What is Android?

What is Android?

Put simply Android is an Operating System created by Google to give better performance on lower spec machines (Typically tablets, Netbooks and mobile smart phones).

The History of Android

Android is a Linux based operating System that didn’t begin life in development under the Google banner. Google did however financially back Android Inc, creators of the OS, and then seeing the immense potential of the new OS, bought the company in 2005, and further pushed development and vigorously pushed ‘Open Standards’ between the parties involved in mobile phone manufacture. This ultimately led to the first Android OS mobile phone being sold in late 2008.

OS Versions

Version 1 – and all sub 2.0 versions – Never used for commercial release

Version 2 – Which ultimately we are still on today (March 2013) has many variants which ultimately are dependent on the API Level.

The latest current version is 4.2 which is known by its Nickname “Jelly Bean”. This is API Level 17

The Playful Nicknames began with CupCake 1.5 back in September 2009 and were followed by (In Order);

Donut 1.6
Eclair 2.0 + 2.0.1 + 2.1
Froyo 2.2
GingerBread 2.3 + 2.3.3
HoneyComb 3.0 + 3.1 + 3.2
Ice Cream Sandwhich (ICS for short) 4.0 + 4.0.3
& of course the latest one as mentioned Jelly Bean 4.2 + 4.1

Each version has had significant improvements over its former release, so it’s very wise to check when buying a device that it supports the latest OS, and if it doesn’t take a look to see what features you’re going to be missing out on.

Why Android?

It fast, fluid¬† intuitive and optimised for touch (all the things Windows 8 promised to be but as of yet, in our opinion, hasn’t delivered on)

Firstly Android is available through 100’s if not thousands of different manufacturers, giving you enormous variety of devices to choose from.
Be it a small ultra portable device, or a large fully touch tablet with options for adding Bluetooth keyboard support.

It has a huge development team behind it and is constantly being improved and upgraded.

It boasts to have more free apps available to install than any of its rival OS’s in the same marketplace.

It allows for far more customisation of how you use and view things within your device.

Why not to go Android?

If you buy from an unbranded company you may find the Support non existent or poor should something go wrong? Our recommendation buy Branded such as Samsung, Google’s Nexus etc…

Unlike Apples App store (which heavily restricts what can be installed on your device), Googles open approach allowing users to install apps from multiple sources, (Not all trusted), allow for malicious or poorly written programs to get out their and onto people phones, sometimes with severely costly consequences!

Manufacturers often take time to test the latest updates out on their hardware before releasing updates to allow your device to use the latest OS, and some Unbranded manufacturers imply don’t care once they’ve moved on to newer devices.

Security – Covered above by malicious Apps, but it’s a genuine concern. With fraudsters creating bogus games that secretly access data on your phones and relay back to the developer, or make Premium rate calls in the background, which catch you unaware until the ‘Big Bill’ drops through your letter box at the end of the month. As with most security issue these can be easily avoided by being Vigilant, and only ever installing apps from long term developers with trusted reputations.