Jelly Bean addresses lag in Android

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Android 4.1 Jelly Bean

Cough! Cough! Wheeze! Cough! Just recently, I wrote an article asking whether and when google was going to address the habitual lag on Android phones. There were those who wanted to pass it off as something far and between, and those who wanted to argue it out (the article has 59 comments till date). In that article, I mentioned that Android OS needed optimisation. See my article, How many cores does Android need to run smoothly?


Clearly, Google agrees, and they have addressed that in the latest iteration of the OS named Jelly Bean (Android 4.1). Here is how the guys at Phone Arena put it:

The first side of the Jelly Bean update is the way it interacts with hardware. One of the main complaints with Androids is that it often gets laggy even on the most sophisticated devices. Google has finally radically addressed this so manufacturers and developers can make their devices lag-free. The solution is called Project Butter and it comes with triple buffering so that the CPU and GPU work without waiting for each other. This means scrolling, zooming and virtually all actions become much faster.

So, we see that the lagging issue was/is a big deal after all. I am glad that Google has made efforts to address it. But that isn’t all that Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) brings to the table. Here is a quick checklist:

  • performance improvement, as stated above
  • improved power efficiency (something I’ve also complained about). Jelly Bean now dials the CPU back to lower frequency when it’s not in use.
  • automatically re-sizable widgets
  • Offline Voice Dictation – no need for an internet connection
  • improved voice search
  • gallery to swiping gestures
  • richer notifications

I am glad that Google didn’t play ostrich and stick their neck in the sand with regards to Android’s well-known resource hogging issues. With Jelly Bean, there is hope that Android now becomes a much more efficient OS in terms of performance and power consumption. This is good news to me.


Android is looking more and more like it! Can I have a spread of jelly bean please?

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19 comments

  1. “Android is looking more and more like it! Can I have a SPREAD of jelly bean please?”

    Mr Mo obviously hasn’t actually eaten jelly beans before. Lol

  2. Bah. You guys are missing the joke. *RME* Read the article again and fit the pieces.

    Yes; what I want is a “spread of jelly bean.”

  3. and what will be the minimum req for this os. Am guessing dualcore, 512mb ram a good gpu so at the end of the day only the powerful phones which are already very fast will get it, the weak ones that desperately need project butters will not get it am i right? Android needs to set its house in order fragmentation is the worse disease need i remind you that only 3% of ancroid devices world wide are on ICS ad many may never get it. there are devices running 1.xx still being sold imagine, will they get project butters. Nope.

  4. Good news!

    If we must keep moving on, fragmentation is something that can never be eliminated altogether. Even Apple couldn’t achieve that even though they try giving the iSheep that impression.

    And have a look at the Microsoft’s new OS. They made it clear that older devices are not going to be carried along.

    And since this version is supposed to bring improvement to Android, theoritically, one can assume that services running version 4.x and maybe even version 2.3.x could handle this version, but device manufacturers would always rather ship new devices than upgrading older devices.

  5. @Happy Echemco if you call iphone users isheep, what are you going to call s40 users? “Nokia goats”? How much will google pay you for say such of iphone users?

  6. ///
    Can I
    have a spread of jelly
    bean please?
    ///
    Again ? hmm.

    obviously, humans do not learn from history .

    unfortunately, history tends to repeat.. .

    Techno_greed!

    okay o …lol

  7. Fragmentation was a given on Android (and iOS – and any platform). I remember saying it again and again while people were lashing at Symbian for fragmentation years ago. But fragmentation is a consequence of growth!

    I said it was wrong to hit at Symbian because of fragmentation, because once the new platforms picked up, the same thing would happen.

    Look around you today:

    – BlackBerry is fragmented.
    – IOS is fragmented (though having only one line of device dumbs it down a bit)
    – Android is heavilly fragmented (naturally because its the fastest growing, and has taken Symbian’s dominant position).
    – Even Windows Phone just got fragmented.

    Let me say it: I TOLD YOU SO!!!!!

    There. I feel better now 🙂

    In the meantime, life sucks, but we deal with it. Fragmentation sucks, but we deal with it. It is not going away.

