OS: Google Experience vs. Mfg UI, updates & features

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  1. Tim K

    Tim K Well-Known Member Contributor This Topic's Starter

    Nov 2, 2009
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    So I am looking at Verizon's upcoming Android phones with excitement. I have some questions though about Android and the OS update "Procedures".

    The "Motorola Droid" is my #1 choice as it has 2.0 and is a Google Experience device. My thinking is that, in terms of updates to the OS, GE devices will get the update first. Whereas any custom jobs like Sense UI will be delayed as the Mfg or Carrier tests or revises the UI to work with the newer OS. My fear is the delay could be extended or the Mfg may choose to not even continue updating UI's. I have this fear based on my Blackberry experience on Verizon and knowing how long it takes them to release OS updates.

    Is this accurate thinking on my part? Is Android so "open" that even if I had a custom UI, I could strip the UI and update the device to the latest OS build with the "Stock" Android interface....or am I stuck with the Sense UI version until HTC chooses to release an updated UI with an updated OS build?

    Also, how much customization is possible on an Android device short of "rooting" it? Are there (or at least will there be) available themes with varying backgrounds and icons? Are custom UI's like Sense nothing more than a theme with some custom widgets?

    Sorry for all the questions but without having ever used an Android device I am not really familiar with it.


  2. SwashbucklerJak

    SwashbucklerJak New Member

    Oct 17, 2009
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    Hi Tim and welcome to the android world.

    You are correct that Mtg. UIs take a little while to hit the airwaves after the original updates drop. As far as stripping the Sense Ui you would have to root. I haven't used Sense so I can't tell you a whole lot about it.

    Hope that helps!
  3. MonmouthDroid

    MonmouthDroid Well-Known Member

    Nov 9, 2009
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    I have the droid on verizon. There are three apps in the android market that give you some of the features of the sense UI. aHome, Open Home, and Panda Home. i have personally used Panda Home and Open Home and they are both very good. I think i prefer panda home, which is free, over open home, which costs 3 or 4 bucks. They both allow all kinds of custom themes and icons, as well as support anywhere from 3-7 home screens. Panda home you can have 3, 4, 5, 6, or 7, while Open Home you can only choose 3 5 or 7. They both allow for a ton of custimization. And panda home is supposed to be updated for the Droid like today or tomorrow according to the app. None of them however give you the multi touch that is in the Sense UI. But i am sure if you are patient it will come from either google or an app.

    EDIT: I ran Panda home on my MyTouch 3g I used to have, and Open Home on my Droid (since when i got it there was no word on when panda home would be fixed). Open home on the droid is faster than panda home on the mytouch by a very big margin, but i am going to test panda home on my wife's droid as soon as the app is read so i can have a side by side speed test between them.
  4. SeanFL

    SeanFL Member

    Nov 25, 2009
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    Tim and others

    I have an HTC Hero on sprint. While sense ui is nice, htc must either get their updates on top of 2.0 quickly, or suffer lost sales as folks say "I'd rather have a 2.0 device, then one with 1.5 with sense ui."

    My guess is that as android matures at 2.0 and beyond, htc and others will find it difficult to convince buyers their overlays are worth straying from the easier/quicker upgrade path other 'stock android' phones will have.


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