Re: Android reality check -- it's a closed world

Discussion in 'NZ Computing' started by AD., May 7, 2010.

  1. AD.

    AD. Guest

    On May 7, 4:39 pm, "impossible" <> wrote:
    > Android's success has nothing to do with open source and everything to do


    [So you think Android is a success now?]

    > with Google's tight control of the commercial development process.
    >
    >  http://www.visionmobile.com/blog/2010/04/is-android-evil/


    Closed for who exactly? The article is from the perspective of Handset
    OEMs - ie the customers of the guy writing it.

    The guy even says Android is the most open system for app developers
    and users. From the article:

    "Whereas Android is completely open for the software developer
    ecosystem, it’s completely closed for the handset OEM (pre-load)
    ecosystem."

    "it’s worth realising that [from the manufacturer perspective] Android
    is no more open – and no less closed – than [licensable operating
    systems like] Windows Mobile, Apple OSX or PalmOS, Symbian and BREW;

    and in his comments:

    "The Android pre-load ecosystem is closed (as per my 8 control
    points), while the post-load ecosystem (the 3rd party developers) is
    totally open – and indeed more open than any other operating system in
    the history of the mobile industry"

    What point were you trying to make?

    --
    Cheers
    Anton
     
    AD., May 7, 2010
    #1
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  2. AD.

    victor Guest

    On 08/05/10 04:46, impossible wrote:
    >
    >
    > "AD." <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    >> On May 7, 4:39 pm, "impossible" <> wrote:
    >>> Android's success has nothing to do with open source and everything
    >>> to do

    >>
    >> [So you think Android is a success now?]
    >>
    >>> with Google's tight control of the commercial development process.
    >>>
    >>> http://www.visionmobile.com/blog/2010/04/is-android-evil/

    >>
    >> Closed for who exactly? The article is from the perspective of Handset
    >> OEMs - ie the customers of the guy writing it.
    >>
    >> The guy even says Android is the most open system for app developers
    >> and users. From the article:
    >>
    >> "Whereas Android is completely open for the software developer
    >> ecosystem, it’s completely closed for the handset OEM (pre-load)
    >> ecosystem."
    >>
    >> "it’s worth realising that [from the manufacturer perspective] Android
    >> is no more open – and no less closed – than [licensable operating
    >> systems like] Windows Mobile, Apple OSX or PalmOS, Symbian and BREW;
    >>
    >> and in his comments:
    >>
    >> "The Android pre-load ecosystem is closed (as per my 8 control
    >> points), while the post-load ecosystem (the 3rd party developers) is
    >> totally open – and indeed more open than any other operating system in
    >> the history of the mobile industry"
    >>
    >> What point were you trying to make?
    >>

