Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 13th Feb 2014 23:38 UTC

Another day, another fear-mongering 'Android is closed!'-article at Ars Technica. After Peter Bright's article last week (sharply torn to shreds by Dianne Hackborn), we now have an article with the scary title "New Android OEM licensing terms leak; 'open' comes with a lot of restrictions".

The title itself is already highly misleading, since one, the licensing terms aren't new (they're from early 2011 - that's three years old), and two, they're not licensing terms for Android, but for the suite of Google applications that run atop Android.

This article makes the classic mistake about the nature of Android. It conflates the Android Open Source Project with the suite of optional proprietary Google applications, the GMS. These old, most likely outdated licensing terms cover the Google applications, and not the open source Android platform, which anyone can download, alter, build and ship. Everyone can build a smartphone business based on the Android Open Source Project, which is a complete smartphone operating system.

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RE: This is a significant leak
by ddc_ on Sat 15th Feb 2014 17:46 UTC in reply to "This is a significant leak"
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Secondly, it is important to note that once you (as a large company) start using Android (vs AOSP) you are basically trapped forevermore. No one in your company can compete with Google's services. This means that if you wanted to transition away from Android to AOSP or an AOSP fork, you would need to do it in one fell swoop, assuming you could do it at all.

Why so? The things that matter for company are pretty simple: mail, contacts, calendar (agenda), probably GPS tracking. All these services can be deployed from readily available software in a couple of hours (including thorough testing).

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