Article: Why I Hate Android, Too

by on January 10, 2012

It seems that all the Mac-hating Windows users have gravitated to Android for their tablet and smartphone needs, and as such, I often get grief for sticking with my “inferior” iPhone and iPad. Just a little earlier today, MG Siegler explained it perfectly, and is worth a read, even if you’re an Android fan.

The entire post gives Siegler’s history with the OS, including a time when he liked it, but if you want the highlights, Google ended up giving all the control to the carriers, mostly to sell handsets:

Thanks to the Google/Verizon alliance on the matter, the FCC decided the compromised vision of Net Neutrality was just fine also. To be clear: Net Neutrality was thrown out in the wireless space because Google sided with Verizon’s ridiculous and horribly conflicted stance on the matter.

The open spectrum enemy, turned Net Neutrality enemy, became Google’s bedmate thanks to a business deal. Straight up. Greed, for lack of a better word, is good.

We got all of this thanks to Google’s desire for Android to take over the world. I commented earlier that they signed a deal with the devil β€” I wasn’t being facetious. They actually did! And they got away with it!

I think about these things everyday that I see positive news about Android. It’s so wonderful that the platform which helped cripple Net Neutrality and is keeping the evil carriers in control is taking off. Make no mistake: Android is now the carriers’ best friend.

I almost see Android along the same lines as the carrier-molested phones of the old days, full of crapware, but with a much worse backstory. Before my iPhone, I had a pretty good Sony Ericsson flip-phone that was utter garbage until you flashed it to have the generic firmware. AT&T disabled things like the GPS chip, the stock email client, or turning off 3G (for a phone without a data plan, this meant saving battery life; if you had a data plan, the other features were handy). These features worked fine on the stock firmware. Let’s not even get into disabled Bluetooth transfers to sell more ringtones, or the fact that every Verizon phone had the same terrible interface, rather than what the manufacturers designed.

A few months ago, we learned how an AT&T smartphone comes to life. I would assume Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile work the same way. Apple’s model for the iPhone is much different—they design, test, and support it, while the carriers simply have to take it or leave it. Verizon wanted more control the first go-around with Apple, as stated by Verizon VP Jim Gerace:

“They would have been stepping in between us and our customers to the point where we would have almost had to take a back seat … on hardware and service support.”

Take that how you will, but Siegler’s analogy wraps it up the best for any tech writer who has become anti-Android, especially since it almost feels like the days before the iPhone:

Perhaps more people will relate to this: I hate Android for the same reason that Severus Snape hates Harry Potter β€” the very sight reminds me of something so beautiful, that was taken from me. Except it’s worse. It’s as if Harry Potter has grown up to become Voldemort.

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