Android™ delivers a complete set of software for mobile devices: an operating system, middleware and key mobile applications.
Open Android was built from the ground-up to enable developers to create compelling mobile applications that take full advantage of all a handset has to offer. It was built to be truly open. For example, an application can call upon any of the phone’s core functionality such as making calls, sending text messages, or using the camera, allowing developers to create richer and more cohesive experiences for users. Android is built on the open Linux Kernel. Furthermore, it utilizes a custom virtual machine that was designed to optimize memory and hardware resources in a mobile environment. Android is open source; it can be liberally extended to incorporate new cutting edge technologies as they emerge. The platform will continue to evolve as the developer community works together to build innovative mobile applications.
All applications are created equal Android does not differentiate between the phone’s core applications and third-party applications. They can all be built to have equal access to a phone’s capabilities providing users with a broad spectrum of applications and services. With devices built on the Android Platform, users are able to fully tailor the phone to their interests. They can swap out the phones homescreen, the style of the dialer, or any of the applications. They can even instruct their phones to use their favorite photo viewing application to handle the viewing of all photos.
Breaking down application boundaries Android breaks down the barriers to building new and innovative applications. For example, a developer can combine information from the web with data on an individual’s mobile phone — such as the user’s contacts, calendar, or geographic location — to provide a more relevant user experience. With Android, a developer can build an application that enables users to view the location of their friends and be alerted when they are in the vicinity giving them a chance to connect.
Fast & easy application development Android provides access to a wide range of useful libraries and tools that can be used to build rich applications. For example, Android enables developers to obtain the location of the device, and allows devices to communicate with one another enabling rich peer–to–peer social applications. In addition, Android includes a full set of tools that have been built from the ground up alongside the platform providing developers with high productivity and deep insight into their applications.
HISTORY OF ANDROID Android, Inc. was founded in Palo Alto, California in October 2003 by Andy Rubin (co-founder of Danger),Rich Miner (co-founder of Wildfire Communications, Inc.),Nick Sears (once VP at T- Mobile), and Chris White (headed design and interface development at WebTV) to develop, in Rubins words "smarter mobile devices that are more aware of its owners location and preferences". Despite the past accomplishments of the founders and early employees, Android Inc. operated secretly, revealing only that it was working on software for mobile phones. That same year, Rubin ran out of money. Steve Perlman, a close friend of Rubin, brought him $10,000 in cash in an envelope and refused a stake in the company.
Google acquired Android Inc. on August 17, 2005, making it a wholly owned subsidiary of Google. Key employees of Android Inc., including Rubin, Miner and White, stayed at the company after the acquisition. Not much was known about Android Inc. at the time, but many assumed that Google was planning to enter the mobile phone market with this move. At Google, the team led by Rubin developed a mobile device platform powered by the Linux kernel. Google marketed the platform to handset makers and carriers on the promise of providing a flexible, upgradable system. Google had lined up a series of hardware component and software partners and signaled to carriers that it was open to various degrees of cooperation on their part.
Speculation about Googles intention to enter the mobile communications market continued to build through December 2006. Reports from the BBC and the Wall Street Journal noted that Google wanted its search and applications on mobile phones and it was working hard to deliver that. Print and online media outlets soon reported rumors that Google was developing a Google-branded handset. Some speculated that as Google was defining technical specifications, it was showing prototypes to cell phone manufacturers and network operators. In September 2007, InformationWeek covered an Evalueserve study reporting that Google had filed several patent applications in the area of mobile telephony.
On November 5, 2007, the Open Handset Alliance, a consortium of technology companies including Google, device manufacturers such as HTC and Samsung, wireless carriers such as Sprint Nextel and T- Mobile, and chipset makers such as Qualcomm and Texas Instruments, unveiled itself, with a goal to develop open standards for mobile devices. That day, Android was unveiled as its first product, a mobile device platform built on the Linux kernel version 2.6. The first commercially available phone to run Android was the HTC Dream, released on October 22, 2008.
