Rich Freeman on 6 Jul 2012 07:16:51 -0700

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Re: [PLUG] Linux friendly tablet?

On Fri, Jul 6, 2012 at 9:46 AM, David Coulson <> wrote:
> Sure, but that has nothing to do with Linux. If you don't want an IOS device
> because of how Apple restrict applications, that's fine by me - Could still
> run Linux under the hood, and you'd have the same problems. Isn't 99% of
> what Android runs actually inside a JVM anyway?

I don't think anybody has an issue with the concept of running apps in
a jail.  That's just good security, and  people go to a lot of effort
with things like SELinux to add it to an OS even if it isn't standard.

The issue is with the gateway that prevents you from loading any app
you desire on your device.  With iOS if it isn't signed then it won't
run on your device, unless you pay Apple an annual fee for the

Most android devices do not have this limitation.  However, I'll be
the first to admit that some vendors/carriers lock down their devices
more (mainly AT&T).  If the vendor blocks loading unsigned apps or
sideloading in general, then I'd steer clear of them.

> My general aversion to Android is the frequency of major OS updates and
> inconsistency of when vendors support each release on their own device. It's
> like the old days when I had a Blackberry and had to get the AT&T or VZ
> specific code update for it, which was usually months later than what RIM
> released. Maybe it's getting better with Android 4.x, but there were plenty
> of people at my office complaining about the 2.x to 3.x transition.

Yup - a big problem with android.  However, you probably mean the 2.x
to 4.0 transition - there really wasn't any 2.x to 3.x transition, as
3.x was a non-open-sourced tablet-only version.

In general most vendors simply don't update the phone OS unless Google
releases the upgrade while the phone is still VERY new and they simply
couldn't sell it without the update.

The Nexus line is your best bet for updates, assuming you like the one
model Google releases in a typical year and it didn't come out 9
months ago like the current phone did.  At best you'll still get only
about 18 months of updates from when the first phone was given away to
VIPs, and I doubt the Galaxy Nexus will get more than one more update
after Jelly Bean.  I hear that they are looking to come out with more
Nexus phones later this year, and actually have more than one to
choose from.  The Nexus One didn't get v4, and that was only 18 months
after it launched.  The ADP (what I consider the first "nexus" phone)
got its last update before it stopped selling - it didn't get the
version of the OS the next phone in line shipped with.  (You could
have bought a "Nexus Zero" the day before the Nexus One came out and
never  gotten an update to 2.0 which is what the Nexus One shipped
with.)  The ADP did have the advantage of being so ubiquitous that I
think you can even get 4.0 for it (I can't imagine how it runs - it
barely runs 2.1).

I'll still stick with Android because it has more options, but their
updates leave much to be desired.  The Nexus only looks good because
the alternatives look abysmal.

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