Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 26th Aug 2014 22:32 UTC, submitted by Decius
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless

How do you determine what makes a good OS? What makes iOS vs. Android or Windows Phone vs. BB10, or any other such comparison not just about the fanboyism? Is it even possible to arrive at a scientific conclusion to this question? If we look at entire ecosystems, Android and iOS are obvious choices for buyers because of the sheer amount of apps they have available. However, what's that got to do with an answer to the question, "What's the best designed OS out of the box?"

Not going to spoil it for you.

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Comment by joekiser
by joekiser on Tue 26th Aug 2014 22:46 UTC
joekiser
Member since:
2005-06-30

They made the most obvious conclusion. BB10 is the best kept secret in the mobile world, and I say this as someone who (briefly) owned a Jolla, and who runs stock Android every day on a Nexus device. Seriously, if BB10 didn't win, I would have bitched about it. My only complaint is that the article didn't mention Android app compatibility out of the box.

Before you pass judgement, give yourself about ten minutes with a Z30 and the latest 10.2 release.

Edited 2014-08-26 22:48 UTC

Reply Score: 5

RE: Comment by joekiser
by ebasconp on Wed 27th Aug 2014 03:39 UTC in reply to "Comment by joekiser"
ebasconp Member since:
2006-05-09

Waiting for the BlackBerry Passport to be released or if too expensive... a Z30 ;)

Edited 2014-08-27 03:40 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by joekiser
by tanishaj on Wed 27th Aug 2014 03:52 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by joekiser"
tanishaj Member since:
2010-12-22

Waiting for the BlackBerry Passport to be released or if too expensive... a Z30 ;)


The Z30 is the most universally loved (by it's owners / users) of any smartphone out there. I certainly love mine.

I was not sold on the Passport but, as it gets closer, I find myself wondering about it. I can see really liking it.

From the moment I saw the first leaked concepts I found the Passport ugly. I already take a lot of ribbing from friends and coworkers (who mostly use shitty mid-range Android devices ironically) over my Z30 though so I am comfortable trading the awesome experience over prestige.

At least the Passport is getting some press. I really want BlackBerry to succeed now because I REALLY want to keep using their phones. They need to keep making more.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: Comment by joekiser
by pandronic on Wed 27th Aug 2014 09:49 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by joekiser"
pandronic Member since:
2006-05-18

I already take a lot of ribbing from friends and coworkers


What could they possibly say?

Reply Score: 4

RE: Comment by joekiser
by sgtarky on Wed 27th Aug 2014 17:51 UTC in reply to "Comment by joekiser"
sgtarky Member since:
2006-01-02

I had been using a z10 for a while, I like it. I dont think i'd like the z30..only because of size. z10 is the perfect size but all phones are getting too farking big.

Reply Score: 2

Guessed it
by Carewolf on Tue 26th Aug 2014 22:47 UTC
Carewolf
Member since:
2005-09-08

Though I was surprised to see the praise for the search function on BB10, I had to go check it out. It was hidden on the third page of apps, and I never used it before. Neat.

I didn't expect iOS on the second spot though, not many things out of the box, but it apparently scored its point on its Android-derived notificaton center.

Edit: After typing in my own preferences of equal weight browser and messenging as first priority and equal weight settings. contacts and notifications as second. I get exact 50 points per phone plus minus 0.46. That is weird. No wonder I don't really have a favorite except rooting for any underdogs.

Edited 2014-08-26 22:54 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: Guessed it
by Tony Swash on Tue 26th Aug 2014 22:53 UTC in reply to "Guessed it"
Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

I didn't expect iOS on the second spot though, not many things out of the box, but it apparently scored its point on its Android-derived notificaton center.


Which given the much bigger score iOS got for notifications compared to the Android 'original' it must have implemented in a better way.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Guessed it
by WorknMan on Tue 26th Aug 2014 22:58 UTC in reply to "RE: Guessed it"
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

Which given the much bigger score iOS got for notifications compared to the Android 'original' it must have implemented in a better way.


Yeah, you notice that Android L rips off several notification features from iOS (which may have ripped it off from somewhere else... not sure), and there is a good reason for that.

That being said, this article is seriously dumb.

First of all, as an Android user, I actually agree with the article that iOS is a better overall experience out of the box. (I've never used BB or WP.) I just think it's cleaner and better laid out, esp the dialer. I HATE the dialer in Android 4.4 with a passion. That being said, there's no way I'd use an iPhone as my daily driver, unless I had no other options. Why? No LED notification on the phone. That by itself is a complete deal-breaker for me. (And no, the battery-draining LED flash doesn't count, you dolts ;) ) Obviously, other people don't care about this feature.

Which is precisely the reason why this article is dumb, because everybody has their own deal-breakers. The author(s) of this piece seem to put a high priority on search, but I've never used the search feature on any of my phones, and is not even a consideration when choosing a phone/OS. I also don't use email and calendar on my phone. I WOULD, however, be completely lost without Google Voice. Thus, it seems to me that trying to choose a best mobile OS without considering apps is like trying to determine which mobile carrier is the best without considering coverage areas. Otherwise, why not include WebOS in this list?

What we really need is some kind of wizard, where you choose the things that are most important to you personally, and it recommends an OS based on your criteria. Without that, there's no way you can choose a 'best overall'. It's like trying to choose a 'best overall' vehicle, where your preferences might be different if you're single, vs a family with several children, etc.

Edited 2014-08-26 23:00 UTC

Reply Score: 9

RE[3]: Guessed it
by leos on Wed 27th Aug 2014 13:33 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Guessed it"
leos Member since:
2005-09-21

Agreed, but a wizard won't work either. It could never capture the experience of using one phone over another and any attempt to capture differences would be subject to the personal bias of the author of the wizard.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Guessed it
by tanishaj on Wed 27th Aug 2014 03:29 UTC in reply to "Guessed it"
tanishaj Member since:
2010-12-22

Though I was surprised to see the praise for the search function on BB10, I had to go check it out. It was hidden on the third page of apps, and I never used it before. Neat.


You could not find the search on BB10? On my Z30 it is one of the three icons (along with phone and camera) that appears on every single app page as well as Active Frames.

It was not showing there for you?

