How does Android stack up as a desktop operating system?

In today's open source roundup: Is Android viable as a desktop Linux distribution? Plus: AnandTech reviews Android 5.0 Lollipop, and ZDNet shows you how to get Linux Mint 17.1 up and running for the first time

Android as a Linux desktop

Android is generally known as a mobile operating system. But it's quite possible to use it on a desktop computer. And since Android is based on Linux, some would consider it a Linux distribution in its own right. Network World took Android for a spin on the desktop and found it to be surprisingly good.

Bryan Lunduke at Network World examined Android on the desktop:

If one can get over the whole “every app runs full screen” shebang, Android actually makes for an astoundingly usable, easy to learn, fairly peppy and relatively good-looking desktop environment.

Would I enjoy the Android user experience as my primary Linux Desktop experience? Yes. Absolutely. In fact, for long periods of time, Android has been my primary computing platform. And the environment is absolutely usable for that purpose.

More at Network World

android linux desktop Network World

AnandTech reviews Android 5.0

Android 5.0 Lollipop has brought an impressive array of new features and tweaks to Google's mobile operating system. AnandTech did a detailed review of Android 5.0, and was impressed with Material Design and Android 5.0's performance improvements.

Brandon Chester at AnandTech on Android 5.0 Lollipop:

I think Google really hit the nail on the head with Android Lollipop. It evokes the same sort of feeling that the release of iOS 7 did, without some of the negative experiences that followed. Getting a brand new interface is always exciting, as it can dramatically change how it feels to use your phone. Moving from KitKat to Lollipop still provides you with a familiar Android experience, but it almost feels like getting a brand new phone in a way.

There's a brand new UI, and big improvements to performance. But unlike the upgrade to iOS 7, Android Lollipop hasn't plagued my devices with application crashes and other bugs. In fact, I haven't really noticed any significant bugs at all after upgrading to Lollipop, which says a great deal about the work Google has put into testing to make sure things are stable.

More at AnandTech

Redditors reacted to AnandTech's review of Android 5.0:

"What kind of review can complain that "iOS had previously resorted to intrusive alerts that displayed in the middle of the screen and interrupted the user" and completely ignore the fact that Android 5.0 now does almost the exactly the same thing?"

"Google seems to be going more and more in this direction lately IMO. They seem to be obsessed with having the interface be as clean as possible, which is not necessarily a bad thing, but they keep ending up with apps that just have three big buttons and all the options that actually make it useful are either disabled or hidden somewhere so obscure that it takes 15 minutes to find them. "

More at Reddit

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