Last Updated: May 23rd, 2012

The update for devices running Gingerbread to the latest Ice Cream Sandwich have been erratic at best. Although Samsung has promised updates for its smartphones and tablets, the overall rollout has been quite unpredictable with different markets getting upgrades before others.

There have been numerous indications that the Galaxy Note would be receiving an update to ICS at some point, however aside from the occasional leak there has been no official announcement. It looks like Samsung is finally starting to get their act together, as Devin Balentina reports that he has just received an ICS update notification for his Note.


The notification indicates that the file is a massive 318.89 MB, with Android 4.0 (running Touchwiz) and updates to the S Note app and S Memo widget.

The YouTube link indicated in the notification is simply Samsung's ad for its "Premium Suite" of apps that comes with Ice Cream Sandwich. So, the 300 MB+ update will have all the apps in Samsung's Premium Suite, including S Note, S Memo, Shape Match, and My Story. I would have also hoped for an official version of Flipboard, but that can easily be obtained.

This update appears to be only for the GT-N7000 international version of the Note, though Samsung has not officially made any announcement about it. Customers with the AT&T version of the Note will have to wait a bit longer. Let's hope more "unannounced" rollouts start popping up around the world... I'm in Singapore with a Galaxy SII and am still waiting for ICS.

[Source: @blue13x via Engadget]

Abhiroop Basu
Abhiroop Basu is an opinionated tech and digital media blogger. As a doe-eyed twenty-something he started his first blog TechComet to comment on anything tech-related that caught his omniscient eye. Since then he has blogged for Android Police, Make Tech Easier, and This Green Machine. In the real world, Abhiroop Basu is a resident of Singapore and the Editor of The Digit, a subsidiary of The Potato Productions Group.

  • Reeveluiz

    It's kinda appalling that Samsung has yet to honor its commitment to current SGSII owners but are concentrating on newer devices just so that people 'feel good' and would upgrade to their newer devices.

    C'mon Samsung. Get your act together and roll out ICS for SGSII users globally!

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/abhiroop-basu/ Abhiroop Basu

      Exactly! The S2 is their flagship device!

      • http://profiles.google.com/marcusleejh Marcus Lee

        The S2's ICS update has been out a long time. It's only localisation and carrier modifications that are holding it back from being rolled out everywhere.

        If you haven't gotten yours, it's likely not Samsung's fault but the carrier's.

        • reevester

          In the Indian region, there is no lock-in with Carriers. All devices are sold unlocked.

          So it definitely not the carrier's end that is restricting it.

          • http://profiles.google.com/marcusleejh Marcus Lee

            Ok, that means you don't have any carrier-specific bloatware / apps if you bought the device via the carriers?

            In that case it's a localisation thing. Sammy will need to add or remove stuff from the international firmware based on your locale.

          • http://twitter.com/kuyanyan Yanyan

            So does the Philippines but we got the ICS update just a few weeks after Poland. Like Marcus said, even its not a carrier branded phone, Samsung still needs to take out some features not available in the local market (Music Hub, etc) and probably tinker with CSCs, etc. Why it needs to take long, we will never know.

        • Iseedanger

          Well you know what, Carriers have nothing to do with the phones here in India. The phones which we get here are not carrier-specific. So it makes little sense to say that Samsung is not the actual culprit if we are not getting ICS update for GS2 here in India, because there's no carrier-check for compatibility issues or such stuff. Because Indian version is an International Unbound version, Samsung India is solely responsible for updates & thats it.

      • reevester

        ICS released for SGSII in Singapore! :D

    • Waleed Shah

      S2 upgrade is being rolled out. I have updated my S2 on 4.0 and now am waiting for my Note update. In my case, it didn't notify me of an update. I checked for one and was prompted that update is available. I guess, keep checking? I agree that this whole delayed upgrade sucks!

      • reevester

        Which region are you in?

        In Indian SGSII's, the inbuilt Settings > About > Update option does not work. You need to use KIES which IMHO sucks worse than iTunes!

        Additionally, don't you think its a major FAIL on Samsung's part that they released a newer model phone before even completing the upgrade of their old phone?? I know of so many prospective SGSIII buyers who have now decided to get either a Motorola or an HTC due to their lack of commitment to the Indian consumers.

        • http://profiles.google.com/marcusleejh Marcus Lee

          Why is it a fail? If manufacturers shouldn't release new phones until the previous generation have all been updated, then we'd *never* have any new devices. That includes iPhones.

          Anyway if KIES has the update ready, then it's not Sammy's fault that your phone isn't updated... Sorry to say this, but the fault is yours.

          • reevester

            errr lets look at it this way. If you owned a Honda Civic and you were supposed to get an update to a critical component of the engine (say the flywheel) and Honda took its own sweet time and rather released the Civic 2013 edition, what would your reaction be? :)

            And regarding KIES, I was commenting on the stupidity of Samsung to force users to use KIES to update their software, rather than use an inbuilt feature of Android. FYI KIES doesn't show the ICS update for this region (which means that the update isn't yet out for this region; just to add more clarity for you). So yeah, the fault is still 'Sammys'. :)

          • http://profiles.google.com/marcusleejh Marcus Lee

            @reevester:disqus Well, I don't get your analogy. How "critical" is ICS? If your Civic has a faulty flywheel then yes it should be fixed asap; has Gingerbread on your S2 been faulty? It hasn't been for mine.

