Last Updated: July 7th, 2012

This is the latest in our Weekend Poll series. For last week's, see Do You Regularly Rent Moves Through Google Play?

Jelly Bean isn't a huge evolution of Android like previous updates have been, but that's understandable given just how polished the OS has become. Still, as the company showed us on day 1 of I/O, things certainly have moved forward in quite a few ways (Ron provided a deeper look at some of them in his first Getting To Know Android 4.1 post). Probably the 2 biggest changes: massive optimizations and tweaks to make things very fast and smooth, and the addition of Google Now. Personally, I'm most excited about Now - a blend of Siri and HAL9000, able to intelligently answer questions, often before you even ask (or thought about asking).

The UI has also been touched up a bit, and icons and the lock screen have been tweaked. There's also more gray and less blue all around. Notifications have been revamped to show more information and allow muting them on an app-by-app basis.

Take a look through the linked posts if you missed out on the details the first time around, then let us know: are you happy with the improvements made in Jelly Bean?

Are You Happy With The Improvements Made In Jelly Bean?

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Aaron Gingrich
Aaron is a geek who has always had a passion for technology. When not working or writing, he can be found spending time with his family, playing a game, or watching a movie.

  • http://trevorsullivan.net/ Trevor Sullivan

    Can't wait for buttery-smooth Android! We've needed that for a long time!

  • http://trevorsullivan.net/ Trevor Sullivan

    Also, the offline voice search is AWESOME! We've needed that for a long time, too!

    • http://wave-france.blogspot.com Supercopter

      It's offline Voice Typing (dictation). 
      You'll still need to be online to perform a search.

      • http://trevorsullivan.net/ Trevor Sullivan

        Yeah, that's what I meant. No idea why I wrote "search."

  • Chris Webster

    I just wish there was a Google Now app/4.1 lockscreen theme for ICS :/

    • Onpointsg35

      In due time I can already see widget locker and/or go locker making an update soon

  • moelsen8

    Everything but the wallpapers were an improvement!

    • Lbpiscool

      I hate you. The wallpapers are sick

      • moelsen8

        haha to each their own.  the jb ones are really good.. just a step back when compared to ics in my opinion.

        • tBs_Battousai

          Do live wallpapers run properly under JB as Live wallpapers on ICS (GNex) just don't run as they should...

          • bjn714

            They are very smooth.  I didn't find them to be that bad on ICS but they definitely run well on JB.

      • John

        Not really
        Are we gonna split hairs here?  Am I wrong?

  • dextersgenius

    I wonder why those 4 people were unhappy about improvements made to JB. Can you guys speak up?

    • http://ashn.myopenid.com/ Ash

       They can't they are just trolling.
      Now there are 69 idiots.

      • Jake Oliver

        My bets are on people who's devices are unlikely to ever receive the update.

  • RedPandaAlex

    Only thing i was hoping for was more developer options to integrate into voice actions

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1359390083 Sodiq Awokoya

    You must be a real DICK HEAD TO VOTE NO!!!(ladies Pussy Foot)

    • Trevor

       My Galaxy note is staying on GB until I can be assured of less than 1% per hour battery drain when Skype and GrooveIP and K9 are running as background tasks. I am awed by what I am getting with GB :)

  • Spam0702

    Ah, well.. the question is basically clear. everyone is happy with improvements. Should have asked like: are there enough improvements or something.. ;-P
    plus, add to the poll: yes, but I wont get the update anyway 

    • kly91


  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1038373145 Alejandro Estrella-Lopez

    Unfortunately I'm sure Samsung won't update the Tmobile Galaxy SII

  • Bxreppa

    Galaxy nexus FTW!!! Love JB 4.1

  • Cguella

    It's great but I went back to AOKP 40 as I like the added features in that ROM better than what is new in Jelly Bean.  When AOKP gets a JB release ready I will use it (toro).

    • Ravrahn

      AOKP definitely won't get JB until at least mid-July, probably later, because it's based Android source, which isn't out until July.

