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50+ Android Phones Expected In Near Future

timothy posted about 5 years ago | from the quite-the-ecosystem dept.

Cellphones 378

wiseandroid writes "It's not even a year ago that the HTC Dream G1 became the first Android enabled phone to be released publicly (on October 22nd, 2008) and now we have listed more than 50 Android phones expected in the near future." Of the 51 phones on this list, 12 (from nine manufacturers) are currently available.

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first post expected now (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29807365)

suck my cock, faggots!

too late (1)

Adolf Hitroll (562418) | about 5 years ago | (#29807369)

they've lost: people want either an iPhone or your Ma's waterproof 2$ Nokia rugged phone.

Any have a decent Camera? (5, Interesting)

thefirelane (586885) | about 5 years ago | (#29807387)

Seriously. Why do Android phones seem to ignore the camera? I'd really like to see one with a very good camera, something like an Android version of the N86 []

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (5, Informative)

WhiteSpade (959060) | about 5 years ago | (#29807489)

The newly released (in the US) HTC Hero has a 5 megapixel camera ( I just got the Hero and it takes surprisingly good pictures in low light too. The screen lags quite a bit behind what the camera is seeing, but I'm told that Android 1.6 is supposed to fix that (whenever HTC gets around to releasing the update). ---Alex

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (4, Interesting)

ircmaxell (1117387) | about 5 years ago | (#29807557)

I'm running the official version of 1.6 (HTC Dream Developer's edition phone), and I must say WOW. SOOO much smoother and more responsive. The new camera interface is eih, but the display is much better with it (A lot faster and smoother)...

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (1, Offtopic)

cerberusss (660701) | about 5 years ago | (#29807677)

That's pretty interesting, because I find the current integrated cameras sorely lacking even for simple pics. I have a 3G iPhone and recently, I snapped a couple of pictures of my girlfriend's Master's thesis defense. I let them print on standard 10x13 cm (4x5.1in) paper by a photo printing service and boy -- what a disappointment. They looked blocky with lots of artefacts. Anyone who defends the iPhone camera should really send a couple of his pics to a photo printing service and be appalled by the result.

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (1)

YouWantFriesWithThat (1123591) | about 5 years ago | (#29807853)

i agree. honestly, and this isn't a troll, i think that the iPhone 3G camera is pretty horrible. didn't the 3GS introduce autofocus to the iPhone? maybe that one will be better because of that. i have an older LG that has autofocus and the shots (when set to max resolution of 1600x1200) are pretty good for a lens the size of a pinhead. they look good printed about 4x6 and okay on a screen up to about 1024x768. a smartphone should have results at least that good, since my phone was $80 when new and about $40 now.

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29807991)

I find the current integrated cameras sorely lacking even for simple pics.

Don't overgeneralise: the 3G camera is pure crap but there are camera phones that are quite usable (many new Nokias are excellent, even the iphone 3GS is pretty good).

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (4, Informative)

LordVader717 (888547) | about 5 years ago | (#29808075)

Photographing documents is always terrible with phones because they have no variable focus. So they use a pinhole camera for infinite focus, but it fails at less than about 3 meters.
I always thought that a camera specifically for scanning documents would be great on a phone. They could have two cameras, one with infinite focus and one for photographing documents up-close.
You could attach an apropriate lens in front and get the same result I guess.

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (1)

MBCook (132727) | about 5 years ago | (#29808305)

The 3G is fixed focus, and not great for stuff close to the lens. The 3GS is variable focus, and the reviews I saw (I'm a 3G owner), it's camera is head and shoulders better than the 3G.

The 3G camera is OK. With lots of light, it takes some pretty good pictures, especially color wise. But with lower light levels (such as room lighting, often) or things closer than 2 feet or so... it's just a cell phone camera.

The 3G takes better pictures that most camera phones, about the same as or slightly better than many smart phones (from last year or so). But it's still a cell phone with a camera. It won't compete with a $150 point and shoot.

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 5 years ago | (#29808423)

Just hold the lens from a pair of reading glasses in front of it. Geezer eyes don't focus either.

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29808125)

did you transfer them through the computer to the photo lab, or email. emailing photos from any iPhone sends only the screen resolution pix (unless you have a jailbroken phone and use sendPix) and will look like crap. I have actually gotten a few decent outdoor bright light pix from my 1st gen iphone.

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (5, Interesting)

japhering (564929) | about 5 years ago | (#29807611)

As someone who frequently has to be in secured areas.. I hope at least some of the models never, ever have a camera, as is it a pain to either have to lock my phone in the car or to hand it over to some $10 an hour security guard prior to entry or have it confiscated by the same guard on the way out if I forget to hand it to him on the way in.

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (1)

Chris.Nelson (943214) | about 5 years ago | (#29808439)

It'd be nice if the camera optics were in a removable little bit that you could leave in your car or with the guard. I imagine something about the size of a 2x2 Lego brick that snaps in and out easily.

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (1)

Andy Dodd (701) | about 5 years ago | (#29808469)

My site eventually changed policy to allow employees to carry cameraphones if they took appropriate training, which was basically, "Don't use the camera on site."

There are areas we can't even bring cameraphones, but we're not even allowed to bring non-camera phones into those areas.

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (1)

Sobrique (543255) | about 5 years ago | (#29808491)

Agreed. I've worked on 'secure' sites, and getting hold of a decent smartphone, which also did not have a camera was a complete nightmare. I do kind of like having a camera, but it's hardly a 'killer feature' in my book. But ... I'd really rather be able to keep my phone when on such a site.

