Samsung One UI 4Source: Nick Sutrich / Android Central

Samsung did a fantastic job with the One UI 3.1 update based on Android 11 to most phones in its portfolio, and with Android 12 set to launch soon, Samsung is getting ready with its next major update.

Samsung's Android 12 update will arrive with One UI 4, its next big interface overhaul. While the design itself isn't too different to the current One UI 3.1, there's a lot to be excited about — Samsung is introducing over 60 new features. The best part is that the One UI 4 beta update is now available for the Galaxy S21 series in select countries, so let's find out what Samsung has to offer with Android 12, what phones will get the update, and a look at the new features.

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This is the one

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra Render Phantom Silver Back Official

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra

Still the flagship to beat

The Galaxy S21 Ultra combines the latest display and hardware innovations to deliver a flagship that truly stands out from its rivals. You get a sublime 120Hz AMOLED screen backed by the latest internal hardware, incredible cameras, all-day battery with fast charging, and software that's highly customizable. If you want to be the first to try out One UI 4, you'll need to switch to the S21 Ultra right now.

Samsung has kicked off the One UI 4 public beta

Samsung shared at the end of July that the One UI 4 beta will kick off in the "coming weeks." And on September 14, it announced the One UI 4 public beta for the Galaxy S21 series. Like previous years, the beta is limited to the latest Galaxy S flagship, so if you're using the Galaxy S21, S21+, or S21 Ultra, you can take part in the beta and switch to One UI 4 right now.

As for availability, the One UI 4 beta is live in the U.S., Korea, United Kingdom, India, China, Germany, and Poland. Samsung has traditionally limited its One UI beta program to these seven markets, and that hasn't changed in 2021. If you're in these seven countries and have an eligible device, you can get started with the One UI 4 beta by heading over to the Samsung Members app and enrolling.

Samsung makes the best Android phones you can buy today, and its mid-range offerings in particular — including the Galaxy A52 and A52 5G — have stood out this year, and while these devices aren't a part of the beta just yet, that will likely change over the coming months.

These Samsung phones will be updated to One UI 4

Samsung Galaxy A52 reviewSource: Apoorva Bhardwaj / Android Central

Samsung is the brand to beat when it comes to long-term updates, and with the manufacturer offering three Android updates to its flagships and mid-range phones, the Galaxy S10 series from 2019 is slated to get the Android 12-based One UI 4 stable build.

Samsung will deliver the Android 12-based One UI 4 update to all of its 2020 and 2021 phones, and there are a lot of phones on that list. Samsung usually shares a timeline for when the update will be available for specific phones, but we will get that information once the stable version starts rolling out at the end of the year.

In the meantime, here's a tentative list of Galaxy phones and tablets that are eligible for the One UI 4 update:

Galaxy S series phones getting One UI 4

  • Galaxy S21 5G
  • Galaxy S21+ 5G
  • Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G
  • Galaxy S20 / S20 5G
  • Galaxy S20+ / S20+ 5G
  • Galaxy S20 Ultra / S20 Ultra 5G
  • Galaxy S20 FE / FE 5G
  • Galaxy S10 / S10 5G
  • Galaxy S10+
  • Galaxy S10e
  • Galaxy S10 Lite

Galaxy Note series phones getting One UI 4

  • Galaxy Note 20 / Note 20 5G
  • Galaxy Note 20 Ultra / Note 20 Ultra 5G
  • Galaxy Note 10 / Note 10 5G
  • Galaxy Note 10+ / Note 10+ 5G
  • Galaxy Note 10 Lite

Galaxy Z series phones getting One UI 4

  • Galaxy Z Fold 3
  • Galaxy Z Flip 3
  • Galaxy Z Fold 2 / Z Fold 2 5G
  • Galaxy Z Flip / Z Flip 5G
  • Galaxy Fold / Fold 5G

Galaxy A series phones getting One UI 4

  • Galaxy A52s 5G
  • Galaxy A72
  • Galaxy A52 / A52 5G
  • Galaxy A42 / A42 5G
  • Galaxy A32 / A32 5G
  • Galaxy A22 / A22 5G
  • Galaxy A12
  • Galaxy A02s
  • Galaxy A02
  • Galaxy A71 / A71 5G
  • Galaxy A51 / A51 5G
  • Galaxy A41
  • Galaxy A31
  • Galaxy A21s
  • Galaxy A21
  • Galaxy A11
  • Galaxy A03s
  • Galaxy A Quantum