Since 2008, Android has seen numerous updates which have incrementally improved the operating system, adding new features and fixing bugs in previous releases. Each major release is named in alphabetical order after a dessert or sugary treat; for example, version 1.5 Cupcake was followed by 1.6 Donut. The latest release is 4.2 Jelly Bean. In 2010, Google launched its Nexus series of devices—a line of smartphones and tablets running the Android operating system, and built by a manufacturer partner. HTC collaborated with Google to release the first Nexus smartphone, the Nexus One. The series has since been updated with newer devices, such as the Nexus 4 phone and Nexus 10 tablet, made by LG and Samsung, respectively. Google releases the Nexus phones and tablets to act as their flagship Android devices, demonstrating Androids latest software and hardware features.
ANDROID CUPCAKE V1.5 or Cupcake was realesed in April 2009. It had several new approvments. Among the new features were Widgets for embeded small apps Contacts improvements invluding the pictures added to ever contact Animations for smooth scrolling and screen changes Blutooth support update for audio pairing and sharing
ANDROID DONUT V1.6 or Donut was realesed in Septemeber of 2009 and had many improvements Voice and Text Improvements Touch Screen improvments Multi select for photos Camara access improvments and faster access Search Option for faster access
ANDROID ECLAIR V2.0/2.0.1/2.1 or Eclair was released in Oct 2009 and had several improvments and looks remarkably simular to todays Android versions. Blutooth 2.1 support Hardware and U.I. improvments Calender improvements for date and not settings Account Sinc improvements allow user to sinc multiable account on one phone Multi Touch improvements to allow better multitouch support Screen size and contrast improvements. Include bigger screens and better contrast ratios
ANDROID FROYO Android 2.2/2.2.1/2.2.2/2.2.3 or Frozen Yogurt(Froyo) was released May of 2010 and improved on many features. There were many key features in this version of Android including Adobe Flash support for rich web content Speed and memory improvements Cloud messaging support USB tethering Multi Language support Bluetooth dock and car support WiFi hotspots support JIT Compilation for application speed improvements
ANDROID GINGERBREAD 2.3/2.3./2.3.3./2.3.4 or Gingerbread was released in December of 2010 and as of the time of this writing has become the most widely used Android version. Some of the new features included U.I. or Interface improvements gave it a more simple but quicker interface Virtual Keyboard updated and improved for a better and faster layout. copy/paste enhancements where a user could just press and hold New Codec support for more audio/video formats Power Management enhancements gyroscope/barometers support input enhancements for game developers
ANDROID HONEYCOMB V 3.0/3.1/3.2 or Honeycomb was released in Feb of 2011 and was a tablet(and later Google TV) only release. Some of its features included Holographic interface that was optimized for a tablet U.I. Improved keyboard support for larger screens Multi Core processor support Hardware acceleration for faster hardware view gallery in full screen interface System bar for better multitasking that allows you to switch from one app to another. Resizable homescreen widgets(3.1+) external keyboard/mouse support (3.1+) FLAC audio codec support (3.1+)
ANDROID ICE CREAMSANDWICH Android 4.0/4.01 was first released in Oct 2011 and was a major improvment upon both 2.x and 3.x. It blended both interfaces and had full support for both phones and tablets. Some of the notable features included Folder system improvements making easier to create. Launcher improved to be customizable Tabbed Browsing improved to allow up to 16 tabs facial recognition support to locking/unlocking phone photo editor built in to Android 4.x Android Beam support to share contacts and files Crome Bookmark sync support WiFi direct support to connect with other users without access point User Interface hardware acceleration for faster access.
ANDROID JELLYBEAN Android 4.1 Android Jellybean saw full release in early 2012 and improved on Android 4.0 in many ways. It took the common features of Android 4.0 and made it more fluid.some features include: Browser has improved performance, CPU and memory efficiency Full HTML 5 support to bring Android up to new web standards Calendar is improved and has features blend with one another bidirectional text means more input languages to make the platform accessible to more people around the world. dictionaries are now more accurate and more relevant