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Google Not Releasing Honeycomb Source for a While, Isn’t Ready for Outside Developers

According to Businessweek, Google is not ready to release the source code to Honeycomb (Android 3.0) because it’s not ready for developers outside of the few major device manufacturers like HTC, Motorola, Samsung and LG.  When asked what the reason for the “delay” would be, Andy Rubin (Mr. Android) had this to say:

“To make our schedule to ship the tablet, we made some design tradeoffs,” says Andy Rubin, vice-president for engineering at Google and head of its Android group. “We didn’t want to think about what it would take for the same software to run on phones. It would have required a lot of additional resources and extended our schedule beyond what we thought was reasonable. So we took a shortcut.”

To anyone that follows Android news on a regular basis, this shouldn’t come as a big surprise.  Honeycomb was built basically from scratch for tablets, and was rumored to be delayed over and over again while it was fine-tuned for the Motorola XOOM.  If Google struggled to get it to work on a tablet, why should we think they were working to make it phone-compatible as well?  And why should the Android team deciding to polish it up before letting developers hack away on it, be looked at as a bad thing?   Of course, Businessweek has taken this movement as a negative, questioning the openness of Android, but we’re not going down that road yet.

We all know that the Android team has been working on a phone OS and a tablet OS simultaneously with hopes of molding them together at some point in the future.  The only bad news here is that we don’t have a timetable for when the source will be released.

Via:  Businessweek

Cheers MBanicek!

  • Djstar2k2

    actually i cant argue with this one and i know the hackers are feeling like uncle googs has slapped them but i agree with uncle googs. jsut like when froyo was released sammy went and mad the g tab even when googs asked or stated they shouldnt. hell sammy aint got all the us galaxy s to froyo yet a yr later but released the tab anyway. then u got the low budget oems droppin tabs and phones sub parly to make a quick buck. zte drop that skate and it was hella buggy right before launch. just imagine after all the work u put into ur rom or hardware and somebody made a mess off it and repped it like it came from you. so i get the the reason esp if your gonna try to tie mobile and tab together.

  • Djstar2k2

    actually i cant argue with this one and i know the hackers are feeling like uncle googs has slapped them but i agree with uncle googs. jsut like when froyo was released sammy went and mad the g tab even when googs asked or stated they shouldnt. hell sammy aint got all the us galaxy s to froyo yet a yr later but released the tab anyway. then u got the low budget oems droppin tabs and phones sub parly to make a quick buck. zte drop that skate and it was hella buggy right before launch. just imagine after all the work u put into ur rom or hardware and somebody made a mess off it and repped it like it came from you. so i get the the reason esp if your gonna try to tie mobile and tab together.

  • Anonymous

    Patients my friends. I’m just glad my TB bootloader is unlocked and I’m ready for some STOCK google experience!

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=25001493 Hank Godwin

      That would be spelled patience.

  • Mrdeezus

    Patience is a virtue. I have wanted a Xoom since day one but did not need, or would never use 3g. I could’ve bought one anytime but I decided to wait. I still have had the urge, even this close to SUNDAY to go get one and droid-life doesn’t make it any easier, but I have managed to keep it in my pants. I purposely try not to read any forums about the xoom or go to BB to mess with it un til this Sunday.

    This applies here. Just like all the iPad1 people when they full well knew there would be an iPad2 and three…..sometimes waiting pays off.

  • JDub

    Take a look at the Google home page. Looks like someone hacked them to make a statement by changing the logo.

    • Wachutalkinbout

      Are you for real?

    • Mentalspaz

      I bet they were a true magician to pull that off…..

    • JDub

      Looks like I jumped the gun a little there. Aparantly Google has the banner up for Houdini’s 137th birthday. The picture was a little fitting for Google locking up the HC AOSP. It may take a true magician from XDA to get us a fully working HC at this point.

  • Padrick77

    It is funny all the complaints about this come from people who bought tablets whos manufacturer is not supporting it by upgrading it to honeycomb. Instead they are mad at Google who has nothing to do with this. They released the OS to the tablet makers it is their responsibility to put it on your tablet.

    You want Honeycomb now buy a Xoom otherwise you get to wait till others come out or the people you bought your tablet from upgrades it.