The killer feature for me is the ability to show just messages with attachments in the HUB (eg. email). It is just so easy to find that spreadsheet, photo or PDF that you vaguely remember somebody sending a couple of weeks ago. Also, the fact that Docs To Go is built in to the OS (so you can view and edit Excel and Word files) is just awesome.

Edited 2014-08-27 03:40 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Guessed it
by Carewolf on Wed 27th Aug 2014 08:21 UTC in reply to "RE: Guessed it"
Carewolf Member since:
2005-09-08

"Though I was surprised to see the praise for the search function on BB10, I had to go check it out. It was hidden on the third page of apps, and I never used it before. Neat.


You could not find the search on BB10? On my Z30 it is one of the three icons (along with phone and camera) that appears on every single app page as well as Active Frames.

It was not showing there for you?
"
Nope. In the home screen, there is the phone in the lower left corner and camera in the lower right corner, everything else are short cuts to the available pages. In the hub there is a search icon, but that appears to be for searching the hub only.

Reply Score: 3

My criteria
by shmerl on Tue 26th Aug 2014 23:50 UTC
shmerl
Member since:
2010-06-08

1. The OS has to be open. Closed OS can't be trusted these days, especially with all that mass surveillance craze.
2. It has to be conductive for competition rather than lock-in. I.e. no DRM and other such junk.
3. It shouldn't be dummified for the sake of it. I.e. be simple, but not simpler than that.
4. It should be easily tweakable and configurable.
5. It should have good performance built into it from the ground up.
6. High usability of the UI.
7. Proper multitasking.
8. Good choice of development tools in many languages (and not one exclusive language).

Edited 2014-08-26 23:52 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: My criteria
by tidux on Wed 27th Aug 2014 00:15 UTC in reply to "My criteria"
tidux Member since:
2011-08-13

So you're pretty psyched for Ubuntu phones, huh?

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: My criteria
by shmerl on Wed 27th Aug 2014 02:57 UTC in reply to "RE: My criteria"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

May be, if they'd be more collaborative with the broader community. But because of the whole Mir split I'm waiting for some open alternatives which would use Wayland. Sailfish could be a good candidate, but unfortunately they still didn't open the system up completely.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: My criteria
by zima on Tue 2nd Sep 2014 00:14 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: My criteria"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Get used to the thought that Mir will be dominating, just like Ubuntu is dominating among desktop Linuxes ;) ( http://stats.wikimedia.org/archive/squid_reports/2014-07/SquidRepor... )

Reply Score: 2

RE: My criteria
by Doc Pain on Wed 27th Aug 2014 03:32 UTC in reply to "My criteria"
Doc Pain Member since:
2006-10-08

Your requirements are fully valid, but they don't get much attention by consumers (end users). Only part of developers are interested in them, even though the goals your requirements illustrate are very important.

I'm a developer. I've often been asked to "write apps", but there still isn't an environment that appeals to me and would make me learn more about app development and mobile. Let's say I'm currently just partially interested in those topics, but because I work in IT security, I know enough to have sufficient distrust in today's mobile platforms. All of them.

Allow me to summarize from the perspective of a person who wants to start developing for mobile:

iOS: Programming in Objective C, which is a nice language, and cool tools, but you will probably want to be on a Mac to fully utilize them. Centralized App Store with verification. Subscription required. There's also good documentation available. When the APIs change, rewrites of the apps are needed. Significant market share.

Android: Programming in Java, which has the taste of "the new COBOL". Good tools available for Linux. Centralized Google Play Store with verification. Subscription required. You can find lots of documentation, but the ecosystem is quite heterogenous across the many different devices. The "write once, run everywhere" doesn't seem to work. Majority of market share.

Firefox OS: Mozilla provides really cool tools integrated with the Firefox browser, even including a device emulator. Distribution of apps is possible through Mozilla, but you can download them, copy them (use mass storage access of smartphone), send them per e-mail or copy them to the phone's µSD card. Subscription is optional. The documentation looks good so far. Still this platform is developing, it's not a "one size fits all + just add hot water" platform. This makes it interesting for developers to try something new. The programming itself is done in HTML (app structure), CSS (app styling) and JS (app behaviour, logic, interaction, and hardware access). The apps themselves are running in a browser, like a "web app", so the OS is providing the browser plus the hooks for JS to interact with the hardware.

Ubuntu Edge: Similar to Firefox OS, except programming is done, as far as I know, in C++ with Qt.

I didn't include "Windows Phone" here because it doesn't have an acceptable market share and is too much tied to "Windows", a platform I intendedly don't use. Requires subscription and paying money, as far as I know. Not interesting at all to me.

1. The OS has to be open. Closed OS can't be trusted these days, especially with all that mass surveillance craze.
2. It has to be conductive for competition rather than lock-in. I.e. no DRM and other such junk.
3. It shouldn't be dummified for the sake of it. I.e. be simple, but not simpler than that.


Those three points, or rather their violation, are characterizing the majority of platforms currently available. In my opinion, they are even neccessary to have a "market impact", which is to attract customers by showing them products, have them use those products, tie them to the products by making them hand their valuable data over, and then keep them using those products with no real way out. It's also typical to make sure consumers don't want to understand how things work (or if they want, make sure they do not find the resources to actually understand), so advertising can do its important job: "Those who do not know anything have to believe everything."

4. It should be easily tweakable and configurable.


This doesn't seem to be important for consumers as they have been trained to accept the "use what we give you, as it is" concept. Consumers don't want to customize, they want to consume right from a "no fuzz" beginning. Also remember that changing things can break things, and consumers who did something wrong or stupid will blame the platform (for doing it, or for letting it happen).

5. It should have good performance built into it from the ground up.


This is also problematic. When a platform doesn't encourage you to write efficient and secure apps, you will soon end up with sloppily written apps, and the typical excuse will be: "If it runs too slow, just buy a faster phone."

6. High usability of the UI.


Definitely. A major requirement.

