Getting phone makers and carriers to update to the latest version of Android has been a challenge for the Google. In the sense, many times, Google releases updated versions of Android, but many of the Android devices will not see changes of the new revision of Android for at least a year of its release. The issue of different smartphones running outdated software lacking the latest security and features has always been a major concern for Google and it has finally decided to act, reports Bloomberg.
Google will release rankings of the Android OEMs who are lagging behind with Android updates by making public their current track records. The ranking already exists, but it’s used only for Google internal purpose. Now, Google plans to make them public by which Google expects to put pressure on Android OEMs to make timely software updates.
As the smartphones are getting more capable, the security issues are equally on the rise and having the latest software working closely with the hardware is increasingly important. The outdated software issue is also a challenge for Google in its competition with Apple. Apple’s 84% of the devices are running latest iOS software, whereas only 7.5% of Android devices run Marshmallow, the newest Android OS, the report pointed out.
Carriers make it a step slower because they test the software update thoroughly to avoid network disruptions before approving the update. This takes much longer time. Google is trying to persuade carriers to exclude this testing process to make things faster, the report said.
Google is also reducing its reliance on the update process. New features, such as the Allo messaging service, now often come out as standalone apps, rather than part of a new version of the Android operating system. Google can refresh these without carrier tests. It’s also making some new features compatible with earlier versions of the operating system.
It sure looks like Google is trying to make things right before releasing Android N, the next version.