Feeds

China sprouts another Android fork

Like 10,000 spoons when all you need is a knife

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

QQ, the world's biggest social networking service, is to launch its own handset and yet another fork of Google's Android, bringing the count up to four Android variants in China.

Not that Tencent (owners of QQ) have varied hugely from the stock Android code. The new platform provides ties into a range of QQ services, but bears more resemblance to the UI shells applied by manufacturers such as Motorola and HTC, rather than a genuine fork of the underlying system, though it is hard to be certain from the Chinese-language coverage and basic screenshots available.

This version follows e-commerce outfit Alibaba's own fork of Android, which links to that company's cloud services and electronic-content stores. Then there's Baidu Yi, which ties into the search engine's application suites just as the stock Android links to Google.

Lastly we have Xiaomi, a hugely aspirational manufacturer with its own Android fork, which reckons selling direct will enable it to undercut everyone else – a strategy which failed so comprehensively for Google.

So on each side of the Great Wall we have variants of Android produced by insanely optimistic manufacturers (Xiaomi and TabCo's Grid, the latter the bastard offspring of the CrunchPad), e-commerce sites (Alibaba in China, Amazon in the USA), and search engines (Baidu and Google).

That's not necessarily a bad thing: Android's openness has always been a double-edged sword with everyone trying to work out their own strategy to make money out of Google's largess.

But the forking balance is now tipped towards China with a QQ variant, at least until Facebook has a shot. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Of COURSE Stephen Elop's to blame for Nokia woes, says author
'Google did have some unique propositions for Nokia'
FCC, Google cast eye over millimetre wireless
The smaller the wave, the bigger 5G's chances of success
It's even GRIMMER up North after MEGA SKY BROADBAND OUTAGE
By 'eck! Eccles cake production thrown into jeopardy
Mobile coverage on trains really is pants
You thought it was just *insert your provider here*, but now we have numbers
Don't mess with Texas ('cos it's getting Google Fiber and you're not)
A bit late, but company says 1Gbps Austin network almost ready to compete with AT&T
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.