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[P]
Android 2.2: Google's Catchupgrade

By Trollaxor in Technology
Tue May 25, 2010 at 10:15:51 PM EST
Tags: Android, browsers, Google, HTML, HTML5, mobile, Trollaxor (all tags)

Recently, Google announced Android 2.2, the next version of their Linux-based mobile operating system targeted at phones and PDAs, at Google I/O 2010. Developers praised the update, calling it and its features a "welcome addition" to the platform.

Android 2.2 will bring the phone operating system closer to parity with its competitors. With 2.2r4 out now and a projected final release date of Summer '10, Android 2.2 is coming fast.

But stepping back from all of the commotion, what exactly is Google offering with this update? What are these new features and who will benefit from them? There are plenty of questions about Android 2.2--and here are the answers.

[See http://www.trollaxor.com/2010/05/android-22-googles-catchupgrade.html.]


Recently, Google announced Android 2.2, the next version of their Linux-based mobile operating system targeted at phones and PDAs, at Google I/O 2010. Developers praised the update, calling it and its features a "welcome addition" to the platform.

Android 2.2 will bring the phone operating system closer to parity with its competitors. With 2.2r4 out now and a projected final release date of Summer '10, Android 2.2 is coming fast.

But stepping back from all of the commotion, what exactly is Google offering with this update? What are these new features and who will benefit from them? There are plenty of questions about Android 2.2--and here are the answers.

Five Alive

Probably the most important update for Android for its end-users is HTML5. This changes very little about the platform itself, but it shows that Google is investing in the technology. It also means that users will have a seamless Web experience.

These two things are important for the future success of Android as a viable mobile platform, though Google's implementation might prove problematic.

On live devices, users will have to install Android 2.2 in its entirety to gain HTML5 support. An entire operating system upgrade for a browser? Get real and update the browser on its own--don't make your users go through the trouble of updating and installing a fundamental update just for some HTML5 support, Google. If this is how you run your phone operating system, I'd hate to see what you expect of Chrome OS users.

And there's also the fact that HTML5 is not novel. Every other industry player has already been including HTML5 support; Apple has long been a proponent of this, including HTML5 support in the developmental Webkit as well Safari since 2007. You're welcome to the party, Google, but don't announce it like you're the one throwing it. You can make catchup, but it's still catchup.

Flash Forward

Oh, Flash. Google and Adobe are performing a very calculated industry sixty-nine because both Apple and Google want the mobile-cum-portable market and Adobe wants the video portion of both.

Apple is pushing the open HTML5 standard; Adobe is pissed at Apple. Google, with the old "the-enemy-of-my-enemy-is-my-friend" tactic, sees an opportunity and hooks up with Adobe. Sadly, revenge sex only seems clever at first.

The reality is that HTML5, being open and supported by hundreds of companies and standard bodies, will win in the end. Google and Adobe will look like assholes having lapped at such a bloated, poorly-coded, closed video platform that everyone else will zoom past using their browsers sans crashy plugin.

Who wins in the end? The entire industry, sharing in the HTML5 platform, and users, whose browsers don't crash or chew up excess cycles and memory. Sadly, though, not Android users, who are unwitting Adobe consumers.

Hotspotting et al

Android will also support "hotspotting," or wifi sharing funneled into its 3G or 4G network, of up to eight other devices. I'm not sure if you've done any serious work on 3G yet, but it's slow.

The prospect of using one 3G account to support other Internet-hungry devices is like expecting a pygmy to carry weightlifters: backbreaking at best and otherwise impossible.

Second, Internet sharing has long been a feature of Mac OS X, which iPhone OS is built upon. This is not a new feature in neither the desktop or mobile segments. Google touting hotspotting as something new and exciting is sneaky: it's new and exciting for Android users, parched for technological conformity, but not more generally to the rest of the world.

Shame on you, Google.

Catchup-Stains

I could go on, but let's staunch the flow of catchup here. The rest of Google's laundry list is the same.

The problem is that they're not really "features," per se, as iPhone OS, Symbian, Blackberry OS, and the various incarnations of mobile Windows have had most, if not all, of the Android 2.2 "features" for years. Android 2.2 is nothing more than Google playing catchup with the rest of the industry.

