Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 4th Jan 2013 18:29 UTC
Google A blog post on the Free Software Foundation Europe site is making the rounds around the web. The blog post, written by Torsten Grote, claims that 'the Android SDK is now proprietary', because upon download, you have to agree to terms and conditions which are clearly not compatible with free and/or open source software. What Grote fails to mention - one, these terms have mostly always been here, and two, they only apply to the SDK binaries. The source is still freely available.
Thread beginning with comment 547323
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
Anti-fragmention and properitary
by WorknMan on Fri 4th Jan 2013 21:25 UTC
WorknMan
Member since:
2005-11-13

What I want to know is, why does Google put features like miracast and photosphere on the Nexus 4, and then deny it to their other devices? And if these features are not in the Android sources, then at least part of it is definitely proprietary.

Do I care about this? Well yes, actually I do. Once I found out that 4.2 was supposed to have Miracast, I was ready to plunk down for a Nexus 7, but was disappointed to find out that it's currently only available for Nexus 4. Seems that Google is fragmenting their own devices, for whatever reason.

Reply Score: 3

hackbod Member since:
2006-02-15

The miracast support is all in the platform, however it requires significant support in the hardware and drivers to work -- they need to be able to run both video encoding and decoding at the same time, streaming and composited video from a second buffer rendered along-side the display to the encoder.

The photosphere feature is I believe part of Google's proprietary apps (same as Gmail, Google+, etc), not a part of the platform.

Reply Parent Score: 2

hackbod Member since:
2006-02-15

The miracast support is all part of the platform, however it requires specific support from the hardware and drivers: it needs to be able to execute both hardware video decoding and encoding at the same time, and be able to stream a second composited display before through the video encoder. Currently only the Nexus 4 hardware has this support. (For other devices I don't know how much of the limitation is core to the hardware or just lacking in the drivers.)

For stuff like photosphere, I believe this is just part of Google's proprietary application code, like many other things: the Gmail, Google+ and other apps, contacts and calendar sync engines, Google account manager, etc.

Reply Parent Score: 2