Google has been busy with its operating software for mobiles, bringing in one after the other in the span of one year. The last software launched by Google has been Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, which was used in Samsung Galaxy Nexus – picking up its momentum until it covered 23.7% of the total number of Android devices. A year later, the launch of new version 4.1 Jelly Bean has been announced. Ice Cream Sandwich’s incursion into the market and the devices has been rather slow. However, most of the top manufacturers assert otherwise and if we are to take their word for it, the updates for several devices will be made available by the end of this year.
The biggest mistake Google made was to believe every word the manufacturers gave. Let’s take the case of Motorola. The company maintained that it would upgrade all devices to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean by the end of this year. The list that Motorola issued, contained names of all the devices that were meant to receive updates from Gingerbread to Ice Cream Sandwich (2.3 to 4.0). However, Motorola went back on its word and later changed its upgrade list to indicate that several phones scheduled to receive the Ice Cream Sandwich, like the original Atrix, will not get the new OS. As per the new updated list, all in all, 13 out of 23 Motorola smartphone – mentioned in the previous list – continue to remain on 2.3 Gingerbread.
It was not only Motorola that backed out, but HTC and Samsung did something similar. Both the later companies have been terribly slow in releasing Android updates. There is a very simple reason behind it – top mobile phone manufacturers are more interested in selling their new products with the updates rather than spending resources on updating the ones that are already sold. The carriers are also partially responsible in moving in line with the manufacturers as they provide the channels for these updates to flow.
The pledge has been kept intact when it comes to the launch of new phones. Top mobile phone manufacturing companies, Samsung and HTC are coming with the latest versions; either 4.0 or 4.1 while both the companies. The companies have committed to give out the upgrade by the end of 2012. Motorola on the other hand went so far as to pledge that if an old phone was not upgraded to 4.1 then the company will reward its users by giving a $100 credit for a new Motorola phone, while the company announced its new Droid Razr.
However, the future looks promising with the commitment of major mobile phone manufacturing companies to launch their new phones with the new version of Android OS. Even in the past, the total number of Android devices using Ice Cream Sandwich, even a year after it was released, is shocking but unfortunately that has been the norm in Android lands. It was only after six months of the official release that the first Android 4.0 devices (except Galaxy Nexus) were made widely available in the U.S. Nonetheless, it is not clear if Google has addressed the pressing issue of Android spyware in its new operating software.
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