Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 27th Dec 2011 16:24 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless And another case of the internet apparently wielding more influence than it seems to. To much dismay, Samsung announced last week that several of its popular smartphones, most notably the Samsung Galaxy S, would not be getting an upgrade to Ice Cream Sandwich. The internet backlash was palpable, and today, word on the street is that Samsung is reconsidering its position.
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Marketing research
by Temcat on Tue 27th Dec 2011 16:42 UTC
Temcat
Member since:
2005-10-18

I think this is how certain kinds of marketing research are conducted by prominent market players these days in our heavily networked world. You announce something that looks like your firm decision, then observe public reaction on the Internet and make the real decision.

Reply Score: 4

Comment by Kroc
by Kroc on Tue 27th Dec 2011 16:46 UTC
Kroc
Member since:
2005-11-10

There is something so very wrong with the whole mobile market if in the span of 18 months, 512 MB of RAM on something in your pocket is not "big enough" for *anything*.

Cripes! It’s madness. I had 512 MB of RAM on my PC a decade ago, it was way more than enough then, and you can still comfortably run the latest Firefox on Windows XP in 512 MB of RAM now.

With throwaway hardware comes throwaway software. It sickens me.

Edited 2011-12-27 16:47 UTC

Reply Score: 6

Arms race all over again
by gan17 on Tue 27th Dec 2011 17:36 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
gan17 Member since:
2008-06-03

Just when the arms race on desktop computing seems to have plateaued, up comes Android to start one for mobile devices.

I bet we'll be seeing liquid-cooled smartphones by the time Android Jellybean (or whatever it's called) comes out.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Kroc
by Neolander on Tue 27th Dec 2011 23:29 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

Windows XP is the keyword here. We are talking about running the latest version of a computer's OS. And Windows 7 would run very badly with only 512 MB.

OS bloat existed before mobile devices. The only apparent reason why we start to care now is that in the mobile world, old OS support seemingly sucks bigtime, to the point where one would have to upgrade the whole OS in order to fix a few glitches and exploits here and there. Kind of like if Microsoft forced you to upgrade a WinXP install to Windows 7 in order to fix some random WMF vulnerability.

Edited 2011-12-27 23:38 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by Kroc
by Alfman on Wed 28th Dec 2011 01:19 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Kroc"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

Neolander,

Ideally, the OS would be designed to be little more than an extremely fast, lightweight & transparent API. Everything else should be an application running on top, including the primary launcher/shell. This way one could always update to the latest secure kernel without also updating the heavy UI components which perform poorly on older hardware.

Unfortunately ms and apple are both extremely guilty of setting a terrible precedent with regards to bundling the UI & kernel.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by Kroc
by Neolander on Wed 28th Dec 2011 08:52 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Kroc"
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

Neolander,

Ideally, the OS would be designed to be little more than an extremely fast, lightweight & transparent API. Everything else should be an application running on top, including the primary launcher/shell. This way one could always update to the latest secure kernel without also updating the heavy UI components which perform poorly on older hardware.

Unfortunately ms and apple are both extremely guilty of setting a terrible precedent with regards to bundling the UI & kernel.

I have some trouble understanding what you call an OS here.

If you are saying that kernels should be lightweight, and that everything else should be an independent, easily replaceable application, then I agree.

If you are saying that an operating system, as a complete and ready to use product that is distributed as such, should feature as little API and applications as possible, to the point of leaving the job of designing the user interface to third parties, then I somewhat disagree. It's good to have a standard bundled package, although everything should be easily replaceable.

To say it otherwise : I understand the need for a modern desktop OS to feature a web browser, but I can't accept Microsoft's tendency to shoehorn IE everywhere in Windows so that replacing or removing it becomes impossible.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by Kroc
by phoenix on Thu 29th Dec 2011 07:09 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
phoenix Member since:
2005-07-11

It's not the RAM that matters, it's the ROM size, and how the ROM is partitioned.

Supposedly, there's not enough room in the apps partition for ICS + TouchWiz.

Why there are hard-coded partition sizes in 2010+ is beyond me.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Kroc
by zima on Sat 31st Dec 2011 01:33 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Cripes! It’s madness. I had 512 MB of RAM on my PC a decade ago, it was way more than enough then, and you can still comfortably run the latest Firefox on Windows XP in 512 MB of RAM now.

With throwaway hardware comes throwaway software. It sickens me.

To be fair, most of the past software left much to be desired, too... (we just largely don't remember the trash that ~always flooded the place; most of it was ignored by us even back then, justifiably so)

Plus, the last decade was quite peculiar with PCs, we largely got into "good enough" territory - which absolutely wasn't the case just a short few years earlier, so hardware was also sort of throwaway (and software had issues) / changing a bit too rapidly.

