A Semi-Charmed Life: Mike's Journey

Learning things from scratch ...

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Why sell your Android Dev Phone?

I was browsing Ebay and saw Dev phone selling with the current bid of 300USD and asked him the reasons why he wants to sell it?

He replied these:

* It is Linux, therefore Linux kernel. It is not GNU/Linux - the common "Linux" OS. Therefore the whole userland glibc/coreutils/bash/etc. is not there and there are some lookalikes instead. Their shell is more stupid than command.com. There is even no `cp'. It is there just to prove it works but not that is would be practically usable.

* It has QWERTY but it is too small for fast typing (such as on Nokia Communicator 9000i). It even does not have arrow keys - there is a trackball instead of it.

* The keyboard is there for typing letters, not for controlling the phone. The phone is generally controller by the touch-display. It is all more like iPhone than like Nokia Communicator.

* So far there is no SIP client for it (but I believe it will change in some time).

* Their userland should be POSIX conformant but there are no X-Windows/GTK/Qt, therefore a port of anything graphical requires implementing a new user interface for it.

* As it is not GNU it all loses the attractivity of the common "Linux" OS and then it makes more sense to check for example the recently opensourced Symbian.

* Applications from Android Market are commonly NOT opensource. Therefore the common free software approach to fix/adjust the applications in use is applicable only for the Google applications, not the Market ones.

* It is not a fully Free OS, it requires proprietary hardware drivers:

* I found out in the recent years I do not use GSM almost at all (up to USD5 per month).

* My old proprietary phone I use mostly as a GPRS bluetooth modem. I could not get working ADP1 as a modem/router (even by an USB cable). It may be my fault, though.

* Even the Jabber client cannot be used there (only for @gmail).



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