re: Google Has Lost Control Of Android Fragmentation
The key difference between Android and Apple (and to a lesser extent, Microsoft) is the devices themselves. There are very basic Android phones that have no need of the higher numbered versions of Android. The same goes for tablets. The sub-$100 ones you see at a drug store run a very basic phone version of Android, and for their intended purposes... e-reading, basic web surfing, etc... are more than adequate. Android allows the freedom for different manufacturers to offer a different Android experience. The market will decide which is the winner.
Apple phones only differ in color and memory... when bought new. iOS 5 will not load onto older iPhones or iPod touch devices. That sounds like fragmentation to me. But, since they only have one current phone, they get a pass on the subject. Windows phone? Well, go try to load WP7 on an older Windows phone, like v6.1, and see what happens.
What Google IS doing is unifying the operating systems between tablets and phones. Instead of Gingerbread on the phone and Honeycomb on the tablet, Ice Cream Sandwich will serve both. Microsoft will be trying this the next time around, too with Windows 8.
And as far as Apple selling phones on the cheap... they're not. The carriers are. They're selling subsidized phones through AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon Wireless, taking a hit on the device and making it up on the contracts. Oh, and China? Probably don't want to bring that up with Apple, considering the problem they're having at their subcontractors plants there, what with the toxic waste, suicides, poor living conditions, working conditions, etc.
"Android Fragmentation" is simply a talking point used by people trying to push another OS. People who regularly use Android don't care. Just as iPhone 4s and WP7 owners don't care about fragmentation on their side, either.