Nearly two years ago, Samsung unveiled what would become one of the most iconic Android handsets of all time, and its powerhouse smartphone for the year: the Galaxy S II. This follow-up to the original Galaxy S brought the goods in a major way, further increasing Samsung's undeniable presence in the Android world. And now the company is updating it to Jelly Bean (Android 4.1.2).

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Owners of the unlocked international version of the handset in Spain should be receiving the update now – either over-the-air or through Samsung's Kies software – which brings an absolute slew of new things to the device, according to SamMobile. For starters, the entire UI should now match that of the GSII's older brother, the GSIII, as the new Nature UX is part of the OTA. Combine that with things like Direct Call, Smart Stay, the pop-up floating video player, and improved TouchWiz widgets, and you have all the makings of a really fantastic update for a two-year-old handset. And all that's on top of things like Project Butter and Google Now that come stock in Jelly Bean.

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Of course, the update is rolling out in phases beginning with Spain, so don't panic if you can't pull it right now. Other areas should follow soon.


Cameron Summerson
Cameron is a self-made geek, Android enthusiast, horror movie fanatic, musician, and cyclist. When he's not pounding keys here at AP, you can find him spending time with his wife and kids, plucking away on the 6-string, spinning on the streets, or watching The Texas Chainsaw Massacre on repeat.

  • TylerChappell

    Ah that's nice to see the GS2 still getting love. Now where is JellyBean for the GalaxyTab 10.1?

  • deltatux

    Still waiting for TELUS/Koodo Mobile to roll out the Galaxy S II X upgrade. My mom has the device and it'll be great if she can get it. It's slated for next month but I wouldn't hold my breath when carriers are testing their devices lol.

  • eaad

    Ok I was already ready to begin the hating, but seriously, they even updated the UI?

    Would be better if it wasnt that much skinned, but hey, thats some serious effort!

    The GS2 was hell of a device when it was released.. like the first android that was just fluid and fast and a beauty..

    • RajivSK

      And it still is. I think I may even prefer it to the S3. The S3 has the better screen but overall I wouldn't want to trade. The performance improvement is hardly noticeable and it looks way too feminine for my tastes.

      Jelly bean makes it feel new again and will definitely get me through the last couple of months left on my contract. Looking forward to what Sammy will do with number four. If they don't fuck it up I will be returning a satisfied customer.

  • Noteuser

    Waiting for the same to happen on original. Note! Hope to hear soon...

    • Jaime Larios

      There is a beta for 4.1 and it brings multi Window. You should try it.

  • Sean Lumly

    This is seriously impressive considering the timeline. I have much more faith in Samsung supporting their devices because of this move.

    • Tee

      But why not straight to 4.2? This seems like a goner to me.

      • hot_spare

        What exactly are the enhancements in 4.2 at system level? Photo sphere, keyboard, aren't exactly too critical. There might be other apps available. multi-user is tablet only for now.

        notifications might be an area for improvement. miracast isn't exactly too important either.

        • Adrian Meredith

          Theres a long list of system improvements, actually they further improved the ui performance for example allowing some soc's (nexus 10) use GPGPU (opencl like stuff). Theres also a load of things related to running on multiple displays simultaneously (not sure this is used anywhere yet, expect this to be bigger news come android 5.0). Also even more audio latency/API improvements

      • http://www.facebook.com/Elrando.the.Wonderhorse Matthew Gardner

        Because 4.2 isn't quite as stable or quick as 4.1. My Gnex has a nice bunch of new features on 4.2 but performance on 4.1 was flawless.

        • mateusbatera

          Agreed! 4.2 is terrible in the Gnex, performance-wise. I reverted back to CM10 4.1.2, and I can assure you I don't miss any of the new features from 4.2 (which are not many anyway).

      • NicholasMicallef

        Because they started working on releasing 4.1.2 for the SII before 4.2 was out. Also the improvements of 4.2 over 4.1 are very minor especially considering some features, such as the new lockscreen, quick settings and camera app won't be used. Finally, this is probably the last update this phone will receive officially, so Samsung will never start working on a 4.2 update for the S II.

  • fixxmyhead

    Lol at HTC fanboys. Where are the updates for a 2yr old htc flagship phone?

    • Davy Jones

      Not to disagree about HTC's lack of support, but 4.1 came out in July last year when this phone was little over a year old. It is only a "2 year old" phone now because Samsung took so long to release this update. My point is just that the update situation is terrible everywhere, even if Samsung is doing better than most of its competitors.

  • priomas

    woo.. now i can make my mind which phone to upgrade next month. I have lost my faith in HTC though I have to admit that I was tempted by their butterfly (DNA) and upcoming M7. My current Desire HD, super flag ship of 2010, has been stuck with gingerbread and I had to rely on Go launcher to hide its laggy sense UI.

  • DarkRain

    In what universe is a younger phone an older brother?

    • http://www.facebook.com/sebastian.kaczor.9 Sebastian Kaczor

      They probably meant bigger brother, no biggie move on

  • Funem

    Have they removed the moove to SD option

  • p123

    Anyone tried this rom? Is this firmware include a wave lock feature which is on GT-I9300?

  • Mikey_H

    Updated to this from 4.0.4, it's ok but there is a noticeable amount of lag at times, which gives the feel of it being unresponsive. I'm just about to disable all the Samsung apps and it should run fine. When the lag stops the transitions are smooth and everything is working great.

    The task bar is now grey, GREY! why Samsung did this is beyond me, you have a great oled screen what can show perfect blacks and they change silly things like this to grey. (it goes black when you pull down the notifications, madness!)

    I used mobile odin to flash the .tar and it updated the OS without repartitioning or wiping any memory, so all apps work retaining all their info just like a normal Sammy update.

    I'm in the UK so this Spanish update worked just fine without messing around with CSC. T-mobile usually drag their feet issuing updates so this is a nice thing to start a Wednesday with :)

    Just need to see if the battery life improves....

    • http://www.facebook.com/xethor Tarun Pemmaraju

      When you look a full screen content, you can see that the status bar area has less wear than the rest of the screen. If you have an old phone, it is extremely visible. They grey probably makes the screen show wear evenly.

  • http://www.facebook.com/sebastian.kaczor.9 Sebastian Kaczor

    I'd like to know if they patched Exynos mishap

  • http://www.mantrais.com/ Steve Schmidt

    This is really good move by Samsung to increase the trust in his Galaxy line of smartphones. GS2 is really old phone and samsung still updating it to new version will help Samsung to gain trust of users.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=704684647 Steve Carr

    Download the UK/Spain ROM and flashed my phone using Odin. Smooth as silk, easy upgrade, and finally, after many, many months, KIES now again recognizes my phone as having a valid, upgradeable ROM. I'm in New Zealand, but this ROM just worked! Only thing I lost in the update was my Bluetooth device connection profiles, but that's not a big deal at all.

  • VGS

    Does it has multi window function?

  • atwitsend

    Wife got her gti9100 updated here in Germany. Completly changed all her home screens and put her gmail on the generic email app on the phone, needless to say she's not to happy. My gti9100 didn't get upgraded, and dreading having to fix everything once it does.