Yes once again the F-word none of us like to hear… Fragmentation in Android… Is it true… yes… we still have devices on 1.6 that are almost a year old… 2.2 is already widely out there and 2.3 SDK is now out, so why are phones coming out with 2.1 still? Why is there so much disconnect between what Google has put out in there SDK to what phones are coming out with? This really is a two part post… 1.) Who is to blame for Fragmentation in Android and 2.) who even cares about it…I’ll answer that second one first since its easier… The only one’s that care of Android fragmentation is the gossip sites or other tech sites and such… as well as Apple fanboys who have to come up with BS excuses as to why they don’t want something that works 2 years ahead of what they are using now. That’s who… the end user doesn’t…Most of the people who I’ve asked either don’t care which OS they are running. They are happy with what they have or root their phones to have it up to date with what the developers are able to push onto it. People who buy the Droid Eris or the Defy or the Backflip are not the ones who care about having the most up to date OS running on there phone. The ones who care are the ones who bought the Nexus One, G2, MyTouch4g, Evo, and the Droid X. They got it for features they currently have, not hoping to get.
So now that we have gone over who gives a cares about what OS there Android phone is running or not running; let’s get to why there is even fragmentation at all. Manufacturer… plain and simple. Google didn’t say “You know what Motorola, our stock look needs some BS widgets and to be colorful like the coral reef s, can you please put a lagging overlay of BS on it?”… Nor did they say to Sony Ericsson “Put something on those sexy phones, but make sure it’ll only run 1.6 until we have 3.0 out then put 2.1 on it and they’ll be happy.”
All of this fragmentation goes back to manufacturers and not Google. Does Google take some blame? Yes, they allowed them to put BS on top of there OS to make it so each could have its “own”. Does someone who just bought a Cliq care about having 2.2 the minute it drops? You bought a gimmicky phone you get gimmicky crap in return. You want what Google will send out quick get a phone that doesn’t have some overlay third-party add-on to it and you’ll get it.
Other tech sites will forever run stories about how horrible Android is with keeping its devices up with the other ones. Yet isn’t the one who puts it on the devices… Motorola, HTC, LG and others are… Yet why are sites that naive to blame Google and not who really the issue is with. I don’t get it… neither do they.