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Samsung Galaxy S4 Android update news

Update: Unstable Marshmallow ROM available

The Galaxy S4 has received the Android 5.0.1 Lollipop update in a number of territories, although T-Mobile users in the US are still awaiting Android 5.0. Meanwhile the Android 5.1 update is already making headlines. Find out all of the latest Galaxy S4 Android update news, including whether it will get Android 6.0 Marshmallow, below. 

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Updates by carrier

Galaxy S4

Android 5.0 Android 5.0.1 Android 5.0.2 Android 5.1 Android 5.1.1 Android M
Verizon   Yes        
T-Mobile ​Pending          
AT&T Yes        
Sprint Yes        
US Cellular Yes          
androidpit samsung galaxy s4 hero 7
The sun still hasn't set on the good old Galaxy S4. / © ANDROIDPIT

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Galaxy S4 Android Marshmallow update

The Samsung Galaxy S4 Android Marshmallow update is not yet available. Android Marshmallow is launching globally and the Samsung Galaxy S4 seems highly unlikely to receive it, but we'll update this section when we find out more.

A custom Marshmallow ROM has made its way to the Samsung Galaxy S4 via the XDA Developers forum. The ROM is based on CyanogenMOD 13, is highly unstable, and comes with a warning that it might eat your cat, so beware. It will also not receive any updates. It might be fun to try out if you're into custom ROMs, but casual users should probably steer clear.

Galaxy S4 Android 5.1.1 custom ROMs

There are currently no official public plans for the Galaxy S4 Android 5.1.1 update, but it has appeared for the Galaxy S4 in the form of custom ROMs on XDA Developers.

Bliss Pop is a super popular custom ROM that is chock full of customization options. It's based on the even more popular CM12.1 ROM from CyanogenMod, taking that base and adding even more features.

There's one other good Android 5.1.1 ROM worth checking out on XDA Developers. The popular Resurrection Remix ROM has also been released for the international Galaxy S4 (GT-I9500). Alongside the usual Android 5.1.1 updates, the ROM also brings some gesture controls, LED density changer and theme chooser.

S4 Active LED
Some Lollipop ROMs for the Galaxy S4 have a LED density changer. / © ANDROIDPIT

Galaxy S4 Android 5.1 Lollipop update

The Android 5.1 Lollipop update is now available for Samsung Galaxy S4 Google Play Edition handsets. Though the update is currently rolling out over-the-air, you can flash it yourself with the OTA Zip file found here.  

Android 5.1 is yet to appear any other version of the S4, but some publications are claiming insiders have confirmed that it will receive it, even though the it wasn't approved for the S4 Mini. Will the standard Galaxy S4 get the official Android 5.1 update? The jury's still out. 

androidpit samsung galaxy s4 hero 8
The Galaxy S4 might soon have Android 5.1. / © ANDROIDPIT

Galaxy S4 Android 5.0 Lollipop update

To check your Galaxy S4 for the Android 5.0 update, go to Settings > About Device > Software Update > Check for Updates. Or jump to the manual install instructions at the bottom of this article (for Samsung Kies and Odin). If you experience any problems with the Galaxy S4 update, visit our guide on how to fix Galaxy S4 Lollipop problems.

US Cellular Galaxy S4 Android update

US Cellular pushed the Galaxy S4 Android 5.0 Lollipop update in mid-July, bringing the US Cellular Galaxy S4 to baseband version TYUGOE2. The changelog provided for the update just listed the usual Android Lollipop features, such as Material Design, lock screen notifications, Smart Lock options and more. 

Verizon Galaxy S4 Android update

Verizon updated its Galaxy S4 support page to announce the arrival of Android 5.0.1 at the end of April. The three-page document outlines the changes that the updated software (version LRX22C.I545VRUGOC1) brought to the Verizon Galaxy S4, including Material Design, lock screen notifications and the new recent apps menu. 

AT&T Galaxy S4 Android update

The AT&T Galaxy S4 Android 5.0.1 Lollipop update began rolling out on April 7 via an OTA update. The changelog for the AT&T Galaxy S4 update mentions the usual changes.

Sprint Galaxy S4 Android update

In early May, Sprint released the Lollipop update for its branded Galaxy S4 Spark LTE devices to baseband version L720TVPUCOD1 and the 'regular' Sprint Galaxy S4 to version L720VPUGOD2. Visit Sprint's Galaxy S4 community page if you have any questions about the update.

