HTC's claim that its gaming of the benchmarking system is actually a feature of the HTC One M8 has been laughed at by the makers of the 3Dmark tool, with the M8 accused of cheating and dumped to last place in the tables. Which, in the packed world of Android, means the HTC powerhouse is now around 1,000th position in the performance charts.
Meanwhile, Samsung, which kicked off the whole cheating benchmarks thing last year, has apparently abandoned the practise in the Galaxy S5, with reviewers finding no evidence of any benchmark boosting system being in place.
Thing is, though, Android phones are so widespread they're bought by your dad now. Admittedly he's probably been conned into upgrading to a first-gen Galaxy Ace, but still. The vast majority of Android owners wouldn't know how to perform a benchmark test, and wouldn't understand what the results mean, not even when you do one in front of them and triumphantly show them the bar chart of justice that proves spending £500 on a mobile again this year was a good idea.
Isn't it time people started judging phones on more useful criteria than how well they can render a 3D dinosaur under laboratory conditions? Battery life and display strength, proper real-world criteria that have an actual impact on usability, ought to be given ten times as much weight than some spurious bar chart an app has generated, a chart that may or more likely may not tell you how good a phone is at refreshing Twitter.
My dad would like a phone that won't break. One that won't be flat the one time a month he needs to use it. One that can be used in sunlight without having to pull his Asda fleece over his head. One that won't get scratched to bits in a week. He's not particularly keen on 3D gaming, so won't take a lot of pleasure from knowing his phone's marginally better at rendering an image of a rotating moon than the LG Optimus 3D.
One day you'll be a dad too, and maybe justifying your tech purchases on whether your phone's bar chart is slightly better than someone else's phone's bar chart might seem a little... childish? [Futuremark via Android Community]