    • Sesawyer3127

      Well i bought a xoom and I want the SD card to work!!!!!!!

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=25001493 Hank Godwin

      The people I bought my tablet from (Notion Ink) CAN’T upgrade to honeycomb until Google releases the source code.

  • Dan

    And I just bought a gTablet with hopes of some Honeycomb ports, a shame

  • Dan

    And I just bought a gTablet with hopes of some Honeycomb ports, a shame

  • Dan

    And I just bought a gTablet with hopes of some Honeycomb ports, a shame

  • Dan

    And I just bought a gTablet with hopes of some Honeycomb ports, a shame

  • Dan

    And I just bought a gTablet with hopes of some Honeycomb ports, a shame

  • islandak

    Too bad. I really want to run HC on my NookColor. The SDK version was okay. But the CM7 nightlies have gotten pretty far at this point. With the button savior app, I’ll survive. At least it’s news.

  • LivinFree

    What is it with all you folks and this BS I WANT crap. Get a grip life does not revolve around just you. Let them fix what needs to be and put out good code not some half ass crap that you will bitch about anyways seeing as you can not get done what you want because it was bad source code. My lord people need to wake up and smell the coffee in this country already. No wonder this society is going ass backwords.

  • LivinFree

    What is it with all you folks and this BS I WANT crap. Get a grip life does not revolve around just you. Let them fix what needs to be and put out good code not some half ass crap that you will bitch about anyways seeing as you can not get done what you want because it was bad source code. My lord people need to wake up and smell the coffee in this country already. No wonder this society is going ass backwords.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=25001493 Hank Godwin

      What’s it like to get that angry over comments on a website? I bet it sucks.

      • LivinFree

        Who’s angry? Its just a matter of people needing to lighten up a bit and not expecting everything because that is what THEY want. Live it not so simple. And I just choose to live life free and not worry about it but sometimes things just need to be pointed out is all.

        Either wya not really a big concern to me seeing as HC was never intended for device anyways, but I can understand some frustration for Tab owners.

        • http://www.facebook.com/BlakeO Blake Power Surge Ourso

          I’m going to be selfish and say that “”I WANT””” You to shuddup ;)

    • Sesawyer3127

      you know your right!!! Why would anyone want a complete product. All those who have the nerve to want their product to work the way it was intended to in a reasonable amount of time and not hear that time will be unknown should be ashamed of yourselves! Jesus people get a life things do not revolve around you! What a world we live in where people get unfinished products on a promise of aspects working at some point in time and that is seemingly put off longer, and you all have the nerve to complain!

      • Anonymous

        Which manufacturer was it that promised an AOSP Honeycomb port, soon? Google sure didn’t promise anything, so you can’y say devs have a right to be angry. If some manufacturer did make that claim, take it up with them since they obviously jumped the gun.

        • Sesawyer3127

          when you make a claim that your product will work in its entirety you might want to have some kind of a time frame on when it will all work, ie SD card. If google does not want devs to have the source whats that really mean for the “openness” of the product???

          • http://twitter.com/jbernard703 Jeff Bernard

            It means that openness is just a fun word they use to illicit developer support. When that openness might impact their partners business they just push it aside. We need to be honest what this is about. The code is available to manufactures, this is stated in the article. They are withholding the code from one group of people. The little android devs, people like CyanogenMOD who will put Honeycomb on cheaper tablets which will cut into Motorola’s already terrible sales.

    • http://twitter.com/jbernard703 Jeff Bernard

      “not some half ass crap”…so you are admitting that the source code used on the Xoom is crap, good to know.

      • DroidzFX

        Good to know you going to use some hippies opinion to base your observations of Honeycomb and Xoom off of.

      • Guest

        Trolling trolling trolling. Gotta keep on trolling. Trolling trolling trolling. Bernard!

  • Sesawyer3127

    So this means the SD card will not work for the foreseeable future impacting the use and ability to do nandroid backups, so that means most devs wont touch making roms right now unless the source is released. Well when is a while? So did moto know this beforehand when they pushed their “open source” device out so fast?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sam-Kessler/100000783393011 Sam Kessler

    honeycomb not ready, that contradicts your review of honeycomb entirely

    • Anonymous

      Actually it doesn’t. They are saying it isn’t ready for phones…it’s just fine on tablets.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=25001493 Hank Godwin

        But by not releasing the code, other TABLETS can’t get honeycomb. Notion Ink Adam, Viewsonic gTab, Nook Color, etc. This is BS. I don’t want Honeycomb on my phone, I want it on my tablet.