Automatic updates, auto-fill search, searching file content, SD card support, and an app store--the "Desktop Android Marketplace"--are all old news, and when one looks at the track record of Google announcements and the actual Android platform itself, it becomes clear that Google came way too late to the game.

It's as if Google is on some bizarre quest to emulate Apple at every point possible, and Android is its iPhone-alike, save for all of the features it does and will lack as it struggles to keep up.

Basically, Google is still coding its way to parity with WinCE and iPhone OS. Each and every update, press release, and conference talk is them announcing this. The buzz surrounding it is empty and hollow, most of which comes from the GNU/Linux crowd which views Android as its mobile Open Source savior.

To real developers and users not attached to Google's teats, Android is a novel mixture of GNU/Linux and Java technologies; an interesting if anemic path to the same destination as the rest of the mobile industry.

But it's still a long way from there, and those things do not make it worth coding for or buying. So who is Android valuable to? To whom will Android 2.2 make a single bit of difference?

Quite frankly, Android is valuable to no one—until Google is done playing catchup.

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Related Links
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o Android 2.2
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o 2.2r4
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o http://www .trollaxor.com/2010/05/android-22-googles-catchupgrade.html
o HTML5
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Android 2.2: Google's Catchupgrade | 18 comments (15 topical, 3 editorial, 0 hidden)
Dick Cheney shitting on your forehead (none / 1) (#1)
by Nimey on Sun May 23, 2010 at 10:20:48 AM EST


--
Never mind, it was just the dog cumming -- jandev
You Sir, are an Ignorant Motherfucker. -- Crawford
I am arguably too manic to do that. -- Crawford
I already fuck my mother -- trane
Nimey is right -- Blastard
i am in complete agreement with Nimey -- i am a pretty big deal

flash hilarity (3.00 / 7) (#3)
by horny smurf on Sun May 23, 2010 at 01:16:20 PM EST

it's curious how everyone on slashdot hates flash and can't wait for it die .... until the iphone is involved and suddenly it's the most important feature ever and no web site can do without it.

Android 2.2 might be the best thing ever, but it really doesn't matter yet. The carriers and manufacturers want you to buy a new phone, so they have no incentive whatsoever to update your old phone and it will be a while until android 2.2 devices are available. Meanwhile, Apple will have a new software and hardware out in a couple months. Apple still has an advantage in that they control the entire stack (except for AT&T which is dragging them down) whereas google, hardware manufacturers, and telcos can't quite get their shit together. But they are catching up.

JIT compiler is a pretty big deal... (2.40 / 5) (#4)
by claes on Sun May 23, 2010 at 01:24:31 PM EST

3-5x performance improvement, and the guys working on it (based on android forums at google) understand that initial user experience is crucial -- people make their initial use/don't use decision in seconds, so it has to be fast at the start. Something SUN never fully understood.

There's a boatload of stuff in Android of interest to the embedded java community. It's a reasonable headless Java 5 SE subset with JIT for ARM, something you either had to pay for or make due with limited performance (other open-source jvms). Yes, you have to run it through dx, so it isn't exactly Java SE, but it's close. I haven't been able to pull out just the VM yet, but I haven't spent that much time at it.

Politics rather than technology... (2.55 / 9) (#5)
by it certainly is on Mon May 24, 2010 at 10:18:38 AM EST

is what shapes the comparisons between iPhone and Android.

Apple will sell you the most beautiful cage in the world - fancy wallpaper, amazing curtains, spectacular vistas seen through the bars on the window - but no door. You can't leave. Apple are going to control everything you see and do. You can try to break out, but Apple will do their utmost to catch you and put you back in. It's like series 3 of Prison Break; if the gods decree it, you'll never meaningfully escape.

It's all about control. I heard Steve Jobs can't get an erection without shooting a bound-up Chinese dissident in the back of the head.

In the other camp, you have Android. It's the OS of choice for the frontiersman. Freedom is the freedom to say 2+2=4, or die of dysentery, whichever comes first. Who cares if it lacks the omfg! SHINEY! factor? It puts my phone calls, email, appointments, travel plans, web searches and chats all in one place - Google's servers, and that's something Apple will never offer you.

kur0shin.org -- it certainly is

Godwin's law [...] is impossible to violate except with an infinitely long thread that doesn't mention nazis.

