During today’s flight to MacWorld/iWorld the Boeing 757 I was on, had to reboot their in flight entertainment system multiple times. These planes have been in service for some time. But the seats look to have been updated within the last 5 or so. I wasn’t surprised to see the Linux penguin during the boot sequence. As a matter of fact, a friend of mine has been leading the development team for one plane which recently rolled out to their customers, and they are using Android for their inflight entertainment system. The part that is surprising is that they are using Android 2.2 for their operating system. It seems that in some of these embedded systems they are not as current as the latest mobile phone.
This all got me thinking, for android apps, do you go for the largest potential customers, knowing that you will be 2-3 years out of date on operating system features? Or do you go for the new and cool features, knowing that you will have the potential for longer life for your app?