In a post titled “Now is the worst time ever to buy an Android phone“, BGR’s Zach Epstein outlines why right now is the worst time ever to buy a new Android smartphone. I agree with him. Right now is certainly a bad time to buy a new Android smartphone.
There are only a handful of devices worth considering on the market and the ones that are on the way will indeed blow their predecessors out of the water. Both the HTC One X and the One S, for AT&T and T-Mobile respectively – are highly capable phones and are certainly the most exciting phones thus far this year.
And, of course, we have the Samsung Galaxy S III launch looming in the distance.
Epstein argues that these phones will set a new precedent for Android devices and again, I agree.
However, isn’t this always the case? Isn’t there always some new Android phone on the horizon that promises to blow the phones that launched behind it right out of the water? Some killer feature that promises to put all of the other handsets on the market to shame?
So while Epstein argues that’s a bad time to buy an Android phone right now, I’ll argue that there is never a good time to buy an Android phone and there is a lot more to it than just the hardware in the pipeline.
If you’re familiar with the world of Android, you’d know that Motorola is one of the leading manufacturers. Don’t get me wrong, Motorola makes some fantastic phones but it also is one of the reasons that I have become skeptical of buying an Android phone.
It all started when the company released the Motorola Droid 2 and then shortly thereafter, decided to release a Motorola Droid 2 Global. Not one to not try and outdo itself, the company decided to pull two similar stunts in 2011.
The first was when it completely overshadowed the launch of the Motorola Droid Bionic, the first dual-core 4G LTE smartphone. It released this phone in September, marketed it everywhere and then decided to release an even better phone a month later in the Motorola Droid RAZR.
And then, just to top it all off, the company announced new Motorola Droid RAZR, the Motorola Droid RAZR MAXX shortly thereafter.
Motorola is the worst offender when it comes to quick releases like that, but Motorola also makes some of the most attractive Android phones on the market.
What I am getting at is, there is always going to be something better on the horizon when it comes to Android.
In some regards, it’s awesome. It’s great to see new devices pushing the bar. But at the same time, it’s tough to buy a phone one week and then the next week, see a similar phone launch with something better.
Lastly, and I’ve already touched on this quite a bit, when you buy an Android device, you often times have no idea when you’ll be getting the latest and greatest update from Google.
Right now, only a few handsets have been upgraded to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, a software update that was introduced in October of 2011.
That uncertainty, unless Google miraculously is able to get all of its devices on the same page, is always going to hang over Android and those looking to buy a new Android phone.
I’ll add this too.
Because Android manufacturers release so many phones, there is less attention paid to the smaller updates. Like bug fixes and enhancements. I mean, the Galaxy Nexus, the flagship Android phone which has been out since December on Verizon, still hasn’t gotten a meaningful bug fix update. And it likely won’t until April.
Even the best Android phones are buggy.
What I am saying is that when you pick up an Android phone, you’re immediately thrown into a bunch of question marks.
Will my phone get updated?
Will there be a new phone that comes out within a month of signing this contract?
Will it come to another carrier that suits me better in a couple of months (See: HTC One X, Galaxy Nexus)?
And these questions aren’t just limited to the present Android situation.
They have been lingering around Android for quite sometime now and I don’t see that changing any time soon.