Changing the interface of mobile devices in new firmware: evil or good?

    For the first time I came across a radical change in the interface of a mobile device in the case of the Cowon S9 media player - there was such an excellent pocket player with an AMOLED screen. So, at the time of receiving this gadget for personal use, it had firmware, say, version 1.0 (I don’t remember exactly).


    Cowon s9

    Then there were 1.1, 1.2, 1.3 and so on, and in some 1.4, the developers took and thoroughly redesigned the interface, adding a car of new icons without signatures, plus changing the location of many old icons. Yes, in terms of functionality, it got better. And - a young affair - within a few days I mastered this new interface with grief in half. But the precipitate remained: it seemed that Cowon did not think very well before writing another software for the flagship player. Because to impose a new user experience like this - it is not very correct. Yes, new functions are needed and important, but please, without radical changes in the interface.

    Since then, fifteen hundred different gadgets have passed through me, and the vast majority of them have been updated one way or another during operation. I can recall Motorola RAZR XT910 from the unpleasant - when switching from Android 2.3.6 to Android 4.0.4, decently branded Motorola functions and applications disappeared from the device, plus the interface also changed a little. Not as critical as in the case of the player, but still. On the other hand, this is understandable here: many solutions in the field of applications and interface used in the firmware with Android 2.3.6 became the base ones for Android 4.0.4. Therefore, it was logical to replace Motorola solutions with standard ones from the operating system.


    Motorola RAZR XT910

    An example of a different approach is the Samsung Galaxy S4. When switching from Android 4.2.2 to Android 4.3, and then on Android 4.4.2, the TouchWiz interface practically did not change. And the 4.4.2 that you see in S4 is different from what is installed in the latest generation devices - Galaxy S5 and, for example, Galaxy K Zoom. I guess that Samsung did not spare a few little things for an older (but still for sale!) Smartphone, the reason is different: the developers did not change the interface of the Quartet because the user did not have to get used to it again.


    Samsung Galaxy S4

    Another example is Highscreen Thor on the 8-core MediaTek MT6592, which was the first in Russia among its own kind to receive an update from Android 4.2.2 to 4.4.2. There is information that the developers planned to introduce some customization in the new firmware - to redraw a number of icons, a dialer application, and so on. But then, after evaluating the differences between what was and what became, they decided not to implement these innovations. Those who love “naked” Android will still not like them, and those who love third-party launchers will install them on their own.


    Highscreen thor

    Well, the reason for writing this post was the visit of my friend, using Lenovo P780. Initially, this device came with Android 4.2.1, supplemented by a proprietary shell in the style of Go Launcher EX (maybe it was he in a certain version specifically for Lenovo). And about a month ago, an update with Android 4.4.2 suddenly flew for him. Well, he would just change the OS version, but no, it’s more complicated: the shell was replaced with another. Quite, completely different: now it does not have a separate application menu, there are only desktops - something like an iPhone. Dialer, notification curtain, settings menu - everything changed, and dramatically.


    Lenovo P780: it was and it has become

    I note that the friend is not very versed in technology, and has been using the P780 for about a year now. He did not feel cravings for the new and unknown, and the appearance of the interface after updating it literally shocked him. Not that it has become less beautiful, not at all. The icons are cute, but only the lack of an application menu made him very upset. It is impossible to roll back to 4.2.1 with an old launcher without certain dances with a computer and cable. And will a person far from technology do this? Will it be able to? Is not a fact.

    I will not draw any conclusions from the foregoing - I suspect that there are many among the readers who are attracted by the unknown in the IT field. To be honest, I myself am one of them, and such a new firmware for the P780 would never upset me. But here the mass user probably thinks differently.

    What do you think about this? Is it worth sticking to the initial course in interfaces or is there no crime in their sudden change?

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