Thursday, May 20, 2010

Android 2.2, Faster and with Flash

Android has now attracted 21 hardware makers and 60 carriers in 40 countries and there are now over 60 compatible Android devices. Google claims that over 100,000 new Android devices are activated every day.

According to Gartner Android OS has overtaken Windows Mobile to claim the fourth position among smartphone operating systems worldwide behind Symbian (44.3%), RIM (19.4%) and iPhone (15.4%). Android now has 9.6%, with a growth rate of some 700%, whilst Microsoft are stuck on 6.8%. The interesting trend is away from ordinary mobile phones to samrtphones and Android is perfectly positioned to pick up the existing manufactures business as they offer a multi vendor platform.

Google have announced Android 2.2 and claim that the new Dalvik JIT compiler will delivers between a 2 to 5 times performance improvement in CPU-bound code over Android 2.1 and the V8 JavaScript engine to the Android browser claims 2 to 3 times improvement in JavaScript performance vs. 2.1.. There are also many developer kit new features and improvements. Interestingly 2.2 will support wireless tethering and make it will be possible to use an Android handset as a WiFi hotspot, making its 3G connectivity available to other devices.

The most predicted and obvious change is the support of the latest version of Flash (10.1) which has been optimised to work on mobiles. Android is first to adopt 10.1 which is expected to be soon be available on other mobile platforms such as BlackBerry, Windows Mobile and Symbian. Many believe Apple’s open and hostile stance against Flash is right. Many others live in the real world and see the huge potential today to use proven and common technology long before HTML5 is fully comparable.

Google have also stated that they aim to sell music and when a user purchases a song, they will be able to have it automatically download on their device. Similarly, Google is also building a media bridge which will allow users to easily access their home music collection from their Android device.

Android has matured quickly and with Google’s commitment and resources is now a serioius competitor in the mobile space.

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