Operating SystemsOpinionSoftware

Should Google Ditch The Yearly Release Of Android Updates?


Every year, Google announces a new version of Android at their Google I/O event and last year we saw the announcement of Android Pie. This, however, got me thinking, should Google ditch this system and try another approach, like a 2-year release cycle or should they just keep doing what they are doing?
I am internally convinced that the annual release cycle does not do any good. I know most geeks will disagree but here’s my reasoning:

The latest stats from Google, show that two and a half-year-old Android Nougat is the most popular Android version running on over 28% of Android devices. Oreo follows suit, going head to head with three-year-old Marshmallow at 21.5% and 21.3% respectively. Interestingly, Google has yet to update the stats from October last year and there’s no sign of Android Pie despite the software being available from August 2018.

This to me looks like a very slow adoption rate and it should strike a nerve. Blame it on OEMs and their slow updates but this is no justification why some new phones don’t come running the latest version of Android out of the box.

The problem with Android has always been updates, I don’t know if this will ever change but that’s what you get for having an open source OS. I think the best solution to this issue is for Google to give OEMs more time to roll out updates to their devices by slowing down on their yearly Android release.

It saddens me that only Pixel and a handful of Nokia and other Android One devices will enjoy the real beauty and power of pure Android. Maybe google should come up with better policies on how OEMs handle updates but as a start, they should first review their own update cycle.

A version of this article first appeared on TechArena Kenya

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