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (3, Informative)

SSCGWLB (956147) | about 5 years ago | (#29807625)

The Motorola Droid (not out yet I think) is supposed to have a 5 megapixel camera, auto focus and flash. I have not heard much about the picture quality. On the up side: the camera GUI, auto focus, and responsiveness have significantly improved on my G1 with every update. In good light on a mostly still subject the G1 takes acceptable pictures.

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29807895)

Someone claimed that this video: [] was taken with the Droid. Not sure if that's true or not though. Excellent video quality for a phone.

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (1)

KlaymenDK (713149) | about 5 years ago | (#29807691)

The camera in my Galaxy is actually surprisingly good. However (and unsurprisingly), it doesn't have red-eye reduction and such photography modes.

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (4, Interesting)

dingen (958134) | about 5 years ago | (#29808045)

There is no such thing as a decent camera on a phone. Seriously, I'm not trolling. It doesn't matter if it offers more megapixels, auto white balance or a Zeiss lens. Compared to any decent camera out there, pictures from a phone will always look like crap. I rather have fewer megapixels, so at least the crap consumes less disk space.

Re:Any have a decent Camera? (4, Informative)

beelsebob (529313) | about 5 years ago | (#29808245)

You're barking up the wrong tree if you want a "very good camera" in a mobile phone, it just can't be done, the optics aren't good enough.

For reference though, an 8MB camera in a phone is likely to be *worse* than a 5MP one, which in turn will be worse than a 3MP one (which is about the optimum).

More pixels in such a small area == less light falling on the pixels == higher sensitivity pixels == worse signal to noise ratio.

The result of that is that phones with high resolution cameras have to apply a noise reduction filter, which is essentially just a blur, and none of these cameras can manage a sharp focus.

Just 50? (5, Funny)

gmuslera (3436) | about 5 years ago | (#29807447)

Will take time till Android matches the market share of IPhone that way.

Re:Just 50? (2, Insightful)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | about 5 years ago | (#29807499)

With 50+ they almost reached the number of Mac users :-P

Re:Just 50? (4, Funny)

schmidt349 (690948) | about 5 years ago | (#29807591)

See, it's funny because if there were only 50 Mac users then their average contribution to Apple's revenues for the last fiscal quarter would be $245 million. In case you were wondering, that will buy you 245,000 entry level MacBooks, or one seriously decked-out Mac Pro.

Re:Just 50? (1)

Tubal-Cain (1289912) | about 5 years ago | (#29807929)

...or one seriously decked-out Mac Pro.

That's a bit misleading. Only a few more million and you might be able to buy two Mac Pros.

Re:Just 50? (1)

John Betonschaar (178617) | about 5 years ago | (#29807995)

iPod, iTunes :-P

Re:Just 50? (1)

Abreu (173023) | about 5 years ago | (#29808213)

It is well known that Mac users overpay for their hardware

Re:Just 50? (1)

Chris Mattern (191822) | about 5 years ago | (#29807661)

Really? There's only been six iPhones ever (counting iPod Touch), and only four are still available.

Re:Just 50? (1)

jellomizer (103300) | about 5 years ago | (#29807767)

We will have to see... Apple could repeat old history and make the first popular mainstream smartphone (like they did with the Apple II) Get good market share then have a competitor with a more open solution take over the market. Or what could happen is all the carriers who wants to make sure they don't blow it like IBM did. Will keep Android Locked down and each version incompatible with each other, so in essence keeping a bunch of branches of Android which won't work seamlessly. Allowing Apple to keep the main market share. As the carriers keep their control by keeping every android version locked to themselfs.

After BlackBerry Storm I am ready (3, Insightful)

the_crowbar (149535) | about 5 years ago | (#29807459)

I have had a BB Storm for a few months I like a few features and loathe a few others.

- Easy web page viewing most anywhere
- BB Messenger is good and beats SMS/MMS anyday (plus its cost is included in my plan unlike SMS)

- Speed of the device (it feels slower now than when I first got the device and can take a few seconds now to come from locked screen to usable mode)
- Battery life ( I don't know how any of the Androids stack up here)

I have briefly used a G1 and I thought it was a nice device. The touchscreen keyboard on the Storm is ok, but when typing quickly it lags several keys behind. I did not experience that on the G1, plus with a physical keyboard you can type without looking at the phone.


Re:After BlackBerry Storm I am ready (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29807551)

If you haven't tried one of the OS5.0 leaks, I highly suggest it. Fixes a lot of the lag and general sluggishness of the device.

Re:After BlackBerry Storm I am ready (4, Interesting)

KlaymenDK (713149) | about 5 years ago | (#29807803)

Regarding speed, you will find Android on the slow side as well, especially if you let your SMS app become bogged down with hundreds of old messages (to show previous chat log), and when your calendar and phone book get lots of entries. I'm not saying it takes *several* seconds, but it's a damn cry from being instantaneous.

Regarding battery life, expect one full working day, or two whole days TOPS, from *any* modern device.

If you want fortnight-long battery life, grab a Psion Series5 MX Pro and have it refurbished (yes, I'm being serious). If you want instant application starts, grab either that or a Palm Treo and have that refurbished. For *phone* capability, forget the Psion, that's "just" a pda (in quotes because it's a damn proper one).

Do NOT expect an Android device to be a pda. It's a smartphone.

Re:After BlackBerry Storm I am ready (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29808225)

Do you have The Weather Channel app installed? If so uninstall it and see how your speed changes.

Re:After BlackBerry Storm I am ready (2, Interesting)

SCHecklerX (229973) | about 5 years ago | (#29808217)

Just got a palm pre myself. While being on sprint sucks, the phone is amazing. Very open with an active homebrew community. Easy to 'root' (even from linux ... I don't even own a windows computer). Changing the phone's behavior is usually just a matter of editing some javascript and CSS (most of the things you'd like to do there is already a patch for, and you don't need to fully install optware just to install the patches). This is all done in a familiar linux environment.