Freedom is slavery, my friend (2.66 / 3) (#8)
by Ruston Rustov on Mon May 24, 2010 at 06:29:27 PM EST

It puts my phone calls, email, appointments, travel plans, web searches and chats all in one place - Google's servers, and that's something Apple will never offer you.

LMFAO. LMAFO. LAMFO.

I had had incurable open sores all over my feet for sixteen years. The doctors were powerless to do anything about it. I told my psychiatrist that they were psychosomatic Stigmata - the Stigmata are the wounds Jesus suffered when he was nailed to the cross. Three days later all my sores were gone. -- Michael Crawford
Maybe tomorrow. -- Michael Crawford
As soon as she has her first period, fuck your daughter. -- localroger

[ Parent ]
i rored (none / 0) (#10)
by Jobst of Moravia on Tue May 25, 2010 at 01:04:41 AM EST


---
              __
   .,-;-;-,. /'_\ ---Did this Negro say "Street Moor"?
 _/_/_/_|_\_\) /
'-<_><_><_><_>=\
 `/_/====/_/-'\_\
  ""     ""    ""

[ Parent ]

bastards at Google are harassing me (2.50 / 2) (#7)
by tdillo on Mon May 24, 2010 at 11:53:06 AM EST

...fuck you, you Google bastards...

"I WANT TO OWN YOUTUBE. I think it's critical, and if it goes to a competitor.....!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
-MTV Networks head Judy McGrath

"If we get UTube... I wanna run it."
-Viacom CEO Tom Freston

"You'll have to kill me to get to it first."
-MTV Networks head Judy McGrath

Oh yeah and btw, -1 for intro repeated in body, pull and resubmit. You know better.

The stories and information posted here are artistic works of fiction and falsehood.
Only a fool would take anything posted here as fact.


-1, take it to a tech site (3.00 / 2) (#11)
by Korean Loller Blader on Tue May 25, 2010 at 02:04:53 PM EST


D'oh! I can't seem to talk to the mod_
ale you a noltheln ol a southeln?$ (none / 1) (#12)
by mirko on Tue May 25, 2010 at 02:43:24 PM EST


--
Finally I managed to make the decision that I would work on it. - MDC
we had to huddle together - trane
[ Parent ]
Depends on where YOU live, but (none / 0) (#14)
by Korean Loller Blader on Tue May 25, 2010 at 03:38:42 PM EST

either way, this ain't no tech site. In my country I'm extremely Southern. Either way, the pevious was what this place was back when the internet was the domain of morons and lonely nerds with nothing to do on a Friday night.
D'oh! I can't seem to talk to the mod_
[ Parent ]
Above, for sure (none / 0) (#16)
by mirko on Wed May 26, 2010 at 01:57:31 AM EST

but near a famous torpedo manufacturer, if you see what I mean...

BTW, where war THAT submarine when the Cheonan sunk?
--
Finally I managed to make the decision that I would work on it. - MDC
we had to huddle together - trane
[ Parent ]

Are you excited about the son of your (none / 0) (#19)
by Wain on Fri Oct 15, 2010 at 10:28:01 PM EST

great and glorious leader appearing out of nowhere and immediately being given all kinds of kudos and securities and titles and shit so he can take over when daddy dies?


[ Parent ]
Android is valuable to Verizon customers who seem (none / 0) (#13)
by king of fools on Tue May 25, 2010 at 02:58:57 PM EST

pretty happy with it. At least the one guy I know. Fix your article Trollaxor, you have to. -1.

----------------

fade out again

Bunch of crap (none / 1) (#17)
by xptm on Thu May 27, 2010 at 07:45:19 AM EST

All the measurable facts contradicts all the author wrote. This is clearly a propaganda article possibly payed by someone... A totally bunch of crap! I wonder he forgot to the catching up on things like, say, multitasking...

This writeup is a complete pile of sickening shite (none / 1) (#18)
by mirleid on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 05:10:05 AM EST

en tee.

Chickens don't give milk
Android 2.2: Google's Catchupgrade | 18 comments (15 topical, 3 editorial, 0 hidden)
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