/e/OS Review: This Operating System Is Better Than Android. You Should Try It Leave a comment

{Photograph}: Scott Gilbertson

Whereas I just like the privateness options of /e/OS and have even taken to spoofing my geodata a lot of the time, the actual killer characteristic to me is the /e/OS app retailer, which is called the App Lounge. Once I used LineageOS, I put in apps from a number of totally different app shops. There’s F-Droid, which hosts open supply apps, and Uptodown, which just a few apps I exploit help (Vivaldi being the principle one), after which I had just a few I might solely get by way of the Google Play Retailer. As anybody utilizing LineageOS can inform you, it is rather a lot to maintain monitor of.

The /e/OS App Lounge combines apps from quite a lot of sources, together with the Play Retailer and F-Droid, amongst others, making all of them accessible in a single place. (You can even decide to solely present open supply apps.)

Additionally good is the choice to remain nameless when connecting to any of the app shops, though you have to to be logged in to get the apps you paid for, since these are tied to your consumer ID. I’ve additionally had the nameless login fail just a few instances, giving me token errors. This is among the few locations I’ve had points with /e/OS.

The App Lounge makes use of a well-known design that appears like Google Play however provides just a few options. The primary is that App Lounge offers privateness details about every app, grading it on a 1 to 10 scale, the place 1 is horrible for privateness and 10 typically means no trackers. The App Lounge additionally grades apps in keeping with which permissions they require. The less permissions (like entry to your images or geodata), the upper the ranking. It is a good means of offering complicated data in a means anybody can simply parse.

In a win for the bigger Android-alt neighborhood, /e/OS claims to be engaged on making the App Lounge accessible as an app that may be put in wherever. (Within the meantime, the Aurora Retailer is an in depth different.)

What Doesn’t Work

As a lot as I really like /e/OS, it isn’t excellent. I’ve had some minor points with geodata. I stay on the street, so my location adjustments each couple of weeks. Typically /e/OS is sluggish to choose up on this, and the Maps app will present me search outcomes based mostly on the place I used to be final week. The included Maps app itself continues to be tough across the edges (and makes use of some proprietary code). It is higher and extra correct than each different map app I’ve tried, nevertheless it is not pretty much as good as Google Maps. I do not care what you consider Google; its Maps app is unmatched. I nonetheless use it as a backup when the default /e/OS app does not discover what I would like.

The opposite large lacking characteristic for me is speech-to-text. Proper now, /e/OS ships with out speech-to-text in any respect. There is a good abstract of the choices accessible within the /e/OS boards. None of them are supreme, however I’ve managed to get by with a mix of Sayboard and the inventory /e/OS keyboard. The excellent news is {that a} built-in speech-to-text characteristic is on the street map for /e/OS in 2024. This may even open the door to an /e/OS assistant, which isn’t at the moment accessible. The mission is unclear about what kind this would possibly take, given the privateness implications of interacting with a server to reply queries, however one chance is a big language mannequin working domestically.

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