  8. Spread of jelly bean??
    Pure Niceness.
    Basically Android 4.1 is more like an optimization of the Android OS which is very important… With the “Tripple Buffering Effect” being offered by the Project Butter whereby the CPU,GPU and display work concurrently, I see a situation whereby Processors may just be a maximum of 2 cores… anything above that may not just be necessary…. In My Humble Opinion

  9. android’s finally rocking with jellybean” . lagginess of the OS has always been a factor for me, all that seem’s to be in the past now,, just ditched symbian and was considering IOS” seriously when this came up, now i guess i have to study my options again. anndroid seem’s to have conquered their last foe, it can only go up from here,, maybe the best update for android so far,
    can’t wait to play with it,, IOS VS ANDROID”?? the war’s raging in mya head!

  10. my beef is if the iphone 3gs can run ios 5.1 a device created in 2009 how come google cant, see windows xp runs on even worse hardware google has a long way to go and the iphone3gs just proved it. Ok another example for android to have a 41mp camera imagine tje amount of cores needed my laptop is dual core and already phones are quad does that make any sense. The oem’s also have a hand in this problem as they are constantly trying to make every thing into a keeping up game remember the camera saga now its cpu, again the galaxy s has a one ghz engine that can run ics yet sammy has refused the say it has 18 months support how sweet how long is apple supporting theirs and to think people will still buy this devices after their support has ended. This was what killed symbian leaving people out android had better watch it, no one is too big to die in this game. The should force their oem’s to provide updates yes because at the end of the day they have a bad impression of android more than that of the oem. My 2 CENTS

  11. @Noni:

    This was what killed symbian leaving people out android had better watch it , no one is too big to die in this game . The should force their oem ’s to provide updates yes because at the end of the day they have a bad impression of android more than that of the oem. My 2 CENTS

    No, Nokia’s problem was refusing to innovate when other phone makers started churning out phones with modern looks. They also refused to play the hardware game.

    Apple’s business is different from that of other manufacturers because they make both the OS and the hardware and make a hell of money out of software and media sales while other manufacturers have basically their hardwares. That is no excuse for others not to respect their consumers, but another truth is that Apple do not always carry owners of older devices along, they just make a motion of it. Give them a watered down version of the latest OS but still bearing the name of the new OS.

    Yes Apple updates older hardwares after abstracting the essence of the latest OS so the iSheep could go about bragging about being cared for or being carried along. The annoying fact remains that after every update, iOS devices remains as locked down as ever or maybe even worse. Give me my laggy but versatile Android phone abeg!

  12. Good,

    Your beef is not with Android. It is with manufacturers who prefer to move on rather than support existing hardware.

    Of course, it is harder for them to do so, because they have multiples lines of devices to support. This is unlike Apple who has only one line of smartphones to support.

    Android’s strength is also its weakness. – the openness and proliferation of multiple devices and form factors by each manufacturer. Simple.

    If however, you have a particular Android manufacturer with only one line of devices to support – just like Apple – you will see better support for existing devices.

    Unless and until that happens, there’s no point expecting the Apple-type of support.

  13. When initially people were speculating that the 4.1 update isn’t going to be anything major, i felt a little disappointed. However,this has come to be one of the best updates to the android market OS till date. I am glad to know that Google too was concerned all this while about the lag issue on android. Now, a final solution. I am sure my s2 will be updated. If not by samsung, Cyanogenmod is always representing. That is why I do encourage people to buy future – proof devices. These days, the least should be a dual core device. Even the iphone4 won’t be receiving some of the key updates in ios6, e.g voice navigation. This is because it’s a single core device.

    It’s as if Google do have the rest of us in developing countries in mind whole updating the android OS. The offline voice input mode makes network irrelevant for the service unlike you need for siri. I have used the voice input severally and if not for our terrible network, it works so well.

  14. Jelly Bean already here? And here am I still awaiting the original manufacturer update of ICS on my Galaxy Note. Well, I guess I may never taste the ice-cream; I will be contented eating my gingerbread till the Galaxy Note2 comes served with Jelly Bean.

  15. anndroid seem’s to have conquered their last foe,

    What about data consumption?

    Well, I hope devices that shipped with ICS out of the box will get this Jelly Bean updates.

    *salivating* 😉

  16. @biyi, why hold yourself back and wait for Samsung to serve you when it is out there for you to download? You can get the stock ICS and flash through odin. Better still, if you have some liver, root it and install cm9 (cyanogenmod ICS) which is damn faster than the stock One.

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