    >
    > <shakes head> I guess you missed this part:
    >
    > "Behind the Open Source facade
    >
    > "What’s even more fascinating is how closed Android is, despite Google’s
    > old do-no-evil don’t be evil mantra and the permissive Apache 2 license
    > which Android SDK source code is under. Paraphrasing a famous line from
    > Henry Ford’s book on the Model-T, anyone can have Android in their own
    > colour as long as it’s black. Android is the best example of how a
    > company can use open source to build up interest and community
    > participation, while running a very tight commercial model. [updated in
    > response to reader comments:] Again I ‘ll emphasize that the closed
    > aspects of Android apply to the handset OEM (pre-load) ecosystem, not
    > the software developer (post-load) ecosystem (see the comments section
    > for a deep dive into pre-load vs post-load].
    >
    > "How does Google control what services, software and hardware ships in
    > Android handsets? The search giant has built an elaborate system of
    > control points around Android handsets.
    >
    > "To dig deeper we spent two months talking to industry sources close to
    > Android commercials – and the reality has been startling. From a high
    > level, Google uses 8 control points to manage the make-up of Android
    > handsets:
    >
    > "1. Private branches. There are multiple, private codelines available to
    > selected partners (typically the OEM working on an Android project) on a
    > need-to-know basis only. The private codelines are an estimated 6+
    > months ahead of the public SDK and therefore essential for an OEM to
    > stay competitive. The main motivation for the public SDK and source code
    > is to introduce the latest features (those stemming from private
    > branches) into third party apps.
    >
    > "2. Closed review process. All code reviewers work for Google, meaning
    > that Google is the only authority that can accept or reject a code
    > submission from the community. There is also a rampant NIH (not invented
    > here) culture inside Google that assumes code written by Googlers is
    > second to none. Ask anyone who’s tried to contribute a patch to Android
    > and you hear the same story: very few contributions get in and often no
    > reason is offered on rejection.
    >
    > "3. Speed of evolution. Google innovates the Android platform at a speed
    > that’s unprecedented for the mobile industry, releasing 4 major updates
    > (1.6 to 2.1) in 18 months. OEMs wanting to build on Android have no
    > choice but to stay close to Google so as not to lose on new features/bug
    > fixes released. The Nexus One, Motorola Droid, HTC G1 and other
    > Experience handsets serve the purpose of innovation testbeds for Google.
    >
    > "4. Incomplete software. The public SDK source code is by no means
    > sufficient to build a handset. Key building blocks missing are radio
    > integration, international language packs, operator packs – and of
    > course Google’s closed source apps like Market, Gmail and GTalk. There
    > are a few custom ROM builders with a full Android stack like the
    > Cyanogen distribution, but these use binaries that are not licensed for
    > distribution in commercial handsets.
    >
    > "5. Gated developer community. Android Market is the exclusive
    > distribution and discovery channel for the 40,000+ apps created by
    > developers; and is available to phone manufacturers on separate
    > agreement. This is one of the strongest control points as no OEM would
    > dare produce a handset that doesn’t tap into the Android Market (perhaps
    > with the exception of DECT phones, picture frames, in-car terminals or
    > other exotic uses of Android). However, one should acknowledge that
    > Android’s acceptance process for Market apps is liberal as it gets – and
    > the complete antithesis of the Apple vetting process for apps.
    >
    > "6. Anti-fragmentation agreement. Little is known about the
    > anti-fragmentation agreement signed by OHA members but we understand
    > it’s a commitment to not release handsets which are not CTS compliant
    > (more on CTS later).
    >
    > "7. Private roadmap. The visibility offered into Android’s roadmap is
    > pathetic. At the time of writing, the roadmap published publicly is a
    > year out of date (Q1 2009). To get a sneak peak into the private roadmap
    > you need Google’s blessing.
    >
    > "8. Android trademark. Google holds the trademark to the Android name;
    > as a manufacturer you can only leverage on the Android branding with
    > approval from Google, much like how you need Sun’s approval to claim
    > your handset is Java-powered.
    >
    > "In short, it’s either the Google way or the highway. "
    >
    >


    So if you are a handset customer you know that you are getting Google
    Android, protected by the licensing of the trademark. Its a standard.
    Google build a business model for the handset manufacturers that make it
    worth signing up for the trademarked version

    But anyone else who wants to can use the published source code like
    cyanogen to build a ROM image that will run on the same phones without
    breaching any copyrights.

    Thats what FOSS is about.

    The *copyright* license.

    Nothing else.
     