T-Mobile Galaxy S4 Android update

The T-Mobile Galaxy S4 Android 5.0 Lollipop update has not been released yet. As soon as the T-Mobile Galaxy S4 update is available we'll update this article.

galaxy s4 6
What version of Android is your Galaxy S4 on? / © ANDROIDPIT

How to install Android Lollipop on the Galaxy S4 manually

If you have an international unlocked Galaxy S4, it is possible to flash the firmware manually as soon as the first international, non carrier-branded firmware appears. Keep an eye on the Sam Mobile firmware page for the GT-I9500 or GT-I9505 (LTE) and either update via Samsung Kies or Odin. 

How to update Galaxy S4 to Android Lollipop with Kies

The easiest way to install the update is by using Samsung Kies. Just download the latest version of Samsung Kies on your computer and connect your Galaxy S4 with a USB cable.

Kies should notify you when there is an update available. Simply follow the steps. If Kies doesn't let you update your firmware, even though you know a new Android version is available, you can flash it manually using Odin. Here's how to do that.

android lollipops teaser
You can get Android 5.0.1 Lollipop on the Galaxy S4 right now.© ANDROIDPIT

How to install Android Lollipop on Galaxy S4 with Odin

Before you manually install firmware with Odin, it is essential you identify your particular model number. Go to Settings > About Device and find your model number. Then, when you download the firmware, make sure you match the model number to the firmware. 

Attempting to flash the wrong firmware (for example, unlocked firmware on a carrier-branded S4 or vice versa) may cause problems so we don't advise it. As always, manually tinkering with your device has risks involved. Please be aware of them before proceeding.

Prerequisites

Odin v309 blank
This is Odin v3.09: note the ID:COM and AP boxes. © AndroidPIT

Install Lollipop on Galaxy S4 instructions

1. Unzip the downloaded firmware zip file on your computer.

2. Launch Odin.

3. Reboot your Galaxy S4 in download mode (Volume Down + Power + Home button).

4. Connect your Galaxy S4 via USB cable to your computer and wait for Odin to recognize it (a blue box should appear next to ID:COM).

5. Make sure only Auto-Reboot and F.Reset Time are checked in Odin.

6. Make sure Re-Partition IS NOT CHECKED.

7. Click the AP button and locate the tar.md5 file in the unzipped firmware file and hit Start.

8. Wait patiently until the procedure ends and do not disconnect your S4. It may take a while.

9. You should see a green PASS message when successful.

10. Once your Galaxy S4 restarts, you should be running Android Lollipop.

Restore any backed up data and if you get stuck in a bootloop or encounter some buggy behavior, reboot your S4 in Fastboot (press and hold Volume up + Power + Home) and use the volume keys to navigate and Power button to access Recovery Mode. You wan to clear cache partition and then reboot.

If you have any major bugs at startup, do a factory reset on your Galaxy S4 from Recovery Mode and then restore your data again.

What version of Android is your Galaxy S4 running? Let us know in the comments.

Readers' favorite comments

  • Dave Schaub May 1, 2015

    The update has:
    1) Significantly slowed my phone down.
    2) The delete button for e-mails is relocated, annoying.
    3) Close all applications....takes forever.
    4) All my favorites lost on internet.
    5) All new color and themes, which I didn't want.

  • Kathryn Taylor Apr 29, 2015

    Hate the new update. Why the change, don't fix what isn't broken. Can we go back?

  • Sam May 11, 2015

    Can someone please tell me how to get rid of this stupid update? Deleted my calendar events, colors are horrible, it's slow, changed they way my chrome functions. It's awful! Please fix this.

  • Jordan Aguilar May 9, 2015

    Today I downloaded the update for my Galaxy S4. I have this to say. "Fuck you whomever thought that this was a good idea."

  • Corrie Docherty Apr 24, 2015

    I don't understand what exactly they were trying to do with this update. I don't mind the visual updates as much as other people but even doing basic things is confusing and there's no way to get them explained. You can't switch music from the lock screen and people can now see your password if you put it in quickly. I can't switch my phone to vibrate any more either. you actually have to change everything in the settings and even then you only have the option for sound or silent mode. Is there any way to uninstall the update? it's complete rubbish all round. It's also fucked up my voicemail which is pretty important for getting shifts at work.

