Dec 16 AT 3:50 PM Dustin Earley 105 Comments

Android 4.0.3 becomes base version of ICS; not all apps ready to roll


Google has just announced an “incremental” update to Ice Cream Sandwich that will now serve as the base version of the OS. From this point forward, manufacturers looking to update their handsets to ICS will be doing so with Android 4.0.3. According to the Android Developers blog, 4.0.3 will be rolling out to production phones and tablets “in the weeks ahead.” While this is a good sign that manufacturers are just about ready to start rolling out updates, not all developers are ready for the jump.

The update to 4.0.3 isn’t exactly earth shattering compared to any other version of Android 4.0.x. There’s plenty of optimizations packed inside, as well as some big fixes, Bluetooth enhancements and graphic improvements. There’s also some new APIs for developers to play with that pertain to the camera, calendar and more. As badly as I’d like to see these changes brought to a device near me, there’s something else that needs to happen first. Developers need to make sure they update their apps to work with Ice Cream Sandwich.

Android 4 may have a relatively small user-base compared to previous builds, but that doesn’t mean app developers should postpone updating their apps until more people are using Ice Cream Sandwich. Of course some developers are ready for the update, but support issues for popular apps are more rampant then you think. We reached out to the followers of the Android and Me Twitter account to see what kinds of apps you’ve been having with trouble with, and which ones are working fine, on your shiny, new Galaxy Nexus.

  • Netflix: Netflix really needs no introduction, and fortunately, the app has been updated to work on ICS. Breathe easy streamers.
  • Dolphin Browser: Easily the most popular alternative browser for Android, ICS users are having trouble using Dolphin Browser.
  • OnLive: If you happen to use OnLive to get your gaming fix, you’re in luck. OnLive works on the Galaxy Nexus.
  • Facebook: Some users are reporting problems with Facebook. Considering it’s the most popular Android app on the Market, Zuck might want to get on that.
  • Light Flow: Light Flow gives users an added level of control over the LED notification light on their device. While most are saying it does indeed work on the Galaxy Nexus, there are some bugs that need to be smoothed out.
  • GTA 3: Probably one of the most popular games on Android at the moment, some users are reporting problems with the newly released game.
  • Swype: This is a big one. Swype has officially announced that their innovative replacement keyboard is not ready for ICS.
  • Adobe Flash: Adobe promised they’d update the abandoned Flash player to work with Ice Cream Sandwich, and sure enough, it was.

This is just a short list of the apps that do and don’t work with Ice Cream Sandwich and the Galaxy Nexus, so feel free to share any issues you’re having in the comments below. And developers, your users are waiting.

Source: Android Developers Blog

Dustin Earley: Tech enthusiast; avid gamer; all around jolly guy.

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  • redraider133

    And this is the reason I got a nexus. No more waiting months for bug fix updates.

    • desean

      Yeah, but the other point of the article is that apps got to update fast enough too :)

      • superusermode

        If the handset manufacturers were a little quicker on the updates, the app developers would follow suit, but there isn’t much point if the demand isn’t there. There are plenty of devices, like the Atrix 4G (which I have), that came out this year and still have no confirmation or commitment from the handset manufacturer to update to ICS. Some people are still stuck on Froyo, for instance those with the Atrix 4G in Latin America and Mexico.

        • Deepak Gupta

          The thing is, if handset manufacturers update their existing line up, people will see no reason to upgrade to their new line up.
          This can especially happen when the hardware is nearly the same as what was available a year ago.

          I am not saying I agree with what they do, but that’s how they like to run their business.

          • redraider133

            You would still get people to upgrade, look at the iphone people. Plus if they would quit making incremental updates every 2 months to hardware, they could make less phones and sell more of them making more profit and then less money needs to be spent on development for updates if you have 5 instead of 10 phones.

    • dacatalyst41

      I’m the poster boy for Nexus devices to all my friends. Why put yourself through the drama of freezes and hiccups due to bloatware and bureacracy! GIVE US, US FREE! lol

      • inviolable

        LOL the Amistad Nexus coming soon to a googler near you

  • Alexander drzfr3shboialex

    If only i had a GSM T-mobile Nexus :(. AlI can say is that ICS is the best android to date UI wise, and feature wise.

    • lxgeorge

      And that beautiful HD screen makes it all come together in fantastic harmony

    • MJM128

      I would gladly trade my sensation for one. :( Oh well, at least the modding community has our backs, right?

  • Wayne Winkler

    I’m a +1 on the facebook issue.

    I can open the app, but the moment I try to post a status or a photo I get a force close. I’ve reported the issue, hoping someone fixes this.

    Otherwise, I haven’t run into an issue with any other app.