    victor, May 7, 2010
    #2
    1. Advertising

  3. AD.

    victor Guest

    On 08/05/10 10:14, impossible wrote:
    >
    >
    > "victor" <> wrote in message
    > news:hs21h8$vnv$-september.org...
    >> On 08/05/10 04:46, impossible wrote:
    >>>
    >>>
    >>> "AD." <> wrote in message
    >>> news:...
    >>>
    >>>> On May 7, 4:39 pm, "impossible" <> wrote:
    >>>>> Android's success has nothing to do with open source and everything
    >>>>> to do
    >>>>
    >>>> [So you think Android is a success now?]
    >>>>
    >>>>> with Google's tight control of the commercial development process.
    >>>>>
    >>>>> http://www.visionmobile.com/blog/2010/04/is-android-evil/
    >>>>
    >>>> Closed for who exactly? The article is from the perspective of Handset
    >>>> OEMs - ie the customers of the guy writing it.
    >>>>
    >>>> The guy even says Android is the most open system for app developers
    >>>> and users. From the article:
    >>>>
    >>>> "Whereas Android is completely open for the software developer
    >>>> ecosystem, it’s completely closed for the handset OEM (pre-load)
    >>>> ecosystem."
    >>>>
    >>>> "it’s worth realising that [from the manufacturer perspective] Android
    >>>> is no more open – and no less closed – than [licensable operating
    >>>> systems like] Windows Mobile, Apple OSX or PalmOS, Symbian and BREW;
    >>>>
    >>>> and in his comments:
    >>>>
    >>>> "The Android pre-load ecosystem is closed (as per my 8 control
    >>>> points), while the post-load ecosystem (the 3rd party developers) is
    >>>> totally open – and indeed more open than any other operating system in
    >>>> the history of the mobile industry"
    >>>>
    >>>> What point were you trying to make?
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>> <shakes head> I guess you missed this part:
    >>>
    >>> "Behind the Open Source facade
    >>>
    >>> "What’s even more fascinating is how closed Android is, despite Google’s
    >>> old do-no-evil don’t be evil mantra and the permissive Apache 2 license
    >>> which Android SDK source code is under. Paraphrasing a famous line from
    >>> Henry Ford’s book on the Model-T, anyone can have Android in their own
    >>> colour as long as it’s black. Android is the best example of how a
    >>> company can use open source to build up interest and community
    >>> participation, while running a very tight commercial model. [updated in
    >>> response to reader comments:] Again I ‘ll emphasize that the closed
    >>> aspects of Android apply to the handset OEM (pre-load) ecosystem, not
    >>> the software developer (post-load) ecosystem (see the comments section
    >>> for a deep dive into pre-load vs post-load].
    >>>
    >>> "How does Google control what services, software and hardware ships in
    >>> Android handsets? The search giant has built an elaborate system of
    >>> control points around Android handsets.
    >>>
    >>> "To dig deeper we spent two months talking to industry sources close to
    >>> Android commercials – and the reality has been startling. From a high
    >>> level, Google uses 8 control points to manage the make-up of Android
    >>> handsets:
    >>>
    >>> "1. Private branches. There are multiple, private codelines available to
    >>> selected partners (typically the OEM working on an Android project) on a
    >>> need-to-know basis only. The private codelines are an estimated 6+
    >>> months ahead of the public SDK and therefore essential for an OEM to
    >>> stay competitive. The main motivation for the public SDK and source code
    >>> is to introduce the latest features (those stemming from private
    >>> branches) into third party apps.
    >>>
    >>> "2. Closed review process. All code reviewers work for Google, meaning
    >>> that Google is the only authority that can accept or reject a code
    >>> submission from the community. There is also a rampant NIH (not invented
    >>> here) culture inside Google that assumes code written by Googlers is
    >>> second to none. Ask anyone who’s tried to contribute a patch to Android
    >>> and you hear the same story: very few contributions get in and often no
    >>> reason is offered on rejection.
    >>>
    >>> "3. Speed of evolution. Google innovates the Android platform at a speed
    >>> that’s unprecedented for the mobile industry, releasing 4 major updates
    >>> (1.6 to 2.1) in 18 months. OEMs wanting to build on Android have no
    >>> choice but to stay close to Google so as not to lose on new features/bug
    >>> fixes released. The Nexus One, Motorola Droid, HTC G1 and other
    >>> Experience handsets serve the purpose of innovation testbeds for Google.
    >>>
    >>> "4. Incomplete software. The public SDK source code is by no means
    >>> sufficient to build a handset. Key building blocks missing are radio
    >>> integration, international language packs, operator packs – and of
    >>> course Google’s closed source apps like Market, Gmail and GTalk. There
    >>> are a few custom ROM builders with a full Android stack like the
    >>> Cyanogen distribution, but these use binaries that are not licensed for
    >>> distribution in commercial handsets.
    >>>
    >>> "5. Gated developer community. Android Market is the exclusive
    >>> distribution and discovery channel for the 40,000+ apps created by
    >>> developers; and is available to phone manufacturers on separate
    >>> agreement. This is one of the strongest control points as no OEM would
    >>> dare produce a handset that doesn’t tap into the Android Market (perhaps
    >>> with the exception of DECT phones, picture frames, in-car terminals or
    >>> other exotic uses of Android). However, one should acknowledge that
    >>> Android’s acceptance process for Market apps is liberal as it gets – and
    >>> the complete antithesis of the Apple vetting process for apps.
    >>>
    >>> "6. Anti-fragmentation agreement. Little is known about the
    >>> anti-fragmentation agreement signed by OHA members but we understand
    >>> it’s a commitment to not release handsets which are not CTS compliant
    >>> (more on CTS later).
    >>>
    >>> "7. Private roadmap. The visibility offered into Android’s roadmap is
    >>> pathetic. At the time of writing, the roadmap published publicly is a
    >>> year out of date (Q1 2009). To get a sneak peak into the private roadmap
    >>> you need Google’s blessing.
    >>>
    >>> "8. Android trademark. Google holds the trademark to the Android name;
    >>> as a manufacturer you can only leverage on the Android branding with
    >>> approval from Google, much like how you need Sun’s approval to claim
    >>> your handset is Java-powered.
    >>>
    >>> "In short, it’s either the Google way or the highway. "
    >>>
    >>>

