T-Mobile's Samsung Galaxy S2 getting Jelly Bean update

Good news for owners of the Samsung Galaxy S2 on T-Mobile USA -- your update to Jelly Bean is due to start rolling out today. The update weighs a hefty 756MB and is available through Samsung's Kies software utility, bringing the phone up to Android 4.1.2.

In addition to new TouchWiz bits, T-Mo S2 owners can look forward to smoother performance thanks to the "Project Butter" performance enhancements, Google Now predictive search capabilities and support for offline voice recognition. To see if your update is ready, fire up Kies on a PC or Mac, and connect your Galaxy S2.

Be sure to hit the comments and let us know if you've got the new firmware.

Source: T-Mobile (opens in new tab); via: Android Central forums

Alex Dobie
Executive Editor

Alex was with Android Central for over a decade, producing written and video content for the site, and served as global Executive Editor from 2016 to 2022.

  • THIS is why HTC is losing! The last thing they updated was the Thunderbolt to ICS like 2 weeks ago! Not good enough HTC! My Rezound needs sum Project Butter in it's life! I know it's also Verizon's fault, but HTC has to grow sum balls at some point!
  • Agreed. While HTC's hardware is more aesthetically appealing, their unwillingness to keep aging devices up to date on software was a deal breaker for me as well. I know this is gonna piss the HTC trolls off but many of us don't feel comfortable using ROM's and we don't feel like having an out-of-date phone for 18 months out of the 24 month contract we sign. When your flagship phone launches with a version of Android that's almost a year old, you had better be prompt with the updates and HTC doesn't seem to care once you've paid them. Say what you want about Samsung but they stand by all of their products, not just the ones that are 6 months old.
  • I also have the HTC Rezound, paid cash for it when it first came out. At that time it was the best phone on any carrier. The phone needs Jelly Bean real bad. The phone still has potential but I stopped using it. It's too bad, I will not buy another HTC phone. HTC completely forgot about the Rezound any many other phones. Samsung is putting out great phones left and right but are still taking care of the older phones. That means allot to me. Samsung is the best manufacturer, they prove it every day.
  • Agreed. It's funny how much things have changed. Anyone who has been with Android for over 2 years can tell you that Samsung used to be the WORST about updates (see the Froyo delay on all of the Galaxy S1 phones) & HTC used to be one of the best. HTC sure has went down the crapper lately though.....
  • IMO the smoothness of 4.1 isn't even the best part....Google Now is. My Note 2 knows when I normally leave for work & shows me when I pull down the notification bar if there are traffic delays.
  • I would love to experience that but I never will with this damn phone.. not at THIS rate anyway! Lol Smh..
  • ^^^^This^^^^
  • Actually it'd be Verizon fault, take a look at galaxy nexus, it got the update about 2 months after all the other galaxy nexus got updated cuz of Verizons stupid bloatware, but HTC is a little late to the jellybean party sometimes
  • But HTC needs to grow sum balls and do something about it. This is why they're losing customers. I'm not getting another HTC after this unless it's a Nexus.
  • Being a HTC rezound owner myself I totally agree with you.. I will never buy another HTC product. Samsung galaxy S4 here I come.
  • I loved my S2 and thought is was a superb device running Gingerbread, then it got ICS and was even better. Now 4.1 & Project Butter?!
    I could have sworn though it was stated by Samsung last year that the S2 wouldn't get updates past 4.0 because of "hardware limitations"..
  • That was the S1.
  • My ics update was full of bugs thats why i'm rocking an aokp rom
  • Picked one of these up for my mom for Christmas for her first smartphone and she loves it. Can't believe it's now getting Jellybean.
  • Just downloaded, everything is smooth so far. I've only had it updated for about an hour, but so far the battery is draining fast, 20% in an hour (I may need to do a fresh install to correct that), though it could also be because I was playing with it and setting up my apps and home screens again the whole time. I can't tell if it's any faster, since I'm at work and can't really do too much testing on that side, but all seems well.
  • And Virgin Mobile's varient!
  • Virgin Mobile is a wholly owned subsidiary by Sprint, so they received their update the same time as Sprint.
  • Also, Samsung updated Keis with newer version, so now i am upgrading my SGH-T989D (Telus) to ICS, currently running original unupgradable Gingerbread. Fingers crossed it works XX.
