One of the main disadvantages about Android is the frequency of updates. For most devices, they aren’t very frequent at all. Unless you have a “Google experience” device (i.e. one of the Nexus phones), most of the time you’re at your carrier/device manufacturer’s mercy – unless you’re tech savvy enough to take things into your own hands and tinker with your Android device yourself. While most people are quick to point the fingers at carriers and manufacturers when it comes to slow updates, Motorola claims it’s not their fault.
In a recent interview with PCMag, Motorola’s senior VP and general manager of its Enterprise Business Unit, Christy Wyatt blamed Google as the cause of slow updates. According to her, when Google releases a new version of Android, they do it for their latest Google experience phone first. Other OEMs have to modify the operating system for it to work on their phones first. Then there comes the part where they customize it with their own software and then they ship it off to carriers for more customization/testing before it gets delivered.
While one can see that being a problem, most consumers are probably fine with the stock version of Android (no HTC Sense, no MotoBlur, no TouchWiz etc) on their phones. If hardware manufacturers only focused on making Android work on their devices, and leave the customization/add-ons up to the users I can see the update process being sped up. But I guess it’s just the manufacturer’s way of differentiating its own phones from its competitors.
Maybe OEMs should make those customizations optional so that if users want them, they can download them separately; which means manufacturers can take their time to release them while they push out the core updates first. What do you think?