Android OS was built by Apple engineer Andy Rubin and his team back in 2003. The World’s most popular operating system will turn six years old this year. Initially based on a Linux Kernel, it was acquired by Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) in 2005 and was officially released as an OS by Google in 2008. HTC dream or T-mobile G1 was the first phone that featured Android. Google leveraged on the mobile OS to promote its search engine and other services like Maps and Gmail. With its open source platform, Android was quickly modified by vendors to incorporate into their range of Smartphones. The brand became a huge success and captured 79% of the Smartphone market in 2013. Last year alone a total of 758 million Android devices were sold. At least 60% of all Android devices, currently available in the market, run on Android Jelly Bean, while the latest version Kitkat has 1.4% market share. The various Android versions are famously named after sweets and treats.
Here is an interesting infographic on the Evolution of Android that highlights a few of the greatest milestones Android has achieved till now.
- Android has been activated on more than 1 billion devices. The Galaxy S4 was the fastest selling Android phone that recorded sales of more than 10 million units in the first month alone.
- More than 500,000 apps are available for Android phones and tablets.
- 20,000 new apps are added to Google Play each month.
- Google Map, Gmail and YouTube are among the top downloaded apps from Google Play.
Yesterday, Google has introduced a new tweaked version of Android, dubbed as Android Wear, especially designed for Smartwatches. The year 2014 is being considered as the year of wearable devices due to the fact that the year is laying foundation for the many mind-boggling wearable gadgets that will be introduced in the next few years. Therefore, it’s evident that Google has a long way to go with Android success and if a few top vendors, like Samsung and LG, would continue their support to Android, a few other companies – especially Apple and Microsoft have quite a narrow lane to park their iOS and Windows Phone OS rides.