    >>
    >> So if you are a handset customer you know that you are getting Google
    >> Android, protected by the licensing of the trademark. Its a standard.
    >> Google build a business model for the handset manufacturers that make
    >> it worth signing up for the trademarked version
    >>
    >> But anyone else who wants to can use the published source code like
    >> cyanogen to build a ROM image that will run on the same phones without
    >> breaching any copyrights.
    >>

    >
    > Yeah, right. Tell me where I can download Google's Android source code
    > -- the real code, I mean, that's actually running on real phones. Not
    > the generic SDK. Can't find it, can you?
    >
    >> Thats what FOSS is about.
    >>
    >> The *copyright* license.0
    >>
    >> Nothing else.

    >
    > Exactly -- FOSS is nothing but a copyright and a license. As Google has
    > clearly demonstarted , it takes a top-notch company that pays top-notch
    > developers top money to produce quality software that people actually
    > want. And that only happens in a closed source environment.


    Android is a distribution of open source software written mostly by
    other open source projects.

    http://developer.android.com/guide/basics/what-is-android.html

    "Android relies on Linux version 2.6 for core system services such as
    security, memory management, process management, network stack, and
    driver model. The kernel also acts as an abstraction layer between the
    hardware and the rest of the software stack."

    The browser is based on Webkit
    http://webkit.org/

    The same as Safari in OSX iPhoneOS and Symbian Phones, and Google Chrome.

    Top-notch companies that pay top-notch developers top money think open
    source development is superior.

    Deal with it, you might find you earn a living from it one day.

    Naaah
     
    victor, May 7, 2010
    #3
  4. AD.

