Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 1st Feb 2018 01:10 UTC

Essential - the phone company led by Android co-founder Andy Rubin - has had some difficulty in getting a stable 8.0 Oreo update released. After three beta releases, the company is not quite satisfied that the update is ready for general release. Because of these protracted issues, Essential has announced plans to skip the 8.0 release entirely in favor of 8.1, which will "push the public release back a couple weeks," according to the company.

Not even a phone with close to stock Android, built by the very same person who developed Android in the first place, can be updated to a newer Android release without delays, stability issues, and general problems - to the point where they're skipping a version altogether.

Android is a mess.

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RE: no understanding
by torp on Thu 1st Feb 2018 10:18 UTC in reply to "no understanding"
Member since:

You're a bit optimistic there. Android is not comparable to a Linux LTS under the hood, that's only for the user facing apps. If you're handling the port to your own hardware, it's a complete mess.

There's no guarantee that any driver you used on Android version N will work out of the box on version N+1. As a bonus, you don't have a large team of open source developers porting the drivers to version N+1, you're at the hardware vendor's mercy or you have to do the (non trivial) work yourself.

As a bonus, internally Android changes a lot, so it's not only the drivers, but also any modifications you did to the layers above that need to be redone. Or you have to add new features to the drivers because the new Android requires them.

Source: I worked on two Android ports to custom hardware.

Edited 2018-02-01 10:20 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 6

RE[2]: no understanding
by unclefester on Thu 1st Feb 2018 11:23 in reply to "RE: no understanding"
unclefester Member since:

Many People (e.g. Thom) don't seem to understand that Addroid is (deliberately) designed NOT to be upgraded (except for apps) once it leaves the factory. That basically eliminates expensive support for OEMs and carriers.

The big manufactuers have the resources to write their own software or demand hardware vendors do it for them. The alternative is touse a MTK reference platform running Vanilla Android (most of the budget phones).

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: no understanding
by shotsman on Fri 2nd Feb 2018 06:49 in reply to "RE[2]: no understanding"
shotsman Member since:

Yet Android will soon (IMHO, 2-3 years) be the only choice we have in many countries.
It is a mess as Thom says but it has to be by design.
Google could have sorted it out years ago but didn't. That tells us a lot.

Back in the day, we had 'RPM Hell'. Some of us can remember it even now and get cold sweats from the memories of how many hours we spent trying to fix it.
But a solution was found and those days/weeks/months are nothing but a memory. A problem existed and it was fixed. Took some time but it worked.

Fast forward and look at Android and updates. Shudder.
If I can get new parts for my 1970's Jensen then why can't I get even security updates for my 18month old Android? or was it destined for 'landfill/recycling' the day it was bought?

Google could lay down the law and make people who supply Android phones provided 3 or 5 years of service but they don't care. There is a reason why I avoid using anything 'made/supplied by Google'. Can you guess why?

Reply Parent Score: 2