Android Is Open? Still?


In any case, it just stopped being free.

Let me see if I get this.

• A big benefit of Android is that it’s free to OEMs, who can stick it on pretty much whatever hardware they build.

• The draw of KitKat is that it’s been designed to run on almost any hardware, so that cheap-ass vendors can stick a state-of-the-art OS on their craptaculent hardware, and that lazy-ass vendors can at long last allow owners of older Android devices an upgrade path.

So the way to get lazy vendors on board with KitKat is to force them to write their own browser and the way to get cheap vendors on board is to force them to pay licensing fees. And the cheap customers who bought non-upgradable Android phones will… what? …maybe have to pay an upgrade fee to offset the Chrome licensing fee?

Have the folks at Google lost their ever-lovin’ minds?