  • Stamke

    Having lived with JB for 3 days now I am left with the impression that Android finally grew up! It no longer feels like I'm participating in a user experience beta test. With Jelly Bean, Android has earned its "big boy pants" at last. Google Now is scary good at quickly determining trends and serving content proactively. This morning, it offered me directions to my favorite Bagel joint, thinking that since I go there frequently it must be my workplace!

  • Gryphkid44

    ICS was a much needed overhaul and JB polished it.

  • http://twitter.com/TheGermian Germian

    To be honest, I was quite surprised when they introduced so much with Jelly Bean.

    I mean, I was expecting more or less a bigger bug-fixes/patches package and maybe here and there some better optimizations with JB but not in the form of Project Butter and definitely not Google Now (a.k.a. the Siri contender). Really cool what they did with the notifications, too. 

    But yeah, to sum it up, I was really surprised and I'm happy with Jelly Bean as it was announced.

  • http://www.facebook.com/DaveHamiltonOnline David Hamilton

    Yes, But I'm still running Froyo So it will be awhile to use it.

  • yankeesusa

    I would love the improvements even more but I don't even have ics yet since manufacturers and cell phone companies screw the android updates up. I have replaced my evo 3d about 6 times due to defects and still have no update. I gave up on htc ever since the evo 3d. I will be giving samsung a try for my next phone. Hopefully the gs3 will get jelly bean this year.

    • LewisSD

      I just pre ordered the sgs3 and cant wait to get it. I think it will have official jb by the end of the year, but if you are willing to root and flash roms then it wont be long at all till its been ported.

    • Ian Santopietro

      If updates are one of your criteria, then consider a Nexus. I know it's not the most modern hardware wise, but you won't be maxing it out by the time your contract is up anyway, and updates are always right on schedule. (Just be sure to stick to a GSM nexus).

  • wickets

    why do you say that jb isn't a huge evolution?  You should give credit where credit is due.  I've only been using it for 2 days but i never want to see 4.0.4 evah again.  jb is brilliant from start to finish.....the damn thing understands what I'm saying!!  even I dont know that 99% of the time

    • http://twitter.com/redbullcat Phil Oakley

      Because the OS level did not change much. Hence why it's 4.1. It's in the same release cycle as ICS in that respect.

  • Andrew Riis

    Even if it was just project butter, it would still be awesome, finally no more lag on my nexus s (I hope)

  • aaronratner

    I really didn't think JB was going to be a big deal but boy was in wrong. Excellent work by Google. A week ago I said it wouldn't be that important. Now I'm running to flash it.

  • http://twitter.com/NokiaKnowings Kevin Everett

    I was kind of expecting more out of Google on this one...Project butter was long over due.  Android ICS lagged compared to WP and iOS even though the Android phone had TWICE the processing power.
    Notifications are better but they are still one step away in the pull down menu instead of on the home screen where you can read it. 
    Google Now was the only real feature that was "new" even that was just another step placed on top of programs like WP "Local Scout".
    However it will get rid of the lag on my Note I will take it as a win.

    • Darkbotic

      Notifications in the home screen is a stupidly invasive idea. No thanks.

    • squiddy20

      "Notifications are better but they are still one step away in the pull down menu instead of on the home screen where you can read it." 
      I hope you're not meaning like the notification method that was used pre-iOS 5, where it would display a horribly obtrusive notification blob on top of whatever you were doing. And if you want (some) info on your homescreen, use a widget. Done.

      • http://twitter.com/NokiaKnowings Kevin Everett

         Honestly I switch back and forth between a HTC Titan II and Samsung Note while I love the openness of the Note after having all my notifications right in front of me as soon as I open it up on my WP it's just annoying to have to swipe down the notification bar to get the information that's all.

        • PhilNelwyn

          That's precisely what widgets are for...
          On your WP, how do you receive notifications while reading a book or a website, or while writing a text or an email? Do you have to go back to the home screen?

