Firmware Update For The Samsung Galaxy Tab

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Over the weekend, I successfully updated the firmware on my Samsung Galaxy Tab to the latest version. No, it’s not Android version 2.3 (Gingerbread). I know that’s what most Galaxy Tab owners are looking for. Unfortunately that’s not what I got.

It has to be said, though, that the update is a very welcomed one. As a matter of habit, every now and then I plug my Tablet to the computer and launch Samsung Kies just to see if an update was available for the Tab. On Sunday night, after connecting the Tab to my computer, I got a prompt notifying me that there was a firmware update available for my Tab. The prompt showed my firmware version before the update as PDA: JJ1/PHONE: JI4/CSC: JK3(ECT) and the latest version to update to as PDA: JMS/PHONE: JM2/CSC: JM5(ECT).

I clicked the update button and got the Tab updated to the latest version. After the tablet did a reboot, the first thing I noticed was that the general display of the Tab was cleaner and smoother. Colours used in the different built-in applications’ menu interface were made lighter which made it feel like I was interacting with a different device. Another aspect of the visual improvement that came with the update is seen in the on-screen QWERTY keyboard.

Photo00441

Beyond cosmetics, the update brought additional functionality to the Tab. I immediately noticed that a calculator application came with the update. You see, the Tab didn’t originally come with a calculator (an omission that didn’t make sense). Also, Social Hub was added to the feature list of the Galaxy Tab, but I am not sure anyone will use it much. It’s a pointless addition, in my opinion. The contact application got both a facelift and added functionality that reduces the number of steps it takes to make a call.

It would have been great though if this was implemented in all the applications. It takes too many steps to get anything done in Android, and that is what irritates me the most about the Android UI.

As I notice other changes brought by the update, I will definitely let you know. In the meantime, the Galaxy Tab feels different, though I would have loved to see Gingerbread right now instead.

25 comments

  1. You said, “It takes too many steps to get anything done in Android, and that is what irritates me the most about the Android UI.” Not my experience with LG Optimus One P500 (Android 2.2 Froyo). Maybe you will want to give instances relative to other platforms (probably touchscreens also).

  2. @Harry, what used to take me three steps to achieve on the Nokia 5800, now takes six steps to get done on the Samsung Galaxy Tab. In this case I am refering to changing the network mode either to 3G or GSM. This is just one of many examples I can give. Another example is shutting down the phone. On the Nokia 5800, two steps, on the Tab, three steps.

  3. On my phone, switching between 3G and GSM always takes 2 steps so long as the screen is not locked irrespective of whatever I might be doing at that point. swipe down from the notification bar and tap the icon. Same with WIFI, bluetooth, GPS and silent mode.

    Shutting down takes 3 steps alright and that I can understand because there are three items on the popup menu when you press the power button. shutting down is not a trivial operation and so the additional confirmation, just like when you select a delete operation.

    Now, assuming you’re in the middle of an operation like typing text message, how many steps would be required to turn on or off any of WIFI, bluetooth, GPS, 3G or silent mode on your Nokia 5800 Xpress Music phone. mine is still 2 steps for all of the above.

  4. @Dayo, what is the firmware version and Build number on your tab now? I’ve been trying to update my galaxy tab but it’s not been successful. Thanks.

  5. @Emmcy, the firmware version on my Galaxy Tab is 2.2, the build number is FROYO.JVJM5. If you require more information, I’d be more than pleased to make it available.

  6. Hi Dayo, I’m thinking of updating as well and would like to know please:

    how long did the whole process take?

    what was your download speed roughly?

    any idea of the size of this download?

    Thanks 🙂

  7. @Karmawa, the whole process took about twenty five minutes. I did the update early hours of the morning and the download speed was above 100kbps.
    The file size was not specified, but I suspect will be about 100MB.

  8. I want to upgrade my tab…please did you lose all your app,did you lose info on your internal sd card.

  9. Hello Dayo,

    I get this promt from Kies when i connect my Tab to the PC.