Galaxy Tab series tablets getting One UI 4

  • Galaxy Tab A7 Lite
  • Galaxy Tab S7 FE
  • Galaxy Tab A7 10.4
  • Galaxy Tab S7+ / S7+ 5G
  • Galaxy Tab S7 / S7 5G
  • Galaxy Tab A 8.4
  • Galaxy Tab S6 Lite
  • Galaxy Tab S6 / S6 5G
  • Galaxy Tab Active 3

Galaxy M series phones getting One UI 4

  • Galaxy M62
  • Galaxy M42 / M42 5G
  • Galaxy M32
  • Galaxy M12
  • Galaxy M02s
  • Galaxy M02
  • Galaxy M51
  • Galaxy M31s
  • Galaxy M31 Prime
  • Galaxy M21s
  • Galaxy M21
  • Galaxy M11
  • Galaxy M01s
  • Galaxy M01

Galaxy F series phones getting One UI 4

  • Galaxy F62
  • Galaxy F52 5G
  • Galaxy F22
  • Galaxy F12
  • Galaxy F02s
  • Galaxy F41

Galaxy XCover series getting One UI 4

  • Galaxy XCover 5
  • Galaxy XCover Pro

One UI 4 is getting a lot of new features

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 Hands OnSource: Daniel Bader / Android Central

With One UI 4.0, Samsung is introducing a host of new features and updating the interface. While One UI 3.1 featured a few refinements over One UI 2.0, the interface was left largely unchanged, so we are due for an update in this area. The first beta doesn't have too many changes in terms of design, but according to leaker chunvn8888, Samsung will unveil an updated color palette and new icons, and use Android 12's Material You design aesthetic.

Samsung took the best bits of Android 12 from Google and added its own flavor.

Even though this is just the first beta of One UI 4, we're seeing a few exciting changes. The brightness slider on the notification pane is larger than before, making it easier to use. It is thankfully not as oversized as the one on the Pixels, with Samsung maintaining the right balance. One UI 4 also enables eSIM for Galaxy S21 models in the U.S.

In terms of privacy and security, One UI 4 gets a nifty permission usage history that lets you see what permissions have been accessed. The location permissions window has a new interface that's similar to what you'll find on Android 12, and like the Pixels, you get the ability to turn off camera or mic access system-wide with a single toggle. And Samsung also added a green recording indicator whenever your camera is in use, ensuring no errant service in the background enables access without you knowing about it.

As for interface changes One UI 4 has a new widget picker, cleaner design for toast notifications, and a new interface for disabling notifications directly from the pane. And a useful accessibility feature is the ability to set custom colors for each individual app's notifications. You can set an AR emoji as your profile photo for your Samsung account.

The camera is also getting an overhaul with One UI 4, with Samsung offering a cleaner design, video recording that starts the moment you press the Record button, tweaks to the Single Take feature and Pro mode, and zoom levels on the lens icons.

Samsung confirmed a few weeks ago that it will be getting rid of ads within One UI, and it is entirely likely it will start doing so with One UI 4. Another major feature in One UI 4 has to do with under-the-hood tweaks, with Samsung optimizing the UI to take full advantage of high-end hardware like the Snapdragon 888 and Exynos 2100. Samsung has done much better in this regard in the last two years, but its flagships and most of its mid-range devices now offering 120Hz panels, any UI optimizations will make a noticeable difference.

Here's the full changelog for One UI 4

One Ui 4 Android 12 Mockup With FlipSource: Nick Sutrich / Android Central

With so many new features and under-the-hood changes, One UI 4 brings the best of Android 12 to Samsung's phones and tablets. The full changelog gives us a detailed look at everything Samsung changed with the update, and from the introduction, it's clear that privacy and customizability have been a key consideration for Samsung this year:

One UI 4 is all about you. Your comfort. Your privacy. Your self-expression. Redesigned for a seamless experience across your Galaxy devices, One UI 4 keeps the things you love while adding a wide array of new features and enhancements and more customizations than ever so you can make it your own. More intuitive, more fun, more secure, and easier than ever.