I was on the fence about getting a 'droid on verizon and the palm pre. After a few days with the pre, however, I am VERY HAPPY with my decision. WebOS is the most open thing I've ever seen on a phone. Messaging is still a little better on the blackberry, but WebOS does it as well as any other platform. And palm / sprint seem to be quite ok with it (other than tethering. *sigh*).

Diversity of features (1)

YouWantFriesWithThat (1123591) | about 5 years ago | (#29807481)

there is not enough information released as of yet, but i really hope for a greater diversity of features and hardware. i really want a better (sturdier) piece of hardware than the G1 that has a keyboard and an SD slot. (or 2!)

i googled the ones on the list that were bold (which apparently indicates they are currently for sale) and i didn't see any that had a keyboard. they all appeared superficially similar in design: touchscreen iphone lookalikes. that is really too bad, i like keyboards.

Re:Diversity of features (3, Interesting)

swimin (828756) | about 5 years ago | (#29807751)

Take a look at the upcoming motorola droid coming to verizon. Probably hitting stores on Nov 6th, Possibly online/telephone sales the end of this month. It has a slideout qwerty keyboard, 3.7inch capacitive touchscreen, 5MP camera, and will be the first Android 2.0 phone. It's also only .5in thick.

Reportedly It's made of metal and has a very sturdy feel to it.

Re:Diversity of features (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | about 5 years ago | (#29807771)

There are supposedly 50 Android phones in the works. I'm sure some will have keyboards. The Motorola Calgary has a keyboard for instance.

Re:Diversity of features (3, Funny)

IBBoard (1128019) | about 5 years ago | (#29807855)

that is really too bad, i like keyboards.

[Marketing-exec]No, I'm sure you're just confused. Yes, you're familiar with keyboards. Yes, the tactile feedback can be exceedingly useful. Yes, it means you're not hiding what you're about to click on. Yes, it means your screen doesn't get greasy. But what you really want is a touch-screen. It's what we're designing our phones with, because "customers" want it, and you're a customer so you must want it.[/Marketing-exec]

Re:Diversity of features (1)

YouWantFriesWithThat (1123591) | about 5 years ago | (#29807871)

nicely played, but i think i want a Pre with a horizontal layout that i can dual-boot to android. but maybe that's just me :)

Re:Diversity of features (1)

IBBoard (1128019) | about 5 years ago | (#29808325)

I want a phone that does phone calls and texts, but these days your options are limited if you don't want to pay for the camera :D

Things like Android and the Palm Pre look interesting, but a) I don't miss most of the features and wouldn't use them much after the first month and b) I don't have the money to spare (£10 of top-up credit lasts me 3-6 months! Land-lines and company phones are much cheaper ;) )

Nice (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | about 5 years ago | (#29807491)

I was just reading the press release for Alex [] from Spring Design. This is still vapor ware, but if they don't make it to market someone else will. It is a dual screen e-reader running Android. If I were going to be rolling out any device that was going to sport the kind of connectivity that people are coming to suspect, Android would have to be in the running as a free, open platform. So I think along with a lot of new Android phones, we will be seeing a lot of Android devices in general.
The Economist did a special report last month on mobile tech in emerging markets. They say in 5-10 years everyone in the world that wants a phone will have one, and the service to use it. I think that is totally amazing. At the same time I've been working with some research folks at the University of Central Florida and they think smartphones will become the norm in the next 5 years or so. I think this all combines to paint a picture that gives Android a bright outlook. I don't think it's inevitable but I do think the odds are good that Android will be massive. On a side note, the UCF folks are doing education software for smart phones. They started with iPhone and Android as their platforms but they've dropped iPhone and moved purely to Android.

Nice, but need more info (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29807513)

For example, when will I be able to get a phone like the Motorola Droid / Sholes on AT&T? The chart shows that the networks will support them, but here in the US we have this really lame setup where phones go "exclusive" on one network for awhile before you can even get them on the others. I understand I could get a Droid if I was a Verizon customer sometime in November, but I need one on AT&T. I haven't seen any Android phone on AT&T yet - even a not so good one. I'd switch providers, but the whole family is on AT&T.

Re:Nice, but need more info (1)

sadler121 (735320) | about 5 years ago | (#29807965)

iirc, Rogers in Canada uses the same spectrum allocation as at&t here in the US. Thus you could get a G1/G2 unlocked from Canada and use it on at&t's network.

Re:Nice, but need more info (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29808319)

I think AT&T is so in bed with apple right now they aren't doing anything in the way of android.

Just phones? (1)

phonewebcam (446772) | about 5 years ago | (#29807523)

Meh. Our Japanese friends have moved onto fridges [] .

More choice means more flexibility (4, Insightful)

TwistedGreen (80055) | about 5 years ago | (#29807565)

This is one of the biggest ways that Android and the iPhone differ. With the iPhone, you have one phone, and one OS. With Android, you have one OS but many different phones. While the iPhone already has a huge number of apps available for their one device, not everyone wants a big touchscreen for a phone. Appealing to a broader audience by letting people choose their phone with a broad range of prices and features could be the most effective way for Android to compete. Smartphones are still only used by a small percentage all mobile phone users--it's still a growing market. It seems that Google is using this opportunity to make smart phones more accessible and more affordable. I think this is a far more sustainable strategy than Apple's one phone philosophy.

Re:More choice means more flexibility (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | about 5 years ago | (#29807735)


Some people want real keyboards. Some people want expensive phones with the best possible features and tons of storage. Some people want cheap phones.

