Feb 07 AT 10:04 AM Nick Gray 60 Comments

While most consumers are still trying to figure out the differences between Froyo, Gingerbread or Ice Cream Sandwich, Android enthusiasts are praising the latest iteration of Android. Android 4.0 delivered a myriad of new functionalities to Android, including a shiny new user interface (UI). The Android development team at Google spent countless hours making Android’s new UI “enchanting, beautiful and seductive.” With such a dramatically improved UI, manufacturers would certainly ditch their custom skins and bring back some unity to Android’s user experience – or would they?

There was certainly hope from many Android enthusiasts that the stock Android UI would be embraced by all. Unfortunately, early leaks and previews from Sony, Samsung and HTC have disappointed many since Android manufacturers seem to be chugging along on the same course as before, spending the majority of their time working on custom skins for Android rather than focusing solely on updating older phones to the latest version of Android. But is this really a bad thing?

If you read through the comments on this site you will notice a recurring theme: our readers are very outspoken about the virtues of the stock Android UI, claiming that “Google finally got it right” and asking “why would manufacturers mess around with perfection” while bullying (down voting) commenters who showed support for HTC Sense, TouchWiz or MotoBLUR (or whatever Motorola is calling it these days).

Personally, I’m a big fan of stock Android and will agree that Google has finally delivered a UI that’s better than most custom skins produced by OEMs. The problem is that Google’s new UI improvements for Android are merely a composite refinement of all the features Motorola, HTC and Samsung have had for quite some time. If you pick apart the new UI piece by piece you will notice that there’s really nothing new. Looking back over the past three years, you’ll see that Google’s UI improvements with every new version of Android include borrowed ideas that were introduced by others.

Below are a few examples of some of the features included in Android 4.0 which were originally pioneered in one or more custom skins produced by Android manufacturers.

Social Media Integration

Facebook and Twitter integration into the contacts application was first introduced by HTC and was adopted a few months later by Motorola in 2009. Both Motorola and HTC served up your contact’s latest status update or a notification of an impending birthday when you called or received a call from one of your contacts. Google introduced a more limited Facebook integration with Android 2.1.

Animated Widgets

When Android first launched, Google only had three widgets and developers had to wait until Android 1.5 before they were able to create their own. Fortunately, HTC jumped into the deep end with HTC Sense and delivered several dozen widgets which also featured animations. The HTC flip clock is probably the most recognizable and mimicked Android widget. Motorola, Samsung, LG and even Huawei introduced animated widgets to their custom versions of Android before Google got around to it with Honeycomb.

Re-sizable Widgets

While HTC kept adding more and more widgets to its Sense library (most of which were simply different sizes of the same widget), Motorola chose to take a different route with the introduction of the DROID X by introducing re-sizable widgets. Users could now choose how large or small they wanted a widget to be. The best part about Motorola’s widget resizing feature is that the widget layout changes depending on which size you choose. As with animated widgets, Google introduced re-sizable widgets in Honeycomb, but the functionality was not nearly as advanced as Motorola’s.

Advanced Lock-screen

With Sense, HTC has always been on the forefront of the customizable lock screen. Early iterations included music controls and details of missed phone calls and text messages. With HTC Sense 3.0, HTC took the customizable lock-screen to a whole new level by giving users a variety of different skins which displayed stock quotes, animated weather, pictures and social media updates from friends. Users were also given the option to choose four different applications which could be launched directly from the lock-screen. The Android team added new features to the lock-screen in Android 4.0 which allow users to launch the dialer or camera applications, but there is still no option to add any user customization.

When it comes to features, many of the custom Android skins produced by OEMs clearly have the Android team beat. But this shouldn’t be surprising to anyone. Motorola and Samsung have been in the mobile phone business for decades and one of HTC’s biggest accomplishments before Android came along was adding a custom UI on top of Windows Mobile which finally made the OS usable for everyday consumers.

My assumption is that there is fear among Android enthusiasts that manufacturers will simply take Android 4.0 and all its new features and cover it up with their own UI without adding any new functionality on top of it. While I can’t guarantee that every custom skin will look nicer than what the Android team has whipped up, the majority of new phones running Android 4.0 with a custom skin will have all the base features with additional features which give users more control and an enhanced experience.

The reason Android is successful isn’t because Google is doing all the work. The leading manufacturers take Google’s base code and add their own tweaks to differentiate their products from the competition while adding features which Google has not yet dreamed up. If everyone simply took Android 4.0 and loaded it onto their phones, the rapid pace of Android’s innovations would slow to a crawl which might lead to the platform’s demise.

