Galaxy Note 4 Android 5.1.1 Update - VZW FAIL
emlspencer
Enthusiast - Level 3

I am beyond irritated that as the flagship of exactly one year, Verizon continues to provide less than vague answers as to when we will be receiving this update.  I used to laugh at Sprint as a provider and swore that I'd never consider AT&T again as an option.  However, I have been awaiting Android 5.1.1 since June this year and have watched carries such as Spring and AT&T release 5.1.1 to their customers.  At this point, considering I pay about $125/month, I have been investigating other carriers and their service records and can honestly say, I am considering paying the fee to break my contract with Verizon to receive support and tech that keeps current.  In my estimation, Verizon should be offering credit to those of us that have been waiting months to receive this update to our [removed] devices which haven't worked properly since 5.0.1 was released.  I've been a customer with Verizon for 10+ years and can honestly say I have never been so disappointed with the service or lack thereof.   Get with it Verizon.  Stop treating your customers, whom are probably paying the highest bills based on the handset of their choice, like second rate piles of [removed].

I'm rather curious how much time and money was spent on Verizon creating their fancy new logo - perhaps the developers, designers and others on that team should have focused their energy on testing and releasing the update for their note 4 customers.

VERIZON FAIL!!!!!

[Removal required by the Verizon Wireless Terms of Service]

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Tidbits
Legend

6 months by the manufacturer on their own right before carrier involvement. Often you see Samsung for example spend 4-7 months to push out an update for their unlocked devices.

FYI HTC, Motorola, and Sony actually admitted multiple times carriers are not involved as much as the general public believes and they don't touch code like people believe.

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RandomKoreanGuy
Enthusiast - Level 3

Don't get me wrong, I don't actually put all that much faith in Samsung either. Regardless, we're all suffering here. My phone ran beautifully on 4.4.4, but terribly on 5.0.1 and it's taken me a while to tweak it to the point that it runs semi-reliably most of the day. (The battery life, though, is irreparably awful no matter what I do.) I do blame Samsung too, but Verizon doesn't get off with a free pass either. They have a known history of holding up updates for other phones, so they have no leg to stand on in claiming innocence. None of us have any reason to throw VZW a bone of good faith and fellowship, especially not in the name of throwing the responsibility squarely onto Samsung. I'll be the first to admit that this multi-layer system Android OS updates have to go through is bogus and convoluted, but other Samsung phones and even Notes from other carriers have the update, whereas we do not. So I point the finger at Verizon.

Tidbits
Legend

Perceived history remember what I said before.  People will blame them regardless if they are hands off or on.  You can't deny that.  That's where you are wrong when other carriers have their devices updated...  Go visit their forums and you will hear about it.  T-Mobile Note 4 doesn't have 5.1.1 either.  the S4 has not been updated since last year, and the S3 is 1 version below other S3's out there.  Sprint has a lot of problems with their updated devices and have somewhat taken the hands off approach(very little testing) and they are getting flack every day about how the update broke their devices and expects Sprint to replace or fix the problem.  They still have devices not updated yet as well.

The problem lies with the fact people don't see what happens AFTER the carrier gets the update to test.  If it fails it goes back to the manufacturer.  It will go back and forth until carriers are comfortable with the update.  Like I said they are in a catch 22.

See if you can find a copy of the AOSP project Google did with Sony(I used to have a copy, but I can't find it).  You'll find out on average carrier testing takes 1 month.  Around that same time Google went quiet about blaming carriers wholeheartedly too.  They also started to roll out a change on how they share their code and came out with a PDK to shorten the process to get updates quicker.  IF the process averaged 1 month then why is it being updated 3-4 months on average after Europe?  Doesn't that make you go hmm?

With the way the FCC rules are shaping out to be, and the way things are going away from subsidization.  People will get a rude awakening when they realize carriers was the least of the problems like they perceived.  Personally I would rather buy unlock and unbranded devices... Now if only they would make them with Verizon bands(Block C rules forces Verizon to accept them).

