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Ice Cream Sandwich not as good as Gingerbread, says Sony

Sony is desperate to convince us to stick with Gingerbread, rather than give it a hard time about Ice Cream Sandwich.

Richard Trenholm Former Movie and TV Senior Editor
Richard Trenholm was CNET's film and TV editor, covering the big screen, small screen and streaming. A member of the Film Critic's Circle, he's covered technology and culture from London's tech scene to Europe's refugee camps to the Sundance film festival.
Expertise Films, TV, Movies, Television, Technology
Richard Trenholm
2 min read
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Ice Cream Sandwich isn't worth the fuss, Sony says. The Japanese giant is desperate to convince us to stick with the "extreme stability" of Gingerbread rather than giving it a hard time about the latest update.

Ice Cream Sandwich is the tasty name for version 4.0 of Android, Google's software for mobile phones and tablets. It's the latest version, but is yet to find its way onto many phones, leaving Gingerbread as still the most widely available version of Android some four months after Ice Cream Sandwich made its debut on the Samsung Galaxy Nexus.

Sony says that although Ice Cream Sandwich is "new and compelling in many ways", it's "not a bad idea to stay" with Gingerbread. ICS is "more intensive, for example in terms of resource usage", making it perhaps more than your phone's processor, RAM or battery can handle and slowing down your phone.

Sony singles out graphics hardware acceleration in Ice Cream Sandwich. Hardware acceleration makes graphics run smoother once you've started a game or app, but makes the app slower to start up in the first place.

As true as all this may be, Sony's agenda is to deflect attention away from the time it's taking to get Ice Cream Sandwich on to your phone -- and from the fact that Sony's line-up of Android phones isn't as cutting-edge as Ice Cream Sandwich demands. Many users are crying out for the latest software update, which is only natural, but all phone manufacturers -- not just Sony -- are having trouble getting ICS out the door.

Is Ice Cream Sandwich really worth all the fuss? Here's our ten reasons why Ice Cream Sandwich beats Gingerbread.

Ice Cream Sandwich is turning into a real bone of contention for tech-savvy phone owners. Samsung's botched ICS update for the Galaxy S2 has S2 owners up in arms, and ICS has delayed the launch of the Galaxy Tab 2 7-inch and 10.1-inch tablets.

Technical teething troubles aren't the real issue here: we're sure the backroom boffins are busting their humps getting Ice Cream Sandwich ready for prime-time. The problem is that the delays are happening in public. As my esteemed colleague Luke Westaway points out, punting different versions but failing to make them available to anyone who wants them is seriously harming Android.

And as if the Ice Cream Sandwich delays aren't bad enough, future versions Jelly Bean and Key Lime Pie are already starting to pile up on the horizon. If all this happened behind the scenes, Sony wouldn't need to desperately try and convince us rabid early adopters that we're better off as we are, thank you very much.

Press play on our video to see Gingerbread and Ice Cream Sandwich go head-to-head.

Watch this: Galaxy S2 Ice Cream Sandwich vs Gingerbread

Has Sony convinced you to continue with old faithful Gingerbread and stop worrying about Ice Cream Sandwich? Is this just another ploy to distract us from Sony's lacklustre line-up? Tell me your thoughts in the comments or on our Facebook page.