    victor Guest

    On 08/05/10 10:14, impossible wrote:
    >
    >
    > "victor" <> wrote in message
    > news:hs21h8$vnv$-september.org...
    >> On 08/05/10 04:46, impossible wrote:
    >>>
    >>>
    >>> "AD." <> wrote in message
    >>> news:...
    >>>
    >>>> On May 7, 4:39 pm, "impossible" <> wrote:
    >>>>> Android's success has nothing to do with open source and everything
    >>>>> to do
    >>>>
    >>>> [So you think Android is a success now?]
    >>>>
    >>>>> with Google's tight control of the commercial development process.
    >>>>>
    >>>>> http://www.visionmobile.com/blog/2010/04/is-android-evil/
    >>>>
    >>>> Closed for who exactly? The article is from the perspective of Handset
    >>>> OEMs - ie the customers of the guy writing it.
    >>>>
    >>>> The guy even says Android is the most open system for app developers
    >>>> and users. From the article:
    >>>>
    >>>> "Whereas Android is completely open for the software developer
    >>>> ecosystem, it’s completely closed for the handset OEM (pre-load)
    >>>> ecosystem."
    >>>>
    >>>> "it’s worth realising that [from the manufacturer perspective] Android
    >>>> is no more open – and no less closed – than [licensable operating
    >>>> systems like] Windows Mobile, Apple OSX or PalmOS, Symbian and BREW;
    >>>>
    >>>> and in his comments:
    >>>>
    >>>> "The Android pre-load ecosystem is closed (as per my 8 control
    >>>> points), while the post-load ecosystem (the 3rd party developers) is
    >>>> totally open – and indeed more open than any other operating system in
    >>>> the history of the mobile industry"
    >>>>
    >>>> What point were you trying to make?
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>> <shakes head> I guess you missed this part:
    >>>
    >>> "Behind the Open Source facade
    >>>
    >>> "What’s even more fascinating is how closed Android is, despite Google’s
    >>> old do-no-evil don’t be evil mantra and the permissive Apache 2 license
    >>> which Android SDK source code is under. Paraphrasing a famous line from
    >>> Henry Ford’s book on the Model-T, anyone can have Android in their own
    >>> colour as long as it’s black. Android is the best example of how a
    >>> company can use open source to build up interest and community
    >>> participation, while running a very tight commercial model. [updated in
    >>> response to reader comments:] Again I ‘ll emphasize that the closed
    >>> aspects of Android apply to the handset OEM (pre-load) ecosystem, not
    >>> the software developer (post-load) ecosystem (see the comments section
    >>> for a deep dive into pre-load vs post-load].
    >>>
    >>> "How does Google control what services, software and hardware ships in
    >>> Android handsets? The search giant has built an elaborate system of
    >>> control points around Android handsets.
    >>>
    >>> "To dig deeper we spent two months talking to industry sources close to
    >>> Android commercials – and the reality has been startling. From a high
    >>> level, Google uses 8 control points to manage the make-up of Android
    >>> handsets:
    >>>
    >>> "1. Private branches. There are multiple, private codelines available to
    >>> selected partners (typically the OEM working on an Android project) on a
    >>> need-to-know basis only. The private codelines are an estimated 6+
    >>> months ahead of the public SDK and therefore essential for an OEM to
    >>> stay competitive. The main motivation for the public SDK and source code
    >>> is to introduce the latest features (those stemming from private
    >>> branches) into third party apps.
    >>>
    >>> "2. Closed review process. All code reviewers work for Google, meaning
    >>> that Google is the only authority that can accept or reject a code
    >>> submission from the community. There is also a rampant NIH (not invented
    >>> here) culture inside Google that assumes code written by Googlers is
    >>> second to none. Ask anyone who’s tried to contribute a patch to Android
    >>> and you hear the same story: very few contributions get in and often no
    >>> reason is offered on rejection.
    >>>
    >>> "3. Speed of evolution. Google innovates the Android platform at a speed
    >>> that’s unprecedented for the mobile industry, releasing 4 major updates
    >>> (1.6 to 2.1) in 18 months. OEMs wanting to build on Android have no
    >>> choice but to stay close to Google so as not to lose on new features/bug
    >>> fixes released. The Nexus One, Motorola Droid, HTC G1 and other
    >>> Experience handsets serve the purpose of innovation testbeds for Google.
    >>>
    >>> "4. Incomplete software. The public SDK source code is by no means
    >>> sufficient to build a handset. Key building blocks missing are radio
    >>> integration, international language packs, operator packs – and of
    >>> course Google’s closed source apps like Market, Gmail and GTalk. There
    >>> are a few custom ROM builders with a full Android stack like the
    >>> Cyanogen distribution, but these use binaries that are not licensed for
    >>> distribution in commercial handsets.
    >>>
    >>> "5. Gated developer community. Android Market is the exclusive
    >>> distribution and discovery channel for the 40,000+ apps created by
    >>> developers; and is available to phone manufacturers on separate
    >>> agreement. This is one of the strongest control points as no OEM would
    >>> dare produce a handset that doesn’t tap into the Android Market (perhaps
    >>> with the exception of DECT phones, picture frames, in-car terminals or
    >>> other exotic uses of Android). However, one should acknowledge that
    >>> Android’s acceptance process for Market apps is liberal as it gets – and
    >>> the complete antithesis of the Apple vetting process for apps.
    >>>
    >>> "6. Anti-fragmentation agreement. Little is known about the
    >>> anti-fragmentation agreement signed by OHA members but we understand
    >>> it’s a commitment to not release handsets which are not CTS compliant
    >>> (more on CTS later).
    >>>
    >>> "7. Private roadmap. The visibility offered into Android’s roadmap is
    >>> pathetic. At the time of writing, the roadmap published publicly is a
    >>> year out of date (Q1 2009). To get a sneak peak into the private roadmap
    >>> you need Google’s blessing.
    >>>
    >>> "8. Android trademark. Google holds the trademark to the Android name;
    >>> as a manufacturer you can only leverage on the Android branding with
    >>> approval from Google, much like how you need Sun’s approval to claim
    >>> your handset is Java-powered.
    >>>
    >>> "In short, it’s either the Google way or the highway. "
    >>>
    >>>

    >>
    >> So if you are a handset customer you know that you are getting Google
    >> Android, protected by the licensing of the trademark. Its a standard.
    >> Google build a business model for the handset manufacturers that make
    >> it worth signing up for the trademarked version
    >>
    >> But anyone else who wants to can use the published source code like
    >> cyanogen to build a ROM image that will run on the same phones without
    >> breaching any copyrights.
    >>

    >
    > Yeah, right. Tell me where I can download Google's Android source code
    > -- the real code, I mean, that's actually running on real phones. Not
    > the generic SDK. Can't find it, can you?
    >


    You really don't understand this stuff at all.
    The SDK is the Software Development Kit, not the source code for the
    operating system.

    The Cyanogenmod project runs on real phones, its built from Google
    source code and hosted by Google on their open source repositories.

    They asked the developer to remove some of the proprietary apps included
    in the ROM image, but they aren't stopping distribution of the Android
    OS source or the ROM images at all.
     
    victor, May 8, 2010
    #4
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