Randall Stephenson: Slow Android updates are Google's fault

Randall Stephenson: Slow Android updates are Google's fault
Ask the average Android owner waiting for what seems like eons for the latest OS update, who is to blame for the long wait and most will throw everyone into the rant that follows. Manufacturers, carriers and Google get the finger pointed at them for what seems to be a very slow current update cycle for the green robot. This is an important subject because Android's main competitor, iOS, has had timely updates including the most recent iOS 5.1.1 which was released this week. Of course, Apple has the advantage as it has three current smartphone models to concern itself with compared with the larger number of Android handsets that all need to be considered for a large, wide spread update.

While Google's role in all of this appeared to be to provide an open-source software, AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson seemingly put the blame for slow Android updates on the Mountain View based tech firm at the Milken Institute 2012 Global Conference. The executive responded to a question about slow Android updates by saying, "Google determines what platform gets the newest releases and when. A lot of times, that’s a negotiated arrangement and that’s something we work at hard. We know that’s important to our customers. That’s kind of an ambiguous answer because I can’t give you a direct answer in this setting."

Google's response was to say, "Watcha talkin' about Randall?" Well, they actually said more than that. Google said that they do not require negotiations before a handset is released. The latest release of Android is available at source.android.com after the first device based on  the update is launched. Google does this to make sure that its latest Android build runs without errors on hardware that has been approved by manufacturers and regulators like the FCC.
We would imagine that things will blow over because at the end of the day, Google does need AT&T and AT&T does need Google. Guys, kiss and make up so that we can move on.

source: 9to5Google via Phandroid



1. sportsinger75

Posts: 72; Member since: Nov 11, 2011

This guy seriously peeves me off... It doesn't seem like he knows anything about Android and he's just spouting his mouth to get the blame off of AT&T. Get real man, you've got to approve the new software as soon as it's available and you'll have many more happy customers because of it. Don't blame it on Google.

2. TheInfamousCJ

Posts: 20; Member since: Nov 24, 2011

Indeed, I received my new gsm Galaxy Nexus last Tuesday, within 5 minutes I was prompted to update my phone to version 4.04. Later that day I chuckled when I read that some VZW Galaxy nexus owners were beginning to receive the very same update. Updates to latest software is not apart of a carriers financial plan for success. I was instructed to use tier one support to solve people issues on their phones. After that urge them to call the insurance or upgrade. Why have the latest software available when you can have the customer can buy a new phone and get locked into a new two year agreement.

13. paulyyd

Posts: 340; Member since: Jan 08, 2011

oh you chuckled bro? sweet

36. ZEUS.the.thunder.god unregistered

exactly. he kinda sounds stupid.

3. Sniggly

Posts: 7305; Member since: Dec 05, 2009

Isn't this the same dumbass who said that unlimited data was a mistake?

21. Gawain

Posts: 443; Member since: Apr 15, 2010

Yeah, it's the same guy. He can't seem to stop whining...wonders for the corporate image, pointing fingers everywhere. I hope the Board of Directors is paying attention.

32. Mxyzptlk unregistered

Do you have to call everyone you disagree with a dumbass?

34. kanagadeepan

Posts: 1271; Member since: Jan 24, 2012

Yes... This guy can talk any bu11_sh!t... Expect the following from his next interviews:- 1) their customers are the real reasons for their network's congestion (and NOT their n/w maintenance or need to improve infra for growing customer base)... 2) Govt is the culprit behind spectrum scarcity (and NOT their foolish policy to give T-Mo the spectrum for compensation)... 3) Verizon behind the slow deployment of their (AT&T's) LTE network... 4) Bloatwares included in their (AT&T) phones are Sprint's fault... 5) Heavy International Roaming tariff is due to Apple's policy... 6) NOKIA is responsible for the tiered data plans... 7) BlackBerry should be blamed for their (AT&T's) slow 3G speeds... 8) T-Mobile should be banned for the failure of their deal... 9) Big size (wrt area) of USA is to be blamed for poor coverage in villages... ------------------------------------------------- On serious note, I think he is solely responsible for the AT&T's plan to take-over T-Mobile, even though a baby knows it will never get approved...

4. Giggity

Posts: 147; Member since: Nov 17, 2011

Everyone, do yourself a favor and ignore this guy, reading/listening to his comment is an insult to your intelligent.

27. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

and your intelligence too :)

5. joey18

Posts: 668; Member since: Jul 20, 2010

Google takes forever looks like apple updates are to slow

6. JGuinan007

Posts: 699; Member since: May 19, 2011

Did you expect a CEO like Randall Stephenson to tell the truth on this and say "Google released the source code months ago, then the OEMs took a month to make the source code work with the hardware on their phones, then released the that code to the carriers, and the carriers take three months to add their bloatware that no one wants on the phone and then turn it over to the custs if the phone is not deemed EOL with that carrier". The carriers are the biggest hold ups. Also the reason phones like the Inspire 4g won't get official ICS update yet the Desire HD will. To get the newest OS update stick with XDA.

7. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

This clown must be related to Sarkozy - it is never his fault. And people wonder why consumers hate AT&T.

24. Lucas777

Posts: 2137; Member since: Jan 06, 2011

hey dont hate on sarkozy… he did the best he could with what he had… and would do much better than the idiot hollande but what i dont understand is how apple is able to push the updates without the carriers checking it… or do they just have the carriers check it before announcing it?

31. Whateverman

Posts: 3295; Member since: May 17, 2009

Apple controls everything about the iPhone except the service, including the updates. In the case of the iphone, i think thats a good thing. Thats why iPhones have no bloatware. They do that with their computers too even with some third party programs like Java. Apple took its time pushing out the Java update and as a result, many Mac computers got hit with a virus.

8. som

Posts: 768; Member since: Nov 10, 2009

Google controlled Android update and fix bugs will be approved by Google before the carrier can test and install new firmware update to customers handsets which is a long process compared to Apple single firmware update to single phone is 100x easier than Android handsets with too many different hard wares, sizes and shapes.

11. Whateverman

Posts: 3295; Member since: May 17, 2009

You probably should not talk either.

14. paulyyd

Posts: 340; Member since: Jan 08, 2011

aw is someone mad :( lol you know you're in trouble when a ceo of a carrier is calling out your company

15. Whateverman

Posts: 3295; Member since: May 17, 2009

No, I have no reason to be mad. My advise was because he sounded silly. Not as silly as you, but silly none the less. If anyone should be mad it sould be the real Pauly D, because he has a wannabe jacking his name.

9. tward291

Posts: 559; Member since: Feb 14, 2012

I'm surprised you guys rant tired of getting f**ked by the Droid

10. Whateverman

Posts: 3295; Member since: May 17, 2009

Why does he keep talking? AT&T needs to put a muzzle on this train wreck!

16. taco50

Posts: 5506; Member since: Oct 08, 2009

I'm sure you know more about the inside and outs of carrier updates than AT&T's CEO.

22. Whateverman

Posts: 3295; Member since: May 17, 2009

Judging by what he just said, maybe I do! It's obvious to everyone except this guy, a few misguided iOS fans and anyone else who didn't read the last few lines of this article that Google has nothing to do with updates after it released to the website. Let me put in Apple user language for you... Let's say you have an iPhone 4 but you are still running ios 4.2 and you want the latest update. The only problem is your cable/internet is down and you can't get a tech to come out for a month. Do you blame Apple because you can't update your phone, or the cable company for taking so long to fix you internet?

28. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

Taco, why do you even open your "mouth" and respond? Seriously. your life is a waste of oxygen. TO Anyone that can not comprehend this shinding. Googles ONLY responcibility (to non nexus phones) is to RELEASE the update to the internet. Nexus phones get a direct update. That is Googles ONLY responcibilty. If you belive anything this whiny CEO says over goog, your a tool bigger than taco.

33. Mxyzptlk unregistered

People love to talk about things they don't know. It happens a lot in the comment sections of PA.

37. iamcc

Posts: 1319; Member since: Oct 07, 2011

Yeah this is worse than the Netflix fiasco.

12. 412News

Posts: 16; Member since: Apr 01, 2012

I swear to God this dude looks like The Joker

17. taco50

Posts: 5506; Member since: Oct 08, 2009

Haha ahaha let's watch the backpedaling in this article. I'll stick with Apple's on time updates thanks

19. BattleBrat

Posts: 1476; Member since: Oct 26, 2011

Alright, while you're sticking with the phone with the on time updates, I'll stick with the phone with apps that run and doesn't crash, The RAZR. My Itouch (64gb 4th) has been laggy as hell since I updated, they call this fixing it?!?!?

20. frydaexiii

Posts: 1476; Member since: Dec 01, 2011

Yes, Apple's on time updates give you bug fixes, but the rare times Android get updates it's for more functions or more efficient way of running functions. I don't know about an idiot like you, but I'd rather have a good OS that gets one update a year to add more functions than have a s**tty OS that gets 10 updates a week to fix minor bugs. PS. i gave u a pity thumbs since I missed the thumbs down...but I'll leave that to the others to thumb u down.

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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