We have moved to a new Sailfish OS Forum. Please start new discussions there.

Why does Jolla Oy seem to concentrate more on Android compatability then Jolla itself?

asked 2014-03-31 17:46:16 +0300

naytsyrhc gravatar image

updated 2014-11-05 15:39:31 +0300

I edited my question here now, as I think the question is still valid, but of course some things changed in the last 8 months. I tried to consider the changes by editing (deleting/inserting) the text. But still I have the feeling that Jolla could do more to support there own hardware and software and native ecosystem.

Allthough I might get blamed for this question, I'll ask it anyway.

So far I think Jolla did a great job with releasing it's first smartphone and providing Sailfish OS as successor of Maemo/Meego.

But: almost 4 months12 months after the initial release there are still many issues open.

To name a few:

Some of those issues are probably responsible for some developers not going to support Sailfish in its current state. Some are probably responsible for users not wanting to buy a phone without those features.

So I think there are many issues open, that have a severe effect on Jollas business (i.e. not selling devices, no revenue from sold applications, etc.).

Also there is this unique "The Other Half" feature but there seems to be nothing done from Jolla's side to enable it (despite those Angry-Birds-TOH that is).there seems to be only one brave group of hobbiest now creating the keyboard OH, but nothing else from Jolla or 3rd party which could be because Jolla does not really promote it as they promote Android for example.

But Jolla seems to concentrate on Android compatibility, just announcing first test images of sailfish for the Nexus 4 and announcing work on ports for other android devices and the jolla stella launcher for android.

There seems to be no information about next release for our Jollas. There is no roadmap to see when which feature/bugfix will be introduced.Due to the continued android support it seems as if updates for sailfish OS frequency went down.

So this is, why my question isstill remains: Why does Jolla Oy seem to concentrate more on Android compatability then Jolla itself?

edit retag flag offensive close delete



I think you answered your own question already, when you said "after 4 months".. Let's talk about it when/if the situation is the same after 2 years.

Acce ( 2014-03-31 18:28:18 +0300 )edit

A short explanation to this question was given on the Jolla Pioneer Fans Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/jollapioneer/permalink/613377992085002/?comment_id=613563992066402&offset=0&total_comments=11

nthn ( 2014-03-31 18:28:44 +0300 )edit

@Acce Uh. I wouldn't say so. Almost every vendor out there concentrated on their own eco system from the beginning. Offering a store with paid apps at the time the device was released. And they offered support for all developers wanting to develop apps for their devices. Jolla not so. I know from a lot of developers that supported Symbian and the N9 (Meego Harmattan), that waited for some months but now don't want to wait any longer.

naytsyrhc ( 2014-03-31 18:31:45 +0300 )edit

@nthn Unfortunately I can't read that explanation as I don't have a facebook account and will surely not register one.

naytsyrhc ( 2014-03-31 18:32:29 +0300 )edit

"As a general note on Sailfish to devices; you should also see it as us being a bit more open about how we practically prepare SailfishOS for new Jolla devices. It's not something that takes away from Jolla or SailfishOS development, in practice it helps making it more scalable, able to fit into more kinds of hardware, fixes bad assumptions, etc."

"they [bug fixes and new features] are prioritised. Imagine an always moving train - that's SailfishOS, sometimes you need to prepare for what comes next around the corner - and do research, planning, preperation. Jolla device has an underlying Android hardware adaptation and so would a future one likely too. In order to limit amount of trouble you have for making more SailfishOS devices, you need to keep your stack up to date, or it becomes obsolete and unable to scale to let's say, bigger displays, different chipsets, different form factors. It's the death that happened to projects like Symbian - they were no longer able to scale. Porting to android devices, helps keeping the stack able to scale and extend - before it's too late. The same bug fixes that gets put into SailfishOS because of this, makes their way to Jolla devices too."

nthn ( 2014-03-31 18:38:44 +0300 )edit

5 Answers

Sort by » oldest newest most voted

answered 2014-03-31 22:32:25 +0300

Titanium gravatar image

I simply don't agree with you. Jolla made four updates each fixing bugs and/or adding new features for the Jolla Phones. Instead there isn't yet SailfishOS fully ported to any Android device. Nexus4 and SGS3 are only at the beginning.

To me they're prioritizing work on building solid grounds vs quick and dirty addition of new features.

