The international version of the Samsung Galaxy S3 has only just been updated to Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean recently. While there was no doubt at all that Samsung’s 2012 flagship device would eventually be updated to Android 4.2, details on timelines for the official update were, and still are not confirmed. However, Sammobile – the unofficial source for everything Samsung has published a leaked build of Android 4.2.1 firmware for the SGS 3 which they report is still under testing at Samsung.
Sammobile states that Samsung would be releasing the official and final 4.2.1 update to the international SGS3 – GT-I9300 only after the launch of the Galaxy S4. Considering the launch date is still not officially confirmed as yet, details on when the official bump up to 4.2 would be pushed out are sketchy right now.
Sammobile got their hands on this leaked test build I9300XXUFMB3 thanks to XDA member Saturn who shared the dump files form his device. As to where he managed to get the dump is not known as yet, but Sammobile has been able to repackage the firmware into an ODIN flashable file for those impatient folks who can’t wait to try this out.
As for what kind of goodies Samsung has included with Android 4.2.1, here’s the list quoted from Sammobile:
New enhancements in I9300XXUFMB3 FW:
– Android 4.2.1 – JOP40D
– Improved Ripple effect on Lockscreen
– New Android 4.2.1 Lockscreen with widgets
– Daydream (Settings>Display)
– New Additions in Notification Center
– Notifications are more actionable
– Voice Command (Let’s you control various parts of the phone using voice commands)
And check out a couple of screenshots of the new firmware which show the Android 4.2 lockscreen widgets and the Quick Settings panel in action. To view the full screenshot gallery, you can head over to the Sammobile page linked above.
As you can see, the general look and feel is still more or less the same as the Nature UX that we are used to seeing on stock Samsung firmware for the SGS3.
I don’t have a GS3 to test this out myself, but feedback from Sammobile, who always test leaked firmware builds extensively before putting it out for public consumption seems to indicate that everything is working perfectly.
Keep in mind though that this is pre-release leak, and still not official. So if you do find the odd bug, do not be surprised. Having said that, an update to 4.2.1, provided it comes out soon enough, would make the GT-I9300 the first non-Nexus device to get the official update to Android 4.2.1. Well, this is as good as official. At least we know know, that Samsung has worked on it, and is close to releasing it.
Android Version: 4.2.1 – JOP40D (Jelly Bean)
Region: Middle East
Build Date: 19th February 2013
Manually Update your SGS3 to Android 4.2.1 with the Leaked I9300XXUFMB3 Firmware
- Backup all of your important data and media o your phone
- Download the I9300XXUFMB3 firmware zip file from the link above
- Extract the downloaded zip file to your desktop.
- Open the extracted folder from Step 2 and launch Odin 3.04
- On your PC, ensure that any Anti-Virus tools are disabled. Also make sure Samsung KIES is not running
- On your phone, got to Settings > Developer Options and enable USB Debugging
- Power off your phone and reboot it to Download mode by pressing and holding own the Vol Down + Home + Power buttons
- Connect your device to the PC. ODIN should show an Added!! message
- In ODIN, click the PDA button, and select the I9300XXUFMB3_I9300OJKFMB3_HOME.tar.md5 file from the firmware folder
- In ODIN, ensure that the Re-Partition box is left unticked. Leave everything else as it is
- Click the Start button to start flashing the new firmware to your device
- Once the firmware has been successfully flashed, your device will reboot automatically, and you will see a PASS!! message on the top left of the ODIN window. Disconnect your phone and let it boot up.
- Now power off your device and reboot to recovery by pressing and holding own the Vol Up + Home + Power buttons
- In recovery, scroll down to Wipe Data/Factory Reset and select it with the Power button. Confirm the wipe on the next screen.
- Once done, select Go Back > Reboot System Now to reboot into Android
Congratulations!! You are now running Android 4.2.1 on your Galaxy S3. Enjoy the latest version of the Android OS, and let us know how you like it in the comments section below.