7. Proper multitasking.


Hmmm... PC users have been conditioned into working in "single computer, single user, singe program, single window, single task, single view" environments for the last decade. Multitasking, the "what we see" part included, requires the user to shift his focus. But that could be a problem: How does he learn again that something is there (and running), even though he does not see it? Of course I'd consider multitasking very useful, especially as the hardware of today's smartphones is so advanced that it's not a technical problem anymore. But using those resources "for good" might become a problem withing the paradigm I initially mentioned. Additionally, multitasking could develop into new "security risks" with undesired or dangerous "background activity" (as if the current platforms wouldn't provide enough of that crap already, both in hardware/firmware and in software).

8. Good choice of development tools in many languages (and not one exclusive language).


This, in my opinion, is one of the most important problems, especially for developers. You don't want to use Java? Android is out of your scope. Or you do not like to learn Objective C? Then better not intend to develop for the iPhone. Today's platforms are tied to specific languages. You could only avoid this by using "translators" or "code generators", but that doesn't solve the initial problem that you can hardly find a way to use a different language than the manufacturer of the platform wants you to use. If a vendor doesn't just sell phones, but also computers and operating systems, he's highly interested in "combining it".

Final note:

Please keep in mind I'm not an app developer, mobile developer, or even smartphone owner. So my opinion shown here is very individual and will probably lack professional background. But that's a possible feedback when you ask a "no clue guy" like me... :-)

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: My criteria
by tanishaj on Wed 27th Aug 2014 03:47 UTC in reply to "RE: My criteria"
tanishaj Member since:
2010-12-22

Although your comments about language are valid, it is not so severe. For example, you can very easily target iOS, Android and Windows Phone with one codebase using either C# or F# (using Xamarin). I mention these because I know them best and know how well they work.

You can target both iOS and Android with C++ and Qt these days. You are not Java only on Android as both Kotlin and Scala are options at the very least. Apple has added Swift to the official language options for iOS. I think you can even use Ruby these days.

All of the above is before we break-down and just use HTML5 and JavaScript.

I am sure the list is much, much longer with varying degrees of maturity.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: My criteria
by Doc Pain on Wed 27th Aug 2014 04:04 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: My criteria"
Doc Pain Member since:
2006-10-08

Although your comments about language are valid, it is not so severe. For example, you can very easily target iOS, Android and Windows Phone with one codebase using either C# or F# (using Xamarin). I mention these because I know them best and know how well they work.


Yes, I already read about this. But there's another problem: A new "layer of complexity" is introduced, and even though C# actually is a very interesting programming language, it's too much tied to "Microsoft" (and yes, I know about Mono, the problems with licensing and software patents doesn't get better). It's probably acceptable if you want to somehow get the "write once, run (almost) everywhere" approach into app production. Again, it's a financial investment as you cannot simply download and use it for free, having the source code available (see: security).

But isn't this what the web initially was about? Write something, and have it work on any computer, any OS, any browser. So in my opinion the conceptual idea of Firefox OS, with its "trinity" (HTML, CSS, JS) being very popular among developers, exactly the logical consequence? "The app is a web page" - and everything the OS has to provide is access to a capable renderer with the hooks from JS to the hardware. Additionally, generating HTML, CSS and probably even JS from a "higher level" is something that's common for many years in web frameworks.

You can target both iOS and Android with C++ and Qt these days. You are not Java only on Android as both Kotlin and Scala are options at the very least.


Great news! I'm already interested in Scala (more than in Java, or C++ / MOC / Qt for that matter), so this is a welcome solution, especially for those developers who got poisoned by "corporate Java" and don't want to touch that crap again. :-)

Apple has added Swift to the official language options for iOS. I think you can even use Ruby these days.


Swift is still "too new", and as far as I remember, there are still considerations about its speed and efficiency.

All of the above is before we break-down and just use HTML5 and JavaScript.


As I said, this "trinity" is already very popular on the web, with many web pages actually becoming complex "apps" (web apps), so why not do the same on the smartphone?

From my (very limited) experience, Firefox OS, with its free distribution model, promising documentation and multi-platform developer tools, currently appeals the most to me. Still here (in Germany) there are only two smartphones available, both not that impressive (low specs, high price). Still it's hard to call this platform "entirely free" because (as far as I understand) the manufacturers of the actual handsets have to provide the JS libraries for interacting with the hardware, and you probably don't get the source code for those "trade secrets"... ;)

Therefore I will resist the urge to start app development for some time, to see what the future will bring. Currently there's just not "the thing" available that can catch my interests. But as I said, I'm a very stupid and ignorant person and definitely not part of any commercial target audience. ;-)

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: My criteria
by leos on Wed 27th Aug 2014 13:39 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: My criteria"
leos Member since:
2005-09-21

Why not HTML5 apps? Because the performance sucks, the tooling sucks, and the frameworks suck. Other than that, no reason.

There's a reason why html5 apps have failed to take off beyond the trivial things like banking apps that probably should have been just a website to start with. There's a reason Facebook abandoned the html5 approach and went native. Html 5 apps are terrible and they're not getting better. As hardware advances native apps get better and html5 apps continue to be inferior cousins.

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: My criteria
by Doc Pain on Wed 27th Aug 2014 14:00 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: My criteria"
Doc Pain Member since:
2006-10-08

Why not HTML5 apps? Because the performance sucks, the tooling sucks, and the frameworks suck. Other than that, no reason.


Those can be said about every other platform. :-)

But of course I understand your concerns, and currently I also don't feel well with the concept of "web apps on the phone". Especially the foundation can be problematic: the OS and the browser. Another problem could be: How well do the JS libraries map to the actual hardware functionalities? And for the tooling: Those are primarily intended for web pages (to be consumed usually on PCs). There's hope Mozilla will adjust those tools to properly work for the phone targets.

Bad things can be written in every language, and as you will probably agree, lots of crap has been written in HTML, CSS and JS. Especially JS has lots of potential for abuse, shitty code, design mistakes and slow programs. Especially the last point may apply to smartphones which do not offer the power that the common desktop PC can provide, still developers expecting that power, therefore causing slow apps to appear, which will surely be seen as a "damage" to the whole platform. Personally, I'd prefer to write native apps, in a programming language that doesn't suck, is free of patents, is standardized, and has platform-independent tools around which help in the design and implementation of the programs. Firefox OS is still young, there's hope that at least some of those points can be addressed. Developers will have to influence the platform so it fits their needs and doesn't suck. They have to decide how much control they want, how fine it should be grained, and what they want to "pay" (speed, lines of code, frameworks, etc.) for it.

