Welcome Android lollipop

In My Eyes: By Edward Antonio
The term android is akin to high tech, fellas.

Android phones, phablets and tablets are the common trend nowadays and they come in packages very affordable to the Filipino masses.

Recently, the most affordable phones have flooded the market with these phones all equipped with the latest android technology.

Late last year, Cherry Mobile came out with its Flare S3 KitKat android phone which has a quad core, 1 GB RAM, 1 GB ROM, 8 GB internal memory, a 13 MP rear camera coupled with a 5 MP front camera and 1.3 ghz clock speed.

Very fast, fellas, and very cheap at P3,999 per unit set. Its only setback is its 1800 maH battery. Early this year, it improved this version to octa core and improved its resolution and named it Flare S4, but still with its low-end battery power at 1800 maH and was priced at P4,499.

Starmobile, Arc Mobile, BS Mobile, Happy Mobile, Blackview and lately, SKK Mobile came out with their own octacore versions. SKK joined the bandwagon with its Lynx model with specs higher than the Flare S4. It has a battery with 2500 maH power, too, but priced at only P3,999.

The branded ones: Samsung, Lenovo, Sony, HTC, Alcatel, O+, Huawei and Motorola to name some, carry the same or even higher specs but are priced higher.

All of them are either Android Jelly Bean (JB) 4.2 or KitKat 4.4 version.

Now, this high-tech mobile cellphone world is bracing for android 5.0 and up version called Lollipop.

Just what is android, fellas?

Android is a mobile operating system (OS) based on the Linux kernel and currently developed by Google. With a user interface based on direct manipulation, Android is designed primarily for touchscreen mobile devices such as smartphonesand tablet computers, with specialized user interfaces for televisions (Android TV), cars (Android Auto), and wrist watches (Android Wear). The OS uses touch inputs that loosely correspond to real-world actions, like swiping, tapping, pinching, and reverse pinching to manipulate on-screen objects, and a virtual keyboard.

Each android version comes with a new feature for the phone.

The version history of the Android mobile operating system began with the release of the Android beta in November 2007. The first commercial version, Android 1.0, was released in September 2008. Android is under ongoing development by Google and the Open Handset Alliance (OHA), and has seen a number of updates to its base operating system since its initial release.

The most recent major Android update is Android 5.0 ”Lollipop”, or Android L which was released on November 3, 2014. Since April 2009, Android versions have been developed under aconfectionery-themed code name and released in alphabetical order, beginning with Android 1.5 “Cupcake”; the earlier versions 1.0 and 1.1 were not released under specific code names: Alpha (1.0), Beta (1.1), Cupcake (1.5), Donut (1.6), Eclair (2.0–2.1), Froyo (2.2–2.2.3), Gingerbread (2.3–2.3.7), Honeycomb (3.0–3.2.6), Ice Cream Sandwich (4.0–4.0.4), Jelly Bean (4.1–4.3.1), KitKat (4.4–4.4.4, 4.4W–4.4W.2) and the latest, Lollipop (5.0–5.1)

Google has introduced a new ‘Material Design’ look for Android Lollipop 5.0 – 5.1, which has also been offered to developers for use in their Android apps. Android L brings more depth to the operating system’s appearance using shadows, light and also automatically generates touches of color based on the content being displayed. There are also plenty of new animations making the OS feel different. The lock screen is the first thing you see when you switch on your device and it looks pretty different in Android L with the addition of notifications. You swipe up to unlock, left to launch the camera and right to open the dialer. The latter is a new feature.

There’s little change on the home screen, although Android L will come with new icons when it is released. The main thing to note is the style change for the navigations buttons which are now a triangle, circle and square for back, home and recent apps.

Recent apps have had something of an overhaul. The 2D list of open apps has been replaced with a 3D rotary style view which makes the old one look extremely dated. Each app has a card and can be swiped off to the side to close it as normal but also tap the ‘X’. A new feature here is that apps like Chrome will have individual cards for each open tab.

The drop down notification bar has also had a complete redesign with a different layout as well as the Material Design style. You swipe down from the top of the screen as per usual but instead of tapping a button, you swipe a second time to access quick settings – which now includes a screen brightness slider, notifications (including do not disturb), and cast screen.

So design is a massive change in Android L but there are other things too. Google has switched from the Dalvik to ART (Android runtime) which the firm says is up to twice as fast. The other big performance upgrade is support for 64-bit processors. We don’t have any 64-bit Android devices yet but they will arrive later this year, probably soon after or with Android L and this will boost performance.
A more tangible performance upgrade which we’re already experiencing is improvements on battery life. Something called Project Volta allows developers to identify where their apps are draining battery power so they can make improvements.

On top of this a new battery saver mode promises to add 90 minutes battery life, so it will be a similar story for most smartphones. In fact, when tested, it showed an improvement of more than 120 minutes which is very impressive.

A new feature which has been announced for Android L is location and proximity based levels of security. Not present in the developer preview, it will enable users to unlock their smartphone or tablet without entering a PIN, pattern lock or similar, but only when they are close enough to a device like an Android Wear smartwatch or in a location like their own home.

So, brace up for a higher hi-tech world , fellas.

Welcome, Lollipop!