In 2021, Google unveiled a newer version of Android (Android 12) earlier than usual. Samsung had announced in July 2021 that it would release the Android 12-based One UI 4 Beta software update to the Galaxy S21 series before releasing the stable version. On September 14, 2021, the company finally released the One UI 4 Beta update in some countries: Germany, South Korea, and the US. A few more countries—China, India, Poland, and the UK—got the update over the next few weeks. One UI 4.0 brings more than 60 new features to Galaxy smartphones, and we have listed and explained all of them in this article. We’ve also listed Galaxy smartphones and tablets that will get the One UI 4.0 update.
On top of all the features Google introduced with Android 12, Samsung has added its own set of software features in One UI 4.0. The official One UI 4.0 update changelog mentions a lot of features to get excited about. The new version of One UI brings enhanced privacy and security features, some design UI changes, improved stock apps, more lock screen widgets, a new charging animation, AR Emoji improvements, and much more.
Best One UI 4.0 Features
- Updated Home Screen
- Material You-Based Colour Palette Feature
- New Widget Styling, New Widget Selection Menu
- More Widgets On Home Screen & Lock Screen
- Improved Stock Apps
- Imnproved Dark Mode & AoD Mode
- Quick Settings Panel Gets Thicker Screen Brightness Bar
- Camera App Design Improvements
- Ability To Use Third-Party App Icon Packs Via Google Play Store
- Improved AR Emoji
- Improved Privacy & Permissions Access History
- Extra Dim Screen Brightness Settings
- Improved Bixby, Bixby Routines
- Improved Accessibility Features
- Improved Quick Share
- Image Editor Gets Shadow Eraser, Reflections Eraser
- New Charging Animation
- Quick Setting Toggles To Enable/Disable System-Wide Access To Camera & Microphone
- Privacy Indicators For Camera, Microphone Usage
- Notification When An App Copies Your Clipboard Data
- New Device Care Design
Home Screen Gets Updated Widget & Widget Selection Menu
Samsung has updated the home screen and icons with Google’s Material You-based Colour Palette feature. Based on the wallpaper you choose, you get the option to choose accent colours that are used across the whole UI. Those accent colours can also be applied to the app icons. But only some Samsung stock app icons change when you activate this feature.
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All stock widgets have also been redesigned. They now feature a new and slick styling and Dark and Light modes. Widgets now offer more information at a single glance. Additionally, you should see recommendations for widgets that may be useful for you. Moreover, the widgets selection menu has been simplified and offers a list view of all the available widgets.
Quick Settings Panel Gets Thicker Screen Brightness Bar
Samsung has also updated the Quick Settings Panel in One UI 4.0. It now has an enhanced layout and an integrated section for alerts and silent notifications. Additionally, Samsung has made the screen brightness bar thicker.
Camera App Design Improvements
The stock camera app in One UI 4.0 has received an update as well. The Scene Optimizer button now appears in Photo mode if the ambient light is low or if you are scanning a document. Settings for Portrait Mode and Night mode are now more intuitive. Samsung also has updated the settings layout in the Pro Mode. The Pro Mode now feels more organized and has a cleaner look. Last but not least, the Document Scanning feature has been improved to make fine editing easier using the zoom feature.
Lock Screen Gets New Widgets
Samsung has added a Voice Recorder widget to the lock screen. It lets you record voice memos without unlocking your phone, making it easier and quicker to record voice. Additionally, Samsung also has added a Calendar widget on the lockscreen which shall help you keep track of your events along with a month view.
Ability To Use Third-Party App Icon Packs Via Google Play Store
Yes, you can finally use third-party app icon packs on Galaxy smartphones and tablets running Android 12-based One UI 4.0. However, the feature isn’t available by default. You’ll have to use Samsung’s Good Lock app to use third-party app icons.
Improved Privacy & Permissions Access History
Samsung has focused on improving privacy and security settings and reporting with the One UI 4 update. You can see which apps are accessing sensitive permissions such as camera, clipboard, location, and microphone in the Permission Usage History section of the Settings app. You can even go back as long as seven days to check which apps have accessed sensitive data. You can choose to deny permissions for any apps you don’t feel comfortable with. You can also set if an app can access your approximate location or precise location.
Extra Dim Screen Brightness Settings
Samsung also has brought a couple of new features in Accessibility mode. One such feature is the Extra Dim which makes the screen dimmer than usual. It can be found in the Accessibility settings of the smartphone or tablet. You can even change the screen brightness intensity.
Apart from these notable changes, there are more than 60 new features that Samsung has introduced with its newer One UI version, and you can find all of them in the official changelog below.
One UI 4 Changelog
- 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).
