Posts tagged Android
Posts tagged Android
Four years after Apple released the iPod Touch onto the world, it looks like Sony is ready to get serious about offering up some competition. Just the other day the once-futuristic company announced their Android-powered Walkman which is said to have some stunning audio quality and more processing power than the average person’s smart phone. Will it catch on and sell 60,000,000 units over the next few years like Apple’s iPhone without the phone?
Even the very latest version of Android (Honeycomb, v3.2) isn’t quite up to the standard of iOS in terms of responsiveness and utility-enhancing applications, and I did manage to spot the familiar lag when dragging onscreen items around the Android interface. That’s a software shortcoming that will get better with time, mind you, and having the almost-standard 1280 × 800 Android tablet resolution should stand this Galaxy Tab in great stead to receive the Ice Cream Sandwich upgrade. Samsung says it’ll do its utmost to provide users with the best possible software, but wouldn’t commit on whether or not the 7.7 will get ICS.
Vlad Savov - This Is My Next
Android will never be as responsive as iOS, WebOS, or even Windows Phone so long as they insist on controlling everything through the software. iOS is snappy because everything runs through OpenCL. WebOS is semi-snappy because it also has semi-optimized systems in place for video. Windows Phone is snappy … probably because it’s not trying to redraw 1280x800 pixels at 30 frames a second.
Regardless; until Google mandates that all Android devices will have discreet video processors, Android will have ‘the familiar lag’. Rather than run from it, perhaps developers should embrace it to use the stutter to their advantage.
Google’s surprise acquisition of Motorola caught a number of people off guard, but one thing is clear: this is more about intellectual property than Google’s desire to manufacture and sell its own hardware.
Since losing out to a number of their competitors on both the Nortel and the Novell patent sales, Google has been desperately trying to find a way to protect their budding mobile operating system from the endless legal attacks brought upon them by the likes of Apple, Microsoft, Oracle, and a host of others. However, without any serious amount of clout available to them in the form of patents, they have not had many opportunities to fend off the competition. This could all change, now … but there are some potential complications.
Android vendors such as Samsung and HTC are undoubtedly scrambling to decide what to do regarding this purchase, as the company that provides their OS is now also going to become their direct competitor. This sounds very similar to another mobile operating system that was once very popular with the open source community: Symbian.
Symbian was created with the Open Handset Alliance and was owned by a number of vendors, with shares being almost evenly distributed among the partners. Nokia had more shares than others, though not a majority, and was able to call the shots a bit more than the smaller handset makers liked. Eventually many organizations became leery of Nokia’s involvement with Symbian and left the group, leaving Nokia alone with the shares and the operating system.
With Google now having a hardware division for their Android platform, they may find themselves in a similar predicament. Sure, Android is still “open” enough that vendors such as Samsung can customize the operating system enough to differentiate themselves but, with Google prioritizing Motorola devices, Samsung may decide to focus more on Windows Phone and Bada devices. If Samsung were to drop Android support, other vendors like HTC, Acer, Dell, Toshiba, Panasonic, and others may also get cold feet and run … leaving Motorola as the one and only licencee of Google’s mobile operating system.
This could spell doom for the company that wants to organize the world’s data.
That said, Google has made a promise:
This acquisition will not change our commitment to run Android as an open platform. Motorola will remain a licensee of Android and Android will remain open. We will run Motorola as a separate business. Many hardware partners have contributed to Android’s success and we look forward to continuing to work with all of them to deliver outstanding user experiences.
We’ll have to wait and see, but this seems overly optimistic at best, and complete fiction at worst.