Bounden delays iOS to Android port after finding many Google phones' gyroscopes don't work

Posted:
in iPhone edited June 2014
Game Oven, the developer of Bounden, a novel dancing app making use of iPhone's gyroscope, has delayed its planned Android port after finding that even top tier devices using Google's platform have defective, inconsistent and in some cases completely faked gyroscope hardware.



The Bounden app (above) is a two player dancing game based around choreography by the Dutch National Ballet. It tracks an iPhone's movements through space as both players hold the phone and navigate through a virtual sphere.

However, as noted by Daring Fireball, the developer was forced to delay its Android port after finding that the "diversity of hardware" across Android devices made delivering a functional game comparable to its iOS offering impossible.

Game Oven noted that Android devices deliver inconsistent data from both their digital compasses and gyroscopes, sensors that first appeared in smartphones four or five years ago. Apple first added a digital compass to iPhone 3GS in 2009, and was the first phone vendor to build a three-axis gyroscope into a smartphone for iPhone 4 in 2010.



Steve Jobs profiled the new gyroscope as a "cool piece of hardware" that would, like the earlier accelerometer, "open up a whole new vista of gaming." Every iPhone since has integrated its accelerometer, gyroscope and digital compass to provide accurate six-axis motion sensing and rotation about gravity.

Apple made accessing these sensors easy for developers to access via iOS' CoreMotion API, which Jobs noted "give you extremely precise position information. And it's perfect for gaming, because it's built into every iPhone 4, so you know it's there."

Android is not perfect for gaming

A Vine video clip (below) of a variety of modern Samsung, Google Nexus, Lenovo and Sony Ericsson smartphones and tablets shows the devices' digital compass pointing in wildly different directions, in some cases erratically.



"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," Game Oven noted.

The developer discovered similar inconsistency with various Android devices' gyroscopes, noting "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.""We weren't just testing on low tier devices, by the way. Popular devices like the Samsung Galaxy S4 are problematic as well" - Game Oven

Game Oven added, "these are all major problems for our heavily gyroscope-precision based game. We weren't just testing on low tier devices, by the way. Popular devices like the Samsung Galaxy S4 are problematic as well."

The developer also noted that the hardware fragmentation it observed wasn't an isolated issue among Android developers.

"We're not the only ones though - after posting the Vine, we got an enormous amount of response from other developers recognizing the problem," the vendor stated.

Android buyers blame app developers for shoddy hardware

Attempting to release the game only for a "whitelisted" group of Android devices with functional gyroscopes is a complicated and risky proposition, the developer noted.

"Unfortunately, the Google Play Store doesn't allow us to filter on 'good gyroscopes', which means our only option is to test the game, on every Android device we can get our hands on, so that we can release Bounden as soon as possible," Game Oven stated.

Responding to a user's suggestion that it release a free trial version that users could try out and buy if it worked properly, Game Oven developer Adriaan de Jongh stated, "Our main concern with a level 1 for free model is bad reviews.

"Our experience with users on the Google Play store is that they are very unforgiving; and they have all the right to be," de Jongh wrote. "Other people should know when a game works incorrectly, especially when they have to put down money for it.

"However, if our game indeed does not work on a number of devices, we feel that this will give us and the game a bad reputation no matter how hard we try to make the game work on as many devices as possible.

"There will still be many 1-star reviews for something we cannot really help, and it won't do the game good. We would not make a very strong case saying 'their device is not good enough.' So unfortunately, a demo model is not going to help us solve the problem of unhappy players."

Despite asking the Android community for help in identifying hardware that works and does not work and offering free apps to users to try out on their devices, Game Oven was immediately attacked by a series of Android fans who accused the small developer of being "anti-Android" and "biased."
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 105
    chandra69chandra69 Posts: 638member
    Quote:


    Android buyers blame app developers for shoddy hardware


    Love the innocence/ignorance of Fandroids. 

  • Reply 2 of 105
    peterbobpeterbob Posts: 60member
    Man DED's hardon for Google and android bashing is reaching epic proportions. Respect
  • Reply 3 of 105
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,222member
    As all of us Apple enthusiasts know, you get what you pay for and then some, in fact a lot, with Apple hardware.
  • Reply 4 of 105
    It seems Android hardware manufacturers have a hardon for DED, giving him the juiciest problems for which the critical commentary nearly writes itself.
  • Reply 5 of 105

    There are definitely benefits to the walled garden.

     

    If that video were of Apple devices, there would be a massive uproar and "gyroscope-gate" would be trending.

  • Reply 6 of 105
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,142member
    Shocking.

    Actually, no it isn't. The saddest thing? The comment on that page from hateful Android fanatics, claiming that this developer has an "Apple bias" and hates Android- even though the developer is trying to work with the community to solve the fucking problem.
  • Reply 7 of 105
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,650member

    Android is just a complete mess, a mix mash of shoddy devices, mostly incompatible with each other, most running outdated and old versions of Android, on crappy, cheap hardware, made by a whole slew of different companies.

     

    And some morons have the nerve to claim that fragmentation is not an issue.

     

    I'd never heard of this developer before, but I applaud their wise decision. If I were a developer, I would never release anything on Android either. It's a waste of time, and the app will suffer and be worse than releasing it on a proper platform such as iOS.