Here's the entire changelog for the One UI 4 update, including a list of all the new features:

  • Home screen
    • Home screen widgets have been redesigned to give you more information at a glance while also making your Home screen more stylish. You'll also get recommendations for widgets that may be useful for you.
  • Lock screen
    • You can now change the audio output to a different device, such as headphones or a speaker, right from the Lock screen. You'll also get customized controls depending on which music app you're using.
    • A new Voice Recorder widget for the Lock screen lets you record voice memos without unlocking your phone.
    • A monthly calendar appears on the Calendar widget to help you keep track of your events from the Lock screen.
  • Always On Display
    • You can set the Always On Display turn on whenever you receive a notification.
    • New animated stickers are available.
  • Quick panel
    • Manage your notifications more comfortably with an enhanced layout and an integrated section of alert and silent notifications.
    • The brightness bar in the quick panel is larger so it's easier to see and adjust.
  • Dark mode
    • Wallpapers, icons, and illustrations are now darkened automatically to provide a more consistent look and more comfort for your eyes.
  • Charging effects
    • New visual effects appear when you start charging to help you check the charging speed.
  • Samsung Keyboard
    • Get to your emojis, GIFs, and stickers directly from the keyboard with a single button. Self-expression is a tap away.
    • Looking to express something new? Combine two emojis, then add an animation so you can really get your feelings across.
    • New animated stickers are available for download.
    • Keep your grammar on point with the new Writing assistant, powered by Grammarly (English only).
  • Tips
    • Preview videos now appear when you enter the Tips app, helping you learn everything your Galaxy can do.
  • Sharing
    • You can customize the list of apps that appear on the share panel to reduce clutter, and scroll left and right across the lists of apps and people for quicker access.
    • When you try to share pictures that have problems like poor focus or framing, you'll get suggestions for fixing them so your pictures always look their best.
  • Camera
    • Enjoy a simpler, clearer layout with a preview that shows only the information you need. The scene optimizer button will only appear in Photo mode if there's low light or you're scanning a document. Settings for Portrait and Night modes are now more intuitive.
    • Lens and zoom: See the zoom level on the lens icons for easier zooming, even in modes that only support one lens.
    • Video that never misses a moment: Recording now starts immediately after you press the Record button, instead of when you release it. In Photo mode, touch and hold the Shutter button to start recording a video. Drag your finger to the Lock icon to continue recording without having to hold down the button.
    • Single take: Add extra time while recording in Single Take so you don't miss key moments. After recording is finished, the content selection menu has been improved to help you easily choose the perfect shots.
    • Pro mode: Settings have been reorganized for a cleaner look. When grid lines are on, horizontal level indicators help you line up the perfect shot.
    • Enhanced scan features: After scanning a document, you can zoom in for fine editing. When you scan a QR code, you can choose from several options depending on the type of QR code.
  • Gallery
    • Stories now show a video preview on the cover and a highlight video inside. You can also see where each picture in a story was taken on a map.
    • More options are available for sorting albums that contain lots of photos.
    • Album covers are now shown at the top of the screen when you open albums.
    • Search suggestions have been improved to help you find pictures and videos. Recent searches are also suggested.
    • Remastered pictures can be reverted to their original versions at any time, even after they're saved.
    • You can now edit the date, time, and location that pictures and videos were taken.
  • Photo and video editor
    • Add fun emojis and stickers to your pictures and videos.
    • Create video collages by combining multiple images and videos from your Gallery.
    • The new Light balance option lets you edit the tone of pictures more easily.
    • The Highlight reel editor has also been enhanced to give you even more control.
    • Revert edited videos back to their original versions at any time, even after they're saved.
    • Cut out a face, pet, building, or any other object from a photo and paste it onto a different one.
  • AR Emoji
    • Use an AR emoji as your profile picture in Contacts and Samsung account. You can choose from over 10 poses or create your own expressions.
    • New AR emoji stickers that show only your face have been added. Have fun decorating your photos and sharing them with your friends.
    • Make cool dance videos with your AR emojis. Choose templates from 10 different categories including #Fun, #Cute, and #Party.
    • Use your own drawings to create unique clothes for your AR emojis.
  • Multitasking
    • Pin the window option menu to the top of a pop-up window to make it easier to access.
    • Easily resize picture-in-picture windows with pinch zoom.
    • Keep your current app in view while using edge panels. Blurring has been removed to help you see more at once.
  • Settings
    • The new Safety and emergency menu lets you manage your emergency contacts and safety information all in one place.
    • Improved search features help you find the settings you need, when you need them. You'll get suggestions for related features depending on what you search for.
  • Digital Wellbeing
    • Keep your eyes on the road with the new Driving monitor. You'll get reports on how much you used your phone and which apps you used.
  • Clock
    • The dual clock widget now shows different background colors for each city depending on whether it's day or night.
  • Calendar
    • The new Calendar layout lets you add events instantly. You can also find events more easily with improved search features.
    • A new Home screen widget shows your monthly calendar along with today's events.
    • Create shared calendars and invite other Galaxy users to join.
  • Messages
    • Photos, videos, web links, and other content will now appear in search results in the Messages app.
  • My Files
    • Search features have been improved. You can still find the files you're looking for, even if there's a typo.
    • The Recent files area has been expanded to help you more easily find files you've used recently.
  • Samsung Internet
    • Get more search suggestions when you enter text in the address bar. Results will appear with an all new design.
    • The new search widget helps you find what you're looking for, right from the Home screen.
    • To protect your privacy, Samsung Internet will automatically start in Secret mode if you were using Secret mode during your last browsing session.
  • Device Care
    • The main screen shows battery and security issues, making it easier to solve problems quickly.
    • Your phone's overall status is shown as an emoji, helping you check the status at a glance.
    • Now you can get right to Samsung Members diagnostics from Device Care. If something seems wrong with your phone, try the diagnostic tests to find out what the problem is and get suggestions for solving it.
  • Samsung Health
    • A new tab layout at the bottom of the screen helps you access the features you need more easily. The new My page tab shows your profile, weekly summary, badges, and personal bests.
    • For your gender selection, you can now choose "Other" or "Prefer not to say."
    • It's now easier to invite your friends to team challenges by sending a link. Additional snacks have been added to the food tracker.
  • Bixby Routines
    • More conditions are available for your routines. Start a routine during a call or when a certain notification arrives.
    • Make your routines do more. You can now turn on Enhanced processing with a routine. There are also more options for connecting and disconnecting Bluetooth devices.
    • Reorder actions by touching and holding actions on the edit page. Advanced options have also been added to let you wait before an action starts, confirm actions, and more.
    • We've removed restrictions for some combinations of conditions and actions so you can do even more with your routines.
    • Create custom icons for your routines using the camera or an image from gallery.
  • Accessibility
    • Perform actions more quickly by moving your mouse pointer to one of the 4 corners of the screen.
    • Adjust contrast and size at the same time with custom Display mode (High contrast or Large display).
    • Access accessibility features more quickly with a floating button that's always available.
    • More visibility options are available to meet your needs. You can reduce transparency and blur or make the screen extra dim.
    • Set different colors for each app's notifications so you can easily determine where notifications are coming from.
    • Magnifier window has been merged with the new Magnification menu, giving you more options and more control for magnifying content on the screen.
  • Privacy
    • See which apps are accessing sensitive permissions such as Location, Camera, or Microphone in Permission usage history. You can deny permissions for any apps you don't feel comfortable with.
    • A green dot will appear in the upper right corner of the screen when any app is using the camera or microphone so you can see if an app is recording you without your consent. You can also use quick panel controls to temporarily block all apps from using the camera or microphone.
    • Take more control over apps that want to access your location. For apps that only need to know your general area, such as weather apps, you can allow access to your approximate location so they can't determine exactly where you are.
    • Sometimes you need to copy sensitive information, like passwords or credit card numbers, but you don't want it to fall into the wrong hands. You can choose to be notified any time an app accesses content copied to the clipboard in another app.