    • fenixshaw

      While the facebook app has made major strides to being better functionality, I find myself using the mobile website more often to avoid the bugs I get in the app.

    • redraider133

      I do not have any force closes on the fb app.

    • Adnoxaei

      You may want to try uninstalling the facebook app and then downloading it again. I have the Nexus through Verizon and at the very least status posts works flawlessly for me :/ I dont use the app much, but it hasn’t FCed on me yet…

      • BillLee3

        Had the same problem, but deleted all apps on facebook site (in preferences) and it started working. Hasn’t quit through several different roms.

  • OnIn2

    Oh, I so want some Ice Cream Sandwich on my G2x

    • Homncruse

      I’d bet good money that CyanogenMod 9 will be ready for the device (in a minimum RC state) before LG even makes an announcement.

  • zyphbear

    While I’m really glad they are getting on with the updates and making sure everything is working as it should be, I’m now a little concerned that some Devs are not updating their apps.

    With more devices getting updated with ICS in the upcoming months, I shouldn’t have to worry that some apps will not work correctly yet. (Reverse of what I now have to deal with, which is my device not compatible due to not getting all the updates/not having current enough hardware.) I get a few bugs here and there, but I really hope they aren’t major and that the issues can be resolved quickly.

  • Blundell

    WhatsApp doesn’t work when taking photo’s from within the app.

    Facebook doesn’t sync your contacts, SO annoying.

    AutoTrader works great though!

    • BiGMERF

      Facebook sync hasnt worked since the n1

      • BiGMERF

        by the way Hulu plus is a no go too

  • behzadbayat

    Waiting for an update on my galaxy tab 8.9 3g. Does anybody knows that if there is any custom room out for this tablet running ics. Looking into being able to use my tablet for calling. I saw this on a video on YouTube calling on a honeycomb but no one seems to have this.

    • behzadbayat

      Please comment if you know something.

    • keridel is your friend. I havent heard of ics on it yet but we will see.

  • Toonshorty

    Skype didn’t used to work with the cameras however this is now fixed.

    Love Film doesn’t work at all. I believe if you try to go on your list of films then it will just force close.

  • Martjn2

    Galaxy nexus: Pure google, pure awesomeness

  • keridel

    Clarks photobooth app works spot on. :)

    Only gta 3 is an issue for me. My facebook works fine as well btw.

  • myandroid99

    i want to try iccream sandwich sooo bad

    • Louis A

      It’s the best yet, that’s all I can tell you.

  • KenG

    I’ve had my GSM GN for a couple weeks now, and the only problem is that it often doesn’t turn on HSPA (or even their slower 3G) after disabling wi-fi, necessitating a battery removal and insertion cycle. However, since the pathetic Verizon DSL in my office is only 5 Mbps, I don’t even bother turning on wi-fi at the office.

    But it would be nice if this is fixed.

  • Rad Stevens

    Cardio Trainer is not compatible with 4.0 . Its really messing with my workouts.

    • BillLee3

      Me too on Cardio Trainer. Screwing up those new year’s resolutions!

  • mikeytusa

    Looking forward to the new improvements to ICS. So happy I finally have a phone that gets those updates as soon as they’re ready and not a year later.

    Note to carriers and manufacturers: Customers are happy when they get their updates immediately.

  • Usman

    Viber is still incompatible with ICS… it’s a gotta have app for me, as I use it to keep in touch with my family overseas.

    • Deepak Gupta

      You can try out other apps such as Fring, Tango as well if Viber does not make itself ICS compatible and you are traveling in the mean time.

  • Hall Lo

    Think it needs so time for the developers to upgrade their softwares…

  • Billy

    Another update! That just makes me excited. Woo Hoo!

    My important/common apps are running well.

    Touchdown, Docs to Go, Spotify

  • ramenchef

    What’s sad is that we won’t see ICS for another 4-6 months on non-nexus devices.

  • @stezozz

    No face unlock =[

    • Taylor

      Yes, very sad.

  • RayMatthew

    “In weeks ahead” Nexus S needs this update along time ago.

  • stenzor

    I really need a Galaxy Nexus

    • Louis A

      I thought you got it already lol. Greatest android phone yet. Only bad thing is the battery life if you have the verizon version sucks. You can by the extended battery 2100mA, but it makes your phone a little fat and heavy. But you get a great improvement on battery life.

  • Jimmy13

    Swype is a big one for me

    • Taylor

      Fer not Jimmy, Swype may not be ready for ICS implemented on Galaxy Nexus, but works great/normally on the Nexus S after ICS upgrade (official path, not mod ROM).