        • Jroc869

          you dont want it on your phone, but that doesnt mean someone isnt going to try. In this instance I can actually see why Google is trying to hold off on releasing the code. I guess I just dont see it as that big a deal.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=25001493 Hank Godwin

        But by not releasing the code, other TABLETS can’t get honeycomb. Notion Ink Adam, Viewsonic gTab, Nook Color, etc. This is BS. I don’t want Honeycomb on my phone, I want it on my tablet.

  • http://jeff-mastry.myopenid.com/ JeffM

    What everyone seems to be missing here is that this makes regular (non-ROM) app development for Honeycomb a major pain in the a##. No doubt this will slow down developer adoption of Honeycomb.

  • Eric

    Just another reason why the Xoom should have been pushed back.

    • http://twitter.com/jbernard703 Jeff Bernard

      They had to release it when they did. They knew iPad 2 would kill sales. Reports say that Motorola is planning on stopping production of Xoom in June. They had a very, very short window to sell their product and they did what they had to do.

  • Knightcrusader

    Crap crap crap I want Honeycomb on my GTablet! Ugh. Hurry up Google!

  • Honeycomb_FTW

    Open sourcing a project does not mean letting every line of code out the door the second it is written. It’s normal not to release the source until the developers feel it is at a stable point. Otherwise it just creates more problems for everyone.

    • Rizzidy

      If they don’t feel it’s stable, then why did they let Motorola put it on the Xoom? Get a grip.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=520188807 Miguel Delapaz

        It may be perfectly “stable” in the “usable” sense, but not in the “unchanging” sense…the exec was very clear stating that shortcuts were taken to allow things to work on Xoom. Those shortcuts need to (should) be replaced with legitimate general solutions before releasing the code to the general public…

        I will say, however, that if they are planning on waiting until Ice Cream Sandwich is done to release the source (as the article seems to imply…though without a direct quote), that would be terribly unfortunate.

    • http://twitter.com/TuxDotKing Avichi Suite

      Actually, nearly every other open source project works by developing in the open. Mozilla projects, GNOME, KDE, Blender, GIMP, Debian, etc., etc., etc.. Not to bash Google’s way, just pointing that out.

  • Anonymous

    let me adress the my battery statement!! xoom battery good but could be improved!! android phones problem battery die to quick and really need to be adress!!!

  • BasilofBakerStreet

    This isn’t bad news at all IMO. Ok, The major players have what is needed to put this on their tablets. Really do we need this? No. Do some ROM Devs want it? I imagine so. But the XOOM isn’t 100% done and I think they should work all the kinks before it is released to the public. And releasing it won’t help us get the SD card slot working any sooner. Unless a Dev can hash it out, and I don’t doubt they could. They started from scratch on this OS. It will be a little while before it is running on all four like the other versions of Android.

  • BasilofBakerStreet

    This isn’t bad news at all IMO. Ok, The major players have what is needed to put this on their tablets. Really do we need this? No. Do some ROM Devs want it? I imagine so. But the XOOM isn’t 100% done and I think they should work all the kinks before it is released to the public. And releasing it won’t help us get the SD card slot working any sooner. Unless a Dev can hash it out, and I don’t doubt they could. They started from scratch on this OS. It will be a little while before it is running on all four like the other versions of Android.

    • http://twitter.com/DavisDarvish Davis Darvish

      yes we do need it. many rom developers will not put out a honey comb version till they build from source. a port of the SDK work shotty at best. i want honeycomb on my gtab and that wont happen w/o source.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jetsaredim Jared Greenwald

    If anyone seriously wanted to run this on a phone they would run into some serious limitations. Having that launcher bar at the bottom of the screen all the time being one. I for one would not want to run it on my DInc. However, there are plenty of devices out there (Nook Color, being a prime example) that would hugely benefit from the Honeycomb source being released.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jetsaredim Jared Greenwald

    If anyone seriously wanted to run this on a phone they would run into some serious limitations. Having that launcher bar at the bottom of the screen all the time being one. I for one would not want to run it on my DInc. However, there are plenty of devices out there (Nook Color, being a prime example) that would hugely benefit from the Honeycomb source being released.