Yes, a decade-old PC can do essentially all that a typical "new" PC does, if some basic care is given to the choice of efficient software. Browsing, music, IM, videophone, videos (last two just at lower, but still fine res), basic document editing - no problem, I know, I keep one such machine around. Even video editing could be not much of an issue, if via a small trick of proxy editing (doing it on low resolution version of footage, at the end exporting changes in full), the only major "sacrifice" being recent games (but 1. most people don't play 2. until recently, most new machines would also struggle)

Something analogous a decade ago, even on merely 5 year old (then) PC, would be much harder. Rewind the clock again ...not even another full decade, just half, and it probably gets into impossible. Those were the times when new usage patterns were exploding, undoubtedly also because the then-new hardware finally allowed them.

Reply Score: 2

512 RAM?
by fatjoe on Tue 27th Dec 2011 16:51 UTC
fatjoe
Member since:
2010-01-12

Where the hell did that RAM limit come from?

The manufacturers always make up an absurd HW limitation, then Google has to go on record saying there are really no such hardware requirements from them.

Also, the 2011 Sony (Ericsson) phones are all getting ICS and they all have 512 RAM (128 of which is reserved for the GPU). And these phones have some customization too.

Edited 2011-12-27 16:52 UTC

Reply Score: 7

RE: 512 RAM?
by TemporalBeing on Tue 27th Dec 2011 18:34 UTC in reply to "512 RAM?"
TemporalBeing Member since:
2007-08-22

Where the hell did that RAM limit come from?

The manufacturers always make up an absurd HW limitation, then Google has to go on record saying there are really no such hardware requirements from them.

Also, the 2011 Sony (Ericsson) phones are all getting ICS and they all have 512 RAM (128 of which is reserved for the GPU). And these phones have some customization too.


Well, at least from the summary, it seems they believe 512MB is necessary for the applications they loaded on it, and they only delivered 512MB on the device, which is not upgradeable so customers are stuck with 512MB.

It may be they have found 512MB had the best price/performance ratio when they pushed it out, but didn't take account what may be happening in the future for Android - no surprise, they'd rather sell you and upgraded model than do that kind of planning.

So it's really their own artificial limit - the solution is to make the software more resource friendly (CPU, memory, etc.) but would require actual work, and to have programmers that actually cared about those things, and managers that would listen instead of the usual "Get it out the door" approach.

Reply Score: 3

v angry mobs 2011
by Worldbuilder on Tue 27th Dec 2011 17:39 UTC
RE: angry mobs 2011
by _txf_ on Tue 27th Dec 2011 17:47 UTC in reply to "angry mobs 2011"
_txf_ Member since:
2008-03-17

dead device.


Whaddaya mean dead? It is less than 18 months old and was top of the range. If ever there was a device that deserves an update it is this one...

Reply Score: 6

512mb
by fran on Tue 27th Dec 2011 18:02 UTC
fran
Member since:
2010-08-06

Wow, 512mb requirement. My first Windows 2000 ME pc used only 256mb ram, and I ran Windows office and everything on it.

Reply Score: 6

RE: 512mb
by Drumhellar on Tue 27th Dec 2011 19:03 UTC in reply to "512mb"
Drumhellar Member since:
2005-07-12

Windows 2000 ME?

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: 512mb
by umccullough on Tue 27th Dec 2011 19:16 UTC in reply to "RE: 512mb"
umccullough Member since:
2006-01-26

Windows 2000 ME?


The best version of windows mixed with the worst version of windows...

It's another way of saying "Windows XP"

Reply Score: 5

v newer- shittier
by antik on Tue 27th Dec 2011 19:29 UTC
RE: newer- shittier
by jptros on Tue 27th Dec 2011 20:00 UTC in reply to "newer- shittier"
jptros Member since:
2005-08-26

I too have issues with my Galaxy S SCH-I500 running the stock 2.3.5 such as the screen turning on randomly which is most annoying at night when you're driving down the road. In addition it will periodically come so unresponsive that I have to pull the battery to regain control. The cherry on top is the camera takes so long to take a picture, whatever you think you got a picture of is not what you got a picture of. I thought my HTC was crappy and this phone was better but the truth is they both suck even at the one thing they should be good at: just being a phone. Battery what? I have to pull out a hand crank to keep these phones sparking for longer than a 15 minute phone call (yes I exaggerated that number, but the battery life of every android phone I've owned has been terrible). What's worse is that the crappy battery lives of the phones on the market now seem to be reducing peoples expectations, frequently seeing people commenting "Man I can get 7 hours of my phone it's great!" F*** that, less than 2 days without a charge for minimal usage is unacceptable. I've had blackberry phones that lasted easily 2 days sometimes more with fairly heavy usage, barely making it through work hours without a charge just doesn't cut it.

