Last week we mentioned that the long-awaited Android 4.3 update to last year's Samsung Galaxy Note II has been spotted in Samsung service centers in India. Now it seems that a version of that firmware has been leaked out and is getting passed along over the Internet.
Just to be clear, this is not the final firmware image itself but is one of the final test builds. These means that there will practically be no major changes between this build and the one that gets rolled out to users. However, there still might be some bug fixes and tweaks that are not yet included in this build, but those should be pulled in later on with the final release anyway.
Aside from the major version bump to Android 4.3, this update is expected to bring parts of the Galaxy Note II's features in line with the those found on the Galaxy S 4 and the Galaxy Note 3. A lot of these are superficial, like the tabbed settings interface and UI theme. Others are more involved, such as the addition of the Samsung Knox security framework and support for the Samsung Wallet e-ticket management system. There is no word yet if the new Air Command S Pen features are also debuting in the update, or if the Galaxy Note II will also be suffering the imposition of regional SIM lock like the Galaxy S 4 and Galaxy S III.
As the build that is making rounds on the Web is a complete firmware image, installing involves a process that will wipe your device. If, for one reason or another, you can't wait for the official release, just make sure that you have a proper backup and understand the risks involved in flashing unofficial firmware.