Everyone wants to own a smartphone today, and it’s not just because they have a host of features. There are only two systems which operate at a lion’s share in the mobile market: Android and iOS. Android has become a hot favorite for several coders while others still argue in favor of Linux. Call me old fashioned but I feel that for a raw coding experience, Linux is still the best and here’s why:
6. Linux is still the biggest platform to code on
Linux has been used for years together and there’s no doubt that coders prefer using Linux even today. In 2014, 49% of all applications are still going to be launched on the Linux platform whereas only 16% will be on Android. So in terms of platform size, Linux wins hands down.
5. Supports many languages
Android primarily uses Java as its primary coding language but with Linux, there’s an ocean of languages. Off the top of my head, Linux works with C, C++, Java, Ruby, Python, Lua and many more. In fact, it has a library which supports almost 21 languages, which is a significant step in the right direction. While some may argue that Android is a more recent platform, the facts are what they are.
4. Easily adaptable in OEM hardware
Linux gives OEMs more freedom to integrate and operate on their hardware without the constraints which Android has tied to it. There is no broad inter operability, there’s no concern for shrink-wrapping apps or breaking APIs, and it allows manufacturers to adapt their own sense of an Operating System, which can’t be done on Android because of their rules, restrictions and regulations. This is why Linux is popularly used in Infotainment systems.
3. Best suited for lean systems
While Android comes with a sense of colour, it’s much heavier on any system then Linux. If you stick with Linux, the load it places on your device will be much lower than that induced by Android because it’s a lean system of coding. It can be trimmed down to match extremely low end systems, with a few of them running it on only tens of MB. It saves on cost and performance.
2. Much larger library and support
With so many programming languages and programs running on Linux, it has the broadest library and source material in the world. Almost any problem can be addressed just by searching for the exact problem online or Googling it. Ironically, you can’t Google many of the problems faced with Android mechanics because the variations and supplier based versions are different from each other. For example, a feature on a Samsung device may or may not be addressed on an HTC because they’ve created their own version of Android from the stock version. Hence, troubleshooting is a minor concern on Linux.
1. Linux isn’t supervised
A problem people are facing today is that Android is still under the control of Google and its guidelines. When Google acquired Android way back in the day, they sealed its fate. And while there are still thousands of apps being released on a daily basis, there are thousands more being rejected and filtered by Google themselves. And with the recent news of data tracking through Android, people are becoming more wary of using Android in the first place. Linux, on the other hand, is completely free and open to use. Anything you create is yours and yours alone and licensing issues are minimal.
While Android might be on the rise, Linux and Embedded Linux will never go out of fashion.