Samsung's Android 10 update is rolling out now, but Samsung is already testing Android 11 on the Galaxy S10+ at Geekbench.
Samsung testing Android 11 on Galaxy S10+, Geekbench shows
The Geekbench sighting shows Samsung testing a device with model number SM-G975F. That number refers to an unlocked device (ends with the letter "F"). The "G975" lettering and numbering refers to a Galaxy S device. Devices having the letter "N" refer to the Galaxy Note. Looking up the model number, one sees that it is indeed a reference to the Galaxy S10+. If readers recall, Samsung released three Galaxy S10 devices last year: Galaxy S10e, Galaxy S10, and Galaxy S10+. The Galaxy S10+ is the largest of the three models.
The Galaxy S10+ in testing is running Samsung's octa-core Exynos 9820 SoC. This refers to an international model, then, seeing that the Galaxy S10 series in the US runs Qualcomm's Snapdragon 855 SoC. This is another clue to the model in question. 7.4GB of RAM of available memory are in the Geekbench report, down from 8GB or 12GB of RAM pre-installed on the device. There is no clue into whether or not the device has 128GB, 512GB, or 1TB of RAM. The 1TB RAM model has 12GB of RAM, versus 8GB of RAM for the other S10+ models. The most conservative RAM estimate would, of course, be the 8GB RAM model.
Android 11= Android R
The operating system for the Geekbench test shows "Android R" in clear print, though this is merely a testing nameholder for what will likely become Android 11. The reason for this assumption pertains to Google's previous nomenclature for its operating system. There was a time when Google's Android nomenclature matched dessert names. Cupcake, Froyo, Gingerbread, Ice Cream Sandwich, Jelly Bean, KitKat, Marshmallow, etc., are some of the dessert names of previous Android system updates.
Android 10 last year put an end to the dessert naming scheme. Formerly called Android Q, Google renamed it Android 11 at the time of its release. Though Google didn't provide a reason behind the name change, one reason could be that Apple's OS upgrades bear a number each year (iOS 9 and iOS 10, for example). So with that said, if Android Q became Android 10 at its release, it's safe to assume Android R is a testing name for what will be Android 11 in the future.
Of course, Google can always surprise Android fans by reverting back to a dessert name for Android R. "Android Red Velvet" and "Android Rocky Road" are perfect names for Google's next sweet treat. And bringing back dessert names would make its sweet treat even sweeter.
Samsung testing Android R takes update record in opposite direction
Samsung's Android 10 update is making the rounds this week on US carriers Verizon and T-Mobile, and yet, in the midst of it, Android R is already in testing. It's a good sign for Samsung, who has not always had a good reputation in updating devices.
There's always been a frustration in Android with Google owning the keys to new updates and Samsung as Android's biggest OEM. One of Google's selling points for its Nexus and now Pixel devices has been day 1 update releases: that is, as soon as Google announces it, Nexus and now Pixel devices get the new system upgrade. Samsung and all other OEMs receive updates after Google delivers them to its devices. In the past, Samsung's update schedule put the company 6-8 months behind Google updates. Motorola once competed with Google in updates, and LG and other OEMs were often behind Samsung.
Samsung wasn't the worst Android OEM to update devices, but it was hardly ever the best. In the past, that is.
Samsung updates are faster today than ever. And yet, Samsung is like all other Android OEMs. All Android OEMs, like Google, must choose between fast updates and buggy updates. A day 1 update may please Android users but contain lots of bugs. On the other hand, an update that comes a few weeks later could be bug-free.
In either case, Samsung is doing an excellent job with Android updates. With Android R in testing, the Korean giant still plans on delivering fast updates to keep up with its recent track record. That's good news for those who prioritize fast updates in Android, though most Android users enjoy their devices as is — updates or not.