Android’s a popular platform, but the biggest problem it has is stagnation. Many popular Android-based phones and tablets are stuck on Android 2.3 “Gingerbread,” despite Google having now released 4.0 “Ice Cream Sandwich.”
Amazon has the power to change that with the Kindle Fire.
While it is true that the Kindle Fire is itself running Android 2.3 at the moment, that could change as soon as Amazon decides to change it. With Android 4 fully open source, Amazon has the ability to port its own version of the OS to the new code. Should the Kindle Fire sell well, that could then result in app and game developers starting to use the new version’s new features.
What happens then is that HTC, Samsung, and other Android vendors will be under pressure to keep up, or else their phones and tablets will fall behind, be unable to run apps, and die in the market.
If I’m Google, what I do is offer Amazon money and assistance to port OS 4 to Kindle Fire. Only when the third party Android vendors actually keep up with Google’s releases, can Android in the wild keep up with Apple’s iOS.
December 5th, 2011