For years, Android phone enthusiasts have been asking for phones running a clean, unadulterated version of the Operating System -- a.k.a stock Android. And for years, manufacturers have mostly lent a deaf ear to these requests, customising the frack out of Android in an attempt to control their fate. Not to say there are no benefits to a customized Android over stock -- the ultra power saving mode in Samsung and other Android phones, the built-in call recording feature in MIUI, or the one-handed mode seen in skins like the ASUS Zen UI are useful indeed. But these customisations come at a cost. Here are a few things that you gain with Stock Android:
I believe Windows laptop manufacturers can take a page out of Motorola's guidebook to create a bang-for-the-buck, trustworthy model like the Moto G, instead of hiding some genuinely decent models within a clusterf**k of options that are hard to differentiate for an unsavvy customer.
A persistent problem along these past 7 years for Android has been software fragmentation -- thanks to the variety of hardware it powers, its open source nature and manufacturers' desire to use a customized version of Android as a selling point. But there's another kind of fragmentation that prevents Android users from making simple buying decisions -- hardware fragmentation.
The first Samsung Galaxy S smartphone was launched in 2010; about the same time as the iPhone 4. Since then, the Galaxy S series has been about one thing and one thing only -- making a product that's "better" than the iPhone at a lower price tag.
A crazy amount of productive time can be wasted as you make up your mind in buying a new smartphone. And the thing about technology is, there can be something new launched today that makes what you decided to buy yesterday seem pale. And it's not going to stop.
Choice is a wonderful thing. Choice is a horrible thing. The smartphone has climbed such a high pedestal in our lives, that we're willing to spend hours reading about new phone launches regularly, even though we probably change them in a year or two.