News by Andrew Kameka on Tuesday October 29, 2013.
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Verizon has started sending the Android 4.3 Jelly Bean update to Samsung Galaxy S4 users, enabling support for new Android features and the ability to connect the device to the Samsung Galaxy Gear smart watch. The update is rather surprising because Samsung announced last week that it would begin updating the S4 to Android 4.3, but carriers based in the US tend to deliver updates weeks later than their European counterparts. The fact that an America carrier - particularly Verizon, which has a tendency to not update phones as swiftly as its rivals - is the first to deliver the latest version of Android 4.3 Jelly Bean to consumers is quite surprising.
Samsung Galaxy S4 owners can check for the update by going to Settings > More > About phone > Software update. Here's what's new in the Galaxy S4 Android 4.3 update:
- Samsung Galaxy Gear support for smartwatch notifications, voice notes, photos, Bluetooth calls, and more
- Blocking Mode added to Settings
- NFC can be enabled before using Group Play
- Samsung KNOX security enhancements added
- Starter Mode is now Easy Mode
- Viewdini app removed
- Weatherbug improves auto-refresh
- Data Usage Meter now includes Mobile Hotspot data usage
- Video app crashing bug squashed
- Bug caused by taking a picture when on a phone call has been fixed
Andrew is MobileBurn.com's managing editor. He is based in Miami, Florida.