Android is going to become more like Apple because that's what Google wants
0. phoneArena 08 Aug 2013, 14:47 posted on
I'm getting a little bit tired of the constant shouting by Android fans that nothing seems to matter aside from specs. The trouble I have with that argument is that it's based on old, busted logic. To me, it comes off just as silly as when Apple fans continue to claim that Android is laggy or buggy, because both arguments are based on platforms that don't exist anymore...
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30. sprockkets (Posts: 1611; Member since: 16 Jan 2012)
" Back in the days before Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, Android was laggy and it was buggy; and the best way for manufacturers to combat the lag issues was to push as hard as possible on specs."
Bull sht. I have an HTC Dream running stock 1.6 that never, ever, EVER lagged.
"There's a reason that Apple doesn't talk about the specs of its hardware except in comparative terms. The new iPhone is always "twice as fast", or Apple will show what the graphics look like in a new game. Think about it: Apple never even compares its new devices to its old ones directly. It's never that the new iPhone is "twice as fast as the iPhone 5", it's simply "twice as fast"."
BS again. Apple did exactly that on stage when the ipad 4 came out.
34. quadrazeus (Posts: 359; Member since: 03 May 2013)
And you know what else is BS? YOUR comment.
How about you upload a video on YouTube showing us your smooth and silky experience on android 1.6?
Fandroids need to learn to accept the facts instead of presenting counter statements that are, 99% of the time, made up.
44. sprockkets (Posts: 1611; Member since: 16 Jan 2012)
I wish I could, but HTC took down the factory image for it and I can't find a copy of it on my computer. I left it running Yoshi 2.3 because 1.6 didn't have all the cool features of newer oses like easy file downloading.
Watch it here.
This is the magic, sorry, dream was the exact same phone but with a physical keyboard. I have the Google ION variant you see here.
58. sprockkets (Posts: 1611; Member since: 16 Jan 2012)
Oh and just to clarify, it ran 1.0 originally in the variant of the mytouch3g but was updated to 1.5.
32. Loubielou (Posts: 506; Member since: 11 Jul 2012)
Google will end up like Samsung having court cases with Apple,but we All want one main Feature added to Android is the "Exit Function" put on Applications,because batterylife on Android phone needs Improving,as the Apple iPhone batteries are Struggling because of to many applications put on the iPhones,Why "Exit" as never been put on Android it truely Amazing,as this just shows that Google do not seem to realise the cost of using Android,as charging your phone everyday is not cheap an annoying,Nokia at Exit on Symbian phones an batterylife of 2-3 days we never get this on Android
35. yudi.nemesis (Posts: 1127; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)
Nice article and very eye opening thanks Michael H
36. quadrazeus (Posts: 359; Member since: 03 May 2013)
+1000 to Michael for an incredibly well written article.
63. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2701; Member since: 26 May 2011)
It's a shame we don't have a +1000 button, but thanks anyway!
37. Stuntman (Posts: 835; Member since: 01 Aug 2011)
The only spec I cared about when I bought my last phone was how much storage was on it.
39. hypergreatthing (Posts: 43; Member since: 13 Jun 2012)
I don't even get this article. The whole point of specs is choice. Google/Android doesn't have one set of hardware, they have everything from top of class 800$ phones to super cheap 50$ phones. Specs is what makes the difference. Does it really matter to anyone but the manufacturers if they're .02% faster because of the choice of cpu? Well it can make or break a new phone at a given price point.
No one cares about specs when they're dealing with apple because there is 0 choice. If you want this years model, there is no shopping around, no comparisons, no anything. You buy it or you don't. If you want to PR it up by saying, don't worry about specs, they care about user experience... that's living in some world where the crap your buying isn't worth it.
I think specs are very important due to one main factor. Competition. Without pushing the devices to the limit in terms of how good they are vs. how much they cost, you'll have what apple is, which is a turtle in terms of smart phone evolution.
64. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2701; Member since: 26 May 2011)
The point is that specs shouldn't drive choice. Performance and useful features should drive choice.
85. Zero0 (Posts: 592; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)
Thumbs up a million times.
Specs are nice, but they won't make a device. Well thought out software (in terms of both features and efficiency) makes a device.
115. SuperMaoriBro (Posts: 523; Member since: 23 Jun 2012)
but geeks will always like specs. have to compensate for other inadequacies somehow :p
154. hypergreatthing (Posts: 43; Member since: 13 Jun 2012)
... performance and useful features are dictated by what components the manufacturers decide to use. It's a two way relationship. Sure, you could get away with a older, more mature setup (like an iphone) and say that it performs enough and has enough features. I'd prefer if manufacturers like in the android market were trying to out-do themselves constantly with healthy competition.
Case in point, i can't wait for android manufacturers to come out with flexible screens. Then i'll point and laugh as it takes apple 5 years to come out with one with a flexible screen.
40. DaNTRoN (Posts: 135; Member since: 23 Jul 2012)
I've had android since Moto Droid, it has come along way. One thing I've learned though. Samsung, LG, HTC, who cares... Nexus is Nexus, and Nexus is the best. Here's to seeing what Google (the only company that truly matters with android) can do.
88. Zero0 (Posts: 592; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)
I went from the Droid 2 to the Nexus 4.
Holy crap awesome decision. Nexus software is so good. "Mid-range" specs haven't stuttered at all. Eagerly awaiting the CM 10.2 nightly.
Although I must admit, I'd consider the Moto X if they'd release it unlocked at a lower price point. Say, a Google Play Edition with Active Notifications and always-on Google Now. I'll wait a couple extra weeks for an update in exchange for some of Motorola's features.
41. buccob (Posts: 2522; Member since: 19 Jun 2012)
Well I have 2 things to say... First, I agree with most of the article, but the optimization part is not all that matters... While a lower MP camera well optimized (Nokia, Apple, Samsung) can take better pictures than a poorly optimized one with significant high MP (Sony, Moto?)... There is a fundamental value with putting the best internals.. and that is Future Proofing your device...
A smartphone today last about 1 year in our hands before we move to the next... but with better hardware you get the potential of having also optimization in the future, and not having the "need" of getting another phone before your current one's first birthday.
Secondly you forgot to mention Sony in this article, which is not a surprise, but I would like to know your opinion on this approach...
One that, for me, it seems to take cues from Samsung, and Google at the same time...
Notice Sony UI lately, and also specs and optimization... and hardware internally and externally...
I am not trying to push Sony into everyone and everything, but for me it seems that in Android, they are the most balanced with their phones... Having a good quality, optimization, features and price...
52. DANTExphone888 (Posts: 102; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)
I'm tired of the haters, and Michael sounded extremely rude with the title! So if I hear anymore hate, I'm going to try and find out how to delete my account on this website.
65. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2701; Member since: 26 May 2011)
You're right, the title was a bit much. Sorry. I've changed it.
60. ThePython (Posts: 879; Member since: 08 May 2013)
Immature fanboys: what I wouldn't do to see their raging faces right now.
67. thiscantbereal (Posts: 5; Member since: 29 Jul 2013)
Who cares people its just a phone. People act like you work for Google or Apple. You don't !!
72. fanboylemonkiller (Posts: 16; Member since: 18 Jul 2013)
well there are 2 diffrent persons. the average consumer and the hardcore one. google are aiming for the avrege consumer wich doesnt care much about specs but about the user experience.
if you are anything like me you like costumize your phone with launchers, roms maybe and play hardcore games at constant 60 fps with the best screen. i care about the phones specs so its more future proof to the things i want to do to years later.
75. dirtydirty00 (Posts: 421; Member since: 21 Jan 2011)
"or the screen has more pixels (as if you can see the difference anyway). "
i hope i dont see an article for a new iphone one day written by this guy proclaiming how sharp and great the screen is compared to the other phones...
82. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2701; Member since: 26 May 2011)
You probably won't, because John V does most of our hardware reviews and comparisons.
83. designerfx (Posts: 76; Member since: 26 Mar 2013)
oh you will. but they'll never mention that he cited his own article as the "proof".
that's the biggest sign of a bad writer, right there. When your main cite is yourself, and it's an editorial? welp.
104. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2701; Member since: 26 May 2011)
They aren't meant to be "proof", because you can't "prove" an opinion. All you can do is support an opinion with evidence, observation, and reason.
Citations would be found at the bottom of an article as "reference". The rest are just the standard links you would find in any of our articles to give those who want more reading on a related topic.
80. designerfx (Posts: 76; Member since: 26 Mar 2013)
this article is so far out in left field that it's almost hilarious. There is no actual argument in the article, just purported claims: "android wants people to focus on the experience" followed by, well, citing yourself? that's so BS that it's pouring out the eyes of the writer.
android is going to get more polished but they are unable to become like apple, and that's a good thing. They don't sue their competitors, they use open source (BSD is not freedom or free, folks), and they aren't afraid to throw out new ideas that will fail and improve upon them.
none of those are things that apple has ever done.
I'd also like to point out that from a maturity perspective mobile hardware has moved faster in 5 years than PC tech did in 10-15. Maturity of the platform just confirms that other PC/computing needs are going to dwindle in demand (but probably never go away)
89. 1113douglas (Posts: 193; Member since: 04 Jul 2013)
NOW LETS LOOK AT THE FUTURE! ANDROID HAS OVERTAKEN iOS BY SO MUCH, ALL APPLE DOES IS COPY FROM ANDROID! SOON THE WHOLE WORLD WILL HAVE ANDROID PHONES, AND APPLE WILL NOT EXIST!
96. snowgator (Posts: 3558; Member since: 19 Jan 2011)
Interested in a side wager on that one?
90. Moimalo (Posts: 11; Member since: 26 Apr 2011)
The writer of this article, Michael H., said, Google wants Android devices to be like the iPhone. That argument make me think you don know what you are talking about. The success of Android devices, with some exceptions, is because of the big differences between Android and Apple OS and devices. You don want to be like the leader, you want to pass him. Thats the Android key to success. Android is hungry and Apple is just sitting in its very own comfort zone. Watch out.
106. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2701; Member since: 26 May 2011)
Actually, the article says that Google wants Android to be like Apple, not like the iPhone, not like iOS. The point is to be different from iOS, be better than iOS, and to continue improving faster than iOS, but to understand that Apple may have a good idea in focusing effort on certain features, and not going for overkill on specs or software.
161. Commentator (Posts: 3669; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)
Not to come off as a contrarian, but hasn't Google traditionally been the "kitchen sink" company as a foil to Apple's "thought-out" approach?
How do you Michael, as a professional and avid follower of the industry, think their impending switch to quality over quantity will effect (affect? Sorry, it's been a long day) Google's notoriously pervasive corporate-culture of reckless pursuit of innovation? Moderation has always been Apple's hallmark, but Google at it's core is a company based on providing as much as possible. Case-in-point: "What has search-overload done to us?"
I don't think you're suggesting that Google will completely change this culture, but becoming more "Apple-like" is bound to have implications for its image. I for one have always enjoyed (to put it in overly-simple terms) watching Apple's Jeckyll square off against Google's Hyde.
91. Luisit0 (Posts: 73; Member since: 18 Feb 2013)
I agree, see they ridiculize older Androids or make them sound old and useless, and their owners will feel left behind... Then they'll rather go for Apple.
93. MorePhonesThanNeeded (Posts: 645; Member since: 23 Oct 2011)
At last someone notices that we are rapidly approaching the point of ill refute. All this talk of quad cores and other such nonsense is incredibl dumb. It's a phone and all this power we want in the device is being used up just trying to display the bloody screen...check how much battery life is sucked up just having the screen alone powered. I love the fork that Motorola has taken, it leads to me wondering when they will use a core just to tell the phone when to charge even if the device is plugged in all day long.
All this smartphone business and so far very few are what you would actually call "smart", not a single phone knows not to charge unless your power is low or at a certain time. Nope, they all charge even if it's at 99% and you just plugged it in, it instantly starts charging...WTF? Idiot phone!
It's not about power it's about usability and ingenuity. If someone picks up a device that can make calls and last all day long, isn't a pain in the ass to use, why wouldn't they go tell others about this device? Why do you think the iPhone sold so much, it's idiot proof and it just works. No one cares what is under the hood because that was never important, you just used it and that was that. Motorola is going for the same thing, but too many Android morons are stuck on more power that ends up never being utilized in anyway. Smart phones always attempt to save power and quad core processors were supposed to be more effecient than dual core but that isn't the case as these quad core phones always try to use as little of the 3rd and 4th core as possible. Why is that? It's because it isn't as effecient as you would think. This isn't a desktop which tends to have limitless power supply and can run at a low power state utilizing 4 cores, but a smartphone runs at even lower power so I would hope that power states in quad core phones would work the same way but it sure as hell isn't shown at all. All these nice quad core phones coming out but no app, programs or anything actually use 4 cores. The OS doesn't even need 4 cores to run smoothly, so you are paying for relatively useless tech since you get ZERO benefit aside from bragging rights.
I own a DNA and I honestly think it's a great device to look at but with all the extraneous OS additions it hiccups often and slows down. It has 2GB of RAM but only 1.5 is available at any given time and just last night this bloody phone was using up 1.1GB of RAM...wtf, I was barely doing anything with it that damn useless and cumbersome HTC Sense took up by itself 150MB that was the first time I ever saw it reach such a level. I wished manufacturers actually tried to differentiate their products with things that didn't drag the phones performance down so much. Sure they run fine when you get it, but give it a few months and watch it slow down. I for one hope Motorolas push actually forces these guys to rethink their MOAR POWAHH route.
94. snowgator (Posts: 3558; Member since: 19 Jan 2011)
Hmmmmm..... should I be ticked off and enraged like everyone else??? Sure would be fun...
First off, I miss the "spec wars" time of mobile. 2010-2011, when I really starrted trying to learn about mobile as to be sure my family and friends made good 2-year decisions on devices, things were EXPLODING in the mobile world. LTE, dual core processors, the move from smaller, pocket handy devices to larger, multi-media devices, the tablet wars, Androids skrocketing popularity, Windows Mobile, BlackBerry OS7, and WebOS (oh, how I miss thee) getting swept aside.... there was a ton to keep things on edge then. A ton to predict (wow, was I wrong a lot), and a ton to debate.
Now, we need to understand the nature of this mobile world is simmering down a bit, and see what is building empires. Why is Apple, who must level headed mobile user will admit been passed by in features in hardware, still such a force? They still lead the way in two very important catagories: Support and ecosystem. People emersed in the Apple experience get their devices upgraded and problems addressed, and enjoy still unmatched across platform sharing. This is why MS is doing what it is doing: They will happily move a little slower to get Windows 8 out as a mobile leader, and get WP/XBOX/XBOX Music to work as an ecosystem. throw in the cloud capatability, and they see where they want to be in 5 years. Basically, where Apple is now.
Of COURSE Google wants a more unified experince across Android devices. They have a great lead in mobile, and a slowly developing tablet following. They have access to music/movie services. They have the cloud. They have a pretty decent set of work/business tools. If they get Android across all mobile to work more seamless and updates more unified, why can't they compete in what Apple has and what MS is trying to build??
Awwww... this wasn't fun.
Micheal.... you SOLD OUT YOU TRAITOR, YOU!!!
Yeah, that was better.
128. networkdood (Posts: 6330; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)
Ecosystem? You talk like someone brainwashed. Yeah, enjoy the Apple ecosystem. Enjoy overpaying for apps and devices. This is precisely why Google is a better choice, a better value that gets better each year.
