Almost all of the Android handset manufacturers ship their devices with some level of UI overlay to the Android experience in an effort to provide certain functionality and experience that they feel the consumer wants, needs or desires. HTC has their Sense UI, Motorola has Blur, and Samsung has TouchWiz.
Samsung recently announced the list of devices that will be getting an upgrade to Android 4.0. Noticeably missing from that list is the Samsung Galaxy S, one of the best-selling devices of last year (2010) selling more than 10 million units, and the 7-inch Galaxy Tab. They’ve now provided an explanation, stating that they lack sufficient horsepower to run TouchWiz on top of ICS. Their argument is that while the Nexus S has essentially the same hardware, the Galaxy S has to run all sorts of “experience enhancing” software on top of the OS whereas the Nexus S does not. Click past the break for more analysis on what this means for the Galaxy S and Tab.
What this says, in essence, is that the consumer desires all the “experience enhancing” features of TouchWiz on Samsung devices more than they would desire the optimized ICS experience. I personally believe this to be a load of bunk. While the TouchWiz UI does look nice and provides a number of nice features (most already available as an add-on app from the Android Market), the new UI design changes that Google has made with Android 4.0 I believe negates this. The new UI is just gorgeous and much easier and well thought out than previous versions, resembling the changes made to the UI with Honeycomb (Android 3.0) earlier this year.
“The proof is in the pudding”, a common cliché, tells us that the Galaxy S is more than capable of running Ice Cream Sandwich without TouchWiz as reported yesterday. While this is not a port done by Samsung, it does show that the device runs ICS quite capably and is quite beautiful.
So that brings me to this: What do you think? Here’s your opportunity to chime in and tell us what you think about TouchWiz and if it is a deal-breaker on whether or not ICS comes to the Galaxy S. Vote in the poll and leave a comment.