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RandomKoreanGuy
Enthusiast - Level 3

Again, I accept that Verizon isn't always the villain, but you can't really hold them up as blameless either. The reality always falls somewhere in the middle. But yeah, if I decide to stay with VZW, my next phone will probably be a Nexus 6P, which does supposedly work on their network. This handily solves most of my issues with both Samsung and Verizon delaying me from getting my precious updates (at whatever levels of involvement they share in those delays). I haven't personally purchased a subsidized phone since they stopped offering unlimited data (since paying full price is the only way to keep my unlimited plan). I mean, I could go on and on about Samsung and TouchWiz and how they clutter up Android with their proprietary nonsense, but this isn't the Samsung forum, it's the Verizon one. I have such mixed feelings about Samsung and their phones, but I really think the Nexus phones have finally improved enough that I can use the 6P in lieu of a Note 5 (or 6) without any remorse or feeling that I'm downgrading.

The Block C rules thing has been around for a while, but I feel like Verizon is only just now getting around to accepting it with this latest batch of phones. I've heard anecdotal stories of people who've been denied under the pretense that the phone has not yet been certified for VZW's network, even though it's equipped to run their bands, but it seems like that's all finally in the past now.

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Tidbits
Legend

It's not they have not been accepting them.  They can't accept them if manufacturers are not making them.  People have this assumption Verizon can block them or tell manufacturers they will block it which is furthest from the truth and is against block c rules.  There isn't even a need to be "certified" to work on Verizon.  Verizon even has to open source things like VoLTE, WiFi calling, and Video calling for example.  There hasn't been ANY device I am aware of that was out that didn't work on Verizon if it has all the bands.  What's most important is Band 13, CDMA, and then the rest of the network stuff in that order. 

You can blame that on Google when it comes to proprietary nonsense.  IF they made Android GPL over ASL we wouldn't have this problem, and it would have been easier to go to stock, but since ASL allows proprietary code stay proprietary that's what happens.

I have said this many times on many forums.  I wholeheartedly dislike Samsung, and they often lie about things.  The company I work for we have dealt with them on many occasions.  There are not the friendliest to work with.  Honestly LG is one of the best, and Motorola used to be good but management started to go bad then Google purchased them and then we were about to start a new contract with Motorola, then Lenovo happened and now we won't touch them with a 50ft pole...

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RandomKoreanGuy
Enthusiast - Level 3

Maybe it's a matter of who they speak to, but I've heard of instances where a Verizon sim (from a working phone) popped into the device will cause it to work, but they're denied a new sim to activate the device (for whatever reason), but again, this is stuff that happened a while ago, not recently, and it's all mostly anecdotal. It's clearly not that way anymore. VZW has thrown the proverbial gates wide open. 

Corporations do have personalities and unique cultures and totally believe that about Samsung, that they're not pleasant to work with. My cousin works for them and he has a Sony smartphone of all things. I've stuck with the Note series phones because they've generally been consistently high rated as far as Android phones go, but I feel like lately the drawbacks are starting to outweigh the positives, which is why I'll probably jump to something else next time. I've never been fond of TouchWiz anyway.

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Tidbits
Legend

Most reps don't understand and the policy for sim cards has always been activate in store  from what I have gathered. Probably to push sales. Honestly when I had the 6 from the play store(I was one of the first to get one) I walked in with it and had to get a new sim because my previous sim was larger. The guy was like "whoa dude you got one?" 2 minutes later activated and ready to go. He played with it and eventually got one himself.

It could be they simply didn't know how to activate the sim with an unauthorized device or still stuck on old policies without realizing they have changed.

I await the day I can carry 1 phone on all carriers we use at work(its complicated). I hate having to swap phones.

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RandomKoreanGuy
Enthusiast - Level 3

Yeah, I could believe that. Sometimes you even get different answers just by calling back again and getting a different rep, but such is how the dice lands with these things. (Especially when you have policy changes.)

