Mobiles & Tablets

Like a kid in a candy store!

Updated on: Mar 25, 2015
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Which version of Android is good for me? This is the dilemma of the handset buyer of today

Smartphones have swept over the mobile communications landscape over the last couple of years. And app-laden smarties even at entry-level prices have led to the migration en masse from feature phones.

But the choices and options are mind boggling. Many a seasoned mobile user is confused with the sheer breadth and variety of options when one goes to buy a smartphone. The confusion begins with the device specifications that are now beginning to push the envelope further than anyone could have possibly imagined a year ago. Camera, metal or plastic, processor and many such metrics, eventually force buyers to seek answers. Amongst the OSes that are out there, one of the most important questions that you have to answer is “Which version of Android is good for me?” 

Take a break

There are two schools of thought that can help answer this query. The first one, states that you go for the handset that supports the latest version of the OS and guarantees future OTA updates as soon as Google releases them.  The other one centers around the argument that even if the android version is one or two releases behind Google’s current release, the OEM (device/ handset maker) ROM should be stable. Now the quandary is reduced to deciding which is best. Each approach has its own pros and cons. The good thing about going for the latest and greatest with assured updates is that you get all patches for critical issues that have been rolled in to your device. But the issue is that you may be bargaining for a loss of some things that are essential. Like the hapless users of the Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 found out when they upgraded to Android 5.0.1 or “Lollipop” as it is more popularly called. A lot of apps went awry, syncing with an exchange server became a pain, the Gallery app disappeared and so on.

Sugary option 

Coming to the second approach, where you trust your OEM to know what is best for the device you buy, this is very comfortable and recommended for the average user who is not technically inclined and is just looking for a stable, practical tablet or phone. Then again, this line is fully dependent on the OEM. If you buy a flagship device from some OEMs, they come loaded with tons of bloat-ware, apps that you will never use and at the same time never be able to remove from your phone unless you root it.

Rooting in most cases voids the warranty of the device and increases the possibility of ‘bricking’ your new phone. This is a major catch-22 to get into. 

So, what is the way out? It is very simple. Who you are decides the approach for you! If you are a technically inclined user who has or makes the bandwidth to get intimate with the ROM on your phone and value high performance over stability, go for the first line of thought.

If you are, on the other hand, a person who uses a phone as a steady, stable productivity companion and an important compliment to your lifestyle, but do not mind if your phone isn’t acing benchmarks, then trust the maker! 

Published on January 24, 2018

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