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daocat555

Pure Android OS

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People have commented on the desirability of a phone with a "pure" Android OS in the Affordable Topic, the Mid-range Topic, the High End Topic, and here and there in other phone threads.  So I thought I would make a topic for pure Android discussions.  
 
I thought of this when I read the announcement by Umidigi of it's new phone with pure Android OS.  I have no idea if Umidigi's claim is accurate or not.  But it seems like there are not many phones running pure Android; the Google phones and exactly one line of Xiaomi phones, the Mi A1 and the Mi A2.  Google phones are expensive.  Xiaomi phones tend not to be expensive except that doesn't apply to the Xiaomi Mi line, which seem more expensive than any other Xiaomi phone for the hardware that you get.  The Nokia Sirocco claims to run pure Android; also an expensive phone with some hardware flaws.  The HTC U11 life runs pure Android, but with a 5.2 in screen and 68.6 % screen-to-body ratio, who would want one of them, and they are not inexpensive.
 
Some of the upcoming phones from Motorola and Nokia may run pure Android; but they have yet to be announced.  So I think the Umidigi One Pro is an interesting phone.  Here it is compared to the Xiaomi Mi A2 on devicespecifications.
 
 
The Umidigi has better body dimensions, stereo speakers, wireless charging supported, and a bigger battery; scoring over the Xiaomi in those categories.  The Xiaomi has a better chipset and a far better Antutu score, apparently better cameras, and a more established reputation for quality.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, daocat555 said:

Some of the upcoming phones from Motorola and Nokia may run pure Android; but they have yet to be announced.

 

Motorola has had a few Android One ones (Moto X4 most recently), and the Motorola One Power expected soon. They also manufactured the Nexus 6 for Google. They also have "Stock-ish" new devices like the G6 family - but these are not Android One.

 

I think a lot of the new Nokia phones are Android One.

 

I can't figure out if the Umidigi One and One Pro are actually Android One? They do mention "Stock Android", which is not exactly the same as "Android One".

 

The Mi A2 is a Mi 6X as an Android One device; no clue when that might be available? It's rumored to have a 5.99" screen.

 

I have a Nexus 6, a Mi A1 and a Nokia 7 Plus. IME, Xiaomi is a bit lame in providing updates - it took them ages to come out with 8.1, while Nokia is quite quick.

 

 

1 hour ago, daocat555 said:

Comparison between: UMIDIGI One Pro, Xiaomi Mi A2

 

Note the frequencies supported, just make sure you purchase a device which will work where you need it to.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by mtls2005
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There is something else to add into the mix and it is called Android Treble. That will be more important moving forward as it will allow phone manufacturers to add their "skins" over a pure android operating system - if they so choose. It should mean faster updates from all manufacturers as there won't be the need to be checking their code additions to new security updates of Android as thoroughly.

 

Should and will are not necessarily interchangeable in the last sentence.

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Yeah, I don't know what "stock" Android means with respect to the Umidigi One Pro.  The Cubot P20 claims ""Pure Android 8.0 system".  Elsewhere Cubot calls the OS "Android 8.0 Original".  Hm, why not Android 8.1 on a new phone?  Anyway here are the Cubot P20, Umidigi One Pro, and the soon to be released Xiaomi Mi A2 compared on device specifications.
 
 
Yes, the Xiaomi Mi A2 is reported to have a 5.99 in screen. rumors say that the phone will be announced on July 25'th and will be available for sale on August 8'th with a price of 11,251 baht.
 
The Umidigi One Pro is listed for pre sale at GearBest for 16,889; the stereo speakers and wireless charging option might not be worth 5,648 baht extra over the Xiaomi Mi A2 with it's more powerful chipset and reputation for quality.  
 
However the Cubot P20 is reported to be priced at 4,329 baht!  That's less than half the price of the Xiaomi Mi A2, well, almost a third of the price actually.  And it stands up to the Xiaomi Mi A2 very well as long as you are not a power user requiring a powerful chipset.
 
The Cubot P20 has similar body weight and dimensions as the Xiaomi Mi A2, yet it has a bigger 6.18 in screen and a 4000 mAh battery compared to the 3030 mAh battery of the Xiaomi Mi A2.  The Xiaomi camera is the only one with optical zoom, and would appear to easily beat out the cameras of the other two models.
 
