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 These old, most likely outdated licensing terms cover the Google applications, and not the open source Android platform, which anyone can download, alter, build and ship.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[3]: Is AOSP still 'Android'?
by WorknMan on Fri 14th Feb 2014 02:00 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Is AOSP still 'Android'?"
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But technically any device that has no GMS will not have the permission to be named AndroidTM.

Nor should it, IMO. Some people may thing Google having proprietary hooks into the OS is a bad thing, but I do not. It keeps vendors from rewriting the whole damn thing so that only a fraction of the apps work, and still calling it Android. I suppose it would be possible to have the whole thing entirely open source, but forbidding certain modifications to keep things from breaking, but that's really two sides of the same coin, in that either approach violates at least one of the '4 freedoms'.

Like Linus, I am more of a pragmatist when it comes to this sort of thing ;)

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