A chief complaint issued by many opponents to Android is what some might call a bland and uninspired user interface. While many (myself included) would live and die by the stock UI, Google has made it clear that they plan to revamp the existing look and feel of Android to make it a bit more friendly to the end user while maintaining all the killer features that have come to make the OS a huge success. In the mean time almost all of the big Android manufacturer’s have taken it upon themselves to develop their own UI skins for their devices. And while huge strides have been made in those custom interfaces, one hope of an improved stock implementation would be to eliminate the need for them, creating faster device update schedules as an effect.
But at least in the case of HTC Sense, one of the more popular UI customizations, the changes in Gingerbread won’t mean the end of the interface found on such devices as the EVO 4G and Droid Incredible, at least according to design team lead Drew Bamford. In a discussion with Forbes he had the following to say:
“Google may focus more on improving the user interface on the stock Android [software], but I don’t think they’ll preclude manufacturer customization.”
Love it or hate it, looks like Sense won’t be gone any time soon. That might not be such a bad thing provided HTC finds a way to more quickly update device software, but as it stands with their current model the devices they deemed worthy of Android 2.2 might not even be seeing it until after Android 3.0 is announced. That sort of lag just doesn’t cut it, and a truly great interface from Google will eliminate the need for such a delay as custom UIs are prepared around new code. Granted, we can’t say for sure which decision is the right one until we have a better idea of what the improvements in Android 3.0 will look like.