I know there will always be a lot of supporters of stock Android, but I hope those of you who prefer your vanilla UI treatment can learn to appreciate custom skins a little more. Google has done an incredible job with the Android 4.0 UI, but lets not forget to give credit to the manufacturers who pioneered many of those same features months or even years before Google wrapped them into the Android fold.

Nick is a tech enthusiast who has a soft spot for HTC and its devices. He started HTCsource.com (the first HTC blog) back in 2007 and later joined the Android and Me family in the summer of 2010.

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  • YellowDucati

    I am game for any vendor trying any custom UI as long as I have root ability and can use my own.

    • WlfHart


    • CTown

      But it’s no easy feat to port AOSP to a device…

      Not only do you have to hope your manufacturer will release an Android update (which can take forever as they mess with the lower levels of Android) one has to hope that they use standard drivers which have some documentation (which they usually don’t as the manufacturers keep messing with the lower levels of Android).

      • http://mihai.discuta-liber.com/ tmihai20

        This article nailed it. For the sake of Android and for its rise, I hope that the author is correct. Some people said that it would be nice to have the Android launcher too. If you look at what manufacturers are showing now, Android 4.0 UI is still better. They need to really show great improvements in order for users to praise them. In my opinion, HTC has been the only one with the most improvements, even though this meant customizing every app and the whole framework at the expense of internal memory space.

    • Jeff Pan

      I am guessing HTC would come up with something more than what 4.0UI has to offer

    • M0nk

      Yes, root ability and unencrypted bootloader is the way to go for a real Android enthusiast. Other hint is to search for a device with a good developer community (Normally all successful devices that sells more than 1 million units and not locked). The reason I changed Motorola for Samsung: full Cyanogen support.

      After 4.0 I guess that the manufacturers should concentrate adding new features to AOSP instead of changing the visual of the launcher and icons that alienate most users. I like what Asus is doing with its little modified 4.0 ROMs.

  • AsakuraZero

    being honest im not against of the manufacturers who want to add functionallity but there are custom Ui’s like YES YOU MOTOBLUR ehem, that just started to suck in design and functionality.

    there are others like Sony’s Xperia UI which i like, it was clean and transparent.

    never liked sense never used that much.

    but im really against of removing the new aesthetics of the new Android 4 design, the holo desing is clean and simple, there is no need to put back the old touch wiz which looks like shit compared to the new android 4 ui, so is Sense and motodontcallmeblurr, i can pass a bit the sony ui but no. manufacturers should be more… on the track of what google designed now since it doesnt need much make up anymore (2.1~2.3 stock ui was ugly i know).

    so in my opinion manufacturers should make better uis and stop using this “nice to have” and “inovative” ui’s… yes samsung and motorola im talking about your BEEP

  • spazby

    Just give us timely upgrades if you slap a skin on it…

    • Gulpo

      Couldn’t agree more. I love the Samsung Notification Toggles and Social Hub (to a degree) but I have yet to hear of a solid ICS upgrade plan from Samsung. I bought the Skyrocket knowing this would be an issue but since its one of the few LTE phones on ATT I was low on options. I rooted it early in case, make that WHEN, CyanogenMod beats Samsung to it.

    • delinear

      100% agreed – it’s not necessarily the custom UIs that people are against (I loved Sense on my Desire, for instance, it made the earlier iteration of Android much more usable), it’s waiting forever for updates that people dislike. Especially when it takes months for the handset manufacturer to update their UI and then it takes months for the network to push it through their approval process/add their own twists to the UI.

      If I could have something like Sense but with a maximum of 1 month turnaround guaranteed I would be in favour of it. As it stands the quickest way to get updates is vanilla Android, and ICS is finally good enough that this is an option.

  • Lucian Armasu

    It’s a good article. I’m mostly against custom UI’s but if there is one positive side to them is this – that because Android is an open ecosystem, it means it can grow and evolve from other ideas inside the ecosystem. Many of them will probably be bad, but some will be great, and Google gets to incorporate them in future versions of Android.

    That being said, I’d still want at least a major manufacturer to always release “stock” Android phones, and I’m hoping Motorola will be that manufacturer once Google fully acquires them. It wouldn’t make sense anyway for Google to develop a version of Android with a certain UI, and then have their other division (Motorola) wait a few more months until they develop something different.

