25 mai 2014

Perdre le nord

Le studio Game Oven, qui a créé le très original Bounden sur iOS, décrit la difficulté rencontrée lors du développement de la version Android et publie ce Vine de plusieurs appareils manifestement incapables de se mettre d’accord sur l’orientation du nord :

In the Vine above are 7 devices all running the same compass app (ironically named Steady Compass) on Android. Yet, all compasses indicate that North is somewhere else. Unfortunately, this has nothing to do with electromagnetic fields confusing the compass; it has everything to do with the diversity of hardware inside these devices.

We have been developing Bounden for Android alongside its development on iOS, and have tested the game on a number of devices. It was only a week ago that we started expanding our list of test devices, after we quickly discovered that:
a) some devices had ‘broken’ gyroscopes that didn’t work on all axis,
b) that some devices were faking gyroscopes by mixing and matching the accelerometer data with compass data, or
c) that some devices did not have a gyroscope at all.

Triste, mais parfaitement logique. La faute à la fragmentation des appareils sous Android, comme l’explique très justement Benedict Evans :

The consequence of Apple’s approach is that pretty much everything behaves in predictable ways, but you have a very narrow range of devices at a narrow range of prices (and screen sizes), and that severely restricts the addressable market. More people can afford $50 phones than can afford $600 phones. The consequence of the Android approach is that you have a much wide range of devices and prices, and a much larger market, but anything on the bleeding edge doesn’t work predictably at all. This doesn’t just apply to the gyroscope – it also applies to varying degrees to almost anything trying to do clever things with the hardware. This is also true even if the API does actually work as advertised – there’s not much point trying to do a mass-market Android NFC deployment when you have no idea how many of your users even have NFC Androids (and the users themselves don’t know).

One result of this, as I’ve said before, is that Apple and Google are focusing their innovation in different areas. Apple is moving down the stack with integrated hardware/software experiences (iBeacon, fingerprints, M7 etc) that are hard for Android to match, and Google is moving Android up the stack with Google Play Services, the cloud and machine learning, which is hard for Apple to match.

John Gruber, rebondissant lui aussi sur cet article de Game Oven, s’amuse à comparer le résultat obtenu avec 7 appareils Apple de générations différentes (iPhone 3GS, 4, 4S, 5, 5S, iPad Mini et iPad Mini retina). C’est évidemment sans appel !

Tout ceci me donne envie de terminer en chanson :

♫ Perdre le Nord, gagner le Sud,
Et les bonnes latitudes ♫

#hardware — #  #  #  #  #

2 commentaires

Greg dit :

Tous les ingrédients pour un bon troll, mais il faut se rendre à l’évidence :-)

Fabien dit :

@Greg: ;) un simple constat, de la part d’un studio de dev juste déçu de ne pas pouvoir sortir une version Android simultanée à iOS à cause de ça.

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