Google needs to take control of updates

Updating the Android device is almost the most painful topic in our small but cozy community. We would ask you how you feel about this issue, but the answer is already known. This unpredictability in Android updates sometimes looks as if the only purpose of manufacturers who delay the update for our favorite device is to pull our honestly earned money out of the new flagship. It’s been suggested for a long time that updates should be handled directly by Google. Let’s think together about what would happen if we did.

Every time you buy a new device, you think it will receive updates in time. These thoughts are especially strong when you buy a Nexus device. In part, they are justified, because Nexus has the best track record in terms of upgrading to the next OS version. Why is that? Because Google controls the update.

Do you know any interesting stories related to the Samsung Galaxy Nexus update? When the new Nexus from Samsung first appeared – it made a huge sensation. New design, a huge number of different chips – the new Google phone wanted almost everything. And when it came time to update, many faced problems, namely: the supplier of updating the device was not Google. In the case of Galaxy Nexus, which were sold in Russia, the updates came from Samsung. And if Samsung could at least somehow cope with this issue, then the owner of Galaxy Nexus in the U.S. was much worse. There, the updates were delivered by operators. Of course, it was possible to change the supplier through some manipulations, but that led to a loss of warranty.

So it was hard enough for them to get their updates. Needless to say, did many people end up selling their devices? Also, we can look at other examples, which are very numerous on the market. One of the highlights is the story of the HTC One S. HTC has long and persistently assured the public that the One S will definitely get an upgrade to Android 4.2. In the end, it ended up updating to 4.1. And everything, the smartphone, despite all its positive qualities, you can write off.

And now, let’s move on to these days. This time HTC convinces everyone that Android 4.4 KitKat will arrive to all HTC One within 90 days. We hope that this time HTC didn’t lie, and the flagship device will really be updated in time. Especially, if promises are not fulfilled, given the position of HTC, this error can be fatal for the company.

There is only one way out of this problem – Google needs to control device updates independently. Take a look at Motorola. The example of this company is astonishing. Before Google bought out Motorola, it also had quite big problems with device updates. The situation was the same as with HTC. But after Motorola became a subsidiary of Google, everything changed. The most striking example is that Motorola X Phone is the first non Nexus phone that got an update to Android 4.4 KitKat. Impressive, isn’t it?

The main advantage of Android is the ability to configure the software “for yourself”. Everyone is free to do with his device what he wants. There is always a choice – to stay on the stock firmware or set the custom, leave the appearance of the device as it was out of the box or put a lounge from Play Market, which will give a huge number of settings. And much more, of course.

But, nevertheless, there are always negative reports that this or that device was left without updating. But it all rests on the fact that the manufacturer has to test it for a long time before sending new firmware to the device. Perhaps, if the manufacturers had made their firmware more similar to pure Android, there would have been much less problems with the update. Accordingly, such a solution would allow Google to be more involved in the update process, with the possibility, in the future, to fully control the update.

However, this process is very, very difficult. Primarily due to the fact that it is unlikely that manufacturers will be able to abandon their changes that they make to make the device more unique. The second pitfall is that Google will get a huge number of devices that need to be updated simultaneously. And that’s instead of the few that they have now.

Either way, taking control of updates from manufacturers to Google is a big plus. But it’s not likely to happen. How do you think?

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