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Tablets are communal devices, but they're still holding on to the one-user ideal of smartphones.
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32 comments
 
I swear you all are psychic! Check my page to see what I just posted. This is the reason why I have been an avid reader.
 
The one user scenario of tablets is something I hate, but on the other hand, tablet makers love the idea you would buy more than 1 because of this (although I doubt it's intentional).
 
Jelly Bean has the basic code to implement multiple users built-in. The next version of Android might actually support the feature.
 
Beware of MS, windows is inherently multi-user and I expect with skydrive they will bring that ability to the tablet.
 
+Jake Weisz Or CyanogenMod 10. I know that they found the code and were playing with it, but I don't know if they're planning on putting it in
 
Google is working on multi-user code for Android. A lot of code for it is already in Jelly Bean. It is not quite finished, but it is coming.
 
I suppose they're multi-user devices.  I've never used them like that.
 
Yes, there is code within Jelly Bean for multi-user support. If you have root, you can actually enable what little implementation they have. Interesting things coming to Android, it seems.
 
+Mike Moore The only reason I want multi-user, is to lock down my accounts when my friends are messing with it.
 
I tried the new multi-user option in #jellybean  , it's great.  Hopefully it will be ready for #jellybean  soon and not only for a next version of Android.
 
+Mike Moore In a house with 2 parents and 2 kids, it doesn't make sense to buy 4 tablets financially. If you can have one or two tablets, that any of those four people can use and get a personal experience when the tablet recognizes their face I can't see that as being anything other than an advantage.

Segregating the device from the user's identity will let me pick up any device and that device is mine for the 5 minutes I use it. Then when the next person picks it up, it is theirs ... THAT is where we should be going.
 
I agree with +Andrew Eva, I have 4 kids in the house. A phone is one thing but I can't see a reason why a tablet needs to be tied personally to 1 person. The option to have a multi-user experience from a tablet makes a lot of sense in quite a few scenarios.
 
+León Castillejos Fernández Windows NT has been true multi-user for a long time. The consumer editions were not "multi-user" as you say because they used FAT32 as the file system. Windows NT used NTFS, which restricted file-level access and enforced programs to run according to multi-user policy.

XP was capable of using NTFS and properly implemented XP machines took advantage of file-level permissions in this way. Just because people didn't install it properly, does not mean that the OS was incapable of fully supporting it.

That being said, appearance is 9/10ths. If I sit down at a computer, put in my name, and get MY screen, that is multi-user to the eye of the average user. that is all they really want.
 
+Mike Moore Multiple user is very important. In a multi person household, wouldn't you like to be recognized by the device (either by your unlock pattern or camera recognition) and in the browser, they're your favourites, in the games, they're your highscores/achievements, in any other apps where "things are stored based on usage", it's your data. It makes total sense.
 
+León Castillejos Fernández we're talking about UX here, not under the hood security concerns, but thanks for throwing monkey wrenches into a decent discussion.

In regards to UX, Windows has support multi users since 95 or 98 (I forget)
 
+Mike Moore+Jake Weisz was agreeing with you when you started flaming. Reworded, Jake was saying the only good use for multi-user is to lock other people out of his tablet.
 
+Mike Moore lol, then why are you posting on here at all?
Edit: Mike decided to remove his comments of "I don't care". Guessing he's having a bad day and someone finally gave him a hug. Hope you have a good day, Mr Moore.
 
+Mike Moore Just trolling then ? Funny how he didn't care but now deleted all his posts. Instablock time.
Gary F
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That is certainly the problem around our household. Of the seven people in the house, the only one who doesn't use the iPad is my 4 month old. And she is probably going to start in a few months.
 
I'm pretty sure Google will fix this in the next iteration of Android per the xda-developer folks who identified a user-switching feature built-in.
 
There appears to be hints of multi user code hidden in JB, so might arrive as a feature soon.
 
+León Castillejos Fernández if you use NTFS permissions properly, that hasn't been possible for a very long time. But most consumers build with FAT32 because they are ignorant. Not using the proper settings is the fault of the OS any more than Android is responsible for people side-loading viruses.
 
I keep wishing for this feature every time my tablet magically has all it's settings and layouts changed after my girlfriend uses it.
 
+1 to this! Get on it Google! Nexus 7 for the fam! :)
 
If we get a tablet, it'll be shared by 2 kids, one of which will mess things up for the other one. (We discovered the hard way which image files needed to be locked down when the background picture for the other was rotated on the XP machine....)
 
Will I have to buy that $4.99 app twice for a two-user setup? Or that album I have in Google Music? Or that bestseller I bought on the Play store? 

It'll be interesting and important how this is structured for a multi-user setup. Users, app developers and copyright-owners will all be watching! 
 
+Niyant Dalal It's interesting, because since apps are licensed to the user, not the device, I think it's only fair multiple users should have to buy the app instead.
 
If World affairs don't settle down,
perhaps, nothing will be needed
any longer. Think about it.
 
The app usage license issue will be an interesting one. I can definitely see the use for this feature. I use my tablet as the main control for my media centre via xbmc. This will allow costomizable usability per user. For instance the favourites will actually be my favourites and not that of my entire household
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