I’m a n00b to the whole Android scene; I make no bones about it. But I have been lurking the XDA forums for the last couple months and I feel comfortable rooting my Android devices (except the Hero) and swapping between “cooked ROMs” from various
hackers devs to get the latest and greatest features. So when the Interwebs started freaking out over the G1’s lack of memory, which we all knew from the beginning, but that it would hinder the G1 from getting future updates, I started to worry.
Alas, those closer to the realm of Android have shed a bit of light on what G1 owners could/should expect going forward regarding those nasty rumors about not getting Donut or Éclair. Mr Wimberly of Android and Me fame did a bit of digging and it seems as though we may have jumped the gun. Maybe.
According to Wimberly, he’s seen builds of Donut listed as 1.6 in “mobile analytics reports” and that G1s will, in fact, receive the update later this year. Which is probably sooner rather than later considering Google dropped Donut a few weeks back. If you recall, back in July a T-Mobile higher up tipped us off that four updates (two major, two minor) would be pushed out for Android this year. So far we’ve had three: two minor (1.1 and CRC1) and one major (1.5). And that leaves one last major update, which I’m positive, will be Donut (1.6).
But don’t take my word for it. Steve Kondik (aka Cyanogen over on the XDA forums) says that no matter the size of future updates, “hackers will get it out to everyone one way or another.” He’s also been tinkering with the recent Donut code and released custom ROMs with Donut features built-in for rooted G1s. He goes on to say that despite Donut builds being a few megabytes larger than Cupcake that compression methods are in place to shrink said builds to make them fit in the limited space available on the G1.
“I don’t think that Donut is going to have any problems fitting on the G,” he said “To make it smaller, I use a tool called optipng which analyzes png images and finds the optimal compression for them. Apps can be significantly reduced in size by using this tool and applying better compression to the package itself.”
It never hurts when Android engineers, like Dan Morril chime in, “Rumors of the G1’s demise are greatly exaggerated.”
Of course, we’ll never know until T-Mobile and Google officially push out Donut for the G1 and myTouch 3G. But there is a sliver of hope and that’s all any G1 owner can ask for at this point.