International LTE Galaxy S4s get first major software update, starting with unlocked German devices
The international LTE version of the Samsung Galaxy S4 (GT-i9505) has started receiving its first substantial software upgrade today, with unlocked devices in Germany being among the first to get it. The update to version I9505XXUBMEA incorporates a number of visual changes, including a new, partially-transparent notification bar, new settings icons, and fix for ghosting issues in certain areas of the UI.
But the biggest addition for S4 owners might be reintroduction of apps-to-SD card support. First added in Android 2.2 Froyo and removed in the most recent 4.2 Jelly Bean, the ability to move apps to the SD card was originally a way to work around the anemic internal storage of older Android phones. The S4, of course, has been criticized for the fact that its 16GB version ships with only 9GB or so of available space. So the reintroduction of apps-to-SD might alleviate some of these storage issues, but you'll still be relying on app developers to enable apps-to-SD before you're able to use it.
(Update: We're also noticing significantly improved responsiveness and less animation lag in this new S4 firmware.)
German users with unlocked S4s should be able to pick up the update over-the-air or through Kies, and other regions should follow in the weeks ahead. (Of course, if you're feeling adventurous, you could always flash the German firmware directly.)