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Discussion in 'Android Apps & Games' started by coyotepup4, Aug 2, 2011.

  1. coyotepup4

    coyotepup4 Lurker
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    I know this has been asked many times before, but I will ask again as my inaugural post.

    Given all the money and energy Google (and others) have put into Android, why doesn't Android have a desktop manager software.

    It would be one thing if it didn't have one only for Mac (which is what I want since I am most a Mac guy at home), but they don't have one for Windows either. How can Android become a legitimate business competitor to Blackberry, the IPhone, and even Palm (now HP) without a way for business people to easily sync with the default business applications on their desktops.

    Personally, I want to be able to Sync Android with the Notes feature of Mac Mail. I am seriously considering going back to Black Berry.
     

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  2. lunatic59

    lunatic59 Moderati ergo sum
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    Because for Google to include these things, it would have to license the technologies not only for itself but for the handset manufacturers who would then all have to work from the same set of licenses. By providing the open source Android model to the OHA, the manufacturers are free to do what they wish. For Example, there is HTC Sync, Samsung Kies, Motorola media sync, etc. Each with a different model. Plus it leaves the opportunity for third party development.

    Android does include Exchange support, just not desktop outlook support.
     
  3. coyotepup4

    coyotepup4 Lurker
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    Then Google made a bad choice. They could have just as easily created an open source core of a desktop manager. It didn't have to be anything fancy..like the original Palm desktop. The important thing would have been the ability for the PC to connect to the phone. The different manufacturers could have customized the desktop the way they did the phone while (if they were smart) leaving the core connectivity alone.
     
  4. lunatic59

    lunatic59 Moderati ergo sum
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    Considering the current market pentration of Android, I don't think I'd call it a bad choice, just a different model. Being a sysadmin in an enterprise, I can say that we never had much problem integrating our phones. Some have iPhones, some Android and even a few BB, but no Windows7 or WinMobile (at least not since I got rid of mine). I much prefer our users sync'ing to the servers or the cloud than to their desktops where we have less control and find it harder to monitor.

    The desktop sync seems to be more suited to consumers, or small businesses.
     
  5. coyotepup4

    coyotepup4 Lurker
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    Bad choice is of course my opinion based on my needs as an individual. However, my story is repeated in the boards. I've seen multiple entries by people who were surprised that the desktop software was not there. After the market was created by pre-IPhone smart phones that used Palm OS, Windows and blackberry, we didn't even think to ask if the Android had one. It was expected. A feature like that is like shuffle mode on an MP3 player. It is so common that people don't ask if there is one, but if we find out latter there isn't one, they feel cheated. Not a great analogy, but you get my drift.

    As to Android's success, the main reason is that its easy to win when your main competitor doesn't show over the half the time. IPhone is only available on AT&T until recently. A lot of people are shying away from the current Verizon offering because they are waiting for the next generation LTE version. Also Steve Jobs hasn't learned anything. He designs a product that is easy to use by the masses, but sells it in a premium way that makes it almost a luxury item. It seems like he expects the consumer to sacrifice to come to him rather than the other way around. The same is true of developers. He insists on keeping Objective-C which is a language that is good for nothing but Apple products. There is not much incentive to learn it for career prospects other than Apple products.

    And of course, Palm is now dead (part of HP) and Windows Phone 7 took so long to come out that it requires product placement on Bones and Castle to just stay alive.

    I guess what I'm saying is that, in my opinion, Android's success is as much a result of the business mistakes of the opposition as it is on the product quality. After all, if Steve had put the IPhone with all four major carriers at the same time or just AT&T and T-Mobile, Android would be seeing a much smaller growth. Jobs is just to obsessed with his "product vision" to compromise.
     
  6. lunatic59

    lunatic59 Moderati ergo sum
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    I do get your drift, I simply don't agree with it. I certainly can understand the expectation, and the surprise when expectations are discovered to be not the case. That expectation is based on an old paradigm. Years ago people expected the phone company to own the phones and lease them to the customer. Android is moving forward. Simply put, Android is more about the cloud than the desktop. If you put all the data you need to sync in the cloud (private small secure cloud, or all encompassing internet cloud.) then the desktop becomes irrelevant. It may not be irrelevant today, but that's the direction everything seems to be moving.

    That argument only bears out in the U.S. Globally iPhone numbers are similar and was available on all carriers. It also doesn't explain how other Mobile offerings didn't see an equally meteoric rise.

    I think Steve Jobs can live with that. He's not trying to be the lowest common denominator.


    That's a bit disingenuous. The same could be stated for any successful product ever made, including the iPhone, Honda Accord and Levi Jeans ... their competitors dropped the ball. It's an attempt to attribute success to something other than the merit of the product.
     
  7. coyotepup4

    coyotepup4 Lurker
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    I think the "owner of the phone" example is not really relevant here. When people got their phone home, it was not an expectation of their ownership or the phone company's. It was a fact. When they took the phone home, they knew who owned it. There were no surprises.