  • Reply 8 of 105
    nhtnht Posts: 4,437member

    Good ol'DED.  No hat tip to Gruber from where he probably first noticed this nor a link to the actual blog post.  Which is here:

     

    http://gameovenstudios.com/bounden-on-android-delayed/

  • Reply 9 of 105
    chipsychipsy Posts: 287member

    Despite asking the Android community for help in identifying hardware that works and does not work and offering free apps to users to try out on their devices, Game Oven was immediately attacked by a series of Android fans who accused the small developer of being "anti-Android" and "biased."
    In every community there will be bad apples. But what you are doing here is focusing on the negative idiots and ignoring the people who actually tried to help. And that isn't right either.
    Just like the Apple community or Microsoft community the Android community is filled with both idiot trolls and rational reasonable people.

    There definitely seems to be some problem with the gyroscopes of certain devices though. No idea whether it's hardware related or a question of calibration.
    Wasn't there a similar problem with the 5s because they changed brands of gyroscope/accelerometer from the iPhone 5. Which then was corrected via a software update. Maybe a similar solution is possible for this problem in Android. Existing low end devices would never get that update of course but for future devices then in that case.
  • Reply 10 of 105
    patpatpatpatpatpat Posts: 628member
    I've had several Android devices over the years and I don't think compass/gyro ever worked right on one of them.
  • Reply 11 of 105
    boltsfan17boltsfan17 Posts: 2,160member

    Pretty funny reading the comments on the original blog post this story came from. Android users complaining Bounden is biased when they are asking Android users for help on Android devices. Fandroids are so delusional. 

  • Reply 12 of 105
    cityguidecityguide Posts: 129member

    @nht

    Um, third paragraph:

    "However, as noted by Daring Fireball, ..."

  • Reply 13 of 105
    poochpooch Posts: 768member
    nht wrote: »
    Good ol'DED.  No hat tip to Gruber from where he probably first noticed this nor a link to the actual blog post.  Which is here:

    http://gameovenstudios.com/bounden-on-android-delayed/

    plagiarism *is* the sincerest form of flattery (or something like that). it's also the source of so many appleinsider articles.
  • Reply 14 of 105
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,650member

    Crazy, delusional Fandroids are accusing the developer of faking that video with the wildly inaccurate gyroscopes. <img class=" src="http://forums-files.appleinsider.com/images/smilies//lol.gif" />

     

    No buddy, there is no wide conspiracy going on. The simple explanation is just that most Android phones are crap. Deal with it.

  • Reply 15 of 105
    appleemplappleempl Posts: 74member

    Jeez even my webOS phone doesn't give me so many troubles.

  • Reply 16 of 105
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,217moderator
    The <a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/id850456491?mt=8">Bounden</a> app (above) is a two player dancing game based around choreography by the Dutch National Ballet. It tracks an iPhone's movements through space as both players hold the phone and navigate through a virtual sphere.

    1. Android users have no friends, least of all a potential dance partner because they are so hateful towards other people
    2. Android users are typically overweight so would have difficulty dancing gracefully
    3. Bounden is a paid app, Android users mostly steal apps or download free apps, I believe a lot of them are baristas
    4. Android users are lacking in culture and respect for creativity so choreographed dance would be wasted on them
    Despite asking the Android community for help in identifying hardware that works and does not work and offering free apps to users to try out on their devices, Game Oven was immediately attacked by a series of Android fans who accused the small developer of being "anti-Android" and "biased."

    That's right, doesn't the developer know that Android has 80% marketshare and it doesn't matter about any problems because they have 80% marketshare, even though they don't have 80% marketshare. If all their hardware is broken then it's clearly the developer's fault because majority rules. It's up to the developer to ship new hardware gyroscopes.
  • Reply 17 of 105
    correctionscorrections Posts: 1,345member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Chipsy View Post





    In every community there will be bad apples. But what you are doing here is focusing on the negative idiots and ignoring the people who actually tried to help. And that isn't right either.

    Just like the Apple community or Microsoft community the Android community is filled with both idiot trolls and rational reasonable people.



    There definitely seems to be some problem with the gyroscopes of certain devices though. No idea whether it's hardware related or a question of calibration.

    Wasn't there a similar problem with the 5s because they changed brands of gyroscope/accelerometer from the iPhone 5. Which then was corrected via a software update. Maybe a similar solution is possible for this problem in Android. Existing low end devices would never get that update of course but for future devices then in that case.

    The majority of comments on the article were these sort of people, the same kind of "bad apples" that complain just like you do about every letter I write.  

  • Reply 18 of 105
    magman1979magman1979 Posts: 1,129member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Slurpy View Post



    Shocking.



    Actually, no it isn't. The saddest thing? The comment on that page from hateful Android fanatics, claiming that this developer has an "Apple bias" and hates Android- even though the developer is trying to work with the community to solve the fucking problem.

    This is why I can't stand Android on the whole, and it's users. The hardware is mostly cheap junk, even the ones that look like higher quality on the surface, and most of the users are not people I would ever choose to associate myself with, and this exemplifies my line of reasoning.

  • Reply 19 of 105
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Pooch View Post

     
    plagiarism *is* the sincerest form of flattery (or something like that). it's also the source of so many appleinsider articles.


    It is not all plagiarism. There are some very original typos in the AI articles.

  • Reply 20 of 105
    tastowetastowe Posts: 108member
    So the Android phones are crappy and shitty hardware. I love my iPhones best.
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