Dianne Hackborn has posted on Google+ about some common myths regarding Android’s graphics rendering pipeline, and we have a rebuttal to that one as well. Interesting stuff, but I want to talk abut something related: Android’s gaphics performance. I’m hearing a lot of talk about how Android’s effects and transitions and such aren’t as smooth as those on iOS, but on my Galaxy SII, everything is super-smooth. So, I’m wondering – what’s it like for you?
Considering the consistent talk on the web about Android’s less-than-stellar graphics performance, I expected to have to deal with this issue as well when I bought my Galaxy SII (after iOS and Windows Phone 7, I only needed an Android device to round out my collection).
Imagine my surprise when I found that graphics performance was about on par with iOS on my iPad 2 and WP7.5 on my HTC HD7, and a little better than on my (much slower, spec-wise) iPhone 3GS. When the phone was new, I assumed that maybe after installing lots of applications, the problem would rear its ugly head. However – it didn’t. A few months down the line, and it’s still fast and responsive.
I did notice one thing: shoddy graphics performance on Samsung’s own lock screen (which I replaced with another one, which does perform perfectly). Could this mean it’s not necessarily Android itself that’s at fault, but OEMs? Or, put differently – does it differ per application?
Even browser performance is perfect. In fact, it’s often a little better than on my iPad 2 (WP 7.5 is no match at all). Everything loads fast, scrolling is butter smooth, panning is fine, and zooming is just as fast as on my iPad 2.
So, what is it? Is it simply a lack of sheer raw power, and is the Galaxy SII fast enough to handle it all? Does it differ per phone? Is it RAM, processor power, GPU? Does Android version matter? What are your experiences?