Define 'abused' for an Open product.
This is Google protecting their brand, now that Android is more readily linked to the company than a few years ago. I'm not saying it's a bad thing for the usability and consistency of the handsets / tablets, but open is open.
Abused was probably the wrong word but I just feel that when you have the OS being heavily skinned or crammed on so many devices. There was a point when I supported Sense but I don't think it's entirely needed anymore and from what I used with TouchWiz & Blur they've been lack luster. I guess ultimately I think the rate at which we're seeing devices released with the OS is just overkill and not much is being done to really give a solid experience with the phone/tablet.
For the record I also support this 100% because of what you said.
Yes. And that's why Android is more and more to me a poor man's iPhone(in terms of experience, not particularly money - or perhaps I'm the only one just looking at it from SIM-free pricing view).
A very cynical take on this is that Google played up the open source aspect of Android when it was looking for early adopters in the mobile market who would see that as a reason to invest in the platform. Now that Android has moved on to the mass market open source is not as necessary a selling point, and therefore Google is free to abandon open source principles as they see fit.
Well aren't we Mr Cynical...
Man after my own heart :p
...although they may not be that 'evil'. I think it's pretty clear they believe there's 'good open' and 'bad open' (and as a concept I absolutely agree) and they have the hubris to assume that they can be the arbiter of it.
It'll be interesting to see how it plays out. I think for the most part, everyone will toe Google's line - I don't see a huge mutiny happening here. The culture will change as even old-school devs peg to the fact that 'bad open' doesn't work. Pretty soon it'll just be Stallman raging in a corner to himself :p
Stallman isn't raging in a corner by himself yet? I thought he reached that point complaining about Ubuntu.
I think the point is that Android is open source, not open development. To me it looks as Google probably rushed 3.0 out to meet the demand for an iPad competitor, and while it may work fine on the select devices it is running on now, the code is far from being usable on most any device.
I am going to wait and see how Google handles this before I grab a pitchfork and torch. If they live up to their word and release the source code after they merge and clean up the various Android branches then it's all good to me.
Personally, I want Google to keep it's pimp hand strong with some of the crappy things manufacturer's are doing. Make all the changes extras widgets or something like Launcher Pro where it works easily with the existing OS. If a company were to do that, the geeks would eat it up and they would recommend it to the non-techies. It would actually be an advantage for a brand not to heavily skin it. Do nothing that can't easily be undone is a differentiator at this point.
Agreed completely. When all is said and done, google is a company who is publicly traded and needs to keep making money. In this case it seems clear google is beginning to realize that android is openly connected to googles image. In fact, in Canada the cell companies market android phones as google phones. If this public perception holds up, google needs to control more and more of the android experience.
It would not surprise me if in the next year or so we see google tightening up it's android ship more and more.