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Originally posted on XDA developers forum. Continuation of these ideas at 2019 Best Devices and OS.

Android as a desktop operating system

I was thinking of the coolness factor of just having one device, a phone, to which you could connect an external display and have an extended desktop. I am not finding any reference to this on Android (only the MS Surface). From what I have been reading, and remember/understand (may be confused), Jelly Bean brought the ability for windowing apps. However, the apps have to be coded for the capability, unless you root your phone and installed an app that provided windowing for all apps. Also, I have not heard of the possibility of having an extended desktop in Android.

I would like to ask WHY? Why not have windowing and the ability for an extended desktop, on an external display? A bluetooth keyboard and mouse just follows. Does google have to play nice with the manufacturers that stand to loose from people only needing one device? Is there a reason I'm not thinking of? Most phones are fast enough for this these days.

At the turn of the century, I was running GPS software Deluo Routis on a Sony Vaio 505 Pentium 200Mhz laptop running Win98. The 2-D graphics were smooth even while playing mp3's through the car speakers. The mapping software showed the map clearly, and effectively gave me navigation. People have lost sight of how much you can do if you give up the bloat and bling.

Also, I am pretty confused with the merging of Android and Chrome. I never liked Java to begin with; my experience with it is in MS Windows, and it runs slow as molasses. I believe my phone would run much faster if they had not chosen Java. I understand this to be because you have an operating system running on top of another operating system. It just makes more sense to me to have less layers and run apps natively, for better performance. I thought maybe they chose Java for its level of security. Is the screening process for Google Play not foolproof enough?

I like the philosophy of Google better than Microsoft, so if one of them is going to win, I hope it's Google. I'm hoping Google won't end up with a convoluted Android/Chrome operating system because Lawyers forced them to (the idea I get based on the latest news). I don't understand: do they want to keep their OS architecture simple, but are being forced to make the OS complex for different reasons?

Apple isn't in the game to win. They have never wanted to dominate, just make huge profits. Unless they break up the marriage of hardware and software, they won't win. Then again, if Samsung keeps dominating, there may not be much hardware diversity?

Oh, and my main question was: “Why not have windowing and the ability for an extended desktop?”. Wouldn't that be a big deciding factor for anyone that wanted to simplify and just have one device?

information-technology/2013-android-as-desktop-os.txt · Last modified: 2019/05/30 23:42 (external edit)