Thursday, September 25, 2008

Android Has Serious Issues and Questions To Answer

There is plenty of time for Google and T-Mobile address issues and shortcomings with G1 before it is finally made available on October 22nd.

One of the issues is the 1GB 3G cap that T-Mobile sought fit to impose on potential G1 users.  Everyone thought that was a bad idea.  To my knowledge, no one has thought otherwise.  And that has had an effect on folks like myself who were initially read to take out our credit cards and make the buy.  (T-Mobile is still vague about it and Google seems awfully quiet, probably want to distance itself from this fiasco.)

Still, issues exist that will keep people from embracing what had been a promising mobile platform.  Now, it is in danger of being marginalized by wireless providers and their demands so that they may retain control over their subscribers.  And control is what they want.

So, when Phandroid's post attempts to marginalize the issues that remains and promises of openness broken in Google's deal with T-Mobile, it has effectively turned Android into another puppet and any future Android-based device becomes just another smartphones and Google will seem content to be the search engine and ad provider and users be damned.

Let's examine Phandroid's lack of concerns.  Just the main ones.  The lack of standard head jack or Amazon sales through Wi-Fi only doesn't bother me as much as other issues.

First, let me tackle VOIP.  Phandroid doesn't think VOIP is important.  If that were the case, why would T-Mobile specifically made sure Google disable any VOIP apps from working on the G1?

Let me take this a step further.  What else are we not being told?  What other apps are not allowed?  This is an open platform, right?  I think most mobile warriors including myself have a different definition of "open" than T-Mobile and Google.

The other issue is Exchange support and wireless syncing only.  I'm lumping this together.  What this is is Google trying to get users to develop the habit of relying on cloud computing, specifically Google's, than on desktop computers, meaning Microsoft.  I understand what it's trying to do here.  The danger is that people may not be ready for just such a change.  And it's not as if Google is offering a massive (or unlimited - guess we'll have to be careful about what Google's definition of "unlimited" is too) amount of storage in the cloud.  Where are we suppose to put our data, music, and video?

So, there are a lot of questions we don't have an answer for and judging by the quick response from T-Mobile, the Android camp doesn't either.  And none of these concerned, raised by anyone, should be so cavalierly dismissed.

Google has to step up and start dictating terms to the market.

Impact on mobile warriors:  Google is happy.  Not about the deal with T-Mobile.  They are happy just to get the first Android phone out.  And it likely know at this time, Android is not "open".  But Google's got a foot in the door and that's what's important.

Phandroid's post

Note:  Tonight or tomorrow, I'll get into how Google can totally kick ass.  Yes, I want Android to succeed very much.

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