          • http://twitter.com/NokiaKnowings Kevin Everett

            Toast notifications..you can either tap to go directly to them, ignore and they go away on their own, or simply swipe them away

          • PhilNelwyn

            Oh, ok.
            So it's basically the same, you have informations on the homescreen and notifications.
            The difference being that, on Android, the widgets are not always added to the homescreen when you get your phone, you may have to do it yourself.
            At least you can chose the widgets you prefer, but I understand that one could be annoyed by the extra steps it requires.

          • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com/ Cody Toombs

            @PhilNelwyn:disqus WP7 still has an apps list that is synonymous with the App Drawer, that's where all apps go when first installed (except for games, they install to separate list in the XBox Live "hub"). If you decide you want to put something on the Home screen, it just requires a long press followed by tapping a menu option. In many ways, it follows the same pattern used in Android. The Live Tiles are only active if the user places them on the home screen (or the app can place 'secondary' tiles when it's running), those are the only things that act like widgets. It all works pretty well, and they are actually quite nice to use once you get used to them and figure out the intended workflow.

            Regarding Toast notifications in WP7...I think they kinda suck. They are functionally identical to notifications in Android, but they aren't really persistent (no way to get them back once they clear, kinda like iOS was before 5.0). At least they are non-blocking, unlike iOS where they interrupted the application you were in. Like everything else, WP7 did a good job of making their implementation better than the worst implementation, but not as good as the best :)

          • http://twitter.com/NokiaKnowings Kevin Everett

            Live tiles are very useful....It's hard to explain to people. The 1st thing you need to do is give up a little bit of control to use a WP. This is why I have an Android (very Symbian like). After about a week you get into the WP groove and you need live tiles.
            Just like people didn't need microwaves when they first came out. (They had toaster ovens.) But after having the microwave for a little they would never live without it because it was quicker. Same thing with WP if they could just let ppl demo them for a month they would sell a lot more of them. I remember HATING mine for the first week, but by week 3 I was loving it.

            That being said once butter hits my note it's going to be a toss up on what phone I take with me everyday. I love that phone.

        • Ian Santopietro

          It's nice that they never, ever get in your way. And despite that they're hidden, I still find that (by and large), WP7 notifications are pretty dull. I can pull down the drawer and see not only the number of unread emails, but the sender subject and (now) start of the body of a bunch of emails. WP7 only gives me a number. Knowing the number is nice, but it's still useless if I don't know if the emails I haven't read are important.

  • http://twitter.com/rohanXm Rohan Mathur

    Its a tweaked version of ICS. What isn't to like?
    No really, though, its not like Google would introduce a new UI, they need to stick to the one in ICS for a while (and I hope they do)

  • Level380

    Oh joy..... 32 apple users read this blog post so far :)

  • ebonyks

    JB has some nice upgrades associated with it, but google missed the two things I was looking for most in android. 

    The first is complicated, but android needs something similar to what webos had with synergy. It blows my mind that 3 years after webos was unveiled, that no one else has been able to effectively implement the idea of a universal inbox. Google talk, voice, as well as SMS, facebook, and a handful of other services should all be wrapped together in a single app. 

    Secondly is a much smaller complaint. The JB keyboard split layout functionality. Anyone who types on a 10" tablet knows what I speak of well. 

    The rest of the updates look great, particularly project butter, but google has me still wanting more, even after this update. It makes me more excited for the release of KLP.

    • LewisSD

      and thus begins the cycle all over again haha I am always waiting and wondering what will be included in the next release too. It is a little early to be dropping KLP though, IMO. I just want to enjoy JB for the time being.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1350934546 Hendrick Equis M

    minor but great improvement. simple enough that it shouldnt take long to transfer into the skins. no need for mayor changes google did the right thing on this one and made a smart move to stay ahead of the competition with out disappointing fans or ruining the experience 

  • Dunner87

    Google definitely made much more significant improvements than a Apple did with iOS 6. iOS had been so stagnant compared to Android, and it's really starting to show. Google Now actually looks MUCH more functional and useful than Siri, which is still largely a gimmick.

