Android is a mobile operating system developed by Google, based on the Linux kernel and designed primarily for touchscreen mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets.Android was developed by the Open Handset Alliance, led by Google, and other companies.
The first beta version of the Android Software Development Kit (SDK) was released by Google in 2007 where as the first commercial version, Android 1.0, was released in September 2008.Android has the largest installed base of all operating systems (OS) of any kind.Android has been the best selling OS on tablets since 2013, and on smartphones it is dominant by any metric.
The source code for Android is available under free and open source software licenses. Google publishes most of the code under the Apache License version 2.0 and the rest, Linux kernel changes, under the GNU General Public License version 2.
Features of Android
|Messaging||SMS and MMS are available forms of messaging, including threaded text messaging and Android Cloud To Device Messaging (C2DM).|
|Voice-based features||Google search through voice has been available since initial release.Voice actions for calling, texting, navigation, etc. are supported on Android 2.2 onwards.|
|Multi-touch||Android has native support for multi-touch which was initially made available in handsets such as the HTC Hero.|
|Multitasking||Multitasking of applications, with unique handling of memory allocation, is available|
|Screen capture||Android supports capturing a screenshot by pressing the power and home-screen buttons at the same time.|
|TV recording||Android TV supports capturing video and replay it.|
|Multiple language support||Android supports multiple languages.|
|Resizable widgets||Widgets are resizable, so users can expand them to show more content or shrink them to save space|
|Connectivity||GSM/EDGE, IDEN, CDMA, EV-DO, UMTS, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, LTE, NFC and WiMAX.|
|Media support||H.263, H.264, MPEG-4 SP, AMR, AMR-WB, AAC, HE-AAC, AAC 5.1, MP3, MIDI, Ogg Vorbis, WAV, JPEG, PNG, GIF, and BMP|
|Storage||SQLite, a lightweight relational database, is used for data storage purposes.|
|Android Beam||A popular NFC-based technology that lets users instantly share, just by touching two NFC-enabled phones together.|
Categories of Android applications
There are many android applications in the market. The top categories are :-
History of Android
The version history of the Android mobile operating system began with the release of the Android alpha in November 2007. The first commercial version, Android 1.0, was released in September 2008.
Versions 1.0 and 1.1 were not released under specific code names, but since April 2009’s Android 1.5 “Cupcake”, Android versions have had confectionery-themed code names. Each is in alphabetical order, with the most recent being Android 7.0 “Nougat”, released in August 2016.