  • Hue Three of Five

    Thank you! Great article. I glad that someone is finally acknowledging that AOSP Android does take inspiration from custom UI’s. People that jumped straight from the Droid 1 to Nexus, act like I am full of hot air when I tell them many of ICS’s features have been available for a while now on custom UI’s

    • Daniel

      And even before ICS, there were many features that we now take for granted. HTC pioneered CDMA support, the black status bar, and tethering, among other features.

      • Hue Three of Five

        Yes HTC are software pros. I use to actually prefer Sense over AOSP before 3.0+ hit. Hopefully they slim it down an make it more functional once again. Even custom launchers use ideas from Sense. I can’t wait to see their upcoming devices.

        • Stoyan Deckoff

          Later versions of Sense fill kind of bloated.
          Weather widgets are going down with the last few releases – I used to adore weather on HD2 (wm6.5 back then), love it on Desire and Desire HD, and now I am using Fancy widgets..

  • http://www.ndroidgamers.com B2L

    After going from two completely stock Android devices, and now a Galaxy Note. I’m really enjoying Touchwiz, custom UI’s are great unless they are intrusive, and cause a great amount of slow down. Just don’t stop me from doing what I want with MY device. (I’m looking at you Motorola.)

  • virexed

    Don’t forget manufacturers and carriers tendencies to load bloat apps. You can easily customize stock android to your own by going into the market or diving in deeper and root. I’ll give praise where its due because the Sense camera is pretty wicked.


    Nice post. Like that you backed up your claim with real examples. I much prefer stock android to skins, and always look for AOSP ROMs ro replace Sense. But this is a great piece that shows how much value these custom skins have added to Andriod over its existance. And really, the only way these manufacturers have to really differentialte themsleves to the general public is with these skins.

    Can you imagine a market place with only stock Android UI? I doubt the lay person has any clue how much an OMAP vs Snapdragon processor will benefit them. But, its much easier to sell them on facebook integration, or prettier widgets.

    • delinear

      A lot of this can be implemented by apps though, and there’s no reason a manufacturer couldn’t have custom apps that they don’t make available in the marketplace that distinguish their devices. I know some of the UI changes are more than skin deep but there’s still plenty of space for manufacturers to distinguish their product and still use stock Android – just look at how much lanuchers can change the look and feel of a phone.

      • http://htcsource.com Nick Gray

        I do agree with you a little on this, but these custom skins are a lot more than just a launcher. The customization ties in nearly every stock application, giving users an experience that’s different every time.

        If we rally want change, we need to push Google to incorporate a skinning layer on top of Android similar to what Microsoft had on Windows Mobile.

  • AnthonyRyan

    Someone finally defending Custom UI’s this is what we all needed I see it as these Manufacturers bring something different to the Android Platform instead of Stock UI I’d be pretty bored and if it was all the same I’d be better off with an iPhone, thats how I see it as

  • Alex Belko

    I agree with the article. At first i didn’t like Touchwiz, it is really not the best looking skin, but in terms of functionality it is an improvement over the vanilla for me. But 4.0 is so beautiful and clever that now i don’t want it to be mixed with the custom skin, manufacturers should include the option to disable their custom UI’s and let users taste pure android and make the choice for themselves

    • Derek


      Manufacturers should add their UI skins, it help differentiate them from one another and it leads to better innovation. But they shouldn’t intertwine it so much into the OS, that the OS doesnt function with out it. They should give users the option to turn all their junk off if they so choose.

      • delinear

        Even if it was an option when first setting up the phone (or after a factory reset) to use stock Android or install the custom UI. Even if they buried the stock option away somewhere so only advanced users would know to look for it. It would just be nice to be able to pick up any new Android phone and know that there’s an option for people who just want stock Android and fast updates. I’m all for choice, but at the moment it feels like the only choice for those who want stock Android is to root (and risk voiding warranties, etc) or go with a Nexus.

  • Rory M

    The argument is valid, but the problem is manufacturers put so much time into their skins that they can’t keep up to date with Android. It takes them months to roll out a new release or just lie and never do it, hoping their customers will simply buy the new phone.

    My personal thought is that all Android handset manufacturers should either offer the option to flash stock android on their phone with the ability to root and update as the user sees fit, or at least keep the bootloaders unencrypted so that modders, themers and developers can customize their phones the way they want to.

    Custom UIs have their place – especially for users that don’t care about customization and just want something that gets them email, music, social media and internet. In the spirit of Android I think we should have the option to decide which path we want to take on our phones.