    • Chiper_tss_tss

      What's that you ask, Am I a gimmick? Just one moment. Do you want me to pull up a search? Mean while. Google search, yes that bitch a gimmick...lol

      • Chiper_tss_tss

        Don't know why Google search sounds like a sistar...lol

        • TrianglesFTL

          what are you talking about?

          • Browntown412

            Hah, I understood. Siri confirms everything with you before doing anything, while google will just give you your answer.

  • Kat

    I was initially disappointed that there wasn't more but it's only a point one, after all. If it had been a full 5.0 jump, I'd have been crushed.

  • archercc

    Hell yes. Its a lot of improvements for just a .1 update.

  • RolandDeschain17

    UI smoothness is the one thing I've wanted to see most from Android since its inception. This looks to solve that issue. Definitely a thumbs up for me.

  • Chiper_tss_tss

    Off line speech to text is something I'm looking forward to... My spelling is atrocious... And I'm constantly using it to spell shit for me... Other then that, I'm loving me some jelly beans... :)

  • Jaymoon

    Jelly Bean has finally made my Galaxy Nexus as fast as my Epic 4G Touch (S2)!

    Love the notification bar too!

  • Ribbed for her pleasure.

    I'm waiting for biscuits and gravy android.

    • http://www.facebook.com/lucyparanormal Daniel Tiberius

      Project KY

  • Michael

    Very happy with the improvements, but I feel like they could have done more. There wasn't much more in the way of new features, just improvements. If we want to be better than Apple. We need NEW features!

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

    How are Live Wallpapers running on the GNex now?

    I played with store phones running 4.0.3 and some LWPs really brought the phone to its knees... 

    • Skillit

      I don't know what kind of store phone you played with in stores but a have never seen a Android device, even at lowest end, be brought down by a properly coded LWP.

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

        Well, "brought to its knees" was an obvious exaggeration. However some of the LWPs I tried (and they were 4+ star rated on Google Play, so I think they were coded well enough) did make scrolling through the homescreens really choppy. I could give some allowance for the fact that these were store phones so there was probably quite a bit of crap installed on them, but a quick Google search for "galaxy nexus live wallpaper lag" suggests this affects plenty of people's personal phones as well.

        I'm honestly surprised, though, about what you've say about the lowest end of Android phones. I must say the part about "properly coded" suggests you're being disingenuous...

      • tBs_Battousai

        I've got a GNex and the LWP's that ship on the device makes it lag like a bitch... 

    • Ian Santopietro

      Here's my test of all the defaults:

      Bubbles: Wallpaper itself was a bit stuttery, but the home screens remained fluid and smooth while scrolling between them and opening the app drawer.

      Holo Spiral: Smooth all around.

      Nexus: Same as with Bubbles.

      Phase Beam: Flawless in every way.

      Spectrum: Flawless.

      Water: Again, as with bubbles, but the wallpaper itself is really stuttery.

      It looks like the above problem wallpapers are all just not coded perfectly well. None of them affected the performance of the phone itself at all.

      Keep in mind that I'm on a Galaxy Nexus, so your results may vary with less powerful handsets.

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

        So was there an improvement over ICS?

  • Aldrick

    Looking forward to JB. Hopefully, Samsung gets it pushed the the SGNote ASAP. It will definitely get me back into the fold of stock ROMs and an unrooted phone, at least for a while, until the custom roms and kernels come out.

  • Nigelsvw

    Should be a 'hell yes' button.

  • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com/ Cody Toombs

    From the sense of the core operating system, I don't think the changes were too big (other than bringing framerates up to par with Windows Phone and iOS).  On the surface level features, I think it was huge.  A lot of the new features will be fundamental to the future of Android and will set a completely new bar for what people expect from their devices in the future.  This version is a very big deal.