Re:More choice means more flexibility (0)

fermion (181285) | about 5 years ago | (#29807999)

It also means that each phone can be tied to a particular US provider, probably with certain non-profitable features disabled and certain featured added to create specific profit centers. I see this as the PC market several years ago. No profit in the PC, so deals were cut with various software vendors to pre install products on the PC. Even customer data was sometimes sold. Same thing for the emerging DSL market on PCs. MS Windows did not have automagic connecting software, so many vendors, for instance SBC, would have the user install software that also did other unknown functions.

The cool thing about android is that it should, in theory, allow end users to get the exact phone they want. The reality it, since the end user is not really buying the phone, that the mobile service providers will continue to design they phone they need, and the collude to provide limited functionality to the United States market. We onlu have to go back to the Motorola Razr and look at the Nokia situation to see that mobile providers in the US will not provide anything that is not centered around them.

Re:More choice means more flexibility (1)

GooberToo (74388) | about 5 years ago | (#29808459)

It also means that each phone can be tied to a particular US provider, probably with certain non-profitable features disabled

People keep saying this but there hasn't even been a hint this is even remotely close to reality. The reality is, with so many phones on so many carriers, gimping a phone means pushing sales to your competition. Even Verizon has publicly stated then will not be gimping their Android phones. This means carriers are forced to compete based on hardware features and value added applications and services.

Until there is at least a hint that carriers intend to screw over their users with these phones, statements like this only serve to provide misinformation and scaremonger.

Re:More choice means more flexibility (2, Interesting)

dingen (958134) | about 5 years ago | (#29808005)

Or, more choice means it's more difficult to develop for the platform, leading to fewer apps and a less interesting platform for both developers and consumers. This is already a big problem with Symbian and Windows Mobile.

I read a reply from a Symbian user a week ago in which he stated that the most interesting app he had purchased for this phone was a better clock. This is a perfect display of the sad state of affairs the platform is in.

It would be a shame if Android would suffer the same fate.

Re:More choice means more flexibility (1)

sribe (304414) | about 5 years ago | (#29808047)

Appealing to a broader audience by letting people choose their phone with a broad range of prices and features could be the most effective way for Android to compete...

A dozen phones would be healthy competition to appeal to a broad audience; 50+ phones is confusion that will drive consumers away.

Re:More choice means more flexibility (1)

cabjf (710106) | about 5 years ago | (#29808073)

I think the only real rub comes with the apps. For all those different models with different screen sizes and different input options, a developer will have more work just making sure his or her app works for the wide variety of phones. And if it was the app store that really catapulted the iPhone to greatness, it's not an issue to take lightly while trying to expand the market.

History repeats itself (1)

paulpach (798828) | about 5 years ago | (#29808077)

This is exactly how Apple lost the PC war

Apple had one computer with one operating system (the mac) vs one operating system (MS-DOS and later Windows) running on hundreds of different clones.

Eventually, the clones competed fiercely on price and features and ate away most of the market share. This happens even as apple had an arguably better product.

Re:History repeats itself (1)

sootman (158191) | about 5 years ago | (#29808223)

This is exactly how Apple lost the PC war

Well, they didn't do as well as MS--nobody did--and while they don't have that high of a market share, they're ridiculously profitable. [] Compared to Dell, Compaq, HP, Gateway, and everyone else who was involved in or "won" the race to the bottom, they've done quite well. Not everyone who "loses" is a loser and not everyone who wins is a winner. []

Re:History repeats itself (2, Insightful)

iamhigh (1252742) | about 5 years ago | (#29808403)

So throw out the winner, then number two looks great! Not to mention Dell, HP, etc. don't write the software, they only sell it with their hardware (sorta). You can't compare the profitability of Apple, with the iPhone, iPod, computer hardware, and the whole software stack as their own to make money off of to a hardware/resale company like dell (might as well compare to cdw). You could compare it to Dell+MS. Apple "lost" the "PC war", but they have found many other ways to make money. So has TI, Xerox, IBM, and all the other players from back in the day (well, not ALL).

Re:More choice means more flexibility (2, Interesting)

tomzyk (158497) | about 5 years ago | (#29808139)

While I agree, I think the big drawback with having different hardware comes from a programming/user-interface standpoint: how do you develop applications that will run on ALL of these phones when the screen real-estate can be so varied?

Anyone that has done a lot of HTML design knows about the headaches this can cause.

ie. You want to make your site look pretty for someone who runs their OS in 800x600 as well as someone who runs at 1280x1024. While you COULD just develop it for the more popular [higher] resolution, you could be ostracizing a large user-base who opted for the more compact screen. Then you also possibly need to add in the complexity to design your UI for when they turn their phone 90 degrees and want to run your app in portrait mode too...

Re:More choice means more flexibility (1)

tzhuge (1031302) | about 5 years ago | (#29808187)

That's great for some people, but personally I find the amount of options overwhelming. Same thing with computers as well. Once upon a time I would've researched parts and looked at spec sheets and read reviews to figure out exactly what to get. However, it seems like I would inevitably be slightly disappointed in the end. I think I enjoyed the process of the 'shopping' more than the final product and in the end it is the final product I have to live with. Choice is good for consumers, but I suspect there are many out there like me that will go with the one easy good choice over many possibly horrible to excellent choices.

For people like me, Apple is generally a good option. They make basically quality products with very good usability and design. The iPhone is an excellent phone and will remain an excellent phone even if products with better feature sets at lower price points exist. I know many times /. posters like to dismiss shoppers like me as being 'stupid' or 'vain' or something, but quite frankly I find a lot of those people either disingenuous or delusional when they try to argue the iPhone is selling purely on 'style' or try to compare product using purely specs.

