Why Google Buzz Won’t Run on Your Android Phone (Yet)

I’ve been hoping to try out Google Buzz, but it hasn’t hit my Gmail account yet and it won’t run on my phone*…even though it’s a web app. Comments at Android and Me and at Mashable show that I’m not alone.

It turns out that Buzz uses HTML5 features (specifically appcache, database and location) to store local data and to detect your physical location…and those capabilities were added in Android 2.0.

The support thread mentions that they are “working on another version that will make Buzz for mobile accessible on older Android OS versions (and some other smartphones as well).” The browser in Android 1.6 and below supports similar capabilities through Gears, so they may be planning a Gears-based workaround.

This would be a lot less of an issue if it weren’t for the fact that most of the Android phones out there still run 1.6 or even Android 1.5. IIRC only the Droid and Nexus One have officially been updated to 2.0 so far**, so unless you have one of those two models, you’re more likely to get Buzz to run on an iPhone than Android.

Funny, that.

*I’ve got a G1. It can only access Buzz through the updated Maps app, which brought up a bunch of people in nearby office parks posting things like “Testing Buzz” and “WTF is Google Buzz?”

**A few other phones have had updates announced, but I don’t think any have actually shipped yet. I could be wrong.

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2 thoughts on “Why Google Buzz Won’t Run on Your Android Phone (Yet)

  1. Diamonds

    Are they fucking stupid – most people have G1’s on 18 month contracts from when they first came out even, there are still hundreds of thousands of users.

    Reply
  2. Kelson Post author

    They’ve since added a link to “Continue on an unsupported device” if you go to buzz.google.com. Not ideal, and I’m sure pieces of it don’t quite work, but it’s better than nothing.

    On the other hand, Buzz seems to be a flop from what I can tell, so for most people, it may not matter.

    Reply

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