These phones initially had that "Oooo shiney" affect on me but I've grown tired of them quickly. Pretty sure I won't get another android phone until this bad taste leaves my mouth. Back to Blackberry I guess, they might be a lost cause but at least they still sell some quality devices compared to the craptastic phones I've been toting around the last year.

Reply Score: 2

Touchwiz
by John Blink on Wed 28th Dec 2011 04:48 UTC
John Blink
Member since:
2005-10-11

I understand that HTC has their UI Samsung has Touchwiz. But I am not familiar with what is Touchwiz?

Because I don't know, it seems like it is Android standard with Samsung Swype keyboard.

What is different? What would I miss if I used one of the mods in future eg CyanogenMod 9.

To me HTC's sense looks obviously different.

Reply Score: 2

Good
by Hussein on Wed 28th Dec 2011 05:11 UTC
Hussein
Member since:
2008-11-22

I might start to like Samsung if they don't kill off support too soon anymore.

Reply Score: 0

Samsung i got an idea for you
by Spoonman on Wed 28th Dec 2011 05:30 UTC
Spoonman
Member since:
2009-02-26

Why not release new stock firmwares for each device for lets say 12 months, and then build an aosp version and open source all drivers, 5his way you leave the option for the power users to naintain your old devices as long as they want. Sure you wont sell every new device to every power user out there, but knowing rhis, we will feel a lot more conftable buying the next device we teen realy buy from you again.
I would definitely love to buy a device from any vendor, knowing that there will be aosp available when the official life cycle has ended.

Edited 2011-12-28 05:31 UTC

Reply Score: 1

say what you want....
by riha on Wed 28th Dec 2011 19:42 UTC
riha
Member since:
2006-01-24

... but this is one of the reasons for me sticking to iPhone.

It has been said,/heard/seen before, all these Android phones not getting any updates, even if they have only been on the market for (example given) 12 months or so.

Reply Score: 1

Why custom skins to begin with?
by cmost on Fri 30th Dec 2011 15:13 UTC
cmost
Member since:
2006-07-16

In my opinion, all these Android phones running TouchWiz, Sense, and other custom skins are just bundling unnecessary bloatware. I can't understand why these phone manufacturers can't simply ship vanilla Android? It's certainly good enough for the Nexus range (superior in my opinion) so why not for everyone else? Why aren't these custom interfaces optional components that users can install only if they choose? Forcing these unwelcome customizations to Android is no different than computer manufacturers shipping myriad crapware with new computers and no longer including a proper Windows installation disk as a result of their meddling. The reason for restore partitions is so that all the crapware and manufacturer customizations get restored too. Why isn't this illegal? Manufacturers want to rope users in and then maintain a stranglehold on the devices once they're sold. My question is this: who really owns my tech, me or the manufacturer?

Reply Score: 2

RE: Why custom skins to begin with?
by zima on Sat 31st Dec 2011 01:46 UTC in reply to "Why custom skins to begin with?"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

"Skins" seem to be how mobile manufacturers try to find some way to differentiate themselves, they don't want to become just ~like PC OEMs. Also not doing, software-wise, quite the same things as the PC ones - adding to the OS not some trash mostly lurking on the sidelines, but top-down customization, "new" UI, which hopefully (in their eyes) will make people "used to" them.

Anyway, there are manufacturers hardly doing any modifications - and yeah, they might as well take over ...coming largely from the same place where PCs are made: ZTE, Huawei (those two perhaps not visible too much, but with explosive growth), partly LG.

PS. And "superiority" of Nexus has a hefty price tag, for vast majority of people it's most likely better to get 3-4x less expensive handset (for example, from one of the 3 mentioned above) and replace it only slightly sooner than a Nexus would dictate (anyway, I suspect that an average Nexus owner is among the "often upgrading" half)

Reply Score: 2

Sony did it
by FunkyELF on Fri 30th Dec 2011 15:50 UTC
FunkyELF
Member since:
2006-07-26

While many geeks would say "good riddance!", the fact of the matter is that offering an upgrade that removes said applications is not going to go down well with consumers, opening Samsung up to all sorts of legal nastiness.


Sony was able to remove OtherOS (Linux) from their PS3 via an update and didn't get in any legal trouble.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Sony did it
by cmost on Fri 30th Dec 2011 16:45 UTC in reply to "Sony did it"
cmost Member since:
2006-07-16

"While many geeks would say "good riddance!", the fact of the matter is that offering an upgrade that removes said applications is not going to go down well with consumers, opening Samsung up to all sorts of legal nastiness.


Sony was able to remove OtherOS (Linux) from their PS3 via an update and didn't get in any legal trouble.
"


Maybe not, but they sure as hell pissed off the hacker community! I would consider that worse than legal trouble!

Reply Score: 2