How long will manufacturers hurt Android with BAD low end handsets

Posted Apr 27, 2012 at 9:30 am in Threads > Opinions

Taylor posted an article about Apple completely kicking Android’s ass in the last quarter in the US and that got me thinking to the reasons why. One of the reasons I hypothesized is that manufacturers (LG *cough* Samsung) continue to pump out BAD low end Android phones to see what sticks.

I believe this is going to hurt Android in the long term. If anything, I believe, the huge Apple numbers in the last quarter can be attributed to a significant amount of users who got burned by low end Android offerings.

Now don’t get me wrong I think Low End Android phones are a necessity for the growth and proliferation of Android, but the bar is set WAY too low for several of these handsets. Think of all the low end Galaxy phones, or the low end Optimus phones. I’m sure while they’ve satisfied a good number of users a whole lot of other one felt burned.

Of all the companies I think HTC has got it right with the One V. It certainly is the low end of the One series but it most certainly is the most well executed low end device I’ve seen. Android 4.0, Sense 4.0 (albeit a lighter version) and excellent build quality. That’s how all low end Android phone should be.

If anything, I’d set the bar at for low end Android phones at the lowest end iPhone still being sold and as of now that’s still the iPhone 3GS. If the phone isn’t as responsive and usable as the 3GS don’t bother putting it out IMO. The fact that 2 years after launch the 3GS is still available (and for free) is probably yet another factor in why Apple dominated the last Quarter.

I’d like to hear everyone’s thoughts on the matter.
Thanks for reading.

  • SGB101

    i have to agree, think last years topend are now mid, 12 months time should be low end, then everyone gets a decent crack at android, the way its meant to be.

    for instance, a htc desire 28 months old, sells for less now than a htc wildfire or similar spec samsung, but the spec are way ahead still.

    if i could only afford an entry level phone, id be on ebay getting last years mid/high end device for the same sort of cash.

    to answer the question, they will keep making them till people are more informed and stop buying them.

    i think the tablets have more to worry about than phones. some of them are shocking, and some folks will see/try one( achi-pad), then get to the shop and see an ipad and a transformer, and pick the ipad up, and think,
    “christ, look at the price of that android one, ive tried one of thos and they are poo, defo not worth ipad money”
    ive thought this from day one, (then it was a galaxy tab, instead of a tranny.)

  • B2L

    There are always going to be bad low end phones, especially with all of the cheap Chinese Android devices. There will always be a tablet at your local Kmart with some of the lowest possible specs and build quality, but people will buy it because it’s on sale for $79. Manufacturers like Samsung, LG, and Huawei see profit in the low end market, so I honestly don’t think it will ever end.

    The real problem is people go to a store, see a device on sale that is either free on contract, or only costs less than $100 for a prepaid device. These same people have heard from their friends or family that Android is a great OS, not realizing that it also requires decent hardware to compliment the OS. This leaves those users with a bad taste in their mouth and they fall into Apple’s brilliant marketing strategies and feel like it’s worth paying extra for a “premium” device, which couldn’t be achieved by their previous low end Android device.

  • TopherM21

    I’m not sure that lower-end hurt that much… as I think of it, the low-end act as an intro to android and encourage people to grab better hardware.

    I def agree with SGB though, the low-end 2.3 tablets don’t put android’s best foot forward.