Andy Rubin, Google's VP of Engineering, today made a blog post about Android and Google's role in supporting the ecosystem.
Rubin say "I'm writing in the spirit of transparency and in an attempt to set the record straight. The Android community has grown tremendously since the launch of the first Android device in Oct ' 08, but throughout we've remained committed to fostering the development of an open platform for the mobile industry and beyond."
We don't believe in a "one size fits all" solution. The Android platform has already spurred the development of hundreds of different types of devices -- many of which weren't originally contemplated when the platform was first created.[…]Miraculously, we're seeing the platform take on new use cases, features and form factors as it's being introduced in new categories and regions while still remaining consistent and compatible for 3rd party apps.
As always, device makers are free to modify Android to customize any range of features for Android devices. This enables device makers to support the unique and differentiating functionality of their products. If someone wishes to market a device as Android-compatible or include Google apps on the device, we do require the device to conform with some basic compatibility requirements. (After all, it wouldn't be realistic to expect Google apps -- or any apps for that matter -- to operate flawlessly across incompatible devices).
Our "anti-fragmentation" program has been in place since Android 1.0 and remains a priority for us to provide a great user experience for consumers and a consistent platform for developers. In fact, all of the founding members of the Open Handset Alliance agreed not to fragment Android when we first announced it in 2007. Our approach remains unchanged: there're no lock-downs or restrictions against customizing UIs. There're not, and never have been, any efforts to standardize the platform on any single chipset architecture.
Finally, we continue to be an open source platform and will continue releasing source code when it is ready.
Rubin, ends the post saying "As I write this the Android team is still hard at work to bring all the new Honeycomb features to phones. As soon as this work is completed, we'll publish the code. This temporary delay doesn't represent a change in strategy. We remain firmly committed to providing Android as an open source platform across many device types."
[Source: Android Developers blog]