Updates on Android devices are about to get much smoother thanks to Qualcomm’s new mobile processors, as the San Diego-based chipmaker will allow GPU drivers to be updated through the Google Play Store.
The company shared this new approach during the unveiling of the Snapdragon 865 and 765 chipsets, revealing that the experience overall should be less intrusive for one simple reason: carriers would no longer be involved in the validation process before a specific update goes live.
The way driver updates are currently shipped to Android has caused much controversy already.
Basically, a new GPU driver first requires carrier approval before it’s published not in Google Play Store, but in the system update feature. As many know, carriers aren’t always very keen on validating updates as fast as possible, and this is why some devices get new drivers faster than others.
New system going live next year
Qualcomm’s new approach no longer involves carriers, so phone manufacturers themselves can test the GPU driver updates and then publish them in the Google Play store. It goes without saying that phone makers are now the ones responsible for how fast updates are delivered to their customers, so theoretically, things should move much quicker now.
Now the bad news. This new system won’t be available for older chipsets, but only for the two that Qualcomm released last week. The Snapdragon 865 will reportedly be the first to benefit from this approach, and the first devices running it should see daylight as soon as 2020.
On the other hand, we must be happy that things are moving in the right direction, and sooner or later, we should be getting updates much faster, partially thanks to Project Mainline, but also to the support that Google partners are showing for Android these days.
It’ll take a while for all these plans to go live, but on paper, the future looks good for Android updates.