  • I have been trying to upgrade. Kies really sucks on my PC. It crashed a bunch of times (after updating), so I uninstalled and re-installed. Now, it seems to have hung up. It has been at 9% downloaded for the past 30 min ... I wish the upgrade were OTA instead of through this POS software.
  • KIES sucks for pretty much everybody so don't feel bad. Really wish Samsung would fix that piece of crap program. It's bloated, slow and hardly even works. On a lighter note, very cool that Samsung is updating it's legacy phones. I'm hoping that the GS3 gets the same love in a year/year and a half down the line.
  • I don't want to say I am glad to hear Kies sucks on your PC but I am glad it isn't just Mac. On my Mac it is borderline unusable.
  • I thought about upgrading firmware on GS2 last summer to ICS. I installed 2 versions of Kies to my Mac and neither would find my phone when I plugged it in! I decided that I would just stick with GB instead of bothering with rooting and installing it another way. I heard about the JB upgrade and thought that it would't work either. I recently reinstalled the newest version of Kies and it finally was able to find my phone! It showed the JB update and I wanted to do it right then. I haven't used Kies for anything else yet, I am hoping that it won't mess up while trying to do stuff. I have waited the past couple of weeks since I needed to backup everything on my phone, and I was hearing a few people say that they didn't like JB on this device and were trying to find ways to downgrade back to ICS or GB. I am just now trying to find some good reviews of JB on the GS2 from T-Mobile so that I can feel ok about upgrading the firmware and that it will work fine. I would hate to have to deal with it causing problems with my WiFi and make me feel like I needed to downgrade again.
  • Why can't it update OTA like normal updates?
    Whenever my Samsung Droid Charge has gotten an update on Verizon it's always been OTA.
  • Great news. First the Rogers S2 LTE, now T-Mo. Skyrocket has to be next in line!
  • Is the power control widget missing for anyone else?
  • yes the task manager widget is gone! Face unlock is gone! and smart stay is gone!
  • Hold down your Home button. When the screen does that weird list thing, look at the bottom. Press the little pie circle on the left. That gives you the task manager. What I can't figure out is how to take a screen shot now. Power + home isn't working, and neither is Jelly Bean's Power + Volume Down.
  • My younger brother will be very happy!
  • Well I'm never going to buy another HTC phone ever again. I have the HTC One S and still no 4.1 update! All other carriers out of state received the update months ago. I know it's the carriers fault but it fees like T-Mobile likes Samsung more than HTC.
  • Geez T-mobile has now released an update. Come on ATT!
  • Got the update applied via ^&@%#!ing Kies, working well enough so far.
  • Wow. Another same timeframe hardware as the HTC Vivid (Holiday/Raider) but no JB (and there won't be). The more JB updates come out for 2012 phones, the less likely I'm going to get an HTC One.
  • Man, I have impeccable timing. Just got this about three days ago, and I can update it to JB proper. Looks like I know what I'll be doing in the morning.
  • I make $80/hour from working freelance on my laptop. Before this job i've been out of a job for 5 months but last month my payment with bonus was little over $15000 just for working on the laptop for about 5 hours a day. Here's the site to read more how you can do it too http://www.snap11.com
  • Finally, I have been waiting for this a long time. So far a lot of changes in touchwiz UI, so far everything is working great....
  • I updated mine and my wife's phone. I am loving it. Smooth, better graphics, the email app is better. I love that they get rid of the banner notification for sms messaging. I like that I can create my own vibrating patterns. It's a great phone and the OS just got a hell of a lot better. Downside, battery has never been worse. Drains quick.
  • Don't do it! The Jelly Bean update on our Sprint Galaxy S2 phones absolutely KILLED our battery life. Easily 20-40% less battery life. It's been the better part of the a year with multiple "fixes", but nothing has actually brought it back. Has significantly reduced the usefulness of the phones. I realize that the internal architecture of the T-Mobile versions of the Galaxy S2 are quite different and it's a different carrier, but I still wouldn't want to be first. Already, I'm seeing the comments like "battery has never been worse" getting posted. Of course, there are 3 vendors involved -- Google, Samsung, and your carrier -- so each one says its an issue with one of the others. (The iPhone advantage; although we're happy with our Samsung's and aren't going anywhere.)