The question here is: Does the foundation on the smartphone outweight all those problems? The hardware, on top of that the OS, on top of that the web browser with its hooks back to the hardware? Sure, things are easier when you can sit atop of a pile of libraries of abstraction of libraries of interfaces of abstraction of libraries of... cont. ad n. - but the price probably is slowness and instability.

Here's an example:

function start() {
navigator.mozTelephony.dial('07XXXXXXXX'); // Call the phone number
setTimeout(stop, 63*1000); // Stop the call in 63 seconds
}

function stop() {
navigator.mozTelephony.calls[0].hangUp(); // Hang up
setTimeout(start, 3*1000); // Call back again in another 3 seconds
}

start();

Source:

http://binary-choice.blogspot.de/2014/08/firefox-os-is-developers-b...

This is to show how easy interfacing with the handset's functions can be. But you need an interface around it, and that's what people see, what people use. If it doesn't impress the consumers, there's hardly a chance that Firefox OS can get mainstream, and developers will decide to use it and write quality apps for it. Without all the "important" apps being present, consumers will hardly decide to buy such devices.

There's a reason why html5 apps have failed to take off beyond the trivial things like banking apps that probably should have been just a website to start with. There's a reason Facebook abandoned the html5 approach and went native. Html 5 apps are terrible and they're not getting better.


Another reason worth mentioning is that apps can be kept proprietary, which is an advantage for businesses. Sure, HTML can be "uglyfied", CSS and JS also can, but there will be the source code (in some form) on the user's phone, which is not desired.

On the other hand, native apps usually work much better for the consumer who wants fast interactions. Just consider a web mailer (written in HTML, CSS and JS) and compare it to a native app. There's already a difference on the desktop, and it's more "impressive" on a smartphone.

As hardware advances native apps get better and html5 apps continue to be inferior cousins.


Yes, I'm considering this one of the most important points. And I won't argue with your point of view which is valid. I just wanted to express my hopes for a free platform that allows developers to use a multitude of deployment channels, good tools, nice frameworks and comprehensive documentation in order to deliver quality apps. Again, allow me to emphasize that I'm not a "smartphone person" (even though I find this topic interesting) so my opinion is not an expression of infallibility. :-)

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: My criteria
by benjymouse on Wed 27th Aug 2014 14:31 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: My criteria"
benjymouse Member since:
2011-08-06

and yes, I know about Mono, the problems with licensing and software patents doesn't get better


Seriously, that FUD is getting old.

Microsoft
1) has granted patents to anyone implementing C# and core libraries
2) has issued a legally pledge under the community promise
3) has placed *all* relevant framework parts under open source licenses. Yes, that includes ASP.NET, MVC, Entity Framework etc etc.
4) has open sourced the compilers and is working with Ximian to port Mono to the compilers.
5) is officially partnering with Ximian and the Mono project.

Enough FUD already.

Edited 2014-08-27 14:45 UTC

Reply Score: 5

RE[5]: My criteria
by protomank on Wed 27th Aug 2014 16:59 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: My criteria"
protomank Member since:
2006-08-03

I would like to see official support in GCC to C#.
While I disklike .net, C# is a beautiful and productive language that avoid some exagertations Java gained throught the years, mostly in web-server-beans (weblogic) like @notations, DAO, signature for everything even when not needed.
I won't even talk about the messa that C++ has become...

Anyway, it would probally be my #1 option for languages in new projects if gcc had support for it.

Reply Score: 3

RE[6]: My criteria
by tanishaj on Fri 29th Aug 2014 19:53 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: My criteria"
tanishaj Member since:
2010-12-22

I would like to see official support in GCC to C#.


Not quite the same but Mono can compile down to native code (Full AOT - Ahead of Time compiling) using LLVM (the Clang compiler back-end).

I know you said GCC but Clang/LLVM is the other big Open Source compiler ecosystem.

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: My criteria
by shmerl on Wed 27th Aug 2014 17:01 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: My criteria"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

1) has granted patents to anyone implementing C# and core libraries
2) has issued a legally pledge under the community promis


Can you link to the source please? I'm not doubting your words, just interested where exactly they did that.

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: My criteria
by benjymouse on Wed 27th Aug 2014 18:29 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: My criteria"
benjymouse Member since:
2011-08-06

"1) has granted patents to anyone implementing C# and core libraries
2) has issued a legally pledge under the community promis


Can you link to the source please? I'm not doubting your words, just interested where exactly they did that.
"

Patent grant:

http://www.ecma-international.org/publications/files/ECMA-ST/Ecma~*...

"Microsoft Corporation will grant, on a non-discriminatory basis, to any party requesting it, licenses on reasonable terms and conditions, for its patents deemed to necessary for the implementation of the ECMA standard".

Following that the scaremongers cried "but they can still *sue* you and you will be bankrupt before you can win".

So Micrsoft placed C# and core libraries under the Community Promise:

http://blogs.technet.com/b/port25/archive/2009/07/06/the-ecma-c-and...

"Under the Community Promise, Microsoft provides assurance that it will not assert its Necessary Claims against anyone who makes, uses, sells, offers for sale, imports, or distributes any Covered Implementation under any type of development or distribution model, including open-source licensing models such as the LGPL or GPL."

The community promise has legal estoppel: It is in effect the strongest contract possible, as it does not require you to request anything, ask anything or accept anything to be covered. It is a one-sided contract.

But all of that is water under the bridge now: The compiler and core libraries has been open sourced and anyone can use the MS compilers and core libraries on any platform. It is an Apache license, so you can also fork and create derivative work without any obligation other than to include the copyright notice.

Reply Score: 4

RE[7]: My criteria
by shmerl on Wed 27th Aug 2014 19:19 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: My criteria"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

As known, being open source can't defend against jerk behavior. One can remember what happened with Oracle vs Google and the Java / Dalvik problems. Given known dirty MS reputation it's not unreasonable to expect any foul play from them (they supported Oracle's claim that APIs are copyrightable by the way).

But I guess in this case it's in their interest to promote C# so it's counterproductive for them to mess with its adoption. It doesn't mean it can't ever change.

