The Samsung Galaxy S3 might have become obsolete device after 2 year of its launch but there is no doubt that this Samsung best-seller has also been the company’s best ever smartphone. The original Galaxy S3 has been so popular that Samsung is still selling the name of S3 with different brandings. The Samsung Galaxy Neo is comparatively a much newer smartphone that was launched back in April this year.
While the users of the original Galaxy S3 did not have the luck to enjoy the official KitKat, the Galaxy S3 Neo, being a new sibling, has recently received the latest Android 4.4.4 KitKat. The first KitKat firmware for the Galaxy Neo was rolled out for the users of the device in Kazakhstan and now Samsung has also released the firmware for Hong Kong.
The good thing about both the firmwares, however, is that they are not carrier-branded. That is to say, if you have a Samsung Galaxy S3 Neo GT-I9300I that is not locked to a specific network provider, you can flash the provided firmware manually. Thus, you are just a few clicks away from enjoying the Android 4.4.4 KitKat update on your phone. If you have got bored with the old Android 4.3, it’s high time to update your phone!
There is no doubt that the 4.4.4 is a big jump from the older Android 4.3 and it’s natural to expect a lot of new changes and features after updating your phone. The new update for the Galaxy Neo GT-I9300I brings a plethora of new features, improvements and enhancements. We have shortlisted some of the noticeable changes below:
- Samsung KNOX security
- The status bar turns transparent and the icons on it become white
- Expandable notifications
- New camera shortcut on the lockscreen
- Option to choose default apps for messaging, home launcher and others
- New effect on screen turns off
- GPS toggle becomes Location toggle
- Samsung clock app has a new Desk Clock tab
- Google Now experience
- The TouchWiz graphical UI is a little better
- Faster performance is faster now
- Tabbed settings panel
- Better battery life
- Many others…
Download Android 4.4.4 Firmware for Galaxy Neo
(More firmware will be added as they become available. The firmwares provided below can be flashed on any GT-I9300I.)
Hong Kong: TGY-I9300IZHUBNI2-20140911135826.zip
Trinidad and Tobago: TTT-I9300IUBUBNJ1-20141028110636.zip
Update Galaxy S3 Neo to Android 4.4.4 KitKat
Installing a Samsung firmware is very easy. All you need is just the firmware file, Odin flasher tool, a some preparations and a few mouse clicks. If you are a novice Samsung users, or have not yet flashed a firmware yourself, you can find the detailed steps below. Just follow things carefully to land safely!
- Download the firmware file our link above and unzip the downloaded file.
- Download Odin tool and extract the zip file: Odin3 v3.09.zip [Mirror Link]
- Download and install Samsung USB drivers on your computer. If you have installed Samsung Kies, you can continue without installing the drivers but make sure Kies is closed while you use Odin.
- Enable USB Debugging on your Galaxy S3 Neo. Go to Settings> About device> Build version and tap it 7 times to unlock Developer options. Then open Settings> Developer options and turn on USB debugging.
- Now run Odin as administrator.
- Turn off your Galaxy Neo, then press and hold the Volume Down+Home+Power buttons for 2-3 seconds. When you the warning screen, press the Volume Up key to enter the Download Mode.
- Connect your phone to your PC via USB cable.
- Wait till the ID:COM port on Odin turns blue. It indicates that your phone has been detected by Odin.
- Now click the AP button on Odin. If you are using an older version of Odin, click PDA button instead.
- Navigate to the firmware folder and select the file with .tar.md5 extension.
Click the Start button on Odin and wait till the firmware is installed.
- Finally, you’ll see PASS! message on Odin indicating that the firmware has been installed successfully.
- Your Galaxy Neo will reboot automatically.
All you need to do now is to disconnect the USB cable and wait till your phone boots up. Enjoy Kitkat!
Fixing Bootloop and Battery Drain
In case the device gets stuck at the bootscreen and does not boot normally after 5 minutes (maximum), do the following steps:
- Open the back cover and pull out the battery.
- Wait for about 30 seconds and insert the battery back to its place.
- Now press and hold Volume Up+Home+Power keys at the same time. Keep them pressed till the Samsung logo with device name blinks for 2 times. Then release the Power button but keep the other 2 keys pressed till your Galaxy Neo boots into the recovery mode.
- Using the Volume Down key, highlight wipe data factory reset option and press the Power key to select the option.
- Confirm wipe by selecting yes.
- When the wipe is finished, go back and select reboot system now option.
Done! You can also follow the above steps if you notice fast battery drain, device overheating or slow performance after installing the firmware. Do not forget to share your experience and screenshots with us!