  • Baller

    My only big problem with custom UIs is that they slow down updates, otherwise I think the differentiation is great.

    Personally I think what would relieve people’s disgust with custom skins is the Nexus devices coming out on all the carriers at one time. So everyone has the option of a stock phone if they want and manufacturers can skin all of their other phones.

    An option to revert to stock theme across the whole device (including manufacturer provided apps) would be nice, but if you do the above, it wouldn’t be necessary.

    • Anon

      I don’t think custom uis slow down the process as much as carriers do.. considering that stock only devices like the tmobile g2 and g2x took LONGER than sense/blur devices shows that custom uis are not only to blame for slow updates..

  • http://htcsource.com Nick Gray

    Thanks for the all the supporting comments. I was actually expecting a bit of hostility since there are a lot of people who can’t even stand the thought of OEM custom UIs.

    Don’t forget that custom UI’s go a lot deeper than just the launcher, but if that’s really all you care about you can always switch it out with something from the market. Fortunately there are people like Steven Lin who give you the option to download the original stock launcher from the market. http://goo.gl/VeaOH

    I’m sure Steve or another developer will be releasing the stock ICS launcher once we see more Android 4.0 devices hit the market with custom skins.

  • greeny42

    This article has a good point. These custom UI’s have fostered innovation. However, Manufacturers should give users the option to switch to a stock experience if they so choose. That would be the best of both worlds. People that like it don’t care could stick with the custom UI. Freedom of choice!

  • E

    why cant each OEM just make 1 pure android each and any other custom kinda like there own nexus in a way yea it would suck cus the nexus would loose exclusivity but kool to see what every one else can bring as far as design of the phone because to tell you the truth i wasn’t too impress with the Gnex looks its not ugly either just feel they could of done a tiny bit better to match the beauty of pure ICS

  • SkullOne

    I’m not opposed to OEM’s doing these things because I understand the business side, but they have to do it in better ways. I can’t believe that the Sense ICS leaked still has that same ugly icons. Maybe that will change, but right now it doesn’t look like they will since all the same icon’s have been used. ICS’s interface is fantastic and all Sense has done is taken it back 10 steps instead of trying to improve on it.

    The OEM’s also have to provide faster updates if they include their UI’s. I’m sorry but for phones to only now be receiving Android 2.3.x is totally uncalled for. The fact that some phones don’t get updates due to the UI’s “hardware requirements” is beyond crappy of the OEM’s.

    If I don’t want to use the custom UI I should be able to totally disable if not remove that crap from MY phone because it is MY phone. I shouldn’t have to have the pig called Rosie from Sense constantly running if I choose to use another launcher like ADW Ex. I shouldn’t be restricted to needing a Nexus phone or having to find a phone that gives me an unlocked bootloader and S-OFF in order to completely rid myself of their overlays. I’m sorry but an AOSP build like CyanogenMod or Liquid are far snappier and smoother then anything with an OEM overlay.

    There are better ways to do things for a new UI other then bake it completely into the code. Look at the T-Mobile Theme Engine for example, a little bit of code goes a long way. Launchers like ADW Ex are just as capable as anything Sense, Blur, or TouchWiz can do and ADW and the like can be themed as well. Look at the lockscreens on CyanogenMod 7 and MIUI, or look at WidgetLocker itself. There are plenty of widgets out there too that do anything the UI’s can do. OEM’s don’t need to bloat up the phone the way they do to differentiate the look. That bloat is why so many people hate the OEM UI’s.

  • sandwich11

    I agree with this article 1000%. Whether you prefer vanilla or skinned, keep in mind that OEM’s need to differentiate their phones from the competition.

    • delinear

      There are lots of ways to do that – through their own custom apps, by adding a custom launcher, through the design and quality of the device, through the specs, battery life, accessories and price. Saying manufacturers need UI skins to differentiate is a bit much. I can see why they like them, it locks users in if they’re used to your UI (it’s harder to go from an old Sense phone to a new Touchwiz than it is to go from an old Sense phone to a new Sense phone), but I think liking them and needing them are very different things.

    • Bhagwad Park

      Why not just compete on hardware specs and phone design? Better for consumers that way.

  • http://droidsamurai.blogspot.com DroidSamurai

    I will appreciate the custom skin if:

    1) The OEM lets me switch back to stock easily — it’s ridiculously difficult to help friends who has a skinned Android phones because the UI aren’t organized the same way.