    • LivinFree

      Agreed, plus Google never intended for HC to be a phone OS anyways. So many people are just clueless.

    • LivinFree

      Agreed, plus Google never intended for HC to be a phone OS anyways. So many people are just clueless.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=25001493 Hank Godwin

    This absolutely sucks. I won’t get Honeycomb on my NI Adam until they release this.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=25001493 Hank Godwin

    This absolutely sucks. I won’t get Honeycomb on my NI Adam until they release this.

    • http://twitter.com/DavisDarvish Davis Darvish

      yeah. i have been waiting for the source so my viewsonic gtab can get honeycomb. i bet this is done on purpose as a request of the major android players to be able to sell their hardware before a bunch of cheaper clones come out. that is totally lame

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=520188807 Miguel Delapaz

    I hope it doesn’t take too long…I’d like to get HC on the GTablet I just picked up yesterday (w00t!)

    • Anonymous

      I picked one up too and would like HC and custom kernals to OC. I’ll still be happy with something like CM7 in the mean time though.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=520188807 Miguel Delapaz

        Sure, the developer community seems to be rocking with the device, so I’m not going to complain…just pine…

  • Anonymous

    why change a good ui!! GOOGLE NEEDS TO ADRESS THE BATTERY PERFORMANCE!!! cause i lose battery pretty fast!!! all Android phones should run stock and there should be an option for the cutomer if they want to run the oem ui!!!

    • http://twitter.com/Crispityyy Chris Spells

      Really? It seems like my XOOM battery is impossible to kill lol……………….seriously though, it does hold up better than any mobile android device Ive ever used

      • Anonymous

        no not talking about my xoom cause that battery is good but. but over im talking about phone!!! you shouldnt have to kill apps yourself.. they seriously need to adress or improve battery issue

      • Anonymous

        no not talking about my xoom cause that battery is good but. but over im talking about phone!!! you shouldnt have to kill apps yourself.. they seriously need to adress or improve battery issue

    • http://twitter.com/Crispityyy Chris Spells

      Really? It seems like my XOOM battery is impossible to kill lol……………….seriously though, it does hold up better than any mobile android device Ive ever used

    • John

      bet you’re one of those running a task killer ? =P

    • John

      bet you’re one of those running a task killer ? =P

  • Mike

    Makes sense to me. Honeycomb definitely has some bugs to work out still.

  • Rizzidy

    This IS a negative. What are they hiding?

    • Anonymous

      Likely the reason things like SD cards don’t work, possibly even lte modems. Nothing to hide, they pushed the Xoom out and did a great job hitting the deadline IMO. If they released it now with known issues there would be massive bashing going on. Let them finish it so people don’t have more sh*t to whine about.

      • tjhrulz

        I agree kind of, my guess is the reason honeycomb looks the way it does is because of Motorola and so it really isnt googles creation more a fusion of the two, what we will see in the aosp will be the pure google one when they finish it.

        • http://twitter.com/TuxDotKing Avichi Suite

          Motorola provided the hardware, they weren’t actively coding Honeycomb. What have you been smoking?

          • tjhrulz

            They built it for motorola did you read the article

          • http://twitter.com/TuxDotKing Avichi Suite

            Yes I did, and I’m still not understanding how you got ‘Motorola put crappy code into Honeycomb’ out of it.

          • tjhrulz

            I didnt say that I said that they built it for them so its not what google would have made they are judt remsking it for the aosp

          • http://twitter.com/TuxDotKing Avichi Suite

            Ahh okay… Sorry for misunderstanding you. And yes, that seems to be the case, so we agree there.

        • http://twitter.com/TuxDotKing Avichi Suite

          Motorola provided the hardware, they weren’t actively coding Honeycomb. What have you been smoking?

    • DroidzFX

      What are they hiding? the secret of the ooze

  • Anonymous

    Take their time (just not too long). I can’t wait for it to be released though, going to be a fun time!

  • Mazz0310

    I just want it released so I can get an sd card