- Preview videos now appear when you enter the Tips app, helping you learn everything your Galaxy can do.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- The dual clock widget now shows different background colors for each city depending on whether it’s day or night.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
Devices Eligible To Get The One UI 4.0 Update
Samsung is the only brand that has been keeping its promise of pushing Android updates and security patches on time. The South Korean firm had announced in February 2021 that it would offer four years of security updates to its devices. It had also revealed that some mid-range smartphones and all high-end smartphones will get three major Android OS updates. It means that the Galaxy S10 lineup will get the One UI 4.0 update. Moreover, there is no doubt that the Galaxy devices released in 2020 and 2021 shall receive the One UI 4 update.
In early 2022, Samsung announced that all high-end and some mid-range Galaxy smartphones and tablets will get four years of Android OS updates and five years of security updates. All high-end smartphones starting with the Galaxy S20 series will get four major Android OS updates.
List Of Samsung Galaxy S Series Android 12 One UI 4.0 Update Tracker
- Samsung Galaxy S10 (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy S10 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy S10+ (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy S10e (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy S10 Lite (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy S20 / S20 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy S20+ / S20+ 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra / S20 Ultra 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy S20 FE (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy S21 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G (Released)
List Of Samsung Galaxy Note Series Android 12 One UI 4.0 Update Tracker
- Samsung Galaxy Note 10 (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Note 10 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Note 10+ (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Note 10+ 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Lite (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Note 20 (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Note 20 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra 5G (Released)
List Of Samsung Galaxy Z Series Android 12 One UI 4.0 Update Tracker
- Samsung Galaxy Fold (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Fold 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Z Flip (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 (Released)
List Of Samsung Galaxy A Series Android 12 One UI 4.0 Update Tracker
- Samsung Galaxy A Quantum
- Samsung Galaxy A03s
- Samsung Galaxy A11
- Samsung Galaxy A12
- Samsung Galaxy A21
- Samsung Galaxy A21s
- Samsung Galaxy A22
- Samsung Galaxy A22 5G
- Samsung Galaxy A31
- Samsung Galaxy A32
- Samsung Galaxy A32 5G
- Samsung Galaxy A41
- Samsung Galaxy A42 (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy A42 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy A51
- Samsung Galaxy A51 5G
- Samsung Galaxy A52 (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy A52 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy A52s 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy A71 (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy A71 5G
- Samsung Galaxy A72 (Released)
List Of Samsung Galaxy M Series Android 12 One UI 4.0 Update Tracker
- Samsung Galaxy M01
- Samsung Galaxy M01s
- Samsung Galaxy M02
- Samsung Galaxy M02s
- Samsung Galaxy M11
- Samsung Galaxy M12
- Samsung Galaxy M21
- Samsung Galaxy M21s
- Samsung Galaxy M31 Prime
- Samsung Galaxy M31s
- Samsung Galaxy M32
- Samsung Galaxy M42
- Samsung Galaxy M42 5G
- Samsung Galaxy M51
- Samsung Galaxy M62
List Of Samsung Galaxy Tab Series Android 12 One UI 4.0 Update Tracker
- Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4
- Samsung Galaxy Tab Active 3
- Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 Lite
- Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 10.4
- Samsung Galaxy Tab S6
- Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 5G
- Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite
- Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 FE (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 5G (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ (Released)
- Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ 5G (Released)
List Of Samsung Galaxy F Series Android 12 One UI 4.0 Update Tracker
- Samsung Galaxy F02s
- Samsung Galaxy F12
- Samsung Galaxy F22
- Samsung Galaxy F41
- Samsung Galaxy F52 5G
- Samsung Galaxy F62
List Of Samsung Galaxy Xcover Series Android 12 One UI 4.0 Update Tracker
- Samsung Galaxy XCover 5
- Samsung Galaxy XCover Pro
Samsung One UI 4.0 Release Date
Samsung released the Android 12-based One UI 4.0 update to the Galaxy S21 series first in November 2021. Later, more high-end and mid-range smartphones and tablets received the update globally. Over the next few months, more entry-level and mid-range smartphones and tablets will get the One UI 4.0 update.
Some devices could go straight to the Android 12-based One UI 4.1 update, which has already been released to the Galaxy S21, Galaxy S21+, Galaxy S21 Ultra, Galaxy Z Fold 3, and the Galaxy Z Flip 3.
How To Join Samsung One UI 4.0 Beta Program?
To join Samsung’s One UI 4.0 Beta Program, you have to download the Samsung Members app. Once you download the app, open it, and register on it, you will see a banner for the One UI Beta Program registration. Click on that banner image and then hit the ‘Enrol’ button. After you have registered your One UI 4.0 Beta Program eligible Galaxy smartphone, head over to Settings > Software Update > Download and Install on your smartphone. If the Beta Progam has been released in your country, you should get the update.