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The Global Appeal of Android Operating Systems

Updated on January 12, 2016

Google is now the company in charge or further developing and improving the operating system. It acquired the operating system in 2005 for around $50 million.

Android devices favored in developing countries today. Android is a very popular operating system—the main rival of Apple’s IOS for global domination. It is a free for all program. Anyone in the world can use the operating system to build new applications. Compared to IOS, the process for reviewing apps is more straightforward and takes a shorter time to complete. Android-based apps are published on the play store much faster. These are just some of the reasons why its popularity is only getting stronger.

Android OS: A historical perspective

Android OS was designed by originally for cameras and not mobile phones. The company, Android Inc. was founded in Palo Alto in 2003. Andy Rubin once described the OS they built in 2004 as a smart digital camera platform. The Java-based OS, as it was then, allowed cameras to connect to personal computers and link via the Web with a datacenter for Android. Rubin and other key personalities in Android, Inc, namely Rich Miner, Nick Sears and Chris White, soon decided to re-design the operating system so that it can also be used for cell phones. Android developers aspired to create something worthy to compete with Windows and Symbian. The decision was based on their assessment of the buyer and market potential for the operating system at that time.

The birth of the Android smartphone

Google launched the first Android smartphone in 2008. The physical keyboard featured in the original design did not make it to the final form of the G1 or the HTC Dream. Instead, the phone was similar to the earlier released Apple iPhone in that it also had a touch screen. Instead of competing with Blackberry handsets, Android phones became the chief competition the iPhone. Today, more than three-fourths of smartphones shipped to different parts of the world use the Android operating system.

Big brands running on Android OS

Android is an open source system that is specifically intended for touch screen input. As such, it has become an indispensable tool for manufacturers of smartphones, tablets, cameras, gaming equipment, wearables technology, and other types of touchscreen devices. The operating system is activated in more than a million devices every day. Aside from the abovementioned electronics digital equipment, the OS also runs on television/media suite devices, home security systems, automotive systems, mini-PCs, and modern refrigerators.

While IOS is exclusive to Apple smartphones, a number of big names in the telecommunications and electronics industry in the world utilize Android. Companies such as OnePlus, ZTW, and Huawei offer affordable handheld devices. Meanwhile, global names such as LG, Sony, HTC, and Samsung are trying to fulfill the demands of customers who demand high performance Android devices, and are willing to pay more. Sony Ericsson, Lenovo, and Motorola are some of the other big names now vying for the attention of Adroid mobile phone users around the world.

The preference for smartphones running on Android OS

If someone asks the question, “Which Android smartphone is best?” then, a relatively long discussion usually ensues. There are many parameters to evaluate before anyone should make this decision. It is tough being sure whether a particular smartphone brand or model is actually a good purchase. That is, in the absence of a set of criteria.

In choosing from the many different Android devices, it is unwise to look only at the cost. A smart consumer makes the decision based on the results of an evaluation of certain parameters. To determine the smartphone’s value for money, the phone’s overall aesthetics is just one component. At the very least, a buyer must learn about the upgrade potential of the version of the handset’s operating system, as well as the overall performance of the hardware.

Google does not restrict other companies from using the operating system. While this is advantageous to consumers in that they have a wider selection, it makes the decision-making process on “which is the best phone” more complicated.

The benefits of Google’s flagship operating system

One of the reasons behind Android’s popularity is the ease of access to apps afforded to users. Google makes thousands of apps available to users, and most of them are free. Aside from the fact that games and media sharing apps are just a few clicks within reach, Android phones also allow multi-tasking. For instance, smartphone users who are chatting with one friend through one app can listen to songs at the same time. High-end handheld units have no trouble running more than one application without any lag or delay in phone function.

Moreover, users of Android devices get periodic reminders. Notifications appear onscreen, heralded by sound, blinking lights, or vibration. There is no reason to miss a new e-mail because the operating system will inform the user with a prompt notice. If the owner of the phone is elsewhere when a call comes in, the operating system notifies of the missed call, complete with details of the caller’s identity and the time the call was made. Real-time notification is one of the strengths of Android technology.

For many Android fans, the best thing about the operating system is its flexibility. Custom ROM options are varied and anyone can have a modified ROM installed. If a smartphone owner is far from satisfied with the standard look, then he or she can easily modify it. The available settings are also variable. With the help of widgets, handset homescreens settings can be molded after the user’s personal tastes and preferences. Some of the most popular widgets are “To-Do” lists, weather updates, and music players.

A world of possibilities on your fingertips

Essentially, Google’s operating system offers users so many possibilities. While Apple IOS users enjoy the perks of exclusivity, Android users have an unparalleled number of options. Custom home launchers make it so easy for Android phone users to come up with a personalized home screen. This is only possible in iPhones after a successful jailbreak; an illegal activity frowned upon by Apple, Inc. In terms of system-level functionality, most things are more convenient for Android users to avail. This is why a growing number of former Apple users are switching to the Android operating system.

It is also important to remember that because Google owns, operates, and updates the operating system, Android users have direct access to Google Voice. Doing online search without the need for manual navigation is one of the perks of Android smartphone users. There is no possibility for calls via Google Voice to be directed to the wrong dialer. The iPhone may be equipped for Google Voice, but it is not yet fully integrated.

Perhaps the biggest setback for Android devices is the quick draining of smartphone batteries. This is the consequence of the ongoing process operations in the background. As handsets continue to be more energy efficient, there will come a time when this will not be a problem for Android users anymore. For now, what is arguably the most widely used operating system in the world continues to see development to improve user experience.

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