Not that anyone's actually pushed Android 5.0 updates yet, but so what if the Nexus 5 isn't the first to get Lollipop?
So let me make sure I've got this right. It's pretty clear that all the major Android device manufacturers have been working with Android 5.0 Lollipop code for some time now, and they're all practically tripping over each other to be the first one to release updates.
Motorola is poised to update the 2014 Moto X. Samsung's Galaxy S5 update keeps appearing. HTC gave its usual "within 90 days" line, but I expect to see updates much sooner than that. Sony is close. And LG — usually one of the slower of the bunch — announced that updates start this week.
So why in the hell are kids fighting over which phone gets updated first — and whether those updates come before the Nexus 6 is actually available?
You would think that the hardcore Android fans would know better. You'd think that they'd be pulling for each and every manufacturer to get updates released — and as bug-free as possible — as quickly as they can. The Nexus 6 really isn't all that different than today's other high-end smartphones — it's just bigger. So what if a similar device, which has had the luxury of months of use and bugfixes in its own right, gets updated a little before a brand-new phone? (And in case you haven't heard us mention it, we're pretty sure the build of Android 5.0 we've been using on the Nexus 6 isn't quite ready for prime time and isn't going to be the release build.)
Complaining about one phone getting a major Android update before others — even a Nexus — completely misses the point.
If there's anything folks should know coming from the Android ecosystem, it's that competition is a good thing. All these manufacturers scrambling to get updates out in a timely manner is a good thing. And should any one of them half-ass it and release a buggy mess, they know they're going be held up against all the other manufacturers who managed to do it quickly and well.
So what if the Moto X or LG G3 or some other phone gets a release build of Android 5.0 before the Nexus 5? They're all different phones with different feature sets and the problems that come with them. Bugs happen. Bugs will be squashed. But do you want it first? Or do you want it done right?
Folks need to not miss the forest for the trees here. Timely updates have long been a sore spot for Android. But updates of any sort are not easy. Ever. Even (and maybe especially) for Google and the Nexus line. A rising tide lifts all boats, ya know. But too many kids are trying to be the anchor dragging things down. We're never going to see updates be made available all at one time, no matter how much we'd like, or no matter how much Apple likes to pretend that's the way everything should work. But we're getting updates quicker than ever before, and that's a very good thing.
A couple other quick thoughts on the week that was, and the week that's to be
- We're in San Francisco this week as the official media partner for the Samsung Developers Conference. Coverage starts Tuesday.
- Expect a whole bunch on connected home, wearables and virtual reality.
- Speaking of wearables, I'm loving the new watch faces on the Moto 360.
- And notice how Pascual is a modified version of the winner from Motorola's design contest. I'm not surprised the design changed — the battery/Bluetooth/Gmail/etc. indicators were never going to be big enough as seen in the original design to actually work. But, still, this is my favorite watch face.
- I'm still very much enjoying the Nexus Player. Can't wait to see where Android TV goes.
- I still have some very real reservations about if modular phones will every actually be a thing, but, damn, this is pretty cool.
- Play till the whistle, kids. And act like you've scored before.
OK, that's it for this week. So much time and so little to do.
Wait. Reverse that.