Google has created an open source environment for mobile phones — Android. Unlike the phone software currently in use, this software would be free for phone manufacturers and allow users more flexibility in loading the applications they want. Android includes:
- Operating system based on Linux
- Media support
- GSM telephony
- Bluetooth, EDGE, 3G, WiFi
- Camera, GPS, compass
- Development environment
There are other features, but these are the ones I understand. 😉
In February, four companies that create processors for mobile phones demonstrated Android in a real environment. PC Magazine was there and provided a summary of how well it really worked, as well as pictures of each of the demonstrations. The author said the most surprising thing was how quick Android ran on slow devices. The four vendors implemented Android in different ways, resulting in not only different interfaces, but also different running applications.
Android phones should be available later this year.