Android – Its Features and Benefits
Just as Microsoft Windows is an Operating System (OS) for your computers and laptops, similarly, Android has been developed by Google as the OS for touchscreen mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets. Most of the mobile devices you see around you either run on Apple’s iOS or Google’s Android. Apart from these there are few lesser known mobile OS in the market.
Story of Android
The original developer of Android OS was Android Inc., which was headed by Andy Rubin. In 2005 Google bought over Android Inc. and this acquisition has been of great significance from business point of view. In 2013 Andy Rubin left the company and Sundar Pichai took over from him and Android’s popularity has been following a steep rising curve. An interesting fact about Android is its method of version nomenclature. The popularly known versions are Cupcake, Donut, Eclair, Froyo, Gingerbread, Honeycomb, Ice Cream Sandwich, Kitkat, Lollipop, all of which are names of desserts.
Why is Android Becoming so Popular?
Android is a Linux-based, free and open source software system. The distinguishing factor of this brand is a kernel. The Linux Kernel version of Android lies at the core of the OS.
But what is a kernel? The kernel is a whole lot of source code, which handles requests to and from the hardware, manages memory and different processes. The kernel can be said to be the intermediary link between the hardware and the software and they both communicate with each other through the kernel. So when you touch the phone, the system receives a touch event from the kernel, and knows what to do.
A kernel can be customized easily to provide improvements, extra features, specialization, and diverse configurability. Additional features can be added from other kernels outside your device and the I/O scheduler can be also configured.
One of the greatest attractions of Android is the wide-range of applications or apps which can be used for different purposes. Like Apple, Android has the collection of apps hosted in a store called Google Play. As per records of May 2013, there have been 48 billion app installs from the Google Play store. People are using them to stay organized, for fitness and lifestyle, for music and movie downloads, for sharing pictures and text, reading books, better typing with keyboard apps, and so on. Unlike Apple’s App Store, Google Play has few restrictions on the content of the applications and is a free-for-all kind of store. In fact you can even develop Android Applications by using the Software Development Kit. It is available for free and you do not need any coding skill for creating your own android application. This is a unique and attractive feature of Android which gives users greater flexibility and freedom to modify and customize the applications as per their liking and requirement.
Does Android Win Over iPhone?
Android has been marketed as a product for the common man who wishes to get maximum features at a low price. Further, an iPhone does not accept many SIM, whereas Android supports any SIM. Thus Android, a customisable, easy-to-use operating system, now powers more than a billion devices across the globe, from phones and tablets to watches, TV, cars and many other devices.
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