Project Treble to get boost from Google, Qualcomm joint efforts

With some of the changes to expand availability of the Android P Developer Preview 2 that were announced at Google I/O 2018, attention is once again drawn to the state of Android version distribution. Even though Android 8.0 Oreo has been around for several months, adoption is still at just 5% of the market and it appears the general strategy of most phone manufacturers is to provide at most one Android update and then hope users upgrade to a new phone for the second one. Google’s Project Treble is supposed to combat the problems with new version updates for Android and it is getting a boost thanks to new, joint work with Qualcomm.

According to Qualcomm, the new joint effort is targeting their Snapdragon 845, Snapdragon 660 and Snapdragon 636 processors. That means it is limited to the newest devices on the market, but it is good news that Qualcomm is not limiting the effort to just the flagship level processor. Since this is only the start, it is also a good sign that Qualcomm and Google will work to expand this to other chips in the portfolio across more market segments.

The new joint effort is designed to streamline the process of getting an updated Android version ready for devices through implementation of a common development infrastructure. By doing this, one step in a chain of events needed to get a particular device ready for a consumer update to the latest Android can be shortened significantly. Qualcomm says they are projecting up to 12 weeks may be eliminated from the typical cycle, or about three months.

When looking at recent devices using older chips, like the update for the Samsung Galaxy S8 phones, from the official release to when widespread adoption started to occur, roughly six months passed. so a 12 week savings is almost half the cycle.

Accelerating Android updates has been a slow process for Google, but with Project Treble finally coming to fruition it is good to see partnerships like this one with Qualcomm to help translate things into actual time savings.

source: Qualcomm

About the Author: Jeff Causey

Raised in North Carolina, Jeff Causey is a licensed CPA in North Carolina. Jeff's past Android devices include an HTC EVO, a Samsung Note II, an LG G3, and a Motorola Moto X Pure Edition along with a Samsung Galaxy Tablet 10.1. He currently uses a Samsung Galaxy S8 and (very rarely) a Nexus 7 (2013). He is also using a Verizon-branded Motorola Moto Z Play Droid supplied by his job. Jeff used to have a pair of Google Glass and a Moto 360 Sport in his stable of gadgets. Unfortunately, his kids have all drunk the Apple Kool-Aid and have i-devices. Life at home often includes demonstrations of the superiority of his Android based devices. In his free time, Jeff is active an active runner usually training for his next marathon, owns a Mazda MX-5 Miata, and plays Dungeons & Dragons. Jeff has three grown kids and a golden retriever.