UPDATE: the Galaxy S9 Android 9 Pie beta program is now live in the US, Europe, and Korea.
Samsung’s customer support has more or less confirmed that the Galaxy S9 Android 9 Pie beta program will kick off on November 15. SamMobile reached out to Samsung’s custom support, after which that date got confirmed, and if the info is accurate, you can expect it to kick off later today. The stable Android 9 Pie update for the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+ is expected to follow in January, after the beta version gets thoroughly tested by the company’s users aka beta testers. Now, Samsung will probably offer a limited number of slots for beta testers, as per usual, so if you’re interested in becoming a beta tester, you may want to stay alert throughout the day, as there’s no telling when will the company announced that you can apply in order to become a beta tester. It is worth noting that Samsung usually opens additional slots to beta testers after some time, though, so even if you miss the opportunity, you may get a second chance. In order to get enrolled, you will need to be logged in to your Samsung account with the Galaxy S9 or S9+, and use the Samsung Members app (Samsung+ in the US).
Background: The information regarding the launch date for GalaxyS9 Android 9 Pie beta program got confirmed by Germany’s Samsung customer support, but the same date will probably be valid for both South Korea and the US, we’ll find out later today. As far as the UK is concerned, it was confirmed recently that the November 20 will be the date when UK consumers will be able to enroll in the Galaxy S9 Android 9 Pie beta program. Samsung has been kicking off such beta programs for quite some time now, so the procedure is quite clear. The Galaxy S9 and S9+ were introduced back in February this year, during the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, and they are still the company’s flagship offerings, along with the Galaxy Note9, of course.
The Galaxy S9 and S9+ are almost identical in terms of the design, the only difference comes to their rear-facing cameras, as the Galaxy S9+ sports two cameras, while the Galaxy S9 comes with only one. The Galaxy S9 is also noticeably smaller than its sibling, as it sports a smaller display. Both devices are made out of metal, and both come in two CPU variants, in Europe, the Exynos 9810 fuels these two phones, while the Snapdragon 845 fuels them in the US and China. The Galaxy S9 and S9+ both ship with 4GB of RAM, while the two phones sport 5.8 and 6.2-inch displays, respectively. These two smartphones ship with Android 8.0 Oreo out of the box, with Samsung’s Experience UI included on top of it. The Galaxy S9 sports a single 12-megapixel camera on the back, while the Galaxy S9+ comes with two 12-megapixel cameras.
Impact: The Galaxy S9 and S9+ have been shipping with Android 8.0 Oreo ever since they launched, so the Android 9 Pie update is the first update for these two phones that brings more significant changes to the table. This update will not only bring some of stock Android 9 Pie features, but you’ll also get Samsung’s all-new navigation gestures. On top of that, the company’s recently-announced One UI will also be included, and it is quite different than Samsung’s Experience UI, as the whole philosophy behind One UI is to make things as accessible on the display as possible, so the bottom part of the display will be the “Action” area, while the upper part will be the “Viewing” area. Beta testers will have access to all that really soon, quite possibly later today.