With Android accounting for the lion’s share of mobile device operating systems worldwide, you might think that developers are absolutely head over heels in love with it. But the truth tells a different story, at least according to the founder of one company that develops games for Google’s world-famous OS.
Speaking during a panel at this year’s Game Developers Conference, Geomerics founder and COO Chris Doran said that Android is not a great platform for development, especially when it comes to graphics. Apparently, Geomerics programmers find it simply loathsome, but continue to develop apps for it anyway. “We have to do it; it’s pretty dominant,” said Doran.
According to Doran, the reason why Android is just not good for graphics at all is because Google “doesn’t put enough love into it.” That’s why even though Android today stands as the most popular mobile device platform in the world, it’s still quite troublesome to develop apps for.
In all fairness, Google does have a dedicated design page up on its official Android Developers web site, where it says that the design of Android is focused around three overarching goals, which are Enchant Me, Simplify Me, and Make me amazing. The dedicated Android Developer design page explains what these overarching goals are all about in detail, and basically, what it says is that Google is not sacrificing function over form — and vice versa — for its mobile OS.
Chris Doran of Geomerics wasn’t the only one who shared his opinion on Android game development at this year’s GDC. In particular, Samsung’s technical marketing manager Michael Ludden said that Apple’s iOS was also in a similar situation in its early years of existence. But as the development tools improved, so did the overall development experience.
As Android grows older, it will likely mature in much the same way. And in case that doesn’t pan out, at least there are other mobile development platforms on the horizon. Plus, if acceptable design just can’t be found elsewhere, then there’s always the iPhone and iOS.