376 comments

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  • Wow. I had no idea something so bad could come of updating. I wasn't able to update for so long due to no internet. But I finally did a couple days ago and it's been nothing but a nightmare since! I really should have looked for reviews on this. But I figured google has never done me wrong.. Until this pile of crap. Every widget is unusable, it freeze a lot and it looks terrible. I have been looking all over the place trying to find fixes and such. Alls I find are problems from all sorts of users and very few solutions. I honestly can't believe this update has been out this long! Considering the amount of negative reviews I think they should release an optional patch that downgrades... I can't use this thing for anything anymore. It's quite infuriating! I might just have to buy a windows phone or something. I hate this pile of crap that much. I have never hated anything from s2 - s4 until this...

  • I hate everything about the new update. Now it is constantly making me restart my phone because the "SIM card is being removed." and also my touch key buttons at the bottom dont work anymore. So i have to use that stupid square to go back from screen to screen. It's all annoying. I tried factory reset to see if that would work... nope. it's all stupid and i hate it. why fix something if it aint broke? ugh.

  • You forgot to mention the amazing JFLTE-GPE 5.1 Custom ROM by Devth which is not based on awful CM which is so unstable and eats battery life. Search for this ROM at XDA forum, you won't regret it. Here some features, between so much more:
    Stock kernel
    Rooted
    Busybox
    External SD permissions for app's added
    Worldwide APNs
    Long press recents
    Lockscreen carrier label alignment fixed
    USB debugging notification disabled
    Tethering unlocked for most carriers
    Nexus UI sounds
    SuperSU integrated into Settings

  • im still stuck on the 4.4.2 version :( i dont know why

  • hi i am using a samsung galaxy s4.... i have the problem with the battery.....once its fully charged after removing from the chrager within a hour without doing anything(mobile data off....gps off...screen brightness fully dim)it losses 10%of the battery.....is it a normal thing.... ? please can u help me...?

  • Kelson242 8 months ago Link to comment

    im about to buy a samsung galaxy s4 i545 verizon gsm unlocked and i would like to know the best way to update it to lollipop

  • I hate the interfaz! Its horrible! Its agh! I hate there... i would like change these horribles colors... how i change it?..

  • I am still stuck on the 4.3 android version for my galaxy s4

  • I was avoiding the lollipop os upgrade for my s4....and I wish I would have avoided it longer it sucks big time and makes me want to throw my samsung in front of a train! !!!! This new update is going to make me dump samsung and look into a non android phone. So again thanks for nothing!

  • Skip Flem 10 months ago Link to comment

    I had GOOD luck 'unlocking' my S4 with 'a Polish Key', then using KingRoot. However, this took four days
    that I couldn't use the phone. And they weren't a GOOD four days... Now everything is TIP-TOP with CM12.1

  • D G 10 months ago Link to comment

    I have Lollipop on my Verizon S4 but unfortunately Verizon has locked the bootloader. I am wondering if root will ever be possible. I have read of people using Kingroot and I have tried it. Frankly I'm glad it didn't work as I don't trust it. Any thoughts or ideas?

  • my Samsung s4 model is GT i9515. how can I update into lollipop

  • Cricket hasn't said anything about Lollipop on the S4 so does that mean they're not gonna release it or we're gonna have to wait a little bit longer?

  • Is the update out for theT mobile galaxy s4 i got 4.4 in it now

  • Your above chart is inaccurate. I have a Sprint Samsung Galaxy S4 (non-spark) it's been on 5.0.1 for months now. Not stuck in 5.0

  • kidsdadam 11 months ago Link to comment

    Been running 5.0.1 on Verizon Galaxy S4 I545 for a while now with no problems. Completed my 2 year contract and was about to upgrade to a Note5 but holding off yet. With Lollipop update running well, cleaned out unnecessary apps and files, got a new battery, changed to a new solid feeling case (good deals on accessories for older models), downloaded a pure black wallpaper. S4 feels, looks, and runs like new. I think I'm still going to hold onto my S4 yet for a while longer.

  • Still waiting on the lollipop for galaxy S4 by Metro Pcs

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