Re:More choice means more headaches (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29808335)

This is exactly why developers (like myself) love developing for the iPhone. Imagine trying to create an app/game and having to test it for all these devices. It's not just a matter of testing though, each one could have different means of input and different screen sizes. Absolute nightmare.

On a related note... (5, Interesting)

keatonguy (1001680) | about 5 years ago | (#29807579)

...I saw the Android TV ad last night. I think it's the only time seeing an advertisement for something has make me verbally cheer.

It lampooned the Apple ad format, complete with the black text on white and indie music listing off stuff the iPhone can't do, then making a sharp cut to an android logo with a URL.

I really hope to see more well-coordinated advertising like this for OSS! This is the first, maybe the second time in my memory that any OSS has had any kind of TV spot, and this one was really solid.

Re:On a related note... (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | about 5 years ago | (#29807759)

I first saw it on youtube - linked from an article at Ars I think. I thought it was pretty awesome. Then this week-end I'm watching football and see it come on national t.v. I was surprised, I didn't know they'd be pushing it with the kind of money that took. I enjoyed it too and thought it was pretty awesome. The rest of my family was less impressed.

Re:On a related note... (1)

swimin (828756) | about 5 years ago | (#29807795)

That's not an ad for android ... it's an ad for a specific android phone. The Motorola Droid (previously known as sholes/tao)

link (1)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | about 5 years ago | (#29808157)

link for the lazy []

I've been wondering when the counter-apple advertising would kick in, the "only on iphone" tagline is just a bit too cocky and deserves to get demolished. I think the advertising of andriod/android phones will be key because, the SW is better than the iphone's, the HW varies but if your looking for any particular feature there will probably be an android mobile that beats the iphone, but the advertising (so far) is what android has lacked.

Droid ad didn't make complete sense (1, Insightful)

Webcommando (755831) | about 5 years ago | (#29808395)

It would be nice if some of the items made sense. Now, I'm speaking from the consumer perspective here and not someone who reads technology sites daily:

For example, what does ability to run "widgets" really mean? I think most people get "applications" and know that Apple iPhone has a ton of what is this?

What exactly is open development to the average user? Again, I can get lots of applications from Apple so what is this specifically saying to me the consumer?

I think most people will get what's the point of 5 Meg Pixel camera (for most bigger is better, right). keyboard and replaceable battery are probably dead on for a segment of the audience. Personally, I like soft keyboards and never have changed my battery. However, I think it makes a key differentiating feature highly visible.

I have an iPhone and it is a nice device and I don't get the seething hate of Apple products. However, something better comes along, I'll consider it.

Now as an aside...I really don't like the generate "hype" ads that don't really say anything about the product before release. I remember the G commercials for Gatorade last year. Is it a new sport clothing line, shoe, what...then turns out to be just a sports drink. Seen these for cars, perfume, etc. and I think they are counter productive for most viewers (bigger hype, bigger disappointment).

Momentum (1)

hattig (47930) | about 5 years ago | (#29807601)

It seems the momentum is with Android for "OEM handsets", the handsets that would previously have used Windows Mobile have migrated en-mass to a cheaper, more modern, sellable phone OS.

It just convinces me that Windows Mobile 6.5 is too little, too late, and it doesn't offer much anyway. Windows Mobile 7 - presumably their next-generation mobile OS - is horribly delayed and will be feature-poor (generation 1) in comparison to Android, WebOS and iPhone OS. Maemo is on the sidelines too, for Nokia.

Android:iPhone::Linux:Windows (0, Troll)

monoqlith (610041) | about 5 years ago | (#29807631)


Re:Android:iPhone::Linux:Windows (1)

$1uck (710826) | about 5 years ago | (#29807707)

Android:iPhone::Linux:OSX would be more appropriate. personally I think android > iPhone OS. iPhone hardware is probably better than any existing android phones thought (for the time being).

Re:Android:iPhone::Linux:Windows (2, Funny)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | about 5 years ago | (#29807775)

They all have a lowercase i in them.

Re:Android:iPhone::Linux:Windows (1)

keatonguy (1001680) | about 5 years ago | (#29807865)

Could be, but I'm inclined not to think so. Linux came around long after Windows had already ingrained itself in the market and in the consumer consciousness, and even then after more than fifteen years it's still rougher around the edges than it's proprietary contemporaries as far as user-friendliness goes. Arguably this is just from the difference in design philosophy forcing new users to learn a new way of working with thier computer, but I digress.

The iPhone has only been around a few years, and it's really the first mobile that's truly comparible to a desktop or laptop's functionality (Browser, media players, apps, etc). The great divide between them is that the iPhone places very hard restrictions on not only what software you can get, but what software can be developed. This may be invisible to the user, but once Android builds up momentum I hold out hope that it will have a true explosion of apps available for it, most of them free (true to it's OSS license!).

iPhone isn't an implacable competitor, it's only been in the market a few years. Android, if it's name is given strong presence in the mind of the consumer, has a chance to do very well comparatively, maybe even match it.

Obviously, I may have a bit of a bias here, I'm not exactly a scientific researcher here, but I'm optimistic.

Re:Android:iPhone::Linux:Windows (2, Informative)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | about 5 years ago | (#29808413)

stop drinking the kool aid (or anti kool aide or w/e)

it's still rougher around the edges than it's proprietary contemporaries as far as user-friendliness goes

This is true of desktop distros*, however for embedded devices & phones, it's unfounded.

