did you hear? Android Pie is a thing now. And we know that everyone will want it and want it as soon as possible. That’s how it works and that’s how we are wired. We want updates, we want them to be spectacular and we want them right now.

The reality of the situation is a bit different. Most phones made in the last 18 months will see Android Pie, but some of them will only get updated when we see the first developer preview for Android Q (Quince Jelly or gtfo, Google!) come along. It’s a lot easier for manufacturers to update their phones to a newer version, but it’s still not any better. That’s another article for another time, though. This one is where I guess which phones will get updated sometime in the next 12 months.

Predicting anything Android-related is 10% science and 90% interpretation.

It’s not as easy as you think and many sudsy cold beverages worth of thought goes into my guesses each and every year. About one-third of them are no-brainers, but some of the others are basically the same odds as a coin flip. It seems like manufacturers only care about a few models that get a lot of press time. But I do have to toot my own hat (or something) and say I have a pretty good track record. Luck or skill? You decide. (It’s totally skill.)

Let’s break it down by the major manufacturers of the phones we love and make a few predictions. Remeber, these are just predictions and not any official word on anything from any company unless otherwise noted.

Still waiting for Oreo? Check to see whether your phone will be upgraded!

Google

I always start with Google because it’s easy and I’ll get it right every time. That’s what I want at the top of the page. I say it’s easy because Google has already told us which phones get updated and which won’t.

And that’s it. Prior to the Pixel, Google promised two years of full support and three years of security updates for phones they sell under their own brand. The Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X are just about three years old. Auf Wiedersehen, Adieu, Adios, Good Bye. They were great phones.

More: It’s time to say goodbye to the Nexus program for good

Android Beta Program Partners

For the first time ever other companies have joined Google in supporting the Android Beta Program. When it was started for Android Pie (then known simply as P) the following phones joined Google’s Pixel and Pixel 2 family in supporting it:

  • Sony Xperia XZ2
  • Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S
  • Nokia 7 Plus
  • Oppo R15 Pro
  • Vivo X21
  • OnePlus 6
  • Essential PH‑1

That means that every one of these phones should see a full-on update to Android Pie in the very near future. In fact, the Essential PH-1 is saw its update at the same time the Pixel and Pixel 2 did.

Samsung

Samsung makes more models of a single flagship line like the Galaxy S each year than Google has made in total, but it’s also pretty easy to know which phones Samsung will update because they’re predictable. Samsung offers four “premium” models each year. like 2018’s Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+, the Galaxy S9 Active that we all know is coming, and the Galaxy Note 9. Even when Samsung sold 15 different models of the Galaxy S6, they were all treated the same when it came to expecting an update.

When to expect it is just as predictable, and it will happen about a year from the date this was first published (March 2018). Some models in Europe will see it first, about a month later it will show up somewhere else, and once Samsung is satisfied it’s not going to totally wreck about a gazillion phones they will give it the green light. Add in whatever time your carrier needs and the final result is just about a year from its initial release.

Here’s where it gets interesting. there are a handful of other Galaxy phones that have a huge regional fanbase. In India, for example, the Galaxy J models are huge hits because they offer most of the same experience you find in a Galaxy S at a lower price. Samsung will give them the same treatment the Galaxy S and Note lines receive. That’s not the most interesting part, though. That would be the seemingly random phones that Samsung decides to update. We don’t know why we see this every year (Carrier requests? Developer favorites? Aliens?) we just like seeing it. And we all wish we saw more of it.

LG

LG has always been a wildcard when I write this post every year. Like Samsung, there are a few “important” models that get all the press coverage and plenty of other more inexpensive models that most of us aren’t talking about.

LG also mentioned some streamlining in the release cycle, which hopefully gives the development teams time to get an update out the door and have it be a good update.

  • The LG G7 ThinQ will be updated to Android Pie.
  • The LG V30 (including the V30S or whatever models we have seen or will see) will be updated to Android Pie.
  • The LG V20 will be updated to Android Pie.
  • The LG G6 will see Android Pie.

Older models like the G5 and V10 are done seeing any attention and won’t see any updates. LG makes a handful of phones that aren’t quite flagship material, and we know it is willing to spend the time and money on updating some of them even if your carrier isn’t and you never see it. That means nothing is a given.

I also think LG consolidating things and releasing phones when they think it’s time for a new model rather than by looking at a calendar will make a difference here and lead to longer support.

Huawei

Huawei is tough to read. It hasn’t abandoned the Asian way of doing smartphones like LG and Samsung have for their U.S. divisions and sometimes that means the things the company does can be puzzling to those of us used to the Western way of thinking. Just when I think I have figured out exactly which phones are the company’s flagship models that will get the lion’s share of time and money spent, they change it all up. That’s a good thing.

