Tag Archives: android

Things I hate about the Android experience

In short, Android and Google have major issues with:
1) Backups. They suck and I do not trust my data with Android or Google’s backup systems. I write backup software for a living and know it’s a hard problem but Android’s backup system makes it sound like it backs up everything which is blatantly false.
2) Duplicate files. Both photos and music have tons of duplicating issues making usage a pain.
3) App permissions. On install you’re shown what the app wants and once you agree, the app has 24/7 access to all these.

* I had to wipe my phone earlier this year. I made sure to set my phone to backup all apps and their data which informed me that it would save ALL settings and auto-restore them on reset. After wiping I discovered that I had lost most of my app data. Apparently this feature is opt-in for developers so most apps will NOT be backed up. I lost tons of data on my apps. I also had to set everything back up on the phone manually after restore.

* I have had my phone set to sync all of my photos to Google since I got it. A few days ago I discovered that since Google separated their photos out of Google+, my phone was no longer backing up photos. I was shocked that Google would stop backing up my photos and not even inform me that I needed to take action to get them backing up again. My photo backups has stopped several months ago. I had to download the new “Google Photos” app since my phone’s built-in photo backup feature no longer functioned. I thought this has solved the problem but…

* I now have duplicates of every photo on my device. When I look in the Photos app I now see a copy of my local photo stored on my SD card as well as the photo backed up to Google Photos. Scrolling through my photos I’m now stuck with two copies of everything and I cannot find a way to fix this.

* Using the official “Google Play Music Manager” app on OS X to keep my iTunes music synced into Google Play Music has resulted in dozens of song duplicates in all my playlists on my phone. I have cleaned these duplicates out once but now I have even more duplicates. This makes playlists useless.

* The permission system on Android is awful. Apps demand all their permissions upfront and once you grant them they have them for the time they are installed. On ios you are prompted before a lot of usage unless you grant permanent access. The permission system on Android is also not very granular so even the simplest apps are requesting wide-open access to the entire phone just to do so simple things. This is a security disaster. I know Google is working on solving this but it should have been solved long ago.

There have been many more hiccups along the way but these are some of the big ones.