Samsung Galaxy S2 ICS update frustrating SIM-free owners

Samsung says it's "working hard" to update SIM free S2 owners -- and thanks you for your "patience".

Natasha Lomas Mobile Phones Editor, CNET UK
Natasha Lomas is the Mobile Phones Editor for CNET UK, where she writes reviews, news and features. Previously she was Senior Reporter at Silicon.com, covering mobile technology in the business sphere. She's been covering tech online since 2005.
Natasha Lomas
3 min read

Some Galaxy S2 owners who shelled out to buy their device SIM-free -- often in the hopes of being at the front of the Android update queue -- are still waiting to get the official update to Ice Cream Sandwich, which Samsung started rolling out on Monday.

Samsung has provided us with this update statement: "Samsung UK is working hard to bring Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) to our Galaxy S II customers. We are unable to confirm exact dates as the software testing and approval process is subject to several variables, but we are working as quickly as we can. Thank you for your patience."

The company did not respond to a request for details of how many UK SIM-free S2 owners have been updated to ICS so far. It was also unable to tell us when the rollout to UK S2 users not locked to a mobile network would be completed. Samsung's original statement about the update only specified a start date -- "the week commencing 19 March" -- which has led to a lot of confusion among SIM-free S2 owners.

Several CNET UK readers have complained they still can't see any ICS update when they connect their S2 to Samsung's phone management software Kies. "Just checked for update via Kies again and as of 13:22 it's still saying no update available, and that I have the latest firmware," said one reader posting a comment today.

"I am a SIM-free owner. Bought my phone through affordable mobiles with contract on Three but still no update, I have checked every day but I am now getting bored," wrote another.

Many S2 owners are especially angry that mobile network Three has been able to rollout the ICS update, seemingly before Samsung itself has rolled it out to all the UK's SIM-free S2 owners.

"It's Friday 23rd March and SIM free users of the Samsung Galaxy S II (SGSII) are still waiting for the official ICS release," said another CNET reader who contacted me directly. "Three UK branded phones have already received the update, which means they've had time to get it from Samsung make their modifications and release it. This makes it seem ludicrous that Samsung cannot get a release out to un-branded phones, especially when some people could have spent ~£500 upfront in order to get their hands on such a device.

"If the problem is that there is bugs in the software and Samsung are wanting to hold fire for a while then why don't they just announce that to everyone? Communication is the key here, I'm sure people would rather hear that they're having to delay it due to bugs that have cropped up rather than just having to second guess what is going on," he added.

Many readers have also complained that Samsung has not given a more specific timeframe for when they should expect the release.

"It is pathetic to see there is no news on update for unlocked SGS2, Samsung could have at least released a statement. Do they not care about customers who bought the phone outside a contract of have an unlocked SGS2 from their network provider? What a shameful way to manage such a major update!" yelled one reader posting a comment.

"Samsung should not have announced the release if it did not plan to stick to it," railed another irate S2 owner.

Do you own a SIM-free S2 and have you managed to successfully upgrade it to ICS? Let us know in the comments below or post your ICS success on our Facebook wall.

If you'd like to see how we installed ICS on our Samsung Galaxy S2, watch this video:

Watch this: How to install ICS on Galaxy S2