Capital One Android App Traps My Phone In Infinite Updateless Loop

David’s Android smartphone, a Galaxy S, is still working just fine. It just has one problem: he can’t upgrade it to a newer version of the Android operating system. He’s stuck on 2.2. So what? It doesn’t affect him all that much except for how his bank’s app requires a newer version of Android than that. His phone gets stuck in a loop of being unable to update.

He writes:

Just wanted to drop you a line as a heads-up. I just got a confirmation secure message from Capital One that they are no longer supporting legacy versions of Android in their Mobile Banking App on the Play Store. That means no support for any versions older than 2.3.3. They are effectively alienating between 10-15 percent of all Android users with this move. I would have thought an email or warning would have been sent. The problem is that my phone, which still functions fine, hasn’t been upgraded beyond 2.2. That is a carrier/OEM issue, not my choice. Here is what I original wrote to Cap One:

“I have been using your Android App on my Galaxy S (Vibrant/SGH-T959)
running Froyo for the past year. It is pretty convenient to keep tabs
on my account balances and to make payments on the go. Today, I went to
launch the app. It starts just fine, but when it comes to the screen to
select “Credit Card Accounts”, I am greeted with the following message”

“Update Available A newer version of Capital One Mobile Banking is
currently available. Please update your version by visiting the Android
Market.”

I followed the directions and navigated to the Play Market on my phone
and opened my installed apps tab. I found the Capital One Mobile
Banking app that I had installed on my phone, but noticed right away
there was a new banner at the top of the page that reads “Your device
isn’t compatible with this version.” I later logged into Google Play
from a desktop computer to confirm–only my Nexus 7 is compatible, not
my Vibrant phone. This leads me to think that the latest update to your
app drops legacy support for Froyo devices. I find it difficult to
understand why you would just drop support for Froyo devices without so
much as a warning. The “error loop” I mentioned above renders the app
useless on my device. I can not currently use it, nor can I update it.
My only option is to uninstall it or get a new phone. What is the
meaning of this legacy support alienation?”

I had originally emailed this to them. I got a reply a few hours later saying that I had to log into my account to send this inquiry via secure message. The irony was that I was on the road and only had my phone, WITH NO APP. Here is their reply/confirmation:

“Hello XXXXX XXXXX,

Thanks for your message.

Currently we do not offer support for Android versions prior to 2.3.3
online.

We do make enhancements to our Web site from time to time, so please
continue visiting us at http://www.capitalone.com to see if this feature has
been added.

Thanks for being a Capital One® customer, and please let us know if
there’s anything else we can do for you.

Regards,

Capital One”

Kind of a cop-out of an answer, but at least they did confirm that it just isn’t my phone. Oh well.

Yes, the answer confirms the problem, but doesn’t explain why they’re treating his phone as obsolete. Oh, well, indeed.