The Xiaomi Mi A2 has pure Android for sure, the Cubot P20 would appear to have pure Android, and the Umidigi One Pro has stock Android; whatever that means.  If you don't need stereo speakers the Xiaomi Mi A1 (in terms of history) has a single down firing speaker which was measured at 74 dB for voice and 90 dB for ringing phone by gsmarena (excellent score), with gsmarena subjectively reporting the sound quality "is rich and crisp, with good bass and clean high notes", so the Xiaomi Mi brand has a reputation for quality audio.  That seems to point to the Xiaomi Mi A2 as being the best of the three phones, with the Cubot P20 being the most affordable by a wide margin and spec wise holding up pretty well vs the other two phones.  The Umidigi appears to be the odd man out, oh well, it's tough being an off brand, but they do keep improving so I'm happy to give them a shout out.

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6 hours ago, thedemon said:

Oneplus' OxygenOS would deserve a mention. Though not quite pure Android, it's pretty close

 

While OnePlus has made some commitments re: Android support (for the -6 this includes P and O releases), they still struggle to pump out security patches. The OnePlus 6 got its first update, which includeded the May security patch.

 

Meanwhile, I received the July security patch yesterday on my Nokia 7 Plus (Android One).

 

I wouldn't necessarily rely on Xiaomi or Umidigi for reliable/timely releases. OnePlus seems a bit more "committed"?

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Thank you thedemon for your post.  I followed your link and was glad to see the Vivo X21 UD on the list.  Lazada has that phone for a reasonable price and it seems to be a very nice phone with good online reviews.

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2 hours ago, mtls2005 said:

 

I wouldn't necessarily rely on Xiaomi or Umidigi for reliable/timely releases.

Hi, not trying to contradict you, but just for clarity Xiaomi have been good up to this point on security updates on the MI A1. I think I bought it in September and have received every monthly security update so far, from Memory. I stayed on the May update but the June update offers 8.1 so I will hang back and wait to see if there is any adverse affect... There is naff all change from 8 to 8.1. A1 users have also been assured of support for Android P.

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25 minutes ago, Farangwithaplan said:

but just for clarity Xiaomi have been good up to this point on security updates on the MI A1.

 

Meh.

 

The initial 8.1 drop on the A1 was a disaster, and they had to pull it back. I finally got 8.1 (w/June 5 security patch) last week, a full three months after I got it (8.1) on my Nokia 7 Plus (Android One).

 

Look, I'm not expecting much from Xiaomi as it takes some effort to pump out these releases in a timely and reliable fashion. I'll be pleasantly surprised if we get Android P much before January 2019, if at all.

 

Do you have VoLTE support on your Mi A1?

 

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1 hour ago, mtls2005 said:

 

Meh.

 

The initial 8.1 drop on the A1 was a disaster, and they had to pull it back. I finally got 8.1 (w/June 5 security patch) last week, a full three months after I got it (8.1) on my Nokia 7 Plus (Android One).

 

Look, I'm not expecting much from Xiaomi as it takes some effort to pump out these releases in a timely and reliable fashion. I'll be pleasantly surprised if we get Android P much before January 2019, if at all.

 

Do you have VoLTE support on your Mi A1?

 

What does 8.1 have to do with my points about regular security updates? If you are unhappy with the 8.1 roll out that is a completely different thing and not what I mentioned. So I think my point stands that up until now the security updates have been regular and monthly.

 

So what made the 8.1 update a disaster? Some people losing their SMS messages? Certainly not all. Samsung have have had their share of bugs in roll outs, too as have One + and Motorola from experience in the past. But I fail to see how bugs are a disaster. I feel that word is a dramatic overstatement and not helpful when having discussions on the pros and cons of things like software.

 

What is the benefit of 8.1 really.. I see very little in the upgrade useful for me. Also, if you are unhappy with the phone, didn't your research pick up that people have not been excited about the speed in updates in the past? When I bought the phone in September, it was reported that version 8 would be released before start of 2018 and from memory they met that target, or were a few days off. I see no repaort anywhere on a release date on 8.1 or version 9.0 P.

 

I just did some seaching online and find that Xiaomi is not alone in losing VoLTE settings in the Oreo upgrade. Some Motorola lost it, as did some Samsung, One + and Lenovo so I am guessing this issue is more about implimentation from the source code rather than a Xiaomi issue directly.

 

I don't have a need for VoLTE as I find standard VOIP working fine for me. I do see on the AIS web site that you need to apply for the service on your account. I wonder if you need to do it with True and DTAC. Have you turned it on with your supplier?

 

I'm not trying to Make Xiaomi out to be something they are not, but I personally don't expect much from a 7000 baht phone. I bought it because I am able to unlock the bootloader without wiping my data. That allows me to do complete backups which I need. And I find it punches well above its weight for the price. The only thing I would find useful is NFC but I can live without it.

