Ice Cream Sandwich update hits Nexus, Xoom

Posted by Mike Luttrell

While more than 97% of Android devices still haven't received an Ice Cream Sandwich update, Google is already updating the few devices that are already running ICS.

The search giant is pushing out the latest version of Ice Cream Sandwich, also known as Android 4.0, to the Galaxy Nexus, which was the first phone to come with ICS pre-installed, as well as its brother, the Nexus S.

The update brings both phones to Android version 4.0.4, as this latest version of the mobile OS is already starting to get fragmented.

Less than 2% of all active Android devices are running version 4.0 or later, while manufacturers are forced to be conservative about when they expect to get their devices updated.

Also getting the 4.0.4 update is Motorola's Xoom tablet, which launched as the first LTE-compatible 4G tablet but failed to gain any kind of significant traction.

Ice Cream Sandwich is one of the biggest updates to Android yet, and includes such features as scanning your face to unlock the phone, a much more robust speech-to-text software program, and an entire platform of data sharing that focuses on Near Field Communication (NFC).

NFC so far has been mostly focused on using your phone as a payment device in retail stores, but with Ice Cream Sandwich's Android Beam, it can also allow users to easily share contact information, Youtube videos, or website addresses simply by waving two phones next to each other.

Several other manufacturers have pledged support for the new update, and a bunch of phones currently running an older version of Android will be eligible to upgrade to Ice Cream Sandwich beginning in the coming months.