151. snowgator (Posts: 3558; Member since: 19 Jan 2011)
And you talk like someone so bitter. It is just tech.
Apple is overpriced. So what? Waiting on the point. Millions of consumers enjoy the apps, iTunes, products, and whatever Apple has lined up next. My whole point was the Google could easily offer the same experience at a much better price range if - and only if- they can unify their mobile division. Which was the point of this whole article.
Apple supports every iPhone, iPad, and Mac computer for 3-4 years after purchase. No other ecosystem comes close. You do not have to like them to respect them.
I, by the way, am almost exclusively a MS user-WP and all. I just respect what Apple has built.
97. djkhalid (Posts: 109; Member since: 01 Jul 2013)
THIS COMMENT MAY BE BIASED BECAUSE I'VE NEVER LIKED APPLE... So I personally think ios7 is made for a 5 year old based on icons and the over all look. Android ( Samsung in specific) has long surpassed Apple.
99. md227a (Posts: 141; Member since: 20 Mar 2012)
I'm happy with stock android on my nexus 7 and Google edition S4. And agree that software optimization is more important then having the better hardware specs.
103. Kishin (Posts: 704; Member since: 30 May 2013)
Wish for this happen, even though it kinda late. specks would have to fall back in order to focus on android not specks.
108. eman99 (Posts: 360; Member since: 03 Aug 2010)
what the point of buying Motorola if you cant control it.
112. fanboy1974 (Posts: 1345; Member since: 12 Nov 2011)
Let's compare 2 vehicles; a Toyota Corolla vs a Toyota land cruiser. If you're driving to work by yourself the Corolla would make perfect sense right? But some people prefer the bigger body (5.5" 1080p display), V8 (quad core processor), 6 speed transmission (2 gigs of memory) with 30 gallon tank (3000 mah battery) over the boring Corolla (iPhone).
In this example the Corolla makes perfect sense especially if you're by yourself. But were humans; we want bigger, faster and stronger. Or if you're a guy you want the most beautiful, most intelligent and well rounded female you can get your hands on. Should phones be any different?
120. snowgator (Posts: 3558; Member since: 19 Jan 2011)
Huh. Okay with that argument. But remember, the vehicles you gave as an example have totally different performance. At this point, there is very little difference in quad core VS. Dual core or pixel density in most smart phones.
113. Q1Q10 (Posts: 20; Member since: 08 Mar 2013)
That's pretty much it, if they can fix lag, and get games to be optimized for the platform, my decision on whether i should buy android or ios would be much, much easier
116. deathgod (Posts: 122; Member since: 23 Nov 2011)
Specs matter to the extent that they allow you to be able to do more/things quicker with your device. I'd rather have the power and not need it, than not have it at all, same with software feature. It's called choice and progression. If people are going to gonna be stuck with a phone for two years or shell out hundreds of $, they want to make sure they're getting the most out of their money and their phone won't be obsolete quickly.
I'm still rocking a GNex (Cm 10.1) which has a great user experience, but would be better with more recent hardware (apps will launch faster, faster browsing, bigger screen, able to play better games, etc.). I think at this point people assume that the user experience will be there with JB, and look at the specs to see how much better that experice can be.
127. XperiaFanZone (Posts: 2075; Member since: 21 Sep 2012)
not trying to start an argument, but can you tell me how my Xperia u came with 2.3? it has a dual core. you said" Android didn't even have proper support for multicore processors until Android 3.0 Honeycomb, which was tablets only, meaning that Android phones didn't get multicore support until Android 4.0."
147. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2701; Member since: 26 May 2011)
Dual-cores came before Android had proper optimization for multicore processors.