Edited 2014-08-27 19:19 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: My criteria
by zima on Sun 31st Aug 2014 19:37 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: My criteria"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

"HTML5" frameworks are available also for Android, iOS, and WP, no need to limit yourself to Firefox OS...

Some examples:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PhoneGap
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multiple_phone_web-based_application_f...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Appcelerator#Titanium

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: My criteria
by Doc Pain on Sun 31st Aug 2014 19:49 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: My criteria"
Doc Pain Member since:
2006-10-08

"HTML5" frameworks are available also for Android, iOS, and WP, no need to limit yourself to Firefox OS...


This is correct, but as you see from the many downvotes, it seems that implementing apps in HTML, CSS and JS is nothing people here see any value in. In fact, the question worth asking is: Is HTML, CSS and JS the right tool to make apps? Of course this question can validly be asked for all other platforms and their tools. Probably there is a certain way of thinking that established platforms and tools are okay, even when someone objects, but new platforms that start a different approach are not worth thinking about. Personally, I also have doubts that HTML, CSS and JS is the way to go, even though in some isolated fields, it looks superior to established platforms (for example, if you value freedom more than profit); the "pyramid" of libraries and abstractions, as well as the restrictions that the browser (as "lowest foundation" accessible by the app developer) imposes seems to scare people. Partially I can even understand this: Web apps, with few exceptions, tend to be inferior to the corresponding stand-alone desktop programs, because the browser is limiting (keyboard support is one example), and it's also a security risk (no need to provide examples, I think it's obvious). If that is to be the foundation of smartphone apps, well... we'll probably see the results of this discussion in 3 - 5 years, when Firefox OS (or web apps on the smartphone) are the norm - or do not exist anymore.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: My criteria
by zima on Sun 31st Aug 2014 19:59 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: My criteria"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Well whatever people here see value in, fact is there are quite many apps built with HTML5 technologies in present application stores...

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: My criteria
by zima on Sun 31st Aug 2014 19:58 UTC in reply to "RE: My criteria"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

You didn't include WP but did (basically vaporware so far) Ubuntu?... ;) (and, to a lesser degree, FirefoxOS - it sure looks like it won't be needed among the flood of cheap Android handsets)

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: My criteria
by Doc Pain on Sun 31st Aug 2014 20:22 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: My criteria"
Doc Pain Member since:
2006-10-08

You didn't include WP but did (basically vaporware so far) Ubuntu?... ;)


Yes, because WP doesn't have much market share and is basically proprietary (which I personally dislike). On the other hand, Ubuntu (for smartphones) is quite new and introduces the interesting concept of being able to use the smartphone as a desktop PC, provided the peripherials (monitor, keyboard, mouse, etc.), that's why I found it interesting to mention it in the discussion.

And being downvoted for not being explicitely "pro Microsoft" isn't actually uncommon (as well as for making that kind of statement(. ;-)

(and, to a lesser degree, FirefoxOS - it sure looks like it won't be needed among the flood of cheap Android handsets)


Now people canargue on how open Android is. Luckily there are many resources for rooting phones, installing "custom" operating systems and building apps from actual source code. Those may be arguments in discussions where freedom, transparency and privacy are a primary topic. I'm quite sure this discussion won't be held by consumers, but maybe by developers who want to contribute to a "smartphone ecosystem" they can fully trust - and trust is only possible when the source of everything is available. Sadly Android isn't a platform that can guarantee this, but FirefoxOS also won't be, simply because there are "executables" with no source code or documentation embedded deep inside the handset's components, and they are totally out of scope.

The question of "being needed" is a question that shouldn't be asked, especially in regards of consumer electronics. "Needed" is what the market comes up with and convince the consumers to buy (through advertising and also through creating needs). It's a common effect of development and evolution. Consumers now want cheap and versatile smartphones and apps. They don't want security, freedom (at the most possible degree), or privacy. They have sufficient choice (either an ihone or one of the many different Android phones). Is something different "needed"? Time will tell.

Reply Score: 2

RE: My criteria
by lispykid on Wed 27th Aug 2014 09:20 UTC in reply to "My criteria"
lispykid Member since:
2009-02-02

Firefox OS?

Reply Score: 2

As expected
by tomz on Wed 27th Aug 2014 00:31 UTC
tomz
Member since:
2010-05-06

BB10's QNX foundation allows lots of things. The current update now has the Amazon (android) AppStore.

BB was and is a phone company.

The richest irony is lost last Win Ate, but had the Elop-Nokia thing went in the reverse direction - Maemo/Meego/now Jolla - it could have been just as good if not better. Blackberry and Nokia made great phones. Yes, better than the iPhone. The N950 (slider keyboard N9) would have dominated the market. Instead they threw that all away for the Lumias. (Lamias? as in "drag you to hell").

Google is a tech company, and requires years to iterate a design for users. Apple starts off way ahead but iterates slower. They aren't media or phone companies.

One quibble - they say "which mobile OS". The OS is the core. The UI/UX is on the top. Then there's services and other things under the hood.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by Kver
by Kver on Wed 27th Aug 2014 01:53 UTC
Kver
Member since:
2012-07-08

I looked at their specification graph and Android roughly lost a whopping 20 points because they don't integrate "brand name" social networks directly into the system - taking points off for each individual social network multiple times; so having Facebook and Instagram to be deeply integrated into your core operating system is overall more important than your ability to make and manage calls according to the scoring.

If they had have used sane scoring for it, then Android would have come out on top by ~3-5 points. Instead they scored it as "Can share photos with Instagram", "Can share photos with Facebook", "Can share videos with Instagram", "Can share videos with Facebook", etc. They also included the "can share videos", "can share photos" stuff as individual points, too - making the 3rd party sharing scores redundant.

It bugs me because the core OS is not the place for 3rd party services which might come and go, radically change privacy policies, and display advertising / sell your likeness to advertisers. I also applaud Android for the ability (which was not counted) to downgrade and disable preinstalled apps, so when they do get preloaded with junk social apps they can be disabled.

