It has been a little while since the version 1.0 of /e/OS was published earlier this year. It has been a big step forward in many aspects.
There is just one thing that I am pretty frustrated about – the leaving behind of older Android versions (Nougat, Oreo, Pie). What disappoints me about it is not so much the fact that they have been discontinued (this will happen sooner or later to other versions too), what disappoints me is rather the how.
Before /e/OS v1.0 was launched it was a good (beta) OS, but it has some tiny but annoying downsides: For instance the syncing of contacts between the /e/cloud and the device did not work (properly). Another annoying issue was the built-in app store that delivered partly only older versions of applications, some (such as the Signal messenger) had to be updated manually by the /e/ team on a regular basis in order to work. There were some other smaller or bigger annoyances that one might have been willing to bear, when improvement was in sight.
But – at least for myself – it was really unexpected that a notable number of devices was simply deprived from receiving the long awaited reparation works – and from security updates. This was the moment when v.1.0 arrived.
I really enjoy using /e/ and I convinced some other people do so. Many of them opted for rather older phone models (for the simple reason that it was easier to find smaller form factors). All of them are suddenly excluded from using /e/ now.
I am aware that the /e/team is not huge, and it has all my respect what they have achieved developing until now. But still, /e/ has arose now from its beta status. What I would really, really wish for the future are three things:
- Update policy. A transparent and plannable update policy (including what devices will run out of support and when as well as how to proceed with version upgrades).
- Communication. A clear communication to users - 6 months ahead of when devices are going to be deprived (directly onto the devices).
- Remove deprived devices from the list of supported devices (Smartphone Selector).