The iPhone has only been around a few years, and it's really the first mobile that's truly comparible to a desktop or laptop's functionality (Browser, media players, apps, etc)

Apart from all the smartphones [] that came before it, from 2002 there have been "smartphones" that could compete with laptop functionality and by 2007 most had 3rd party apps, 3G and bluetooth. The iPhone is good but it wasn't the first at anything.

iPhone isn't an implacable competitor,

Indeed [] it's the blackberry that's the real #1 smartphone, but the real mistake is thinking that the smartphone market is "full" and to get users you have to take them off the competition, in reality it is an emerging market, you just need to sell your product to people who were previously happy with "dumbphones" (or if your nokia, get the phone companies to upgrade thier existing users to your smarphones for you)

*i think mint and distros specialised in being user friendly address most of the issues

Re:Android:iPhone::Linux:Windows (1)

sootman (158191) | about 5 years ago | (#29808153)

Happy Slashdot pageviews:Angry Slashdot pageviews::Money in Taco's pocket:Money in Taco's pocket :-)

N900:iPhone:WinMo::Linux:OSX:Windows (3, Insightful)

Microlith (54737) | about 5 years ago | (#29808171)

I'm sorry, that slot is reserved for Maemo. Until the community has real influence on the path Android takes, it's not nearly as open.

It's sad that the N900 doesn't get as much attention as all the Android based phones, what with it being considerably more open and based on existing open frameworks.

Too expensive (1)

cellurl (906920) | about 5 years ago | (#29807641)

When I see any of these, I say to myself $1000/yr. Thats what these things cost, a vacation to Mexico!
I entered the ADC2, and if you took a poll, you would find that 1/2 of the entrants don't actually own an Android (including me), because its financially unjustified.

IMHO, Three things are needed, one of which has almost occurred.
1. A superbabe (not Whoopi sorry) needs to hold an Android on T-Mobile site.
2. Skype or such needs to work as well as T-Mobile voice, better would be nice.
3. The phone must cost US$99.

Back-Seat-Driver []

Re:Too expensive (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | about 5 years ago | (#29807813)

With the vast majority of the growth in mobile happening in emerging markets - I don't think cheap phones are far away. If you'll see them in the U.S., I don't know. I think that depends on if anything is ever done to fix the mess we are in with the whole telecom industry in this country.

Re:Too expensive (1)

bigstrat2003 (1058574) | about 5 years ago | (#29807827)

With a contract, you can get the HTC Magic from T-Mobile for $150. That's not quite your asking price of $100, but it's not exactly $1000 either.

Why? (2, Interesting)

sootman (158191) | about 5 years ago | (#29807643)

I mean, I'm all for choice, but why so many? Why, in particular, are a few manufacturers in particular releasing so many models? Half of the phones (25 out of 51) come from just three companies--HTC (9), Motorola (9), and Samsung (7). I can see why a manufacturer would want some variety in general--slider, bar, flip; big with good battery life or small and thin and light--but aren't all Android phones big, touchscreen smartphones? I don't want to start googling every name (hasn't ever heard of links [] ?) so can anyone clue me in on the differences?

I like Apple's stuff and you might call me a "fanboi" but you have to admit they've made some good decisions in the past decade, especially with regard to simplifying their product lines. The stereotypical Slashdotter hates having their choices limited but everyone in sales, marketing, and product development should know about the disadvantages to offering too many options. [] Make one phone with as many or as few features as you care to cram into it and the choice becomes a simple one--take it or leave it. Start offering them with minor differences--this one has WiFi but no GPS, this one has GPS but no WiFi, etc.--and people will start to say "screw it, what else is there?" Plus every time you offer more models you're increasing the cost of your R&D but with less and less improvement in sales.

If anything, we should see more Android devices--Android technology without the phone, like the iPod touch. Clearly there's a market there, and you get around the whole pesky "tied to the carrier you hate" issue.

Re:Why? (0)

$1uck (710826) | about 5 years ago | (#29807797)

the iPhone is a piece of hardware. Android is an operating system. Repeat it to yourself. Hardware != software. so stop drawing false equivalencies.

Re:Why? (1)

dingen (958134) | about 5 years ago | (#29807949)

The iPhone, just like the Mac, is completely about the software in a nice looking package. The key factors of the iPhone have to with the OS and the way apps are developed and distributed for it. Everything else is secondary.

Re:Why? (1)

$1uck (710826) | about 5 years ago | (#29808049)

Ok, then why can't I put OSx or the iPhone OS on some other piece of hardware? Clearly the hardware is not a "key factor." No its about control of the hardware/software. Mind you I have a mac at home and I like it, but Apple is a bit on the control-freak side of things.

Re:Why? (1)

dingen (958134) | about 5 years ago | (#29808359)

You call it control. I call it a way of creating nice working and looking products.

So what if you can't install iPhone OS on other phones? Nor can I install the Wii operating system on my XBOX360. You could call creators of gaming consoles "control freaks", but what they're really doing is just creating a product that works. And so is Apple.

Re:Why? (4, Insightful)

jhfry (829244) | about 5 years ago | (#29808131)

You don't understand what is happening at all.

Right now there are 100's of phones on the market, all running some sort of OS. Each of them appeal to different audiences, with different features, reliability, and carrier compatability.

Essentially, some of those 100's of current models are being replaced with models running Android. Android is an operating system, it does not define the device it runs upon. Just like I can run Linux using just a tty interface over a serial link, or I can run it with a 3d desktop across multiple screens; Android can be similarly used for different phones.

The advantages of Android over existing phone OS's are threefold:
1. cost... there is no cost to the manufacturer of the phone or the carrier.
2. compatibility... applications for Android will be compatable with other manufacturers Android handsets, so different manufacturers will compete on quality of their product rather than the amount of software available.
3. features... Android was developed to be very feature rich, of course manufacturers can disable features but if they want them it is trivial to enable them. If the public begins to demand additional features as ideas change, then Android can be upgraded to include those features.

Essentially, there were no phone OS's that manufacturers could even purchase that would result in a product so refined that it could compete with Apple and Blackberry, and neither of them were licensing their code. Android changes that.

