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.
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.