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TweetDeck: Android much easier to support than Jobs claims

updated 09:15 am EDT, Tue October 19, 2010

TweetDeck CEO says Android easier than Apple says

TweetDeck CEO Iain Dodsworth today rejected Apple chief Steve Jobs' claims that Android was hard to support due to the plurality of devices. He pointed out that, even with 244 devices and 100 Android variants, two people could still cover virtually every Android device properly. Fragmentation to Dodsworth was a non-issue.

"Did we at any point say it was a nightmare developing on Android?" he asked of Jobs. "Errr nope, no we didn't. It wasn't."

The iPhone creator had justified the tight reins put on how iOS appears and where, arguing that the common specs and interface expectations let developers focus on the quality of the app and not just covering every possible combination of OS and device. Apple only supports two versions of iOS on its store and, even with the iPhone 4 and new iPod touch, only needs a handful of accommodations to reach much of the device ecosystem.

The TweetDeck CEO's observations are valid but also gloss over the relative simplicity of his app, whose text focus doesn't need specific Android version features or risk losing features with a slower processor or a lower resolution display. Game developers have actively shied away from Android as the wide range of performance, screen resolutions and controls have made it difficult to promise a given experience without watering down details. Many of Google's later official apps also won't work on pre-Android 2.2 devices, ruling out two thirds of active hardware.

TweetDeck for Android just shipped in the past few days where it has been one of the longest-lived and successful free apps on iPhones and later iPads.

by MacNN Staff



  1. AlenShapiro

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Glass is half empty

    If it takes two people to cover all the android variants over different hardware I would have to double my staff (from one to two) to support an android version of my iOS app.

    That would almost double my costs!

    I guess I need a bigger company to absorb the extra expense - but wait... I don't need to if I just support iOS!

  1. vasic

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Two people, for a simple Twitter app???

    So, for an app with functionality that anyone can whip up in HTML, he still needed TWO people to test on all possible Android iterations? What happens if your app is even remotely more complex than that (for example, some drawing app, augmented reality app, using live video/gps/rendering, a virtual musical instrument, not to mention games?

    The greater point here is, Jobs cast his line, and Android folk are biting. They are engaging in this debate from a very defensive point of view. This is all that is needed to highlight the issues with the Android.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. rampagedeluxe

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Its sad when fanboys become such tools as yourselves. You blindly side with someone and act like fools to make them sound right. Call me a troll, but goodness you people are lame. I'm not gonna bother reading your replies, so have fun acting like mindless drones.

  1. Schatz

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Vasic has it

    The debate is off and running. For many less technical end users the Android FUD seed has been planted, whether real or not.

    Mission accomplished for SJ's comments.

  1. wrenchy

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Mr. Steve Jobs,

    You are a F'ing liar.
    It's pretty bad when you try to quote someone and they come back and say, "I didn't say that."

    Are you making this stuff up as you go along? To make yourself look good? To spread Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt? Not confident in Apple's business strategy? Have to spread FUD to slow down the competition?

    You sound frightened.
    Sandpaper? Weak, childish.

    STFU, sit down and STOP LYING.

    Little Green Robot is going to get you for being truly "Disingenuous".

  1. Tjp

    Joined: Dec 1969


    All finger pointing at Google and Apple aside

    I keep 6 iPhone Apps for myself going, 2 never released test Apps (that violate store policy for Apple and would not be useful outside my own work) and am able to still port a few tools I like to the platform, test and tweek for iPhone, iPhone 4 and iPad screens to cover the 3 different resolutions that the UI components need to work in, and develop custom controls. I do all this while consulting for other folks like a major bank app, a comic reader app supplier, and cranking out about 2-3 quick UI demos each week. All of it works on all the platforms.

    And you're saying it takes two people for one Android program to cover the various platforms. I hope you are seriously partying most of the time dude, 'cuz that is horrid productivity otherwise and I'd expect better.

    Oh, and I can take a lot of the core logic and move it over without change (or very minor change) and create a desktop version of the App by changing the UI and UI logic to Cocoa from Cocoa Touch. Almost all the "core foundation" work moves over unchanged, and what doesn't needs minor tweeks. But usually I just have the core logic in a static library used by both platforms, mobile and desktop, because I can easily.

    And because the platforms are pretty homogeneous it works well, and the mobile side and desktop side look like they are from the same place.

    All gold and sunshine on the Apple side of the fence? Nope, I'd like to be able to have anything with my App prefix be limited to being submitted by me, so that I could safely have them all play in the same sandbox. I.e., share the same documents folder, etc. But iOS 4 gets me close enough for now, still it's not ideal. I'd like to put my own developer tools on the phone and not need to refresh the provisioning. But those are really really minor to me as I can work around any of them in a consistent manner that works on all the iDevices. And I appreciate the sandbox environment means it is less likely some other App will trash my data.

  1. global.philosopher

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Steve should just keep focused on his own technolo

    but having said that I would like to pick up on TweetDecks response. Even if only two people are able to test on every single android device does this mean they have to go out and buy every single handset. How do they test them without having the actual device? I would like TweetDeck to explain.

    Remember, it only takes two pilots to fly a commercial plane....but the cost of the plane is the gotcha.

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