    2) The OEM, before they invest time into building the skin, invest more time to OPTIMIZE their damn phones. Anyone who has used a Galaxy S2 knows what I mean — that’s when we can appreciate a custom skin even if we don’t like its look. On the other hand, HTC is doing exactly the opposite.

  • http://www.jimtravis.com jimtravis

    Enjoyed the post, along with the specific examples. I have the Nexus One, S, and Galaxy Nexus to ensure I have the “pure” Android experience, but I also welcome UI skins on my other devices. I may not like every enhancement, but overall I do consider them a plus. As the article stipulates, many of the newest, greatest futures we like in ICS were actually introduced earlier in vendor specific skins.

    For me, the ideal situation would be a vendor UI master control panel that allows me to turn on / off individual enhancements so I can keep the ones I like, and turn off the ones I don’t.

    I do hope the vendors continue to offer custom UI skins so we don’t have the one size fits all UI like competing platforms force on users. For those that want pure Android, they do have an option with the Nexus line, and of course rooting etc.

  • http://www.jimtravis.com jimtravis

    Wish comments could be edited for typos etc. greatest futures should be greatest features.

  • yankeesusa

    My biggest reason for liking custom ui’s is htc sens and their specialized screen lock which I love. Right now on my 3d my lock screen shows pictures and I love that. I hope htc continues to improve htc sense especially with ics.

  • NegativeOne13

    Someone has to say it…. AOSP4LYFE!!!!!

  • jamal adam

    If only they had a switch that could turn of their skins, I would be all for it. Also, if they can update them in a timely fashion. The Us govt. says it can update its custom UI in a matter of 2 weeks, why can’t these big manufacturers do the same. Though they probably could, the carriers are to blame because they just want customers to buy newer smartphones every time instead of getting updates.

  • SGB101

    we all like android because it is customisable, so we cant complain when we dont like the differing ui’s. nobody is forcing you/me to use any given skin.

  • Jackie

    This is how you tell if Custom UIs are a good thing:

    Why did I have to wait so many MONTHS for it?
    Why did you have to FORCE it on all your users?
    Why do you forbid me from ever removing it? (other than rooting my phone entirely)

    If it’s so good… why force it?

    • yes

      Sir you’ve just asked and answered the question that every android lovers would say.

      You are my hero.

      Srsly why the f##k not to give us option to get the pure google. They can install w/e the app and widget they want to put. But please don’t mess with the skin anymore.

      I have a suggestion though. Google needs to release theme setting option to their whole UI. And themes should only come from google inc. and posted on google market so people can download the theme and beautify their ui ( colors ,patterns , battery icons … etc only so it will not alter the ui experience) by just restarting their phone.

      Then it would rock the world, guys will shoot one up thru their pants and girls will be getting whipped creams ready.

      It will be loved by the people that manufactures will think twice before they alter the UI. Because if you put custom UI the theming setting from google will not work anymore.

      And that’s end of my rant on toilet seat, now I have to go to gym to work out.

      Please google PLEASE. Do something that no other modern SMARTPHONE manufacture have done and put the theme setting on the whole UI. Do it right and do it first.

      Please…. theme…please do it

  • Kim

    Why is the original, pure Google OS such a bad thing that so much time and money has to be spent “improving it” before it can even be rolled out to millions of people?

  • Paul Atreides

    We should’nt have to root. I was happy with the option to use Sense or Stock when I first bought my EVO. That option was taken away with a firmware update we received. I’d like to see custom UI’s less intrusive and for OEm to include a app/feature to add/remove different components of the custom UI i.e. Stocks, Facebook integration.

  • nrorm

    Don’t forget the contributions of Cyanogenmod to these changes—weren’t they the first ones to offer the swipe-to-dismiss option for notifications? Standard feature on CM7 and now on ICS

  • mclarensr

    Dont care about the custom UIs. More up to date OS upgrades? Now we are talking.

  • Max.Steel

    I’m all for custom UIs. Just give us the option to switch to stock Android if we wish. Don’t force it down our throats.

  • masterpfa

    I agree in general with the OP on the basis that HTC sense on my first phone the HTC Hero(UK) was the the factor for me personally taking the leap into Android, that first viewing of the YouTube video with all the features, I was hooked, the widgets , integration everything.

    But what I liked best about my Hero at the time (Android 1.5) was the ability to turn Sense off and have a pure Vanilla experience and the choice of reverting back to Sense as and when I chose too.

    The problem however has been since Android 2.0.xxx HTC removed this feature and the decision then became HTC Sense or Custom ROM.