  • Doan

    I'm specifically happy about Project: Butter.

  • Alm0s

    Haha, I wonder what the results would be if iPhone users were asked if they were happy with the improvements in iOS 6. :D

    Nah, Google I/O seriously outdone WWDC this year. :)

    • SebaKL

      Hey, come on. Great improvements. Map, call filter, animation of shredded credit card, customized wallaper, ringtone.... 

      • PhilNelwyn

        But, to be fair, they already had their project butter and their assistant.

  • Spydie

    Kinda early to be taking a poll before anyone has had a chance to actually use it! LOL  I hate grey, would like to see more blue or other colors and get away from the 'apple' look (everything is grey on apple computers)

  • http://twitter.com/anucool360 Anukool Karvir

    The improvements in JB are quiet good... But this is just an incremental update rather than a revolutionary update. Few things need to be improved in android. And that needs to be done very urgently.

    The case for comparison is Youtube. On a 2g connection

    I ran same song on an iPhone 3gs and a samsung galaxy S (Cyanogen 9) and a Motorola Defy. All on same network.

    Youtube on iPhone 3gs started almost immediately.
    While on SG S and Defy were trying to connect for a long time. There was no buffering on iPhone. and the song went very smoothly. And on Android phones It was taking age to buffer. There is heavy connectivity issues on android and which need to be sorted.

    • Ian Santopietro

      Maybe just those phones? I've never seen any issues with that.

  • http://twitter.com/anucool360 Anukool Karvir

    One thing i noticed on JB was... default colours look faded. ICS wallpapers look more colourful and lively. JB looks kind of ... dull.

  • Albin Hermansson

    Well according to me, JB was freaking AWESOME! I mean, this was supposed to be like a bug-fix with maybe one new feauture but Google Now + Project Butter = Me happy
    Can't wait for Key Lime Pie and a new nexus device this autumn!

    • http://www.facebook.com/lucyparanormal Daniel Tiberius

      Do we think KLP is coming this fall? I'm sure a new Nexus or 3 but I think they'll be sticking with Jelly Bean for now.

  • alex

    One important thing is still missing - global support for the Play strore!

    Nexus 7 and Q will bomb outside its reach.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=636165701 Zaeem Shahzad

    Project Butter is amazing! :D

  • http://twitter.com/anucool360 Anukool Karvir

     There will be no new devices till next year... JB is akin to FroYo. Its an step up.. more like refinement update. Still awesome.

  • http://twitter.com/kokotron kokotron

    Despite the fact that very few people have actually seen Jelly Bean changes in action, I have one thing to say; haters gonna hate

  • Stephen

    I voted "Yes", but I wanted to vote "No" and the reason being I want multi-user support to be brought to Tablets. This would have been a killer feature if Jelly Bean had dropped this onto us at Google I/O and leaves the door open for Apple to be take the glory, although it might not be in Apple's interest to provide such functionality either.

    • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com/ Cody Toombs

      Apple won't do that.  As it is, they've slowly been working to hide that feature away in Mac OS, I doubt they will rush to bring it forward on the iPad.  Also, it's logistically unfeasible to do on an iPad because of the limited disk space and how the signing process works on apps.  In order to make it work on an iPad, they would have to make pretty substantial changes to their security model and trash the existing DRM system which signs all of the apps and much of the media to a specific iTunes account.  Also, it's impractical for Apple to do based on their business model, they want everybody in the family to buy a personal iPad.

      Android can do this more realistically because apps (including paid apps, until Jellybean) weren't signed or encrypted for a specific account.  In a sense, Android already (minimally) supports multiple accounts within the store and services, it just doesn't offer a concept of account profiles (with personal storage space, alternate customization settings, and differentiated launcher/home screens).

      The winner of this race is clearly Microsoft.  Windows 8 has this functionality baked in right from the start.

