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Android updates for Samsung Galaxy A series: the complete list

Update: Galaxy A3 (2016) is now getting Nougat

Samsung launched the Galaxy A (Alpha) series in in mid 2014 as a mid-range counterpart to its immensely successful Samsung Galaxy S series. While the Galaxy A series has firmly positioned itself as a strong contender in the mid range market, many of its devices are still running behind in terms of Android updates. Here's an overview of the current status on Android updates for the Galaxy A series, and we'll update these as soon as we about any further information becomes available. The latest news is that the Galaxy A3 (2016) is now getting Nougat.

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Samsung Galaxy A3 Samsung Galaxy A5 Samsung Galaxy A7
Samsung Galaxy A8 Samsung Galaxy A9  

Samsung Galaxy A3 Android Update

  Android Kitkat Android Lollipop Android Marshmallow Android Nougat Android O
Samsung Galaxy A3 Yes Yes Yes (6.0.1) Planned Q2 2017 TBA
Samsung Galaxy A3 Duos Yes Yes (5.0.2) No No No
Samsung Galaxy A3 2016 - Yes (5.1.1) Yes (6.0.1) Yes (7.0) TBA
Samsung Galaxy A3 2017 - - Yes (6.0.1) Planned Q2 2017 TBA

The Samsung Galaxy A3 was first released into the mid-range market way back in early 2015. Samsung had a long tradition of pushing its "Mini" series of devices, but with the launch of the Galaxy S6, a mini version was noticeably absent. Instead, the Galaxy A3 entered with market the slogan, "A is the new mini." So, it's position as the successor to the Mini was pretty clear. 

Since then we've seen four versions of the Galaxy A3 released, and with each upgrade the design and specs have been tweaked and improved. While the Galaxy A3 Duos appears to have been left behind - the last update it received was Android 5.0.2 Lollipop - the remaining three versions of the A3 are on track to receive the Android Nougat update before the end of Q2 2017. The A3 (2017) has popped up on GFXBench running Nougat, so it's safe to assume it's being tested and will roll out soon. The A3 (2016) has started receiving the update to Android 7.0 Nougat over the air in Europe with firmware version A310FXXU3CQE6, according to SamMobile. Those in other regions can expect it to arrive soon.

Samsung Galaxy A5 Android Update

  Android Kitkat Android Lollipop Android Marshmallow Android Nougat Android O
Samsung Galaxy A5 Yes Yes Yes (6.0.1) Planned Q2 2017 TBA
Samsung Galaxy A5 Duos Yes Yes (5.0.2) No No No
Samsung Galaxy A5 2016 - Yes (5.1.1) Yes (6.0.1) Yes (7.0) TBA
Samsung Galaxy A5 2017 - - Yes (6.0.1) Planned Q2 2017 TBA

First announced in October 2014,  the Samsung Galaxy A5 was the middle child between the Galaxy A3 and Galaxy A7. The Galaxy A5 was the first Samsung device to feature an aluminium unibody. Featuring a 5-inch super AMOLED display, and clearly borrowing from the design of the Galaxy Note 4, it was also Samsung's thinnest smartphone at the time.

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The second update of the Galaxy A5 saw a shift in design, swapping out the back for a glass panel, and moving the speakers to the bottom of the phone. The Duos version of the device doesn't seem to be receiving any updates past Android Lollipop, whereas all other Galaxy A5 variants are set to receive an update to Android Nougat towards the second half of 2017. 

The Galaxy A5 (2016) is already receiving Android 7.0 Nougat in Russia, with the firmware version A510FXXU4CQDK, and now in India. The update reportedly came OTA for the A510F, but you can expect it to be available for manual download soon.

Samsung Galaxy A7 Android Update

  Android Kitkat Android Lollipop Android Marshmallow Android Nougat Android O
Samsung Galaxy A7 Yes Yes (5.0.2) No Planned Q2 2017 TBA
Samsung Galaxy A7 Duos Yes No No No No
Samsung Galaxy A7 2016 - Yes (5.1.1) Yes (6.0.1) Yes (7.0) TBA
Samsung Galaxy A7 2017 - - Yes (6.0.1) Planned Q2 2017 TBA

The Samsung Galaxy A7 was the largest smartphone of the A series when it went on sale in early 2015. Featuring a 5,5-inch super AMOLED display, it still ran under the slogan "A is the new mini."  For reasons only known to Samsung, initially the A7 wasn't available for sale in the US, as the company decided to focus on the South East Asian market instead.

That said, the Galaxy A7 was eventually released into the US market. Despite being a mid-range device, the latest Galaxy A7 model features a fingerprint sensor, a USB type-c port and an 1.9 GHz octa-core processor.  As with the A3 Duos and A5 Duos, it seems highly unlikely that the Galaxy A7 Duos will receive any further updates beyond Android Lollipop. Samsung Turkey released a list of planned updates, and both the Galaxy A7 and Galaxy A7 (2016) were in line to receive Android Nougat in Q2 2017. It seems only natural that the Galaxy A7 (2017) will receive the latest Android update as well. 

Along with Nougat for the A5 (2016), the A7 (2016) is receiving the update in India now as well. It weighs in at about 970 MB.

Samsung Galaxy A8 Android Update

  Android Kitkat Android Lollipop Android Marshmallow Android Nougat Android O
Samsung Galaxy A8 - Yes (5.1.1) Yes (6.0) Planned Q2 2017 TBA
Samsung Galaxy A8 Duos - Yes (5.1) Yes (6.0) TBA TBA
Samsung Galaxy A8 2016 - - Yes (6.0.1) Planned Q2 2017 TBA

The first Samsung Galaxy A8 was unveiled in July 2015 with an event in China. Squarely positioning itself as a mid-range phablet, the Galaxy A8 stood out on its release as it was noticeably thinner (5.9 mm) than the previously released A models. As is typical for the A series, the Galaxy A8 came with a fairly decent 16 MP front and 5 MP back camera, a 3,050 mAh battery and as usual a super AMOLED display.

The Samsung Galaxy A8 was not intended for the US or European markets, so at first it was only released for Asian and African consumers. All three current Galaxy A8 devices have received an update to Android Marshmallow. Samsung Turkey shared an update list in early 2017, showing that two Galaxy A8s will receive an update to Android Nougat in Q2 2017 - though it wasn't clear if the A8 Duos will also be included. 

Samsung Galaxy A9 Android Update

  Android Kitkat Android Lollipop Android Marshmallow Android Nougat Android O
Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) - Yes (5.1.1) Yes (6.0.1) TBA TBA
Samsung Galaxy A9 Pro (2016) - - Yes (6.0.1) TBA TBA

The Samsung Galaxy A9 and the Galaxy A9 Pro were both presented in December 2015 and were officially only released for the Chinese and Hong Kong S.A.R markets. The only real difference between the Galaxy A9 and A9 Pro is that the Pro version has 4 GB of ram instead of 3 GB and has a 5,000 mAh battery instead of 4,000 mAh.

While the Galaxy A9 was released with Lollipop, the A9 Pro was launched with Android Marshmallow. Both devices are currently running Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow with no word of any Android Nougat updates planned. 

What do you think of the Samsung Galaxy A series? Do you think it's in the company's interests to continue updating A series devices? Let us know in the comments below.

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