    I do not dislike the manufacturers Skins, not at all, I just hate the fact that because of the skins we are held up in receiving updates when the OS is updated.

    Now as stated earlier HTC did have that option so I’m sure to degree, if they wanted to, manufacturers could factor this into their skins and allow the user the choice of Fully Featured Skin with all their options or switch to the Vanilla experience of Android 2.0, 3.0 or 4.0.

    I am also aware that these integrations are more than just skins or launchers, but why are they not designed to be like launchers to permit the users a choice, rather than hard coded as they are.

    Having flashed many a custom ROM on my previous phone the HTC Hero and currently HTC Desire HD, I have always had to wait for a leak featuring Sense before I could taste the flavours of the latest OS, which currently isn’t the case for ICS, luckily I have my Galaxy Nexus to fill that void.

    So HTC, Samsung, Motorola & Sony, herein lies the challenge, design your respective skins in the manner of Custom Launchers, design your widgets so that they are not reliant on hard coding, give your customers the choice.

    HTC, Samsung, Motorola & Sony will always have their fan base among the general public and with HTC and Samsung I really do like what you have done with your skins, but if I have the choice of HTC Sense or Touchwiz and waiting up to a year before the OS is updated to the latest or The latest Google priority phone? Yes you guessed it Google latest Nexus it is every time.

    I wonder what The Nexus 2012 will feature? (can’t wait)

  • Nathan D.

    Well I don’t mind since you can always root it :-P

  • Hall Lo

    What I love on Android is the freedom. Different UI overlays is one of them, and I see no reason why not to have them. And if you are desperate for the vanilla UI, root your phone and custom rom and voila!

  • lokidokie

    I disagree

  • http://www.infotainmentempire.com pekosROB

    I have said this many times before, but I wish we could choose to install or uninstall the custom UI from the OEM. It would be so awesome if you could uninstall Sense, Blur, TouchWiz, and any other OEM UI that I might have missed, and have plain vanilla Android OR even download a different UI.

    Like Samsung but hate TouchWiz and like Sense better? Get it in the app market. Like Moto but don’t like Blur? Go get Sense or TouchWiz.

    Unfortunately, this will never happen. I mean they have LauncherPro (which is what I use), ADW, and several more. But I feel like since they are running on top of Blur (I have a Droid3) it’s not as efficient as if it was the only launcher running.

  • Oskar Wismierski

    I like the features offered by custom ui’s but hate how most of them look.. touchwizz for example is too cartoonish and sense just kills a device.. It makes it very slow which is a shame as it has some interesting add ons ;/

  • Bpear96

    I think manufactures should either, offer in settings to go to aosp look and launcher, or be like mostly a custom launcher and widgets like touchwiz 4.0 minus the blue color scheme it has all through out the ui it seems, just the touchwiz launcher and widgets/apps, then if you want to just install another launcher and bam aosp look :D. Not that i care anyways one of the main selling points of a phone for me is its development (custom)

  • bd1212

    All manufacturers need to do is add a button into the settings that says “Revert to Stock” that will let you switch from having to use the manufacturers UI to the stock Android UI. I mean really, if they can take a couple of months to fully skin Android, the least they can do is add in that button.

    Just give us the choice, after all, these are OUR devices.

    Am I right?

  • vid500

    That’s the thing that also made Android great ( besides its performance,…). The point is that you as a costumer have a choice what you wont to pick, the design of the device, the brand and the UI. For my part it is a plus, why should all devices look the same and have the same interface. I personally picked my first android phone also because of its UI. If you have 10 different devices with the same specs than there should be some difference between them.
    But I think that on the device you should have a option to change it to the default android UI. Not that you have to root it, to do so.

  • Kats

    I’m up for customization, as long as these manufacturers make it look better. HTC sense and Touchwiz just have a bad color choice and no consistency. its a huge mistake to divert massively from the original look like sense does. You can customize the apps, give the finish your own matte but let, it at least look like something of quality. And everyone should be mandated to have a button that will strip all customization.

  • reddragonman

    This is exactly what I was thinking too. We want the choice to use stock UI if the custom ones don’t work for us. The other issue is that if they went with stock UI, they would be able to get updates out to devices quicker, as less customization would be needed. Also, with the case of the Samsung Galaxy S, it apparently isn’t even going to be upgraded to ICS due to the fact they can’t fit Touchwiz on it. It’s a shame a device stops getting support because a developer can’t put what they want on it.