Google has partnered with chipmaker Qualcomm to expand its Project Treble, in order to ensure four Android OS updates and four security updates on upcoming Android 11 smartphones that are powered by Qualcomm chipsets. With the latest partnership with Qualcomm, Google has only expanded its Project Treble that was introduced in 2017 to enable faster Android updates from manufacturers. Google announced the partnership with the chipmaker in an official blog post on the Android developers forum. According to the new partnership, smartphones powered by Qualcomm chipsets that launch with Android 11 or later will get four promised OS updates and four years of security updates.
Both Google and Qualcomm are working together to allow for faster Android updates from smartphone makers. The Mountain View, California-based giant had introduced Project Treble with this very view in 2017. The goal for the partnership between Google and Qualcomm is to increase the life cycle of Android smartphones as the partnership could help push four Android OS updates (launch version + three updates) and four years of security updates. This will put Android smartphones closer to Apple's iPhones in terms of long-term software support. "All Qualcomm customers will be able to take advantage of this stability to further lower both the costs of upgrades as well as launches and can now support their devices for longer periods of time," Google said in its blog post.
What Project Treble also aims to do is allow smartphone makers to just use the updated piece of Google's software without having to worry about waiting for updated components from silicon companies like Qualcomm. The new approach will also allow Qualcomm to cut down on the added combinations of software that it was forced to support, allowing for faster updates, at least in theory.
While all of this seems convincing and is something Android users have asked for on multiple occasions, there is still some time until we see the benefits of this program. It is also important to note that Qualcomm is only making the commitment for future devices, starting with the upcoming Snapdragon 888 flagship SoC.