This in addition to the business model consideration made above.

edit flag offensive delete publish link more


"Nexus4 and SGS3 are only at the beginning." The nexus was choosen because it is the easiest to port too. The SGS3 has a much larger market but I'm not sure if their version will also run on the more popular non-LTE-variant of this SGS3. Any ideas?

manut ( 2014-04-01 00:19:36 +0300 )edit

answered 2014-11-20 22:16:11 +0300

mariner gravatar image

updated 2014-11-20 22:20:51 +0300

I agree with the majority of this thread. I want phones and tablets that are open source, privacy and security oriented and are not controlled monitored and otherwise owned by Apple Google or Microsoft. I consider Android compatible apps an admission of defeat and would only consider using if I could believe these were completely sandboxed and isolated from Google and Google Store, which is of course not the case. Spending so much development effort on Android compatibility is diverting effort from what should be the aims of Jolla and is only pandering to the Android community who do not believe in Jolla/Saifish anyway.

Finally the more support is given to Android compatibility makes it self defeating and less easy to justify the native Sailfish apps and everyone becomes lazy and gives in to Android then what is the point of Jolla - just another Android clone.

edit flag offensive delete publish link more


Totally agree.

naytsyrhc ( 2014-11-22 01:46:19 +0300 )edit

answered 2014-03-31 18:56:30 +0300

00prometheus gravatar image

updated 2014-03-31 19:04:11 +0300

We must remember the stated business model of Jolla: It is to sell OS licenses, not devices! It has time and again been pointed out that the justification for making Jolla devices is that selling a new OS requires a display-case that proves that the OS is viable.

It really doesn't make any business sense at all for a company as small as Jolla, with so extremely small marketing budget as they have, to try to sell a consumer device as Jolla. Try checking how many people around you know the Jolla exists at all! Obviously, if they don't know it exists, they will not be able to buy it. Without a sufficient marketing budget, it is impossible to let a sufficiently large number of people know that the device exists, and that means it becomes impossible to scale up production to get a reasonable price/performance level. Jolla have performed a Herculean task in getting the device as far as they have with the resources at their disposal!

I am not even sure the argument about the Jolla device as a display case is even valid. They are able to display the OS on various Android devices, right? I think that argument is more a justification to themselves and their investors to allow an act of love for innovative phones to become reality.

So the answer is essentially: They must do the Android porting, it is their main business case to sell OS licenses to manufacturers of cheap Chinese phones that want to get out from under Google's thumb. They are building the Jolla devices, perhaps mainly because they love building phones, but they still have to give priority to their "day job".

edit flag offensive delete publish link more



But the device has its potential. The unique feature TOH just wants to be used/enabled. Just see all those great ideas/solutions from community (Keyboard OH, etc.)

naytsyrhc ( 2014-03-31 19:03:08 +0300 )edit

No matter how great the device is, if people don't know about it they can't buy it. And marketing at the scale of mobile phones requires a budget several thousand times larger than what Jolla has.

00prometheus ( 2014-03-31 19:05:43 +0300 )edit

There are more ways to let your product known then those ways that require bucket-loads of money thrown at them!

manut ( 2014-04-01 00:11:40 +0300 )edit

If Jolla is "so small and poor" as everyone keeps repeating like a mantra, then THE QUICKER they should launch an app store with paid apps and start making EASY MONEY (store vendor usually takes 30% of every sale) and let their budget grow. The same for TOH - offer some really useful accessories that everyone will want to buy (e.g. a hardware keyboard) instead of wasting money on Angry Birds covers. Complaining about small budget while not taking advantage of possible revenue sources is idiotic.

my-jolla ( 2014-04-01 01:02:34 +0300 )edit

The Question was: "Why does Jolla Oy seem to concentrate more on Android [device] compatability then Jolla itself?", such as making Sailfish run on things like the Nexus 4, and no information on the next Jolla phone. I was Answering why their focus is directed that way.

00prometheus ( 2014-04-01 03:27:57 +0300 )edit

answered 2014-03-31 18:21:18 +0300

ApB gravatar image

I suspect that the android compatibility makes more noise while the work on the problems/features happens more quietly. New features will be coming every month (ie. mms comes april) so we probably just have to wait for them.