Top Spot (1)

whisper_jeff (680366) | about 5 years ago | (#29807689)

To me, this is why an Android phone will never take the #1 sales slot. Android, as a platform may quickly rise in dominance, but the competition, just amongst Android phones, will prevent an individual phone from taking a dominant position. When there's 51 possible choices for someone who's interested in an Android phone, it will result in diluted sales for all 51 phones. That's not to say that some of the better phones won't enjoy strong sales - I'm sure several will - but it is to say that I don't believe they'll compete, on an individual basis, with Blackberry's best sellers nor the iPhone. This, of course, is regardless of the quality of the phones - it's purely an opinion about market forces and the resulting outcome...

Re:Top Spot (1)

KlaymenDK (713149) | about 5 years ago | (#29807903)

So what? If we'd all rush to buy electric cars, would it matter that we wouldn't *all* be rushing for the EV-1? Wouldn't it, in fact, be better if we had dozens or more options to choose from -- any electrical vehicle is going to "promote the cause", as it were.

Re:Top Spot (1)

keatonguy (1001680) | about 5 years ago | (#29807927)

Right, you're precisely right, and for this reason Android will probably never have the kind of ubiquity in the consumer mind that the word iPhone has. What's really important is that the OSS community, particularly the Linux dev community, rally around Android too. Like with any OSS endeavor, if you don't have a community of volunteers helping to make the software better, it'll just fade into obscurity and obsolescence.

But if the community jumps on it and starts building the apps we want to see for it? Then we'll have our OSS superphone.

I wonder if this will help the app ecosystem (1)

dingen (958134) | about 5 years ago | (#29807701)

The main thing the iPhone's got going for it in my view is the enormous amount of application available for the platform. Android has the same potential with a nice centralized distribution channel, while allowing more open development. It would seem to make sense that this will result in many more Android apps in the future, but I wonder if the huge amount of different phones will be of any help at this or maybe in fact create a barrier for developers.

It seems to me that one of the reasons there aren't as many apps out there for Symbian or WinMo is the fact that the hardware which runs these operating systems is so incredibly diverse that it's almost impossible to create an app which runs on everything. Some phones offer multitouch, other's don't. Some phones offer an accelerometer, other's don't. The same goes for pretty much every feature... recording video, a second camera, GPS, you name it. Not to mention the different screen sizes and different UI widgets. These differences make it more difficult for a developer to create an app for these platforms, resulting in fewer apps on these platforms.

Now I know Android doesn't suffer from all of these difficulties... but still I think 50 different phones make it harder to create an app for Android than for the iPhone, where basically only 1 model exists (although in 3 versions).

Re:I wonder if this will help the app ecosystem (1)

KlaymenDK (713149) | about 5 years ago | (#29808059)

Yes, it will be 'harder' to code for a *class* of devices rather than targeting a single model, but not necessarily harder than you choose to make it yourself.

If you want to code a game for the PS3, you know *exactly* what the hardware is -- but it'll be limited to that, and X-Box owners can't play along unless you port your game.

If you make a website, by simply sticking to the standard, you can support *any* browser out there.

Similarly, in Android, the OS framework is going to give you a lot of assistance, for instance with laying out the screen (for whatever dimensions, aspect ratio, resolution, colour depth), and features relying on model-specific features will degrade gracefully (a Galaxy doesn't crash because you ask it to turn on its (nonexistent) notification LED).

The problem, as evidenced with the somewhat painful browser example, is whether or not device manufacturers will in fact build their devices to spec -- and there is talk that HTC has pulled a classic "IE" by misinterpreting the compass sensor, causing other manufacturers to have to make the same misinterpretation or supply incorrect readings to the OS. (rolleyes)

Carriers (2, Insightful)

Enderandrew (866215) | about 5 years ago | (#29807709)

Wired had a great article on this a year ago or so. Every carrier was afraid of touching Android. They said if they used a common OS between phones, they were afraid they would become dumb carriers, and it would remove the potential to advertise each network provider having unique phones.

In reality, today providers PAY to put Blackberry OS, Web OS, the iPhone OS, and Windows Mobile on their phones. They can't customize the OS. So buying a Blackberry on Verizon is no different from buying a Blackberry on AT&T. Google offers up Android for free, and tells networks that they can even customize the software so AT&T's build of Android is unique, and they reject Android. It makes zero sense.

I desperately wanted and Android phone. I contacted customer support for several providers telling them they could have my business if they put out an Android phone. (T-Mobile basically has no coverage in Omaha, so they weren't an option). I waited an year. No Android phones came out.

So instead, I bought an iPhone. I'm not terribly happy that I have an iPhone as opposed to an Android phone. I'm not terribly happy I ended up with AT&T. But honestly, it seems like providers really didn't want my business. For all their supposed desire to find an iPhone-killer, they're ignoring the FREE iPhone-killer right infront of them.

Re:Carriers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29808401)

they were afraid they would become dumb carriers, and it would remove the potential to advertise each network provider having unique phones.

Exactly: they were afraid of having to compete on service, price, etc. rather than which ego...err, phone they have available.

These companies are predatory. Just look at what they do with text messaging.

That's the main reason I am stuck with a really crappy phone: buying a better one makes no sense because it will cost me too much to actually use it.

just going to visit with friends at the yacht club (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29807801)

1st, the 'friends' 'disappeared', then the yacht club closed. how annoying/inconvenient. what's next?

Apple store is down! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29807829)

New products today! Android sucks!

51 is hardly impressive (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29807863)

next to the 2 million iPhones out there.

Is this necessarily a good thing? (1, Troll)

nweaver (113078) | about 5 years ago | (#29807913)

The question: Is Android trying to dethrone Symbian or Apple?