Older corporations are, by nature, conservative and slow to change, but that day is coming, I'm sure. Google's Project Fi has made it a reality, albeit on the fringes for the moment. But basically the technology exists and it is possible to do it without having to have a multi-sim phone (like in international markets). I think Apple even had something similar, like a smart sim that can swap with a command from the OS (something to that effect), but the carriers obviously resisted and each carrier stripped the sim of features in their own way until it was essentially useless. The tech exists, though. It's just waiting for the carriers to be ready to accept it. I think Qualcomm supposedly created a chip capable of supporting nearly every band from almost every carrier, so it's theoretically possible to have a single phone variant that services every market.

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Tidbits
Legend

I just want to say... Apple does not do as they want. If you ever done ADC you will know carriers are involved in the process. When Apple finishes with one device they don't release it. They just give it a version bump to match unfinished devices. Once they are all finished they push it out all at once which gives you the idea they are timely.

elkhaven
Enthusiast - Level 1

Poor customer service, full price upgrades, highest cost plans, degrading coverage, and the slowest software releases. Remind me why I am a Verizon customer?

Toxicle
Enthusiast - Level 3

I keep asking myself that as well - the biggest issue is that they actually do have the best reception for where I live, which is hard to deal with in terms of considering to switch. Honestly, with all of the issues I've had, I'm constantly checking on my fi invite. I almost don't even care what I'll have to pay to get out of Verizon, with a plan half the price, with a phone that is easier to update, I'm just killing time until I switch.

Everyone has, at the very least, asked Verizon 'Give us an estimate of when', and they can't even do that. I'm sure internally they have a deadline, because I can't think of a whole lot of job fields where your boss says 'Hey, just get it done whenever, take your time!' - meaning, there has to be some sort of deadline for them, which would hopefully mean if they tried, could give us at least an idea of when we'd be getting the update after they had finished up. And of course, that's the minimum of what people want, seeing as how they're on pace to be the last to get the update out, we all just want the update.

I want to be happy with them, I really do, but other than the coverage I get where I live, there isn't a single quality, price, or software reason any sane person would stay with them. I'm so tired of paying the most for poor customer service with issues, no communication about anything, and the highest prices.

Ann154
Community Leader
Community Leader

They won't ever give you a deadline or due date when they expect an OS update is going to be released. It creates more liabilities if they give a date then if they don't.

I'm most definitely NOT a VZW employee. If a post answered your question, please mark it as the answer.

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Jhahn01
Contributor - Level 1

That would be just another promise they wouldn't fulfill.  Your right though, no news is better than bad news.

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hoboX10
Enthusiast - Level 2

I find it pathetic that some people actually try to defend Verizon here.


The reality is, if ANY carrier is capable of having 5.1.1 out by now for the Note 4, then there is no excuse for Verizon to have not done it first. They are the biggest carrier and have the most resources to keep their network and phones up to date. Their whole notion of "we test our software rigorously first" is completely debunked every time they release updates with issues and bugs like, ahem, our Note 4. Any anyone that tries yelling "B-B-BUT MINE WORKS SO PURFEKTLEEEEE" -stop. You are either very lucky, or too stupid to notice. Most of the Note 4 models (not just VZW) have issues. There were slightly modified versions of the phones released that fixed them. Most of us have the faulty device versions. 5.1.1 alleviated most of the issues people had on AT&T despite this however, so Verizon's PRIORITY should have been getting us this update ASAP to give me a freaking break from this headache of a device.

This whole thing is inexcusable and I will definitely being leaving Verizon after this. And Samsung for that matter. I'll be getting a Nexus device on either AT&T or T-mobile. And what's sad is Verizon's service is been slipping majorly in all the areas I frequent. I mean come on, having less coverage than T-mobile in major metropolitan areas... That just shouldn't happen. Pathetic.

Jhahn01
Contributor - Level 1

I went to the Samsung website and talked to a chat guy in India which did absolutely no good, I did find a place on the Samsung site to leave comments

Which version of the Android ™ platform does my Samsung Note ® 4 use?

If enough of us complain and say we are going away from Samsung, maybe they will twist Verizon's arm to release it...

