Sometimes, commenters are better than the articles on which they’re commenting. On a post about how Google is open, no really, it’s open, Android owner “David S” says this:
So Android is open if you redefine open to the point that Android becomes open? Because you say it is, we should trust you? You can’t be serious,
Open source software has very clear definitions and Android no longer meets those criteria. That is a fact and no amount of spin and requests to “trust me” can change that. Having multiple hardware vendors making devices is not the same thing as being open source, unless you consider Windows to be open source. And that would be crazy.
Looking back on Google’s statements over the years I’m struck by how rarely they actually describe Android as “open source” and how frequently they just referred to it as “open”, allowing everyone to assume they meant the former. Clearly they didn’t. They meant Android was open the way Windows is open – open to being run on different manufacturer’s hardware.
Of course being or not being open source has nothing to do with whether a piece of software is any good or not, and that’s what we Android users should be most concerned with. It’s time we gave up the fantasy that Android is better than the competition because it’s open source and judged it on whether it’s a better, more reliable, easier to use system than others on the market. The answer here is that it isn’t, yet, but it can be if Google and Android developers make it so.
I couldn’t have put it better myself.