I'm talking about users. There effectively is very little freedom.
And I do not know what happens to the kernel between versions, so I do not know what APIs were adversely affected.
I remember WAY back in the Atari days people programming against non-standard APIs (or, rather, not sticking to the documented "entry points" as we called them then), taking advantage of things in the OS. Then there was an OS revision and everybody who did that had their programs break. Users had to basically load the old OS version from disk to use the programs. Not a good idea. It's the OS vendor's responsibilty to publish what happens with APIs and the developers' responsibility to stick with the APIs.
and I know that Froyo supports multi-language keyboards VERY well
On my phone that was introduced here less than a year ago, I will never see carrier-supported Froyo.
And you can download a German keyboard quite easily. Just like you have to do on an iPhone.
The iPhone gives the umlauts in the way that Android recently copied for Froyo. Otherwise, the iPhone has the German keyboard built-in. But thanks for the link. I'll check it out.
Freedom for developers provides freedom for users. How about a different home screen? With Android, the user can play with that. With the iPhone, they cannot. Not because the iPhone cannot technically support different homescreen layouts, but because Apple won't give developers the freedom.
Locking down developers necessarily locks down innovation. And that hinders the users.