  • Never really understood the move to have different variants of the Galaxy S2. Still, I'm actually liking the GS2 variant (the AT&T model) with the physical home button better. Eithe way, I've heard about better battery life for the T-989 variant for T-mobile after the update. I'm hoping that it's true, considering that ICS on my device for some unexplainable reason doesn't want to turn on NFC.
  • I updated my GS2 last night and it's been working great so far. Nice and smooth. The first thing I did after upgrading was done was turn off wifi, bluetooth, gps, etc. For some reason, everything was turned on during upgrade. Battery use has been a bit better than with ICS. The camera seems better (though no HDR in the settings, which I thought it would have after JB update). The gallery I have to get used to. I like the old one better. Let's see how it all goes these next few weeks.
  • I have successfully updated my younger brothers T989 S2 just a few minutes ago. I am pretty pleased with the update. Kies used to work perfectly when I first installed it September 2012. But later after other Kies updates it really screwed up with updating my phones through Kies or even detecting them. One thing that helped me was to run Kies in Windows XP SP3 compatibility and as a administrator. I have successfully updated the S2 from 4.0.4 to the newer 4.0.4 on a Windows 7 PC that way and then to 4.1.2 on a Windows 8 PC. I'll have to see if I have the same battery draining issues after tomorrow. I have a lot of acquaintances with Galaxy S2's from different carriers. There is no way I can recommend the Jelly Bean update if battery life takes a hit.
  • Updated my Galaxy s2 last week. It is so SLOW. Battery is dead by noon. Slow to dial. Internet no point in even trying to search anything, it stops working and sends up a "sorry network error" and closes out. Will try and reinstall to see what happens. So disappointed!!
  • I have an S3 and a Sensation 4G and I been dying to get JB on it, I mean the official version.... I don't know why HTC left us hanging... Its still a great phone even after buying my S3 I still use my sensation here and there just cuz...
  • I have an S3 and a Sensation 4G and I been dying to get JB on it, I mean the official version.... I don't know why HTC left us hanging... Its still a great phone even after buying my S3 I still use my sensation here and there just cuz...
  • Battery drains quick, Power app killer is gone too. Phone is very sluggish.
  • For those that have upgraded firmware on the SG2 (T989) from T-Mobile, could you tell me what your experience has been? I currently have GB (2.3.6) installed, since I couldn't get Kies to work properly before to upgrade to ICS. Now I have it working and I would love to get JB installed. I have seen a few YouTube videos with the new features and really like them. My biggest concerns are battery life afterwards (I have heard of it being worse AND some people saying it's better), how the phone generally runs, and if you are having issues with Wifi (has that been fixed for those that were having it not connect to wifi at all?). What other things do you dislike about it? What are the things that you like about the upgraded firmware? For those that had issues, did you do a factory reset after doing the upgrade? I heard that it will fix many issues that happen with the upgrade. If you did, did that help at all? Thanks!
  • Upgraded Tmobile Galaxy S2 to JB last week..had problems upgrading so I did a factory reset,, finding different problems with the upgrade. Lag time, unable to connect to network at times, programs erroring out once in a while and when restarted they work fine..battery drains fairly rapidly...just to name a few... not sure I want to keep it...
  • A warning to all yall dont do the software update...i did and it crashed my phone and wiped out everything now my phone wont even load up
  • Today is August 8th. I have the T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy s2 and yesterday August 7th I updated it to 4.1.2 through the kies air software. I downloaded the kies air software on my computer and after it installed I attached my usb cord to my phone and computer. My phone popped up in the kies air software and everything in my phone popped up so I backupd everything that's important to me. And when I finished another screen popped up saying there was a new firmware update. So I pressed it started downloading files from the computer to my phone. Then my phone shut off and went into downloading mode until all files were finished downloading. Then it powered back on and it looks and works just like the T-Mobile Galaxy s3 and it works much better and faster. There's more settings and the camera is even better everything has changed and I'm satisfied.