MTK processors get slower Android updates. Here’s why

We are always excited, where there’s a new release of Android’s operating system. Of course the folks with the latest Nexus devices receive it first. It takes some time for the other manufacturers to modify the source code for their devices. We all know that the flagship models are the one to receive an update first. Mid-range smartphones are rarely updated to a new Android version and you can feel lucky, if your device is one of them. Usually there’s no after-sale software support fordevices with MTK chips. There’s a big chance, that your phone will stuck with the same software version. If your manufacturer promised you an update, then probably you should wait for a while before it reaches your phone. We can give you an idea why.

MTK processors

MTK-6589The Taiwanese processor manufacturer MediaTek is well-known for the cheap chipsets, which are used with most of the Asian (Chinese) smartphones. A smartphone with MTK processor was a synonym for a cheap device with average performance. This changed, especially with the newest 64-bit MTK chips. They deliver great value for money performance. It will not be exaggerated to say, that they are even better compared to 64-bit processors made by Qualcomm (the most popular mobile processor manufacturer at the moment). We actually see more and more companies using MTK chips for their low and mid-range devices (big names like Sony, LG and HTC). But anyway let’s put the performance aside and see why the updates tend to be delivered slower to smartphones with MTK processors.

There are two important components, which are needed for a software upgrade – the new operating system’s source code and the processor’s source code. That’s right, you need an access to the chip’s source code, otherwise you can’t be 100% sure, that your code will operate smooth with this processor. If you don’t have it, then you can’t build fully optimized operating system for this processor.

For some reason MediaTek doesn’t reveal the source code of its processors with their release. It is expected that the source code for the latest 64-processors will be revealed in June.

You can guess that, if you recently bought a Chinese smartphone with a promise for future Android 5.0 Lollipop update, then you should wait for a while. Perhaps in June/July most of the smartphones will receive Android 5.0 and we will see some devices with Android Lollipop out of the box. However, until then, all Android 5.0 versions will be made without access to the actual processor source code. Don’t be surprised, if there are some bugs or performance issues.

MediaTek official website

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