Microsoft can teach Android makers a thing or two about updates(!)

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Not my headline, but AndroidCentral's much respected Jerry Hildenbrand, providing an outsider's perspective on the split between older and newer devices getting the 'official' Windows 10 Mobile upgrade. In sharp contrast to the Android world, where the vast majority of devices are on older versions of the OS and likely to remain that way, at least the figure in the Microsoft/Windows camp is significantly higher - and with a Microsoft-sanctioned way of getting just about any device on W10M via Insiders if the user is happy to take a chance. Nice to have a fresh perspective anyway!

From Jerry's post:

Microsoft has begun rolling out the Windows 10 Mobile upgrade to a long list of phones. I'm not a Windows fan by any stretch of the imagination, but I am a mobile tech fan so I'm interested. I jumped over to Windows Central to check out the news about the rollout, to see which devices were getting it and find out when people should expect it. I immediately saw two things that made me pause:

  • The 2014 Lumia 535 is getting updated.
  • The very low-end Lumia 430 is getting updated.

...Android OEMs take note. Microsoft's phone division isn't exactly a rising star in the techosphere. At one point, nobody thought they would be able to survive as long as they have. But they are doing much better than all of you when it comes to software.

...And not every phone running Windows is going to get updated to Windows 10 Mobile — the super-popular Lumia 520 didn't make the cut for example, and many others won't for a bunch of reasons. But Microsoft did their part. They put in the work required to update phones that are old or low-powered — phones that Android OEMs would have (and historically have) left behind...

...It's not a matter of numbers, so spare me the "they only have to update phones for a few customers" rhetoric. They're not going door to door and installing updates, and the same update they made available will work on 100 units of a particular model or 1,000,000,000. In fact, when you consider how few phones there are in the wild running Windows, it's even more impressive that Microsoft (and a few partners) were willing to update some of these models. And the way they are able to do it — by breaking the ties between the radio and operating system — means that they have been working on this for a long time. It's similar to what we think Google is doing with Android, and hopefully will have the same result. As long as the people making the phones get on board.

...If anyone had any doubts that mobile is the way we will compute and communicate today and in the future, you've already been proven wrong. And Microsoft just did what they needed to do to make sure the vast majority of their user base can be current and able to use the new features they have made available. Today was a giant win for just about everyone using a Windows phone.

Well, at least this partly balances the outcry in the comments on editorials like this one. Here's my original news story on the Official update and supported device list, by the way.

My stance is still that all the phones which aren't on the 'list' are better off on 8.1 - and that anyone who's in disagreement with this can simply update to Windows 10 Mobile 'Threshold' via the Insiders programme anytime they like (or at least until Redstone launches for production devices later in 2016), and they'll carry on getting updates for the next year or so on that branch. And for the great unwashed, the mass of Lumia 520 and 630 owners who don't read AAWP and aren't being offered Windows 10 Mobile, I'll warrant that not one of them will even know that the next-gen OS even exists.

And yes, there's an editorial in all this, but I'm still waiting for more of the dust to settle!

Source / Credit: AndroidCentral