            Further, in all the ads I've seen, Sammy's never advertised that the S2 would definitely get ICS. If this is also true in your region, why is it Sammy's "fault" if you don't get it?

            Re Kies: lots of people with the S2 have gotten their ICS update via OTA. I had a choice of both for my unlocked S2, and I chose Kies. If you don't get it, don't blame Sammy - your carrier is the one who chooses how to roll the update to users. 

          • Gunghogroup

            The ICS for the Note was promissed at the time of purchase, that is why it is getting it before GS2. As for why would people want it, I am noticing speed improvements in app switching as well as stabt alone application responsiveness.

        • robtheking

          Well it's damned if you do, damned if you don't. Sony is updating their 2011 phone to ICS before their 2012 ones and people are still complaining...

  • han badatar

    Can be downloaded here http://goo.gl/uo3Qm and flashed with Odin (or mobile Odin to preserve root from an already rooted GB-Rom)

  • Chris Banks

    I think Samsung has been stalling its ICS roll outs to make the SGIII more appealing. 

    • http://profiles.google.com/marcusleejh Marcus Lee

      Nah, some of the S2s have had ICS for almost a month now, depending on region.

      As far as I know, after Asus, Sammy's been the most prompt OEM in terms of updates this time around. Not in the US though.

      • http://twitter.com/kuyanyan Yanyan

        I'd actually put HTC above Samsung when it comes to updates actually. The Sensation with its inferior specs got it earlier than the SII. Not to mention that HTC actually promised an ICS update for its 1GHz single core phones like the Rhyme, Incredible S, Desire HD, and Desire S while there is still now word on whether or not Samsung will update the Galaxy W. Given that the Galaxy S didn't get the update, I doubt they will bother updating the Galaxy W. I'm currently using the Note right now but I'll have to wait a few days/weeks before it becomes available in my region. :D

    • reevester

      Especially in the regions with a high rate of early adopters.....!

  • [email protected]


    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii


  • WTF

    Abhiroop, connect your phone to kies and you will get your update, somehow they are stagering it for the different phones. I just did it for a couple of my friends (Singtel). Now I am waiting for my note to get it!

    • Pat

      In canada, and just tried this on 2 windows boxes and a mac box through kies, didn't work... 

      Even tried using a german proxy to make it appear like I'm outside the country

      My phone shows up as LA6, XEU in kies

      • WTF

        From my experience, they use some logic for the upgrade... Not that they have explained it. But they may change versions by the end of the upgrade cycle, if they find bugs. This is if your handset is unlocked. Else carrier is in control!

  • http://twitter.com/ToysSamurai Toys Samurai

    Forgot about the slowness of the update process. A bigger question is, does this update include some features from the Galaxy S3 such as the S Beam? I can understand that Samsung wouldn't want to incorporate some premium features like the S Voice, or SmartStay into existing handsets, but come on, the S Beam is something that should be deployed to as many Samsung phones as possible, as long as they are capable of doing NFC and Wifi-Direct (the Galaxy Note does.) Features like the S Beam is more useful when more people are using it.

  • Oliver Petruzel

    No fix for the black clipping problem... :(

    • Sam Eum

      What is the black clipping problem?

      The only problem i have is with the stock keyboard...
      And there aren't many alternatives for me because i need a keyboard that does both korean and english... sigh

  • http://www.geekchoice.com Dagmar Schneitz

    You know what's going to happen? They're going to delay and delay until a lot of upset cutomers just trade in their Samsung for something else. It can happen.

  • Xeneize480

    to bad they have this device on att only :(

  • spydie

    Amazing how this G-Note news article became a cry-baby room for every other Samsung phone not getting ICS!  The only thing I should be reading in the comments here are who has and who hasn't gotten the Note ICS update notification yet, what regions, and any problems people are having with the new update.  This was about the G-note, not the "flagship" phone.

  • spydie

    Edit (delete)

  • spydie

    Why aren't these comments in some kind of order, like oldest to newest?  They are scattered all over the place.  Disqus really sucks

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      You can pick the order you want them in yourself. There is a selector at the top. I believe it may default to "popular".

  • http://twitter.com/AlexDumitru Alex Dumitru

    For those who didn't get the update from Samsung, here's the guide I used and it works just perfect: http://www.android.gs/update-samsung-galaxy-note-n7000-to-official-ice-cream-sandwich-lpy-with-mobile-odin/

  • vikas

    have tried updating my note through kies , as well as the option within the phone. No update available yet :(. I am using voda in delhi

  • Sawariyasree

    Samsung has cheat me, iam a indian galaxi note user. I can't get the ics yet

  • Alykha

    I have in international version of the galaxy note (GT-N7000) i live in Egypt and i didnt receive any notification, i even tried to check for updates manually but it says no update available. Any thoughts??

  • Donrcanlas

    I just received a notification to upgrade to ics 20 minutes ago and I was able to with no problem los angeles ca