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vzw_customer_support
Customer Service Rep

HoboX10, we would never want to see you leave the family. I understand your feelingsabout the issue at hand. We would like to let you know that we would like to turn things around and retain you for years to come. Please tell us more about your situation. We appreciate your feeback.
BobbyN_VZW
Follow us on Twitter @VZWSupport
If my response answered your question please click the �Correct Answer� button under my response. This ensures others can benefit from our conversation. Thanks in advance for your help with this!!

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emlspencer
Enthusiast - Level 3

Are you serious VZW?!?!?   Give us 5.1.1 and stop acting like ignorant morons.  You know what everyone's problems are.  I'm truly insulted at this stage that the only thing any of you support folks can offer is..... 'tell us what problems you have.'   'We don't want to lose you.'    'Look at our new plans for upgrading your device.' 

Why would anyone spend more money with a network that can do nothing better than beat around the bush and offer the same rhetoric we've been getting for the last 6 months???

VZW should truly be ashamed that they are being surpassed by what used to be inferior providers.

Miller6386
Contributor - Level 1

This is essentially a reply to everyone here and not meant to be a put down or picking on anyone.... We are all speculating on the reasoning behind NOT getting this update. With how close the release is to 6.0 perhaps VZW felt their resources would be better used being applied to devices that will not be getting 6.0 and getting them up to the newest available.

Being a business owner myself I have to sometimes look at what is the best option overall.. Granted it may not make everyone happy but sometimes it is the best option. Perhaps VZW had inside information that the Note 4 would receive 6.0 tentatively at the beginning of 2016 and felt it would be best not to "waste" time and resources on 5.1.1 when they can update to 6.0 just a short time later...

If this does happen then all of the nay-sayers who get 6.0 on the VZW Note 4 quickly will be happy.... Of course most of this could be all avoided with a site/thread for each VZW device where VERIZON can post updates and statuses on what is going on... I am not saying they have to post dates but I think that a HUGE portion of the threads across all devices could be avoided.

All we really want is to be informed of what is happening. The threads with the updates could be locked to VZW personnel only but still give us all the information we are asking for....

As for issues with the Note 4 YES I am in the same boat as all of you. The 5.0.1 update destroyed my phone... I have the inconvenience of having to carry an extra battery with me everyday in order to ensure I can get a days use. When the phone was new in the box I could get a day no problem..

I have done MULTIPLE factory resets and it is ok for a day or 2 but the issues always come back. No matter how few apps I install the battery drain and somewhat sluggish behavior returns... I used KIES and ODIN to install the firmware and neither helped... I still LOVE my Note 4 and will be stuck waiting for a solution as I am NOT giving up my removable battery and SD card to change phones... Just think of the nightmare I would have if I didn't have a removable battery in my Note 4 after the update LOL..... I understand VZW has many devices and they can't push updates to them all at once but I still think they could EASILY create a place to keep us updated... One would think that the "Community Forums" would be a GREAT place to keep us updated.

Ann154
Community Leader
Community Leader

Personally I think Samsung would be better off with allocating their resources to update the phones straight to 6.0 instead of finishing the 5.1.1 version and then starting all over again to write the 6.0 update. Verizon Wireless has nothing to do with updating the code. VZW only tests and certifies the completed update sent from Samsung.

I'm most definitely NOT a VZW employee. If a post answered your question, please mark it as the answer.

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Jhahn01
Contributor - Level 1

Normally I would agree with you if so many phone weren't by the 5.0.1 update that screwed up thousands of phones.  First they got to get those phone working properly before even thinking about 6.0.  If everyone with a broken phone would put their payment in escrow like when a renter has a problem, they would probably take action quicker.  No phone = no pay.  This is more than just an inconvenience, some have real issues holding and making communications they are paying for.

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DrewPittsburgh
Enthusiast - Level 2

I contacted customer support for help on this issue. They told me to call Samsung. I don't understand what that might do as other carriers have received, validated, and released their updates some time ago. This is just another example of why we all should get away from Verizon. I am on my way out. I would have accepted an Edge up to another device that is better supported but that was never offered.

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