When will my Samsung phone get the One UI 4 update?

One Ui 4 Android 12 Mockup With Fold FlipSource: Nick Sutrich / Android Central

With the Galaxy S21 series getting the beta before other devices in Samsung's portfolio, it is safe to assume that these phones will be the first to make the switch to the stable version as well. Samsung usually starts rolling out the stable One UI builds at the end of the year, and if there isn't any change in that strategy this year, the Galaxy S21 models should get One UI 4 by December or early January.

Samsung is ahead of schedule with the One UI 4 beta — One UI 3.0 beta didn't roll out until October last year — so it is possible that we may get to see a stable build before December for the Galaxy S21 series.

The One UI 4 update will start making its way to older Galaxy S, Z, and Note flagships, with the mid-range phones likely to make the switch from later in Q1 2022. But at this point, we don't have confirmation on the same, and we will have to wait and see how the One UI 4 beta unfolds before we can figure out a timeline for the stable rollout. With Samsung introducing a lot of new features, the beta may not be as straightforward as previous years.

This is the one

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra Render Phantom Silver Back Official

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra

Still the flagship to beat

The Galaxy S21 Ultra combines the latest display and hardware innovations to deliver a flagship that truly stands out from its rivals. You get a sublime 120Hz AMOLED screen backed by the latest internal hardware, incredible cameras, all-day battery with fast charging, and software that's highly customizable. If you want to be the first to try out One UI 4, you'll need to switch to the S21 Ultra right now.

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