 

 

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Posted (edited)
45 minutes ago, Farangwithaplan said:

I'm not trying to Make Xiaomi out to be something they are not, but I personally don't expect much from a 7000 baht phone.

 

I think we agree that Xiaomi is not particularly adept at Android One, and that we don't expect much - we've both written as much a few times in this thread.

 

I paid 4,990 for my Mi A1 and I am relatively happy with it - the fact that it works on Band 4 LTE is a bonus for me as I need that with T-Mo in the U.S.A. 

 

Having, then losing VoLTE (and VoWiFi) was/is a PITA, and just points to the level of competency at Xiaomi. My Nokia 7 Plus retained full functionality (incl VoLTE and VoWiFi) through the 8.1 update and all subsequent security patches including July. 

 

I was simply cautioning others that Xiaomi is a bit behind the curve in rolling out Android updates - maybe 3-6 months on a major update (like P), and ~ 3 months on a point release, and 30-60 days on a security patch. Not quite up to Android One "expectations" but again, not exactly a sharp stick in the eye either.

 

 

 

 

Edited by mtls2005

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Great.. if you want to have VoLTE then you might want to look for a generic fix that also seems to work for the Samsung Motorola, One +  and other phones.

 

As I said, from the limited info I just read on the issue that it is specifically  an Xiaomi created bug, but an android os bug.

 

Good luck with it.

 

I still curious about what is the importance for 8.1? Not just you but so many people are getting very flustered about having it on every phone.

 

An old saying in software development is "be careful what you wish for. You might just get it."

 

Companies that bend to consumer pressure often end up releasing unpolished software and the result is often mob mentality hate by the same people screaming for the software to be released.

 

And the majority of companies, at some stage, have been guilty of bending to calls for release of software.

 

Software is so hard to define a completion date when there are variables as vast as you would find on a phone.

 

Take for example, the SMS issue in the Mi 8.1 update. Apparently triggered by specific setting when using specific countries when initially setting up the phone. That is a fairly obscure bug.

 

Again, I'm not taking a shot at you, but more putting some thoughts down for discussion.. for me, these things are as much a psychological interest on how people react to software not being released or being released in an imperfect state as much a a pure software interest.

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Posted (edited)
The Xiaomi Mi A2 Lite is expected to be announced and released along with the Mi A2 in a week.  The Lite being a very different phone in that it has a 4000 mAh battery and a sleeker body to boot.  Interestingly, it would appear that the Mi A2 Lite is the exact same phone as the Xiaomi Redmi 6 Pro; the only exceptions being that the Redmi 6 Pro will run MIUI 9 Android and the Mi A2 Lite will run pure Android.  Aliexpress has gone ahead and listed the Mi A2 Lite for sale at 5,921 baht in the Global version, and Aliexpress sells the Redmi 6 Pro for 5,417 baht in the Chinese version as the Global version is not yet available.
 
So for the apparently exact same hardware, it's a 504 baht fee to free yourself from the MIUI; a pretty good deal.
 
The Mi A2 is expected to have a 5.99 in screen compare to 5.84 in for the Lite. The Mi A2 has a 3030 mAh battery which has fast charging; the 4000 mAh battery of the Lite doesn't support fast charging; it charges at 5 V/2 A. 
 
The Mi A2 will have dual 12 MP/20 MP rear cameras while the Lite will have dual 12 MP/5 MP cameras.  The selfie on the Mi A2 is 20 MP and only 5 MP on the Lite.
 
The Mi A2 will have more memory and a better chipset vs the Lite.
 
Just to chime in on my personal view on a phone, which I know other people may not share, the width and length of the Mi A2 (75.4 x 158.7 mm) makes the Mi A2 Lite (71.68 x 149.33 mm) the more interesting model amongst the pure Android Mi A2's.
Edited by daocat555
grammer correction

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On 7/13/2018 at 12:09 PM, mtls2005 said:

I think we agree that Xiaomi is not particularly adept at Android One, and that we don't expect much - we've both written as much a few times in this thread.

 

Never one to fail to admit when I am wrong...

 

Got the July 1 security patch today for my Mi A1. So other than the stumble with 8.1 I have to say that I'm impressed that Xiaomi is able to crank out the updates in a timely fashion. Well done.

 

And also discovered the keycode to enable VoLTE: *#*#86583#*#* re-enables VoLTE.

 

Still trying to figure out how to get VoWiFi working; seems like it's doable.

 

 

 

 

Screenshot_20180717-171538.png

Screenshot_20180717-170925.png

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I had an UMI Super and the Android op was very nice, no bloatware or Chinese apps installed. I actually loved that phone but it was heavy.

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