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Google Delays General Release of Honeycomb Source 262

Posted by timothy
from the hey-that-doesn't-feel-right dept.
iluvcapra writes "BusinessWeek reports that Google will not be releasing the source code for Android Honeycomb 'for the foreseeable future.' Android lead Andy Rubin is quoted, stating that if Google were to release the source for Honeycomb, Google would be unable to prevent it from being installed on mobile phones and 'creating a really bad user experience.'"
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Google Delays General Release of Honeycomb Source

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  • So Android 3.0 ... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by WrongSizeGlass (838941) on Thursday March 24, 2011 @06:37PM (#35605744)
    So Android 3.0 isn't exactly 'open source' for the foreseeable future?
  • by Daniel Phillips (238627) on Thursday March 24, 2011 @06:40PM (#35605792)

    This is very much in violation of the spirit of Open Source, on which Google relies for its entire existence.

    Actually, even holding back the development repository and just doing periodic code drops is a violation of community spirit at the very least, and probably harmful to the pace of ongoing development as well. It is clear that Google still does not "get" open source.

  • From TFA (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 24, 2011 @06:44PM (#35605832)

    Over the past few weeks, Google has notified device makers of its change in plans with Honeycomb. Android executives have also been telling companies that Google will likely wait to make another open-source distribution of Android software until it completes the next version, called Ice Cream.

    So unlike what the summary suggests, and more in line with the title, it really is a delay, not an indefinite cutoff.

  • Easy fix? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by hahn (101816) on Thursday March 24, 2011 @06:58PM (#35606002) Homepage
    How difficult would it be for Google to put in some code to check the hardware. If it's a tablet, let it install. If not, don't. And if someone wants to remove it from the code and install it anyways, let them. It's not like they can complain about the results.
  • by naasking (94116) <naasking&gmail,com> on Thursday March 24, 2011 @07:01PM (#35606050) Homepage

    Who are they trying to protect from this bad user experience?

    The Android brand.

  • by Daniel Phillips (238627) on Thursday March 24, 2011 @07:05PM (#35606102)

    Which is the kernel, and only the kernel. Which is usually published as a tarball on some obscure page.

    And Google has made much less than its best effort to merge their Android-specific hacks back into Linux mainline, which makes them not much better than a number of other fly by night OEMs relying on Linux to make their dreams come true. Even when playing with the community properly would help advance their own interests.

  • Re:From TFA (Score:4, Insightful)

    by iluvcapra (782887) on Thursday March 24, 2011 @07:28PM (#35606384)

    Yeah, the OSS platform will always be one version behind the version they give to their top-tier partners, thus Motorola and Samsung get a head start selling the best devices, and then vendors who Google doesn't license Ice Cream to are stuck selling last year's commodity, in a market that is by then saturated.

    Pretty cool, huh? Almost as if Google has created a perpetual motion machine that allows them to release their platform as open software, while simultaneously maintaining the power to decide which handset vendors will thrive.

  • by shaitand (626655) on Thursday March 24, 2011 @09:06PM (#35607208) Journal

    They are doing this to give the xoom a sales boost. There are tons of tablets sold with 2.2 code using hardware that can run Honeycomb (which isn't for your phone and has nothing to do with iPhone). This is about burning everyone who bought one of those to boost the sales of tablets with 3.0. In many cases, for the same company that sold the tablet with 2.2 and wants to now sell the exact same hardware with 3.0 and a new model number.

  • Re:From TFA (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anthony Mouse (1927662) on Friday March 25, 2011 @01:26AM (#35608322)

    I thought we got rid of that kind of shit.

    It is kind of silly. I almost want to like it because it's a huge incentive for internal innovation -- the developers have to make sure every version is better than the last because otherwise no one will pay for the latest version when the GPL version is just as good.

    The problem is that making it "open source" but only with the previous version pretty much eliminates any hope of there being any kind of external developer community, since the external developers would be out of sync with the internal ones and you'd get horrible merge problems at every new release.

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