Jean-Baptiste Queru is the technical lead for the Android Open Source Project at Google. When he talks, we tend to listen. Many a time now, JBQ (as he’s more commonly known) has come to the aid of speculating bloggers and explained situations with updates, Nexus devices and much more. Today, with the Sony Tablet S getting updated to Android 4 and Google selling the Galaxy Nexus directly recently, JBQ took a moment to share his thoughts on updates on Google+.
When it comes to Sony updating their Tablet S, JBQ says that the five months time it took them to complete the update was, “very reasonable.” He continues on to say that the changes from Android 3 (Honeycomb) and Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) to Android 4 (Ice Cream Sandwich) are huge. A lot has changed from previous versions of Android to now, and the only reason Sony has managed to stay as up to date as they are is thanks to their contributions to the AOSP. ASUS’ updates have also been very timely, but that’s because of the tight relationship between ASUS and NVIDIA. Both companies are extremely focused on keeping their products up to date.
Continuing on the subject of updates, JBQ isn’t too happy on how the Nexus program is playing out. But Google selling the Nexus directly will help that:
The part that blows my mind is that some variants of the Google-engineered flagship devices still haven't received Ice Cream Sandwich (or are stuck with older versions of Ice Cream Sandwich) because of delays introduced by operator approvals. I'm very glad that Google is back in the business of selling phones directly without any middlemen to interfere, and I'll be even happier when I see that program expanded to more countries.JBQGoogle
Personally, I take two important things out of this. For one, Google is most definitely aware of the woes delayed updates cause. Especially when it comes to Nexus devices. And number two, those delays aren’t going to change if you buy a carrier regulated device. If you really, truly want your updates from Google, you have to buy your device from Google.
While none of that may be new information (in fact, it’s starting to feel like we’re beating a dead horse here), it’s especially relevant after this past weeks news of Google deciding to sell the Galaxy Nexus directly. Even the support website for the Google sold GSM Nexus will be directly managed by Google. And that’s all there is to it.
What do you think of a five month wait between updates for carrier regulated devices? Is that too long, or is it worth the wait? And while we’re at it, is anyone planning to buy an unlocked Nexus from Google? Have you already? Let us know in the comments.