    The more relevant example would be if I bought an Android phone and took it home. I opened the box and there are no * key or # key on the number pad. It's something I would not have thought to ask about or even notice on the box picture. They features I can live around. I'm sure there would be an app to simulate them. Still, it's an annoyance. Given the consumer experience. It's something I should not have to think about.

    A real would example is that in Android 2.2, the speed dial feature disappeared and was replaced by favorites. It's one thing if they offered both and eventually phased out speed dial, but to suddenly go from one to another with no regard for the consumer experience would be like a car company deciding that a car should suddenly have a joystick instead of a steering wheel. It might be great, but you can't just change a hundred years of driving experience over night.

    As to me being disingenuous. I'm being honest. Almost all successful companies owe some of their success to outside factors such as the economy or the mistakes of the competition. Was Robert E. Lee a brilliant General or was he just up against the second string. Was Grant a better general or was he just facing Lee after previous generals had bled his armies dry. I like to think it is a combination of both. Android has some great features and good strategies. However, they just make some minor decisions that make no sense and drive me nuts.
     
  8. lunatic59

    lunatic59 Moderati ergo sum
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    The comment was made to exemplify how past experiences fuel future expectations and when things change there is bound to be resistance and dissent. When the phone companies became deregulated, even though the handset was still leases to the consumer, many still expected the utility to repair the wiring in their house -- something that had always been done previously -- only to find that they were now responsible for that aspect of their telephone. The expectation of a feature that is not forward-looking being always available, such as desktop sync software will yield similar results. Google chose to leave that aspect up to the manufactures and independent developers and don't deliberately block the functionality, but they also look to the cloud for services, not the desktop. It makes perfect sense given their model.

    But that is not a relevant example at all. A desktop sync application is not an integral and necessary part of smartphone use. It is an accessory, like a case. It provides enhanced functionality, but it's absence does not prevent the phone from being used as intended. A missing key on the keypad would.

    Bad example again (car analogy). Speed dial is not a core function but a feature. It would be more similar to the auto industry suddenly changing cassette players to compact disc players without offering both for several years so. Which they did and I am sure there were plenty of consumers bellyaching about how they now had all these tapes they couldn't play in their new cars. Android is an extensible platform. Don't like part of it, it's pretty easy to change. There are plenty of third party dialers that have a speed dial functionality.

    A rather pessimistic view of success. I would prefer to think of them taking advantage of opportunity rather than being fortunate that the other guy missed, but to each his own.
     
  9. claus1953

    claus1953 Well-Known Member
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    To be honest i never used a desktop application,
    not for Palm when i was using it, first only for installing apps, but then i used a thrid party app, and backups i did internally
    not for windows mobile, there i only used it for flashing new roms, but then i learned to do it internally from the sd card
    and now for android i do not miss it at all, even do not use Kies, i backup internally with Titanium and on the cloud, sync my contacts and events with Google.... so what for would i use it??
     
  10. coyotepup4

    coyotepup4 Lurker
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    I think too many people are more interested in winning the argument than taking into account what is being said. My point is that the Android team has made decisions that I find annoying as a user. The responses so far have boiled down to people trying to convince me how I am wrong because I just don't get the Android model.

    There are only two reasons I have an Android phone. First, smart phone choices are very limited on my carrier. It's either Blackberry or Android. The Blackberry screen is just too small for me. If they provided IPhones (or even Windows Phone 7), I would be on it like a shot because being able to easily sync with my computer is important to me.

    Because I like the speed dial feature. I have had it on every desk and cell phone for 20 years. I don't mind the favorites feature. I think it's cool. But, the decision to just remove a widely used feature for no justifiable reason smacks to me of developer hubris, that 'I know better than you what you need' mentality that too many designers get accused of. It may not actually be that. It may have been unintentional. However, perception is reality, and my perception is that the Android team got arrogant. If they put speed dial back in the next version of Android, I think we'll know that people were more attached to this feature than once thought.

    Again, this is all opinion which leads to me being an annoyed customer. For me, and many like me, Android is the new Windows. We took it by default. Blackberry is like Linux. It's a much better put together, but there aren't that many apps for it. Finally, there is IPhone which is still in the same Apple position. Seems Steve Jobs has forgotten nothing and he's learned nothing. Bill Gates is just too busy saving the world. Again that question, is Steve a better businessman or is Bill just not around to crush him anymore. Is a win by default still a win?
     
  11. lunatic59

    lunatic59 Moderati ergo sum
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    I apologize if that's the perception I've left you with. I was simply trying to explain the change in paradigm from a desktop-centric model that had been established in smartphones with the iPhone's juggernaut to the cloud-centric approach of Google and Android.

    I have no intention of convincing anyone their opinions are wrong. You are perfectly entitled to express dissatisfaction on what you perceive does not fit your needs or desires. Just be aware that everyone's base feature set in a smartphone and their requirements for daily use will be very different. That is also one of the great strengths of the Android platform in its extensibility.
     

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