Edited 2014-08-27 02:02 UTC

Reply Score: 12

RE: Comment by Kver
by tanishaj on Wed 27th Aug 2014 03:32 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kver"
tanishaj Member since:
2010-12-22

By default I would agree. I have to say though the "HUB" in BB10 has changed my mind quite a lot about the benefit of OS integration with communication services. Not having things like Twitter and Blackberry messenger in the hub would be a big step back.

As the article says, BlackBerry's are the best communication devices out there right now. I am a Z30 user. My previous phone was an iPhone (not an older BlackBerry) and you would have to drag me back to iOS kicking and screaming.

Reply Score: 3

Search and notifications
by thesunnyk on Wed 27th Aug 2014 02:49 UTC
thesunnyk
Member since:
2010-05-21

The most surprising thing is that iOS beat Android on Search and Notifications. Android fares better in almost every regard. Search and notifications were the shining jewel of Android 2. Amazing!

Reply Score: 2

The quality of the comprehensive table
by Decius on Wed 27th Aug 2014 05:25 UTC
Decius
Member since:
2006-01-03

As a fervent supporter of Blackberry I am glad to see these kind of well-deserved (IMO) plaudits, as well as the attention this article has attracted. Overall I found it to be a fairly honest analysis.

I think, for two reasons, that the spreadsheet that is included is particularly interesting. First, the info contained in that table is exactly the kind of reference to have access to if one is going to change devices and wants to know how to do something on ones new platform. Second, by making public a table containing their findings/methodology there is the possibility of review and honest evaluation.

I was a bit surprised at how the Blackberry browser fared in review and I look forward to any constructive analysis of their posted findings, especially if that may put it in a better light. I've always found it to stack up quite well to other offerings.

Reply Score: 3

MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by AmixG5 on Wed 27th Aug 2014 06:56 UTC
AmixG5
Member since:
2013-05-28

What is wrong with this world? Why do we like to talk about pain, when we can talk about beauty and efficency? MorphOS is a very small OS. It takes under 300MB in size and requires minimal with mem. It would be a perfect OS for mobile devices with little storage and less mem than desktops and laptops.

There was a project back in days when MorphOS Team was part of Genesi. It was about MobileGT and Freescale. I am not certain about the details regarding it, but my thinking is.

Why do we all use massive Linux-Ports, Windows waste or closed unix iOS?

MorphOS could be the thing. I mean it. Think of it.

Reply Score: 0

RE: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by daedalus on Wed 27th Aug 2014 07:40 UTC in reply to "MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
daedalus Member since:
2011-01-14

If you give it a 100% new interface, maybe. But if you're going to the trouble of developing an entire UI along with new APIs for communication, notification etc., why not use a more widely-known and better supported kernel like Linux? Same goes for AmigaOS4 - it's suited to efficiently running on low-end hardware, but so much work would be required to get them to a stage where it would be acceptable to the average Joe that it would be easier to start with a more tried-and-tested foundation and build from there.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by AmixG5 on Wed 27th Aug 2014 09:24 UTC in reply to "RE: MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
AmixG5 Member since:
2013-05-28

Linux is slooow. Very slow.. and requires way more than any of AmigaOS clones. They are leaders in size and mem category.

It is very easy to modify MorphOS GUI to be mobile or even tablet compatible. Yes, it would feel more desktop alike, but it would be fast! Even on a 400MHz slow without DMA on IDE controller motherboard, MorphOS boots in 7 seconds. On a mobile, with great bios in 1-2 seconds maybe.

I would even say that AmigaOS GUI systems is the most adjustable GUI systems out there. A user can simply change the GUI as she or he wants.

Reply Score: 0

RE[3]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 27th Aug 2014 09:26 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

MorphOS/AmigaOS is also essentially useless since it doesn't have any applications normal people want and doesn't run on common hardware (you need to buy an old Mac/expensive custom hardware for it). I like Amiga, but let's be realistic here.

Edited 2014-08-27 09:26 UTC

Reply Score: 3

v RE[4]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by AmixG5 on Wed 27th Aug 2014 09:42 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
RE[5]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by daedalus on Wed 27th Aug 2014 12:45 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
daedalus Member since:
2011-01-14

Given that I code for AmigaOS, and own OS4, MorphOS and AROS machines, I can safely say I'm aware of the strengths and weaknesses. I use it for a lot of day-to-day tasks as well, but the unfortunate truth is that the benefits of using a Linux kernel greatly outweigh the massive effort that would be required to bring any Amiga-type OS up to the same standard. The interface is baked in at a very low level for a start, and if you've ever used an Amiga emulator on a phone, you'll know how awkward that is to use. It relies on having a 2-button mouse and keyboard, both of which are absent on touchscreen devices. Unless you replace all those parts, any other form of GUI will simply be an application running on top of the OS, which you'll frequently end up back at since it's very easy for a misbehaving app to take the whole system down. Which brings us onto the whole memory protection thing. Reworking the OS to include full memory protection and user accounts will basically leave you with a few APIs and a totally incompatible OS mostly built from scratch and with many of its original strengths removed, which you then need to write heaps of drivers for because you can be sure they don't exist yet. Why go to all that hassle? Wonderful as a hobby, useless for the average smartphone usage case.

Reply Score: 5

v RE[6]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by AmixG5 on Wed 27th Aug 2014 13:19 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
RE[7]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 27th Aug 2014 13:40 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Symbian had no memory protection also.


What?

Symbian most definitely has memory protection.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Symbian#Design

AmigaOS isn't less or more stable than Linux, OSX or Windows.


Without memory protection and any mitigation features - and I'm speaking from experience - it most definitely IS less stable than modern operating systems. Admiration for alternative platforms is nice (BeOS rules), but don't let it cloud your sound judgment.

Edited 2014-08-27 13:42 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[7]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by daedalus on Wed 27th Aug 2014 13:43 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
daedalus Member since:
2011-01-14

AmigaOS is very flexible and it seems like you don't have any knowledge of coding for Amiga or have been using Amiga at all?