133. darkkjedii (Posts: 20085; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)
I've always felt android needed to become more iOS like, and iOS needed to become more android like. Android is sorely missing auto compression/auto edit in the vid camera, better picture folder management, better cut copy paste, and a better music player. iOS needs widgets, an app drawer "c'mon apple it's time", screen size isn't android that's the handset makers, but a bigger screen is welcome, and way more customization options. The rest it's getting in iOS 7. These are the two top platforms, and I love and use both.
197. buccob (Posts: 2522; Member since: 19 Jun 2012)
Well I agree with your 2 first lines dark... However picture management, copy-paste, music player are, most of the time brand dependant... Sony, Samsung, LG and others make their own core apps which include Keyboard, Music Player, Photo Album, and many more, and in my experience with all those brands, Sony's Walkman player is the best I have ever used, the simplest, and coolest, has extensions and many features without being overwhelming... While Samsung's Music player has the most functions but it lacks simplicity and looks... I would dare to say that the Walkman app is better than Music in the iPhone...
New Samsung and Sony Albums for picture is really great and I also like them better than the one in iOS 6... (iOS 7 looks better though)
And Keyboard, I would say the one that new Samsung device brings is more accurate than Sony's but the later has many skins and is a bit simpler...
iOS lack customization for the keyboard as well... Swype-like input, ie.
If you were just comparing iOS vs stock Android (nexus) I can see your points... but Sony and Samsung offer great features (bloatware for some) that addresses the disadvantages you mention.
And I think that beside Widgets, iOS needs a "Multi-window" or Floating apps, like the ones you can find in Samsung and Sony today... these offer a better multitasking and usability experience... specially for Tablets.
134. clevername (Posts: 1436; Member since: 11 Jul 2008)
Michael.... Great article. I love how you were nearly clairvoyant when you called out all the spec hogs. They came in spades like they didn't even read.... Then again they probably didnt
135. coinmanmat (Posts: 12; Member since: 28 Nov 2012)
living up to the "iPhone Arena" title I see
146. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2701; Member since: 26 May 2011)
Only if you don't actually read the article...
164. Commentator (Posts: 3669; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)
Can you just perma-ban everyone who uses the term "iPhoneArena" please? It's never held any weight, and even if it did it's the laziest, most uncreative insult I've ever seen (hyperbole duly noted). PA deserves better critiques.
139. Mrmark (Posts: 269; Member since: 26 Jan 2013)
What is more interesting is the S4 lags more than the Note 2
140. thephonedude (Posts: 60; Member since: 27 Oct 2012)
Finally Google is moving towards the right direction. I use androids and honestly I have never liked the way those hardcore android fans (especially geeky ones) kept bragging that specs is everything. Tell me, what real life performance difference can you tell from a galaxy express and a galaxy S III? am using the lg optimus l5 which is clocked at a lowly 800 MHz and I have o ssay, android ICS for it really spiced up the over all performance and an OFFICAL JB update is coming for this phone. Hardcore geeks may just say that the phone is slow with updates but when do you often see low end single core phones getting software updates? Just to say that Google should really spice up the UX and not really focusing on specs.... and they've gone the right way... Keep it up Google.
142. GoVinci (Posts: 16; Member since: 13 Dec 2011)
Come on. I thought were done with Motorola X already.
Google is in a very tricky situation. They have to balance everything. There's Apple, Motorola, and the rest of the Android gang.
I agree the point the author is driving at. Google wants people to care less about the specs and more on the experience. That's what a product is supposed to be. Nobody can fault Google for that. But there's more to it than that.
If you looked at it in a different perspective:
On one hand, Google owns Motorola. They invested a lot of money (to ward off Apple) and as a businessman, you got to have something in return.
On the other hand, there's Samsung, HTC, LG, Sony and other OEMs which Google owes for the Android success. These guys produce top-of-the-line products. Innovating at a staggering speed.
In this situation, Google is walking on eggshells. COMPROMISES have to be made. And make the most out of the situation they're in. Google sees this as an opportunity.
Very catchy title BTW. That is sure going to add fuel to the fire. Lol. But hey, everyone's entitled to his own opinion.