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Android Open Source, Good Or Not Good?

Posted on: 05/08/2010

  • In: Internet
  • Comments Off on Android Open Source, Good Or Not Good?

For some time Google launched on the market its first mobile phone, called HTC Dream, aka G1 (a Google phone), came after the famous Apple iPhone. The Google phone has been put in opposition to the iphone just dominating the smartphone market, including its open source aspect.



Its operating system “Android” a free operating system, source code is therefore open to anyone interested, but mostly the Android Market, Google’s equivalent of the App Store from Apple makes the subject to any control on the part of Google applications that are offered freely by the developers. Contrary to Apple, a developer can submit their application without having been previously validated by a pre-moderation, something which, as we know, takes time and is not infallible. While in theory, the idea has many advantages for developers and consumers, it could be cons-productive as shown by a recent case in which an application would be suspected of harming the smartphone and its users.



The application in question, entitled “MemoryUp” and is distributed by emobistudio is applied to optimize the memory of the Google Phone and thus allow the phone to operate more efficiently while also providing improved battery life.

Some users who installed the application on their phone have complained then and denounce harmful application, having destroyed all or some of their data or even completely blocked the phone. Worse still, some commenaires suggest that their contacts have been transferred to other addresses, which would partner therefore spam. 



The issue of Wired magazine has contacted the publishers of the application in question to try to pull their nose. These are all denying the accusations and take years of experience in this sector. We can indeed see on their website that said there enforcement for several years now for smartphones like the BlackBerry phones running Symbian or Windows Mobile. They also expressed have made many tests debugging techniques before publishing such version on the site and say they do not know what the basis of these false accusations.

However, since this intervention, the application MemoryUp is no longer available for download from the Android Market. Nobody said if the withdrawal was effected by emobistudio or Google itself. Neither one nor the other had hoped to answer this question. The withdrawal is no less a confession: the application problem, at least for some users because it is also satisfied.

That the fault is intentional or not, this example demonstrates that there is a potential risk for this phone and the publishing model on the android market. In the highly competitive environment such as that is emerging, consumers had little use for technical questions: they will adopt the platform they have the most confidence. Or how to have confidence when any application may, at least potentially, be dangerous?

Maybe Google discovers here that any central market on the App Store model necessarily implies control, however small it was.

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