Something made Huawei change the way it redistributes and maintains phones running the EMUI operating system (Huawei’s version of Android) in 2017 and I think that’s going to be reflected when it comes to Android P updates.

Per an update from the company on November 6, the following phones will begin to receive the EMUI 9 / Android Pie update starting November 10:

  • Huawei Mate 10
  • Huawei Mate 10 Pro
  • Huawei Mate 10 Porsche Design
  • Huawei Mate RS Porsche Design
  • Huawei P20
  • Huawei P20 Pro
  • Honor 10
  • Honor View 10
  • Honor Play

Motorola

Motorola had a weird 2017. That’s putting it mildly. They released like 100 phones in the Americas and Western Europe (Editor’s note: it was actually 9) and they ranged from the surprisingly great $100 Moto E4 to the Moto X4, the first of hopefully many non-Google phones you can use on Project Fi, and all the Z and Force you can handle in between.. And they did it without compromising the G series which has been a company staple for years from the smartphone division.

Moto phones under Lenovo are slowly becoming like the Thinkpad — quietly chugging along in the background doing their thing. And doing it well.

On August 15, Motorola published a blog post outlining the handsets that’ll receive the official Pie update starting this fall. They include:

  • Moto Z3
  • Moto Z3 Play
  • Moto Z2 Force
  • Moto Z2 Play
  • Moto X4
  • Moto G6 Plus
  • Moto G6
  • Moto G6 Play

While that’s a strong list, the notable omissions include the Moto E5, E5 Plus, and E5 Play.

OnePlus

OnePlus is on the verge of becoming more than just a niche brand. But it won’t forget where its early success came from — providing fast updates because its customers wanted them. And just because it is never as fast as we wanted doesn’t mean it wasn’t as fast as possible. Sometimes, too fast even …

Here’s the list of phones OnePlus is going to update to Android P.

  • OnePlus 3
  • OnePlus 3T
  • OnePlus 5
  • OnePlus 5T
  • OnePlus 6

Nokia

Nokia seems to understand that a substantial portion of its own customer base wants fast updates. Like OnePlus, they should listen to their current customers while trying to find new ones if they are to be successful. Here’s a list of phones expected to see Android Pie from Nokia.

  • Nokia 3
  • Nokia 5
  • Nokia 6
  • Nokia 6.1
  • Nokia 7 Plus
  • Nokia 8
  • Nokia 8 Sirocco

HTC

Disappointing sales have left the future of HTC’s smartphone business in uncertainty, but assuming the company doesn’t go under in the next few months, it’s announced that it’ll be updating four of its smartphones to Android 9 Pie. The list is as follows:

  • HTC U12+
  • HTC U11
  • HTC U11+
  • HTC U11 Life (Android One version)

Annnnddd…that’s it.

HTC says that it’ll release timeframes for its Pie updates “in due course”, and as those announcements are made, we’ll update this article accordingly.

Sony

Sony announced its Pie update plans on August 16, 2018, and as expected, the phones that’ll be the first to get the new software treatment are the company’s high-end flagships. So far, the following phones have been confirmed to get an Android Pie update.

  • Sony Xperia XZ2
  • Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium
  • Sony Xperia XZ2 Compact
  • Sony Xperia XZ Premium
  • Sony Xperia XZ1
  • Sony Xperia XZ1 Compact
  • Sony Xperia XA2
  • Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra
  • Sony Xperia XA2 Plus

On October 12, reports started coming in to show that Pie is making its way to Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact handsets. The update changes the build number from 51.1.A.11.51 to 52.0.A.3.27 on both phones and weighs in at around 1.059 GB. In addition to the usual Pie goodies, there’s also a new camera app and the October 2018 security patch.

But wait, there’s more!

The Xperia XZ Premium, XZ1, and XZ1 Compact will all receive their update on October 26. The XZ2 Premium will follow them on November 7, and if you have an Xperia XA2, XA2 Ultra, or XA2 Plus, you can expect Pie to land on March 4, 2019.

Must mentions

These may be the companies we’re most familiar with in the west that sell Android phones, but they aren’t the only companies doing it. Out of the literally hundreds of models available, a few stand out and need mentioning.

  • Any phone running the Android Go version will probably see an update once Google gets Pie optimized for the meager specs these devices have.
  • The BlackBerry KEYone probably won’t be upgraded to Android Pie, but we know the KEY2 will be.
  • Someone at XDA will update their Nexus One to Android Pie and I am going to do my best to get Google to send that person a brand new Pixel 3 NotchXL.

Like mentioned earlier, these are just educated guesses at this point. but one thing I know for certain is that no matter what the phone, any updates will feel like they took too long to make it into our hands. That’s just how we’re wired.

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