It seems like you didn't read my post properly. I've been coding for AmigaOS and its derivatives for the guts of 20 years. Yes, I know how easy it is to write a script, having written many, and also having written my own commands to make up the shortfall where the underlying AmigaDOS didn't suit my needs. Putting an AmigaOS-alike shell on another OS isn't all that big a deal so I'm not sure what your point is. Besides, who wants to write scripts on their phone.
Yes, I'm well aware of commodities, having written many in my time. I'm also aware of ARexx and the powerful scripts it allows the user to write. Do you know how IPC works for both ARexx and the Commodities? It relies on the idea that the programs can access each other's memory. It's super efficient and easy to use, but will totally break when you introduce memory protection and multiple users. This means incompatibility with what was there before, which effectively rules out any remaining advantages such technologies might have in this day and age.
Symbian is a different beast altogether with different coding practices and different methods of IPC. I loved it on my E52 as well, but it needed a complete overhaul to be able to offer the same sort of features the "modern" smartphone OSes do.
I agree that AmigaOS isn't unstable. It's very stable I've found, so long as you don't run anything. But it's extremely easy for an application to take the whole OS down in one go. All you need to do is pass a dodgy pointer and boom. Your email client craps all over your low-level graphics drivers and you're screwed. Sure it only takes a few seconds to reboot, but that's no use when you were in the middle of a phone interview, or just about to beat the last level in Candy Crush. That's not something that will happen on iOS or Android, or Windows, Linux or OS X for that matter.
I also don't think you realise what I and others were saying about the user interface. It's designed for a mouse and keyboard. I know these things can be emulated in various ways, but when stuff is misbehaving, your prefs aren't worth a damn when you need to use the early startup menu to disable something. Really, I recommend you try an Amiga emulator on your phone. Install whatever toolbars you like and see how well they work. Install the VisualPrefs hack so you can set your gadgets to whatever size you like. Try run a couple of apps for a while and see how easy it is. Then, try write an app for it which has a touch-friendly user interface, and let us see how you get on.

Reply Score: 6

RE[7]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by zima on Sat 30th Aug 2014 00:22 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Microsoft Windows doesn't have proper mem-handling neither.

Windows NT most definitely has proper memory handling.

You know what, go ahead and implement your prototype mobile UI on an Amiga base, if you think that's such an optimal system...
(I almost feel we're being trolled here)

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by zima on Sun 31st Aug 2014 21:34 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

What's an AROS machine? ;p (some x86 PC with carefully selected components or perhaps something slightly more exotic?)

Reply Score: 2

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

"Desktop Publishing"

Wow, there is a phrase I haven't heard for 20 years.

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by BlueofRainbow on Wed 27th Aug 2014 12:43 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
BlueofRainbow Member since:
2009-01-06

Does having thousands of apps in the store really make a difference?

In an article a few days ago, http://www.osnews.com/story/27906/Most_smartphone_users_download_ze... , it would appear that most users do not go after apps.

This would imply that as long as the device, as taken out of the box, should have the desired applications and services all set-up and ready to go! Mind you, finding them through random navigation of the possibilities could take some time if one is not familiar with the interface.

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by WereCatf on Wed 27th Aug 2014 13:01 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

it would appear that most users do not go after apps.


Mmmno. It does not say anything to that effect. It says quite literally that most users do not constantly download new software to their devices, not that they don't download any at all. Facebook-app, for example, only needs to be installed once after which it'll stay on the device indefinitely. You are reading the article wrong.

Reply Score: 4

RE[6]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by Sparrowhawk on Wed 27th Aug 2014 13:47 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
Sparrowhawk Member since:
2005-07-11

Facebook-app, for example, only needs to be installed once after which it'll stay on the device indefinitely. You are reading the article wrong.


Or in my case (BlackBerry Z10), it only has to be uninstalled once, after which it will stay off the device indefinitely... ;)

More seriously, I agree completely with your point based on my own experience and watching family and friends.

Personally, when I have a new phone, I'll typically install (or uninstall) most stuff in the first week until the phone has the functionality I need.

After that it's the odd game or utility that might catch my eye. Although kids on the whole seem to install more I find, especially those endless freemium games.

Reply Score: 4

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Does having thousands of apps in the store really make a difference?


Well, in a sense it doesn't. You only need a small sub set of apps. But those apps have to be *good*. And when a rare good app does come out, you want to have it available on your platform. I think the quantity of apps present usually gives rise to better quality for the most popular ones. If you have a bazillion email apps, theoretically, they have to compete with each other for downloads, forcing them to improve.

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by zima on Sat 30th Aug 2014 00:16 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

I like Amiga, but let's be realistic here.

A True Amiga Fan(tm), realistic? Why won't you be realistic? ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by WereCatf on Wed 27th Aug 2014 13:04 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

It is very easy to modify MorphOS GUI to be mobile or even tablet compatible.


No, it definitely wouldn't. You don't have any UI-design experience, do you? Reworking the whole OS for a touch-centric input that does not rely on emulating mouse+kb, making all the UI-elements work well on a small, high-DPI display is a tremendous amount of work and it'd basically destroy any compatibility with the apps that already exist for the OS.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?
by zima on Sat 30th Aug 2014 00:20 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: MorphOS as Mobile OS?"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

AmigaOS clones. They are leaders in size and mem category.

...and in frequency of crashes (come on, the OS still doesn't even have memory protection)

The daydreaming of Amigans knows no bounds...

Reply Score: 2

Pity Maemo/Meego is gone
by daedalus on Wed 27th Aug 2014 07:46 UTC
daedalus
Member since:
2011-01-14

It would've been nice to see how it would have fared. There are some of those criteria that the N9 excels at, but other features which have fallen behind in the couple of years since it was launched and cancelled. The search is excellent for example, as is its contact handling. Sailfish isn't mainstream enough to be considered in these things, but maybe Maemo/Meego could have been up there on this list with a few updates.

Reply Score: 3

Comment
by pandronic on Wed 27th Aug 2014 09:57 UTC
pandronic
Member since:
2006-05-18

Even if you agree with the scoring system (which I don't) there is no point in comparing out of the box functionality. Android and iOS have apps that can do things that other mobile OSes can only dream of. Add Android's insane customization, versatility and different ROMs and flavors and you can turn the top 3 upside-down.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Comment
by leos on Wed 27th Aug 2014 13:48 UTC in reply to "Comment"
leos Member since:
2005-09-21

There's a lot to be said for having common use cases supported right in the phone. A flashlight, a good calculator, good call privacy, good calendar, email, etc functions all mean that I don't have to search for apps to do those functions on iOS. The ones that come with the phone are essentially guaranteed to be developed competently with no risk that my flashlight is selling my device info to advertisers. I have quite a few apps but when possible I prefer the built in ones.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment
by pandronic on Wed 27th Aug 2014 14:38 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment"
pandronic Member since:
2006-05-18

I don't think you can make one-size-fits-all applications, not even for basic stuff like dialing and SMS. It's irrelevant how good or bad are the default applications on any platform. IMO it's relevant how good are the best apps you can install.

