For all of the progress Android has made in the last year in establishing itself as the leading smartphone operating system, commanding over a 46 percent market share according to comScore in its Q3 findings and sending RIM and its BlackBerry well on its way towards platform irrelevance, so many other distracting things went on that kept it from fully realizing its true potential.
In modern psychiatric medicine, the term “Dissociative Identity Disorder” (or DID for short) is used to describe what is commonly referred to as Multiple Personality Disorder — a rare mental illness in which a human being manifests distinctly different and separate personalities in their own brain, each of which have their own pattern of perceiving and interacting with the environment.
Awareness of the condition was first popularized with the 1974 novel and then the 1976 NBC television miniseries “Sybil” starring actress Sally Field, which was re-made in 2007 with Tammy Blanchard reprising the title role.
If you could sum up what was wrong with Android in 2011, this despite it having achieved the market leading platform position in the mobile industry, Dissociative Identity Disorder just about describes it exactly. Here’s why.
Split Smartphone and Tablet Personalities
The first and most easily recognizable dissociative identity problem is that for the past year, we’ve had entirely different versions of Android for smartphones and for tablets — Gingerbread (2.3.x) and Honeycomb (3.x).
A Split Commitment to Open Source
As if having two distinctly different versions of Android in the wild to address two different target device formats wasn’t painful enough, Google also decided to withhold the Honeycomb 3.x source code from developers, which potentially damaged their relationship with the Open Source community in the process.
A Split Universe Between Google and Amazon Ecosystems
Not to be deterred by Google’s own dissociative identity problems with Android, Amazon went off on its own tangent and released Amazon Appstore for Android.
Splits Between Preferred OEMs and Carrier Implementations
The wide proliferation of shovelware, varied implementations of Android versions and the overall inability to get software updates rolled out by the carriers and by the hardware manufacturers despite Google’s stated commitment to rectify this problem back in May at Google I/O is another form of fractionalization that hurt Android in 2011 and projected an overall feeling of Multiple Personality Disorder.
Did you like this? Share it: