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Why you don't need the Marshmallow update

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A new Android version? Whatever. Times have changed. Our smartphones no longer need the operating system’s latest version. Here are some reasons why it's not absolutely necessary to use the newest version of Android.

AndroidPIT marshmallow 0385
Will I ever get Marshmallow? / © ANDROIDPIT

In March 2016, according to Google, only 2.3 percent of all Android smartphones were running Marshmallow, the latest version. However, more than 34 percent of devices ran KitKat and up to 35 percent ran Android 5.0 a.k.a. Lollipop. That's more than 97 percent of devices running older versions. What are the consequences of this? Absolutely none. There, I said it.

At the same time every year a new version of Android appears, and seems to be installed on fewer devices each time. I can still remember the way it was back in 2013. I could not wait to finally install Android KitKat on my Galaxy S4. I almost squealed with excitement. I also remember the discussions between AndroidPIT readers on who had received KitKat and who were still waiting.

Those still waiting looked online for instructions on how they could update their phones with KitKat custom ROMs. Expectations of network operators to push out the update as soon as possible was incredibly high.

Back to the year 2016. I own a Sony Z3+ running Android 5.0 Lollipop. My expectations that Marshmallow will come to my device? Zero. If it doesn’t come, it won’t mean the end of the world for me. But I know others feel the same way. Why? Here are the reasons:

1. Resignation

We have learned our lesson. The manufacturers of our smartphones created the device we bought, yet perhaps they will decide to not upgrade us to the latest version of Android. Marshmallow will not simply drop from the sky.

androidpit Kitkat vs Marshmallow
Who cares about Marshmallow? / © ANDROIDPIT

We know that only a selection of Android users - such as owners of Motorola devices - will regularly receive new versions. Or we buy a new smartphone to get upgraded, which will probably not happen. That’s because our devices work. Why should we bother about something we can’t get anyway?

2. Differences between Android versions are minimal

The latest versions of Android often bring small, incremental changes. Both the design and the usability KitKat peaked. Following versions brought only minor performance improvements or design changes. Our devices work quite well without them.

My expectations that I'll received Marshmallow? Zero

Although Marshmallow brings improved power-saving features, and with the exception of Nexus devices, changes to other devices are not so noticeable.

3. Our phones already do everything

Let’s assume you bought your last smartphone in 2014, or perhaps 2015. It’s probably running KitKat or Lollipop along with 1.5 GB or 2 GB of RAM. And the OS runs on it perfectly. An update is actually not so necessary.

motorola moto g 2015 lollipop
Lollipop is the most widely-used version of Android. / © ANDROIDPIT

The quality standards of smartphone manufacturers work means our devices have fewer issues than ever before. If there’s a slight shortcoming, such as with the software, you could just install a different launcher. It’s not like iOS, where users who install each new version run into more problems than solutions.

What is your opinion on getting Marshmallow? Can you wait to get a new Android version or do you not care? Let us know in the comments.

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Kike Santamaría

Kike Santamaría
Head of Content

Kike works as Chief Editor for the spanish AndroidPIT. He studied Media & Communication in Madrid, where he also lived and worked during 10 years. He loves horror and science fiction films and you can ask him about almost any tv series. Chucky is the love of his life.

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  • 1
    Edward Antonio Feb 23, 2017 Link to comment

    ONE BIG, BIG difference is that when Im playing my videos with Lollipop, I can magnify the screen and have a close up view of what Im watching up to 4 times bigger. I dont know if that's a feature of my lollipop smartphone but I'm extremely disappointed with my new marshmallow phone, I cant do that or simply IT WONT! Or is there any app to install so my marshmallow phone can do the same? Thanks! I need reactions, please....

  • Teddor58 2
    Teddor58 Nov 10, 2016 Link to comment

    I have two BLU phones and they both came with marshmallow installed, so I put a 64g sd card in both and SUPER I now have 68g's of internal storage on both phones, so I read somewhere that marshmallow is comming for Samsung Galaxy Tab A, GREAT, I have one, it has 16g's of internal storage and I have a 32g sd card in it. I was able to put about 1/3 of an app and almost all the data on my sd card, so along comes the PUSH from Samsung for marshmallow, with NO big warnings at the very beginning of the push and after all I already have it on two phones and it works great. WHAT NOBODY IS TELLING ANYBODY IS THAT MARSHMALLOW DOES NOT WORK THE SAME ON A TABLET AS IT DOES ON A PHONE, EVEN THOUGH EVERY OTHER PAST "OS" WAS THE SAME ON A TABLET AS IT WAS ON A PHONE. YOU CAN NOT PUT ANYTHING EXCEPT MEDIA ON A SD CARD IN A TABLET AND YOU CAN NOT GO BACK TO LOLLIPOP, SO MY TABLET IS NOW ONLY HALF AS GOOD AS IT WAS WHEN I FIRST BOUGHT IT. i FIND THIS TO BE EXTREMELY SLEAZY ON SAMSUNG'S BEHALF, NOT MUCH DIFFERENCE THEN MICROSOFT PUSHING WINDOWS AND NOT TELLING ANYONE THAT THERE WAS NO LONGER A MEDIA CENTER., AND I JUST GOT'S TO SAY "I'M PISSED"!!!!!!! Ted Doherty (

    Update, you can go back to lollipop, just go to Samsung get the 5.02 lollipop firmware and flash it with Odin. NOBODY at Samsung and NOBODY at best buy (Geek Squad) will tell you this they will just tell you it can't be done. I SAY Fxxx Yxx Samsung and Geek Squad

    • Ken Cordle 1
      Ken Cordle Jan 2, 2017 Link to comment

      Not really sophisticated on this stuff. On a tablet for my wife looking at a 16 GB cuz it has marshmallow or 32 GB with lollipop. Are you saying on a tablet you like lollipop better? If so why? Thanks.