And also remember that the Jolla team is probably smaller than the amount of people Samsung/Apple/Google employ to clean their headquarters. :P

But i have to say that i feel you. I am also quite impatient. :)

edit flag offensive delete publish link more



But shouldn't the own OS, it's features and possibilities make the noise? Is there something about it Jolla must be ashamed of? I wouldn't say so. Why don't the put every single effort in those features/bugfixes of their device, adding support for more apps in harbour etc. I know they are a small company but because of that, why do they spent those limited resources on providing unfinished images for the nexus 4 instead of making Sailfish "complete".

naytsyrhc ( 2014-03-31 18:25:52 +0300 )edit

Making it available to a wider audience will benefit jolla (and the OS) by bringing more devs and people. And even thought i would like them to spend most of their time designing kick ass desirable hardware of their own i understand the reasoning behind it.

ApB ( 2014-03-31 19:10:50 +0300 )edit

Maybe it's true that Android compatibility "makes more noise" but is it really too much to expect (after a YEAR now, I've ported my first apps to Sailfish OS already in March 2013) that Jolla at least confirms IF AT ALL they are going to EVER enable support for paid applications? No single word about it has been said since December -- developers ain't no turtles and won't wait another year for Jolla to say a word (and quite possibly that word being "No"). Proper information really wouldn't hurt

my-jolla ( 2014-04-01 01:13:21 +0300 )edit

@ApB - "making it available to wider audience will benefit Jolla" - that's for sure. But it would benefit them EVEN MORE if that wider audience also got an app store with support for paid apps, as in such case wider audience would mean more and more app sales (of which Jolla would take 30% each). So why launch it WITHOUT paid apps and earn MUCH less?

my-jolla ( 2014-04-01 01:16:12 +0300 )edit

answered 2014-03-31 18:41:38 +0300

tokaru gravatar image

updated 2014-03-31 21:15:48 +0300

EDIT: I obviously misunderstood the question, but my answer pretty much boils down to the same (I left the orginal answer below): Jolla and SailfishOS are symbiotic. Jolla benefits from a bigger SailfishOS spread as well as SailfishOS benefits from a bigger Jolla spread. In the long run, users will benefit from an increasing number of SailfishOS apps, a bigger community and more developers contributing.

Android compatibility is a key argument for people to switch to Jolla, I think that is why. Most people have at least one or two crucial apps that they cannot do without; and Jolla needs a bigger segment of the smartphone market to make companies port their apps to SailfishOS.

However, I am not sure whether the focus is actually more on Android support than on other things - I do not think so. Actually, they are currently fixing bugs, and improving/adding features nearly every month.

edit flag offensive delete publish link more



I don't say that ACL is bad. Supporting android apps is a good choice. But not really supporting the own ecosystem will not help Sailfish in the long run. Only native apps will help Jolla to survive. I could buy a cheaper android phone with better hardware if I really wanted android compatibility (which is much better on android devices anyway ;-) ). However I also asked, why they put their effort in bringing Sailfish to Android devices not supporting android apps on Jolla.

naytsyrhc ( 2014-03-31 18:48:53 +0300 )edit

The key argument for me to switch to Jolla was that I didn't want something from Google at all. As well I don't want any boring Samsung, LG or which ever Android device. My hope was that the store would be opened for paid Jolla apps and therefore interesting enough for developers. From the very small Jolla store I have installed in the meanwhile 26 native apps and I hope it will be more in future ;).

vision ( 2014-03-31 20:22:39 +0300 )edit

@naytsyrhc Ooops, got that wrong.... answer updated.

tokaru ( 2014-03-31 21:22:49 +0300 )edit

@vision, Don't forget the OpenRepos, accessed through the Warehouse app. That's where most of the apps are!

00prometheus ( 2014-03-31 21:45:19 +0300 )edit

@00prometheus: Sure, I don't forget OpenRepos ;) ... and I want to mention that of course the way how Jolla is making Sailfish more puplic is not too bad... even if I could read that the port for Nexus 4 still has a lot of feature gaps and still is not so easy to install... this might result in disappointed users who previously were using Android.

vision ( 2014-03-31 22:27:55 +0300 )edit
Login/Signup to Answer

Question tools



Asked: 2014-03-31 17:46:16 +0300

Seen: 2,324 times

Last updated: Nov 20 '14