Engineer phones

I dreamt last night I was upgrading to Android 4.3

android 4.3 upgradeThis is another musical post to be sung to the tune of Sit Down You’re Rocking The Boat from Guys and Dolls. If you don’t know it look it up.

Whilst I was in bed I dreamt last night I was upgrading my Android, a great big download that took me quite a while. 730MB. Blimey. That’s more memory than they had on the Apollo space mission to the moon (etc). It took what seemed ages though I didn’t time it because I didn’t know when it started.

I quite like it when I see my phone upgrading itself. Makes me think I’m being looked after by the great Android god in the cloud. These upgrades aren’t without an element of fear though. The fear of the unknown. You hear stories about “how my phone has never been the same since”. Perhaps stupidly I trust the major global corporations that provide me with these services. I trust that at least they won’t get the upgrade wrong. They only need to step out of line once for them to lose that trust but so far so good. Not everyone’s experience.

Now I will say that a few thoughts have entered the bonce since capturing the screenshot of the upgrade. First of all I thought Oooh. I can use Samsung Galaxy Gear. Aside from the fact that I didn’t know I couldn’t use it already with my SGS4 my next thought is hmm, I haven’t heard good things about it. I did see some in PC World last weekend and they looked plasticky. Also I’m not going to pay two hundred odd quid to try it out and find I don’t like it, especially as I don’t wear a watch. And that is even though I happen to believe that the smart watch is the way forward. I bought my Samsung Chromebook for roughly the same price as the Gear.

The next thought I thunk was that I was looking forward to the improved graphics performance. Unfortunately this is not particularly noticeable. It seems as slow as ever though I ascribe that to Samsung software and not Android. What was instantly noticeable is the flickering screen when displaying multiple browser tabs. I’ve just checked and it is still there. A backward step. Definitely.

You can see from the screenshot all the other features that have been improved in this version of Android. I obviously welcome the security update. Who wouldn’t eh?

That’s all. I might pop down to PC World and see if they will let me have a play with a Gear.

Ciao bebe.

Trefor Davies

By Trefor Davies

Liver of life, father of four, CTO of, writer, poet,

One reply on “I dreamt last night I was upgrading to Android 4.3”

I vaguely recall in hte past writing (possibly as a comment on this very blog) that it seems like there’s almost a conspiracy among Consumer Electronics manufacturers to produce updates that make products slower over time, to incentivise people to buy new products.

Otherwise, they’d never sell any new ones and they’d all go out of business.

I remember when my HTC Desire running old Android 2.1 was the fastest most amazing phone I’d ever seen.
Over 2 years it became the slowest and most useless piece of junk I’ve ever had. Some of that may be down to wear of the flash cells, slowing down the OS from failed i/o operations, which has been attributed to smartphone slowdown but it can’;t be that alone – it’s the software updates, surely?

Everytime you get a big software update for phones people rush to download it as they’re promised more feature, for free, and ‘performance enhancements’ – but this never seems to pan out.

You’ve found, as have countless others, that the new updates just make things run more slowly.

And over time things get worse and 2 years from now you’ll write off that old SGS4 as a PoS old brick, throw it away and get something new and fast.

It’s intriguing how this contrasts to the PC experience where machines appearing to get slower over time is a long established phenomenon and people are quite keen to keep Older Operating Systems on their PCs as there is (at least in the case of windows) a strong distrust of the newest version of the O/S, quite the opposite from smartphone land.

My phone (an ageing Samsung Galaxy Nexus that used to be just about the best phone you could get, for a short while) is feeling very slow now.

My Wife recently updated her Nexus 4 to KitKat too. Didn’t really add anything…feels a bit slower.

At least there’s Cyanogen.

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