By now you have seen the commercials for the new Android phone that state that it is something that “does” things. The things that this new smart phone does were created by Android application developers in conjunction with Google. Introduced as an alternative to the iPhone, the very things that this smart phone does will be what can differentiate it from the competition.
What exactly is an Android phone and what does it do? Is it like the iPhone or better? To better understand what it is and what it can do, you first need a little background information on cell phones and how they work.
All cell phones smart or otherwise, have operating systems. This software that is permanently stored on your phone is what makes the phone function. In the past, these systems would only support apps or programs that were created by the original developers giving them complete control over the functionality of the phone. With Android, this is not the case.
Android features and open source operating system which means that anyone who wants to develop apps for the Android platform can. Android apps developers can create new applications or programs for anyone to use. This shift from the past proprietary systems gives freedom and offers advantages for users.
Some notable benefits are:
Application Variety. With innumerable apps developers using their creativity to develop unique apps, there can be an endless variety of types and functions of apps. Nearly any idea for an app that can be conceived can be made into reality.
Innovative applications. In the past, applications could take months to create. With this platform, Android developers can create their applications in less time while bringing new and fresh ideas to life.
Money saving. Due to the move past proprietary systems to open source systems, the cost of your cell phone will be reflective of the actual hardware as the costs for research and development will not be present. This used to be a major part of the cost of the phones in the past.
Multiple carriers. With Android you have your choice of cell phone carriers rather than just one carrier, like the iPhone. This can possibly be money saving as well as you can compare several companies to find the best plan for you. Additionally, there have been issues with the coverage area for iPhone users that may not be present with those that offer Android.
Multi-task. With the Android phone, the notification bar will alert you to various things such as new voice messages, email messages (in Gmail and others), Facebook notifications and new text messages for example. If the Android app developer created an app that has notification capability, it can alert you quickly and in the background without disrupting anything else you may be doing with your phone. With the iPhone, which depends on a single system where not all applications may have access, you do not have this ability.