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Pushing change with Android.

Certainly I expect Cupcake to deliver a lot of new features. But these roll-outs are, in the end, controlled by carriers, which likely as not retain a certain veto power, not only over what improvements they might push down but on everything else.
Written by Dana Blankenhorn, Inactive

While everyone eagerly awaits their Android 1.5 Cupcake, here's a question worth pondering.

How will updates of open source code level the mobile playing field?

(Picture from the Mars Hill Torah Club. While on the site watch for Easter eggs.)

I ask this because Apple firmware updates are not treated like Christmas. Quite the opposite. Often as not Apple uses its update process to turn features off, or reverse hacks brought out by the community.

This may or may not always be true with Android. Certainly I expect Cupcake to deliver a lot of new features. But these roll-outs are, in the end, controlled by carriers, which likely as not retain a certain veto power, not only over what improvements they might push down but on everything else.

It's another reminder of the stark difference between the Internet you're probably reading this on and the mobile Internet. Even when Internet access is censored, the motivation is not commercial advantage. With the mobile Internet it always is.

To what extent might Android change this? Can open source act as a lever long enough to lift the rock of carrier self-dealing?

Discuss. And don't forget to blow out the candle.

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