OSes should come with only one app - the app store.

no risk that my flashlight is selling my device info


There are permissions people can read. If they don't, then it's their problem and responsibility. Furthermore these cases are isolated since all the app stores are curated and you can also use your common sense and look at the rating and read the comments.

Edited 2014-08-27 14:39 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Comment
by leos on Thu 28th Aug 2014 06:57 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment"
leos Member since:
2005-09-21

I don't think you can make one-size-fits-all applications, not even for basic stuff like dialing and SMS. It's irrelevant how good or bad are the default applications on any platform. IMO it's relevant how good are the best apps you can install.


Those are two different factors and both are relevant. One is out of the box setup and the other is optimum setup. Many many people never get very far from out of the box. For people who have more time to tinker, the optimum setup is more important than the out of the box.

"no risk that my flashlight is selling my device info


There are permissions people can read. If they don't, then it's their problem and responsibility. Furthermore these cases are isolated since all the app stores are curated and you can also use your common sense and look at the rating and read the comments.
"

Except we just saw the stories of highly rated flashlight apps leaking user data, hence my example. If an app is ad supported you cannot tell from the permissions whether it leaks data, just roughly how much it might be able to leak.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment
by cdude on Wed 27th Aug 2014 17:06 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment"
cdude Member since:
2008-09-21

"The ones that come with the phone"

Most Android users are on Samsung Android. But that wasn't even considered. How comes that the number #1 smartphone seller, so for most there offering would be out-of-the-box, was completely skipped?

Edited 2014-08-27 17:09 UTC

Reply Score: 1

App gap sort of a myth
by sagelike on Wed 27th Aug 2014 14:29 UTC
sagelike
Member since:
2014-08-27

The app gap argument doesn't really hold for most users as this article points out:

http://qz.com/253618/most-smartphone-users-download-zero-apps-per-m...

Two thirds of users only use their phone for the basics which Blackberry has covered anyways. It mostly comes down to momentum. People are comfortable with the phone they have and buy the same.

Once Amazon app store becomes to Blackberry, the imagined app gap will be mostly closed.

Reply Score: 2

OS != User interface
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Wed 27th Aug 2014 21:44 UTC
Bill Shooter of Bul
Member since:
2006-07-14

I dislike their metrics.

I'm not sure If I can disagree with the results as I haven't used BB10 much. I briefly played with a Play Book, before a sales guy came up to me and told me to please not buy it... His commission got dinged on returns or something. But that was before the phones got QNX.

Reply Score: 3

Out-of-the-box is meaningless
by phoenix on Thu 28th Aug 2014 19:48 UTC
phoenix
Member since:
2005-07-11

From the article, on why Android scores so poorly:

Perhaps it's a leave it to the apps philosophy, but out of the box it's a little underwhelming when compared to the competition.


And that, right there, is exactly why I prefer Android. The less functionality built into the OS, the better. The OS should include the bare minimum in terms of apps and functionality, but provide the foundation for the apps the user actually wants to use. The less pre-installed crapware, the better.

Sure, the OS should include the basics for dialer, keyboard, calendar, messaging, e-mail, and the like. But it doesn't need to have Facebook deeply integrated into everything, or Instagram pre-installed and not removable, or 3 different versions of the same app (Google, Samsung, AT&T versions of dialer, messaging, browser, etc, for example). A phone OS install should not take up 2-3 GB of storage; 200-500 MB is more than enough. Especially if the pre-installed crap is non-removable!

Reply Score: 3

RE: Out-of-the-box is meaningless
by Morgan on Thu 28th Aug 2014 20:21 UTC in reply to "Out-of-the-box is meaningless"
Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

Normally I'd be inclined to agree with you, as I'm a minimalist at heart. But mobile OSes like Windows Phone and BB10 excel at giving you more features with less bloat. The difference between those OSes and, say, a Samsung phone with TouchWiz, is that the added features are part of the OS itself on the former two. On the Samsung, they are apps on top of the OS; root the Samsung and remove those apps, and the phone will still function and be a lot leaner for it.

But that kind of fiddling isn't necessary with BB10 and WP8. They are already lean, fast, and functional right out of the box.

Of course, not everyone desires those integrated features, and there's the issue that the service provider for those features may change APIs and break things until the next OS update (this happened to me on the N900 a couple of times). So for many people, Android or iOS is the better choice, getting the services they want piecemeal instead of baked in.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Out-of-the-box is meaningless
by zima on Sat 30th Aug 2014 00:12 UTC in reply to "RE: Out-of-the-box is meaningless"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

But mobile OSes like Windows Phone and BB10 excel at giving you more features with less bloat. [...] They are already lean, fast, and functional right out of the box.

Hm, so they are like classic Opera! ;) (were you by any chance using it?)

Reply Score: 2

Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

Actually I haven't used Opera in a very long time. When I did use it, it was the absolute best browser available on Windows.

These days it's either Chromium (built from source) on GNU/Linux, Firefox or Chromium (from chromium.woolyss.com) on Windows and Mac, or Mobile IE on Windows Phone. Lately I've been testing out an HTC Evo 4G LTE, and the native Sense 5.0 browser on JB 4.3 is very nice...and it's an awesome Android phone overall. It's actually turning my opinion of Android on phones around completely, I really like it.

Reply Score: 2

zima Member since:
2005-07-06

I'm still switching from time to time between Firefox and... classic Opera. I'll guess I'll settle soon on the former, the time is running out on the latter.

But, if you think Opera classic was in its time the best browser on Windows, you might be interested in...
http://pl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Otter_(program)
http://otter-browser.org/

And you don't let Google spy on you? ;)

Reply Score: 2