    • Ian Santopietro

      It's definitely not a killer feature. Many people don't use multiple user accounts on their laptops, and tablets are even more personal than that. I could see a "Guest mode" function that could hide access to apps, prevent installation and removal of others, and maybe provide temporary access to a second Google account. Beyond that, there just isn't a need for more than one profile beyond what third-party apps already provide.

  • tBs_Battousai

    Ask me once it's on my phone next month, or is this going to be yet another case of July for the US and six months later for the rest of the world??
     I'm still waiting for ICS on my Xoom here in the UK and I'm quite sure it's now Q3... I am starting to get arsed off with US companies just sticking a middle finger up to the rest of the world...

    • http://www.facebook.com/Shad0wguy Chris Jutting

      They do it to us as well, not just the rest of the world.

  • tBs_Battousai

    On a side note, could you do a "where are you" poll as I'd love to see a geographical breakdown of where your readers are from...

    Please "Like" if you agree...

    • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com/ Cody Toombs

      To be fair, that information would be FAR more accurate and faster by just grabbing it from Google Analytics.  Many visitors don't answer polls, especially for something that isn't likely to interest them very much.

      Normally, I'd hate to see that information become publicized, just because it will inevitably lead to some very vocal people yelling about how other countries are getting screwed by the dirty United States companies that just don't care about the rest of the world cause they are just so great and wonderful and think they can do no wrong and they treat everybody else like....  Well, you get the idea, we've seen it before.  I admit though, considering how redundantly vocal some of them are, I'm curious just how 'minority' they are.

  • John Hoffman

    Jelly Bean is nice but I am dissapointed i was really hopping for more.

    • Ian Santopietro

      Wait till you use Google Now. It'll change your mind.

  • andrew__des_moines

    JB is revolutionary on the inside the way ICS was revolutionary on the outside.  Next, I would like to see Google focus on growing and improving the core apps.  The Android phone should have extensive capabilities out of the box without the need for downloading lots of apps or OEM skins.

  • http://profiles.google.com/nicholas.foote Nicholas Foote

    While I agree that it's not a big enough change to be 5.0, it seems like only calling it 4.1 doesn't do it justice...

  • Brianreed

    Yes it runs buttery smooth...

  • http://brgulker.wordpress.com/ brgulker

    Project butter is the thing I am excited about. I love ICS on my Gnex, but there is still some lag now and again.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=635525837 Mitchell Mellin

    My RAZR just got ICS will I even see JB!!! I hope so!!!

  • http://www.thatgamerhub.com/author/moofey Adam Advocaat

    For me it all comes down to how it performs on my Nexus S. I've been having quite the performance issues on my phone since upgrading it to ICS.

  • http://www.facebook.com/nonione Claudio Meardi

    got it on my nex since day one and i gotta say this is JB is bugless ICS, its too damn great

  • Jon Garrett

    Im only just now getting ICS on my GS2 how the hell am I supposed to know if Im pleased or not with JB !!

  • TemplarGFX

    I only just got the ICS update to my HTC Sensation. It was only released this week. Yay for the JB update and all, but geez, how about standardising your OS before releasing new versions. Android 5 will be out before I get a whiff of 4

  • Pundie

    Would have liked to see the cool blue color stay (or at least let us choose a color scheme)

  • Hans

    I've had JB on my vzw GN for a couple days. Definitely way less lag. Love the new notifications and the ability to turn some off. Google Now isn't Siri, but it has potential to be much much better. So far it is very useful. It just needs more integrated voice commands.
    Overall a very good update. Less lag and Google Now alone make it great, but the notifications really make it an excellent OS. Considering it isn't a major update, it packs a lot.

  • http://www.jeffkibuule.com Jeff Kibuule

    The OS itself is fine, but looking at apps that don't follow Android 4.x+ guidelines makes me want to both vomit and scream.

  • RolandDeschain17

    UI fluidity was the one huge thing Android was lacking. There are no other white elephants in the room, now.

  • RolandDeschain17

    UI fluidity was the one huge thing Android was lacking. There are no other white elephants in the room, now.