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October 2, 2017

Android Oreo Thoughts

Filed under: Main — Tags: — admin @ 12:01 am

Back in the old days, major software releases were a big deal, not an annual PR event.

MS-DOS 5.0 was a massive update over MS-DOS 3.0. It offered memory management and a host of tools that made using a PC easier. It was truly a momentous update.

PC-DOS 4.0 was an IBM version, not really something Microsoft made. And it was horrid. Microsoft rushed to complete versions 4.1 and 4.2 to make up for the mistakes.

WordPerfect 5.0 was a tremendous improvement over WordPerfect 4.2.

Android OS 8.0 “Oreo” is only subtly different from Android OS 7.x “Nougat.” The biggest difference I’ve noticed so far is that they’ve reorganized the Settings app. In fact, it’s that app that suffers the most with an Android OS update.

With Oreo, Google has reduced the number of top-level Settings app categories. It’s a good move, though not one worthy of a major OS version update. Still, it’s better to have a short list on the screen than a longer, complete list. Many items do fall under a specific category. And for those actions you need most often — Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and so on — you can use a quick action.

Of course, re-arranging items in the Settings app means nothing if you have a Samsung device. That’s because Samsung has always messed with the Settings app. It’s necessary because Samsung devices have lots of specific features and they gladly give you control over each.

I’ve not yet had any of my Samsung gizmos upgraded to Android Oreo yet, though according to what I’ve read online an update is pending for the Galaxy S8 phones.

Beyond the Settings app, I’m a bit pressed to find major differences between Android Nougat and Android Oreo. Perhaps that’s a good thing because it means you don’t have to suffer through a new learning curve.

Unlike iOS upgrades, which are available immediately to all iPhones and iPads (well, current models), Android upgrades appear only on the newest devices — if at all. So you may not get Android Oreo until your next Android mobile device purchase. Even then, come next year, we’ll see another Android OS update. It’s an annual thing, like getting a physical or paying taxes.

What will the next OS be? Oreo 8.1? Or will they go to version 9.0 version “P.” Pie, anyone?

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