View Full Version : Why Maemo kicks Android butt
10-07-2009, 12:55 PM
I have had a G1 for one year and the OS is fine for basic operation and some handy apps, but one thing it has against it is a very inefficient layer that is a bite code java layer translation.
This is about as efficient as Java running on top of a desk top OS, but with less system resources to compensate for the overhead and clock cycles.
Due to the java layer, forget trying to create video codecs or something as simple as an audio EQ with Android. Unless part of the framework, they would beat the CPU to death. A good example is Coreplayer. The dev team basically abandoned their efforts because the overhead is too much with Android.
10-07-2009, 01:05 PM
Well, Android has native code now.
But I get the hint, I've been a PalmOS dev for years and having "specialized support for native code" (armlets/pnos) while the rest of the application was coded in an interpreted language sucked. :)
10-07-2009, 01:08 PM
I never did understand the rationale behind making a VM-based OS for inherently constrained hardware.
10-07-2009, 01:29 PM
Yeah, i was all excited about Android until i realized that it was just an app running on top of linux kernel--and a java-centric one at that. Being a linux distribution, Maemo has one less level of indirection with all the power and risks that implies. And i'm very excited about it. :D
10-07-2009, 01:46 PM
Native code is a relative term to Android and is only system efficient if part of framework that Android decides on and is the heart of the OS.
MP4 is an example. It is part of the framework so play nice with the java layer, bite code, etc (whatever evil thing you want to call it).
You can create all the code you want, but if not part of framework you will beat the cpu to death (aka device runs hot and eats battery).
The positive is it creates a "simple" building block for app creation and part of the security. The negative is the simplicity results in strict requirments for efficient code execution in the OS.
Even the evil Apple has a more robust SDK that allows more access to hardware features than Android does. Not much, but compare same apps to get an idea.
Not advocating Apple, but games are more robust when compared to last generations Apple devices, which have the same 7200 series chipset.
It'll be interesting to see Maemo and Android in direct competition once Nokia switches more of its phones to Maemo.
I was frustrated that Google took something fundamentally free (i.e., the Linux kernel) and then plopped a restrictive, non-*nix userspace on top of it. I was even more frustrated that so many people kept calling it a Linux phone.
That said, I understand their reasons for doing so...
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