    • Jules 1
      Jules Feb 12, 2017 Link to comment

      Hi Tedder.
      Would you mind clarifying something for me? I have a 16gb samsung TAB A running Marshmellow and have put a 128 sd card into it and am disappointed as I have run out storage even though I have saved what I can to sd card ~ pictures, music and videos, although a copy of these seem do also the remain on the device which avoids the object. If I were to purchase another tablet with lollipo would this be more beneficial when is comes to saving onto sd card and like what? Thank you for you advice in some matter, jules

  • BraveFoxx 1
    BraveFoxx Oct 18, 2016 Link to comment

    Honestly I like the marshmallow fixes with the KitKat design

  • 1
    Solar May 26, 2016 Link to comment

    After a groundwork, if I think the new OS will be really helpful and it will run without any flaw on my target hardware and existing software, then I will do. Otherwise nope.

  • 1
    Glenn smooth Apr 30, 2016 Link to comment

    Marshmellow is a horrible update. It will make Android Auto useless, spell check while texting is all screwed up, and many people get their contacts scrambled and unusable. I want to go back to lollipop!!!!

  • Alex 17
    Alex Apr 26, 2016 Link to comment

    I think Lollipop works great for me!!

  • CJ Brown 29
    CJ Brown Apr 24, 2016 Link to comment

    I have accepted the fact a stable version of Android OS Lollipop 5.2 is what I will have unless ZTE decides to upgrade the OS to Marshmallow 6.01 - which is available on their latest devices (mine is barely a year old, if ZTE offered a trade in? I would take it)

    I have no idea if Android OS N(o name yet) will be this giant leap from OS Lollipop ... I just like everyone else it's a wait-and-see ;-)

  • 10
    Edward Amarille Apr 17, 2016 Link to comment

    Don't downplay the biggest weakness on Android systems.

    I agree, feature wise, most updates are probably not necessary, but bug fixes and security are important. There honestly is no reason why every Android shouldn't all be updated.

    I think it is wrong to tell Android consumers that it is OK to buy a new phone and NOT expect any updates for it. The "disposable" mentality that this creates in consumers is the wrong message to throw out there, and Android OEMs bank on it. We should be pushing OEMs to put more focus on creating exceptional products that will be supported for at least 2-3 years.

    Carmelo Rivera

  • rob blac 4
    rob blac Apr 15, 2016 Link to comment

    Totally unnecessary to update. They were designed for the OS version it came with, so often times more problems are introduced than solved. Many apps will malfunction. We get too captivated by newness and the greener-grass syndrome. As we get maturer and more experience as a culture these hypes will eventually fade. I actually regret updating my LG V10 to MM. I wish i be a way to permanently reject such updates. If it ain't broke don't fix it.

    India MeccaCraig Duffield

    • 10
      Edward Amarille Apr 17, 2016 Link to comment

      "We get too captivated by newness and the greener-grass syndrome."

      And that is what OEMs are counting on. By slapping together a half-baked upgrade that they know will cause issues, they have garaunteed that their newest phone with a proper working updated OS will sell.

      India MeccaBrianW

    • Carmelo Rivera 20
      Carmelo Rivera Apr 17, 2016 Link to comment

      Mostly likely your opinion stems from a bad experience with your LG V10, but you do have an interesting point. A lot of updates are rushed and/or not well optimized, therefore wreaking havoc on devices.

      Craig Duffield

  • 28
    itprolonden Apr 14, 2016 Link to comment

    It works well on my Nexus.....

    • Teddor58 2
      Teddor58 Nov 10, 2016 Link to comment

      That's what it was made for !!!

  • 1
    Barbara Ludwig Apr 14, 2016 Link to comment

    Ever since (inadvertently) installing Marshmallow on Galaxy S6 Edge, I cannot make voice calls on WhatsApp: shortly after connecting, the message "Reconnecting" appears - permanently. Subsequent WA calls to the same number don't even appear on the recipient's phone and on mine shows "Calling".
    Voice calls via Skype display the message "No internet connection", while every other app (e.g. Facebook, email) connects to the internet without problems.
    Am currently using an old Galaxy S3 running Android 4.3 and WhatsApp 2.16.13 to make voice calls - works perfectly.

  • 5
    Rich D Apr 13, 2016 Link to comment

    I have the galaxy s7 but I still couldn't agree more with this article. I've never owned a device that ran better after an update. In fact battery life and snappyness usually takes a small hit. With the exception of small bug fix upgrades the one that came on your phone is the one usually best for it.

  • 7
    jack pollard Apr 13, 2016 Link to comment

    This article is the reason I buy Nexus devices and root it immediately. That way I'm not beholden to the cell monoliths that could care less about me keeping my phone because it gets better every time its updated (usually). Wouldn't the carriers have a vested interest in NOT updating? You want the next version, well you can certainly wait and wait and wait or you can buy the new xyz and give us your money.
    I've been on M since the day the factory images came out and may even try the N beta.

  • 12
    lianne john Apr 13, 2016 Link to comment

    Something to think about:(

  • 16
    Viktor jovanović v. Apr 13, 2016 Link to comment

    I have started with Kitekat, and than upgradet on Lolipop and since october last year i'm on Marchmallow. with every upgrated there were some bugs, buth my opinion is, that every upgrated is worth.

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