Motorola finally released an estimated schedule for the Android 4.0 upgrade to be installed on many of its smartphones and tablets. Unfortunately, the news isn't good for those hoping for some tasty ice cream sandwich love this quarter. In fact, only a handful of devices will receive the update in 2Q12 and five devices in the following quarter. Over twenty smartphones and tablets are still stuck in the "evaluation and planning" phase (limbo), and awaiting a projected release date.
As Motorola indicates, upgrades go through four stages: evaluation and planning, development, testing, and the actual release. During the evaluation and planning stage, Motorola evaluates the benefits, technical issues and user experience of an upgrade. "Generally, we are not able to provide release dates in this stage," the company states. "There are also some cases in which we can state that an upgrade will happen but are not able to provide a release date. Please note that some products that enter the Evaluation and Planning phase may not complete the upgrade cycle."
Once the upgrade goes through development and testing, it must be approved by the carrier or local regulators. Typically this is when consumers actually notice that an OTA update is ready to install, but at times there's also a small testing group that will make sure everything is in order before the carrier unleashes the upgrade to the masses (Verizon, for example, does this). Otherwise, users can simply go into the Settings menu to see if a manual update is possible.
With that out of the way, here's Motorola's schedule thus far here in the States:
Motorola Xoom Wi-Fi only
Motorola Xoom Family Edition
Atrix 4G MB860
Motorola Xyboard 8.2
Motorola Xyboard 10.1
Undetermined (meaning it's too early to project a timeframe)
Droid Razr Maxx
Droid Xyboard 8.2
Droid Xyboard 10.1
Motorola Xoom Wi-Fi + 3G MZ600
Motorola also provides a schedule for Canada, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia-Pacific, Latin America and Mexico which can be viewed here.
"We know how excited you’ve been about getting the next stage of Ice Cream Sandwich updates for your Motorola devices," the company said in a blog. "Our engineers and designers are combing through the code and preparing it for you. We are pleased to provide more details to the ICS upgrades."
So far it seems that a majority of Motorola devices won't bite into Google's ice cream sandwich until later this year. Bummer, we know (sigh).