    New Firmware is available
    Upgrade your device to enhance its capabilities

    Current firmware version: PDA:JJ3 / PHONE:JID / CSC:JJ3 (CPW)
    Latest firmware version: PDA:JP9 / PHONE:JPZ / CSC:KP1 (CPW)

    but when u try updating it freezes when it reaches “Preparing firmware upgrade components” when the box pops up for hours.

    My firmware version is 2.2 and the Build number is FROYO.XWJJ3.

    Any help with this please?

  10. Abba,

    I think you should ensure that your Kies software is the latest one. That may be the reason it is freezing.

    Also, I advice you try the firmware during off peak period. Hope this helps.

  11. My Kies software is the latest

    Kies information

    Samsung Kies
    Version 2.0.2.11071_128

    When i click to upgrade it doesn’t get pass “Preparing firmware upgrade components” and the device disconnects from the Kies, then reconnects afterwards. My device is even slow now, since i tired to do the upgrade.

  12. Hi, I’m facing the same problem like Abba….

    When i connect my Tab to the PC and turn on the Kies, it says…

    New Firmware is available
    Upgrade your device to enhance its capabilities

    Current firmware version: PDA:JK3 / PHONE:JJ1 / CSC:JJ1 (INU)
    Latest firmware version: PDA:JPA / PHONE:JP4 / CSC:JPA (INU)

    but when I try updating, it freezes when it reaches “Preparing firmware upgrade components” and the box pops up for hours. The download gets completed much before and on time also. It took only 2-3 mins for the soenload to happen. So, i assume the speed is good enuf.

    My firmware version is 2.2 and the Build number is FROYO.DDJK3.

    My Kies software is the latest

    Kies information

    Samsung Kies
    Version 2.0.2.11071_128

    When i click to upgrade it doesn’t get past “Preparing firmware upgrade components” and the device disconnects from the Kies, then reconnects afterwards.

    Please help.

  13. hi guys I also faced the same problem trying the upgrade on windows 7 and vista but didn’t get any errors using win xp.

  14. Hey Karmawa,

    Thanks for the tip, it’s working with XP, just got a PC with windows XP OS, and its updating now, about 22% now, would tell you how it goes.

    Cheers.

  15. Hi Manish,

    Seem their is a problem updating with windows 7 & vista, karmawa just told me to try using XP, and its working, you should also try it aswell.

    Cheers…

  16. hi Abba,

    glad it worked out 🙂 we all need to try and find a solution for getting the upgrade to work via win7/vista though. will post anything I come across.

  17. Hello Guys,

    Any luck on a solution for upgrading GT1000 via Vista?

    I don’t have anyone close running XP.

    Thx

  18. Hi Guys,

    Just updated my Galaxy tab to Gingerbread(Android Version 2.3) for those who havent updated yet here’s a little info:

    – I tried(with a whole lot of checking up on the net) the update with both Vista and Win 7 and there was just no way and in the end had to use XP

    – update was smooth although took time as my connection was slow(those with a slow connection expect this to take around 7hrs or more)

    _ I wasnt expecting the update to be gingerbread but thats what I got 🙂 (I don’t know if this is because its a middle eastern region
    tab where Gingerbread has already been released??? ).

    Things I noticed with the update :

    – startup tone has changed.

    – interface (dont expect the upgrade to drastically change the “look”) is now darker with menu items having a darker shade of grey than before.

    – the battery, signal and connection type icons have changed

    – addition of the folowing apps (again these could be region specific):

    – calculator

    – Latitude

    – Places

    – Pulse

    – Sketch Memo

    – Social Hub

    – improved Active applications and RAM Manager now has only one button to clear memory.

    – Improved email app

    – Improved Contacts Tab

    All in all in looks there have been minor tweaks BUT I have noticed

    – a HUGE improvement in battery life (before this update i had my battery drain pretty fast and couldn’t get more than 6 hrs very active use this
    has gone to double that)

    – When watching a movie listening to music etc there are no stutters

    – the overall use of the tab is definitely smoother and more fluid

    these last three items alone are more than enough to get the upgrade to
    Gingerbread!

    would be happy to answer any questions you may have Enjoy your Tabs 🙂

  19. I forgot in addition there’s a much improved keyboard and selecting copying etc is less painful than before 🙂

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