If the goal is Symbian, this is a good thing: An OS thats customed by the handset deliverer with development being secondary, because the platform ends up grossly fragmented (different screens, capabilities, processing power, UI presentation, storage, etc...)

If the goal is Apple, this is a horrid thing: Apple's huge lock is the ecosystem, with all the developers. Which would you rather develop for, a platform which has everything being the same capability, or one with a grossly fragmented market where screens, UI conventions, etc are all different?

What Android say to Iphone? (1)

gogowater (913090) | about 5 years ago | (#29807957)

"Watch your back, my brothers are coming to kick your ass!"

goodol' (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29807977)

pff.. androids. Good ol' kicks androids a*s

Features I want First. (2, Interesting)

mrpacmanjel (38218) | about 5 years ago | (#29807979)

A decent processor!

I think the current available phones have a 520mhz processor. The Android software seems to run at an accetptable speed (since the os was updated to 1.5?) but I imagine any apps would be limited by the speed of the processor.
I know this will change with newer phones - Acer are develping an android phone with 1ghz processor.

A camera flash!

I do not understand why many of the phones contain a 3 or 5 megapixel camera but no flash! Maybe it is related to cost/component size but come on! - this was acceptable with older phones but today I would like to think it is essential.

A physical keyboard!

I know this will add bulk to the phone but considering what android's potential can be (with the right hardware) this will make the phone much more versatile. What about a detachable keyboard?

More memory?
The os runs in a java-like virtual machine. If it has any relation to Java does this mean it will exhibit memory consumption similar to Java? I also understand there is an API to bypass the vm and use native code.

As it stands I will be ordering the Nokia N900 at the end of October and cannot wait for the hardware to improve. Despite the hype I think the N900 will eventualy become a "niche" product.

On the other hand, the development of Android phones is great and appears it will dominate the mobile phone market. Hopefully it will drive competition and lead to the reduction of iphone obsession.

Speaking of iphones does the Android phones have a "Big Red Kill" switch too?

Worst thing that could happen for Android (0, Troll)

khchung (462899) | about 5 years ago | (#29807997)

50+ Android phones coming?!

Is it for real? IMO, this would be the worst thing that could happen for the Android platform!

Imagine what would a PC user who wants to try Linux reacts if he sees 50+ different distributions of Linux on the shelf! Each with different features, strengths and price (not free for the sake of analogy). He would be confused and do not know how to choose!

Good luck sorting out the features of different phones and the compatibility/usability of different apps among them. It would be worst than try to figure out if a given PC game can run properly on your home PC.

Having 100+ models works for ordinary mobile phones, as you mostly do not expect to install any extra software other than which comes with the phone. With a "smartphone" (I hate the term) that is practically a mini-PC, there is value in keeping a small set of uniform performance/feature profile. It is the same trade-off between PC gaming vs console gaming.

With two or three strong Android models, it has a chance of overtaking iPhone. With 50+ different models, average Joe is not going to bother to sort them out and just buy an iPhone.

Re:Worst thing that could happen for Android (2, Insightful)

il1019 (1068892) | about 5 years ago | (#29808201)

Not necessarily. I don't think your analogy to Linux works quite the same. It would be more like someone walking up and finding 50 different versions of Ubuntu (for example). They all can run the same code, same programs. They might have buttons placed in a different place, different colors or wallpaper, maybe even a slightly different desktop experience (different/more widgets) but they are all running the same basic codebase. From what we've seen with HTC's Sense and Motorola's MOTOBLUR, there will be differentiation, but all apps will still run the same. Especially at the moment since they all have the same processor. HTC has their own on-screen keyboard, for example, but there are no compatibility problems (yet) with Android across multiple phones. Realistically, the changes between the phones are relatively small (qwerty vs t9 vs no keyboard, capacitive vs resistive touchscreen, camera autofocus and megapixels, etc). These changes don't really affect how the platform runs, just specific aspects of it. The goal of Android was to create a strong, common base where many apps can run, and I think they have done that so far. When phones start differentiating on CPU and RAM, we may see some apps which don't perform similarly across all Android phones, but Apple is already having to deal with something similar between it's own versions of iPhone models, so it basically is not inevitable. Phones will get faster and have more RAM as time goes on. I think Android really is going in the right direction, and the more models that are available, the better. A 'universal' app store under Android in my mind is much better than an app store for every phone.

Re:Worst thing that could happen for Android (1)

DeadCatX2 (950953) | about 5 years ago | (#29808349)

I wonder if the free market will help naturally select Android phones with features that are popular among the most users, with possible niche phones serving niche markets (like that fellow up there who doesn't want a camera on his phone)

Re:Worst thing that could happen for Android (1)

javilon (99157) | about 5 years ago | (#29808433)

You are thinking smart-phones, but the day you have 50+ models, they are just regular phones. So people will look at external design and at the bundled applications and that's it.

You have the same thing with Symbian. People don't say: "I am going to buy a symbian phone". They just look at the phone hardware and bundled apps and mostly forget about the OS.

Battery Life is the problem (2, Interesting)

z_gringo (452163) | about 5 years ago | (#29808461)

I have the HTC Dream, and the biggest problem with it is that the battery life is so bad, there is no way I could use it for my main phone. Even with light usage and bluetooth and wifi turned off, the thing is dead in 6 hours or less. If I turn on and use wifi, it gets a lot less. Maybe 2 hours or 3.

It a nearly 500€ phone and it can't make it through a whole day without recharging. The camera isn't great either, but that isn't a big deal. The battery problem is a HUGE deal. However at a recent conference, I saw that the iPhone users had the same problem with battery life.
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