  • Kent Burton

    that reminds me that I need to download flash for my Galaxy Nexus…. The OG droid that I was rocking could not handle it all that well. But I am sure the Gnex will have no problem.

    loving it

    • Ari32

      Flash was pretty much pointless on the OG Droid… works great on the Galaxy Nexus tho

  • flo

    it’s the nexus’ birthday! hello? did you mention that?

  • David Hughes

    I am managing with my galaxy with a few apps that are not 100% small price for a great phone

  • Taylor

    Take note: Swype may not be ready for ICS implemented on Galaxy Nexus, but works great/normally on the Nexus S after ICS upgrade (official path, not mod ROM).

  • Richard Yarrell

    Now the clock begins. Lets see exactly what Htc, Samsung, Lg, and Motorola, decides to do with ice cream sandwich. I am happy to be on the stock android side of the ledger this time around.

  • Richard Yarrell

    I still give Htc props they will be the first to ice cream sandwich. I still say NOBODY will have updates till March/April. Galaxy Nexus rules android for the next 6plus months regardless of any future quadcore devices.

    • squiddy20

      1. “I still give Htc props they will be the first to ice cream sandwich” Technically, you’ve already been proven wrong Dick Granted, it was a “demo build” but HTC, Samsung, et al. have only released info on which devices will officially get ICS.
      2. As for your “predictions” about when other manufacturers will get ICS out, if you bothered to read the 2 or so Android and Me articles explaining the process Android OS updates have to go through (Motorola and LG(?)), then you would KNOW it’s true instead of making stupid guesses. Heck, even using common sense, anyone could figure out the rough time frame. A month or so for manufacturers to get ICS up and running, a month of carrier testing, a month back with manufacturer to iron out the kinks, another month or so of carrier testing and if its right, release. That’s about 4 steps, roughly a month for each step = 4 months + today = “March/April”. It really isn’t rocket science or “magical”…
      3. “Galaxy Nexus rules android for the next 6plus months regardless of any future quadcore devices.” Hahaha You said the same exact thing about the Evo 3D when it was first released and it was arguably bested in about half of your “6plus months”. What a whack job

  • jj

    Does any one kno if the gslate and the g2x will get ics

  • Ari32

    Urbanspoon and Scoutmob don’t work… oh, and this website doesn’t work either. The main page is fine, same old mobile site, but as soon as i click on an article it goes to a bastardized version of the full site, while logging me out at the same time and making me post as a guest. Maybe it’s just this particular article… doubt it tho

    • Ari32

      And now it’s fine… who knows? Still love me some Ice Cream Sandwich tho

  • Nathan D.

    well I need a new phone first! XD

  • Craig LeBaron

    I’ll also add that Plants vs Zombies keeps hanging up for me. I’m a little sad, seeing as I bought it on my OG Droid during Amazon’s sale. One day I’ll finally get to olay it, lol.

    • Craig LeBaron

      Also, Handcent keeps force closing.

      • Deepak Gupta

        Never liked Handcent, try Go SMS Pro as well. Has all the features of Handcent and is much much better.

  • alexaac14

    Which one is better galaxy with ics… Or galaxy nexus

  • lolobabes

    The more reason am not too excited to update yet, whats the use when its only compatible with fewer apps

  • Alexander drzfr3shboialex

    the best thing is facebook contact sync.

  • sgumer

    i hope they don’t keep making incremental changes because i hate doing all these updates on my phone. i hope this is the last one that they decide to do for a base version.

    • Deepak Gupta

      Actually working as a software developer, I find it easier to roll out incremental changes. This means customers get things quickly (if they want). This also means a whole lot of work is reduced compared to if we have to roll out big updates.
      To each their own I guess!!

  • sockeqwe

    btw. Adobe Flash is now available for ICS

  • Fabio R


  • mrbill187

    sigh waiting for amazon to throw on a sale before i jump on the gnex bandwagon.

  • sap 26

    I hope this update comes soon. This was my problem with Honeycomb and why I returned my ASUS Transformer. I’m in line to get the Transformer Prime and I just hope that I don’t experience the same problem with ICS. I’m glad Netflix is already on board. I still would like to see HBO GO working.

  • dharr18

    Like someone once told me, “When you are on the cutting edge, you are bound to bleed.” Frequent patches and incremental updates are a good thing in my book. I would rather have the fix earlier than wait for a roll up.

    My fear with a lot of apps out there are Devs who no longer update those apps. Also larger companies who do a poor job supporting their apps after initial release, looking at you EA.

    There will be quite a few apps that will never work with ICS.

  • Oskar Wismierski

    It’s gonna take ages to come to my sgsII :(

    • pritams

      @Oskar CM9 is there..;)

  • cristian cristiandonose

    I want a Galaxy nexus sooo much. But cant , because im tied to my carier untill february. :(

  • Samar

    Get more developers and reward them for moving onto new platform version at the earliest.

  • Androidcrazed6

    Quick question.

    Should i get the transformer prime, samsung galaxy s2 epic 4g touch, or galaxy nexus when/if it comes on sprint.

    (btw on sprint currently)

    • Deepak Gupta

      Depends, do you want a Tablet or a Phone? If you want a tablet, go for the Prime. As for the phone, choose the nexus cause it has ICS on board. Not sure when S2 will get ICS.

      • Androidcrazed6

        Im asking you guys which would be better because i have to replace my phone so that means the price for a tablet or smartphone will be pretty much the same sooooo yea.

        And also the nexus isnt coming on sprint till most likely next year and i am on sprint

  • jenskristian

    Wish I had the Galaxy Nexus, but hey. ICS is bound to come to Galaxy S 2 soon right? :-)

    • Deepak Gupta

      ICS expected to arrive on S2 sometime in Quarter 2 next year. You can always head to XDA and flash a custom ICS Rom. Stable ones should start appearing in about a month’s time!!

  • aranea

    Another update another reason for companies to postpone their ICS release for earlier phones. :(

    • Deepak Gupta

      Hopefully, they will merge their already developed code base with the new changes bought by this new version. Some manufacturers plan to stick to their timelines. Sony for example, I am impressed!!

  • kimminer1

    surely hope I can win a nexus

  • YNWA

    Plants vs. Zombies Amazon App Store version is unusable. Could be because of the fact their releases are delayed, and sometimes updates are abandoned.

  • xfaith

    Glad that they have a base version now, and also that nexus s rolloed out. Now to hit F5 on ICS development over at XDA to watch the updates for Captivate.

    So far the only apps that I know that were not working for ICS (*Captivate) — CM9

    Flash – which has been updated.
    Jelly Defender – which was updated.

    But I only run the basics right now as I reload to much….IE I have FB, Twitter, Cut the Rope, DropBox, Google+, Google Voice. All seem to work good.

  • Eric Wilborn

    Perfection comes with time..

  • dacatalyst41

    I originally intended to download all the apps that I had previously used. Many of them have not been optimized for ICS yet. Some of them have updated in the last few days. This is something that the developer community need to make a priority in order to continue the adoption trend we are seeing with Android.

    • Deepak Gupta

      Sadly, there will always be some app developers who developed and forgot. For such apps, ICS compatibility may never come :(

  • booyootoo

    The one app I really used the most was Swype. Now I can’t use it and had to settle for Swiftley (thank you Google for the €0,10 celebrations).

    But its good to know the Swype guys are working to make it work.

  • ccn_cristi

    Nexus FTW! Tested onLive and it works!

  • gherea

    I do not have any force closes on the fb app.

  • Sean the Electrofreak

    I wish I had ICS to be worried about app compatibility… :-\

  • Goatyeah

    Sadly I report.. I have had 2 Galaxy Nexus with Verizon and Both had the same issue of continuing to get stuck in the reboot cycle… the second one was worse… it stayed with the falling tiles for over a hour in the Verizon store. The battery was removed and the same process again.

    They tried to get me into another one… I declined. Ill wait for something better next year. Tegra 3 or 4 But this one needs work.

    Anyone else have problems?.

  • humidity

    Yay for Facebook sync!

  • Danny Calderon

    No ics issues for me seeing that I’ll probably be stuck on gingerbread forever with my MT4G

    • Ilyse Rose

      Pretty much came here to post just this. I love my MT4G but I’ve resigned myself to be stuck on Gingerbread.

  • kungpaodragon

    Me want! Now!

  • Marcus

    Its a good thing more and more apps are starting to work with ICS now! I’d love to see all of them, especially games updated to support ICS. That’d be awesome… especially with the improved graphics and default hardware acceleration.

  • Louis A

    Two thing:
    1) I hope the do something about the battery life on the galaxy nexus. Yes you can go buy an extended battery but I think they can do something to help the battery life on the galaxy nexus.

    2) Is 4.0.3 gonna role out to GN?

  • Luke Haviland

    i cant believe i’m still running 2.3.6 when 4.0.3 is out
    i feel so left behind

  • donger

    yeah ICS ftw.

  • Anthropic

    I just wish Samsung would skip trying to update their gui over ICS and just give me the update already.

  • mclarensr

    Any news on the Google trying to reduce fragmentation (like they announced at the IO this year). Yeah….., thought so.

    • Word

      you, good sure. are an idiot.

  • gherea

    And this is the reason I got a nexus

  • Rosslyn

    I was playing Tap Tap Revenge 4 on my Nexus S, but then I updated to ICS, but now that game is not compatible, and the developers at have not released an update. This is making many fans of that game upset because they can’t play anymore. Bummer!!