Android is a mobile operating system developed by Google, based on the Linux kernel and designed primarily for touch screen mobile devices such as smart phones and tablets. Android is a mobile operating system that is based on a modified version of Linux. The first commercial version, Android 1.0, was released in September 2008. Android is continually developed by Google and the Open Handset Alliance, and it has seen a number of updates to its base operating system since the initial release.
- A free, open source mobile Platform.
- A Linux based, multiprocess, multithreaded OS.
- Android is not a device or product.
- It’s not even limited to phones-we could build a handled GPS , MP3 player.etc
What is Application?
An application is any program, or group of programs, that is designed for the end user. Android applications are usually developed in the Java language using the Android Software Development Kit. Once developed, Android applications can be packaged easily and sold out either through a store such as Google Play.
Application software can be divided into two general classes:
- Systems software
- Applications software
App versus Application : A similar phrase, app is used to describe a type of application that has a single functionality whereas an application may handle a number of functions.
What is Android software development?
Android software development is the process by which new applications are created for the Android devices operating system. Applications are usually developed in Java programming language using the Android software development kit (SDK), but other development environments are also available.
Advantages of Android Application Development
- It’s popular : According to the latest figures Android has more than 82% of the market share in the Smartphone market. More than one billion devices are powered by the operating system. The huge market creates many opportunities for businesses.
- It’s Free : Android being open source and free has a comparatively low entry barrier and this allows small businesses and start-ups to develop apps easily. This also ensures that businesses can price their apps more competitively.
- It’s Easy : With the help of its robust Software Development Kit (SDK) developers can easily build apps for businesses, entertainment and gaming. The SDK helps minimize the cost of development and licensing.
- Customizable UI : Google has always focused on making its User Interface customizable and this allows more opportunities for businesses and developers to get the best out of the UI and make their apps ever more engaging.
- Freedom & Innovation : This is the key philosophy at Google and this allows developers to put their imagination and creativity to use and come out with engaging apps. No other platform offers you this creative freedom.
- Easy Approvals : Android apps don’t need to go through any stringent approval process before making their way into the market. So from concept to an actual product making its way into the market place is shorter than others.
- Customization : Android offers more options for customization based on the needs of your business, and also the changing trends in the market. Developers can easily tweak the existing apps and make them more contemporary in their features and functionality.
- Multi-Network Distribution : Apart from Google Play the official app marketplace, Android apps are also distributed through several third-party marketplaces. This allows you to reach out to larger section of the audience and increase your market penetration.
- Hardware Compatible : Continuing with the earlier point, Android apps run on devices from different manufacturers with varied hardware configurations. This ensures that they offer great performance to the users irrespective of the device they use.
- Market Fragmentation : While fragmentation poses challenges for the developers, it also offers an equally lucrative opportunity for the businesses. No other mobile operating system powers devices in every segment of the market and this means a mass market at disposal.
Disadvantages of Android applications:
- Little Memory for Storage : You do have a memory card in your phone, but the system storage is small and you have to be very careful with your storage.
- Force Close on Large App/Games : This is another drawback of android OS, when you run large apps/Games most of the time android shows error force close which is definitely annoying. However this is not always the case with high end devices.
- Data Connection : Android has large number of background process which runs in the background, which eats so much mobile data. And thus cost lots of money if you are not into unlimited data plan.
- Battery Problem : While android has much process running in the background this increase the usage of RAM and decreasing Battery Performance
Uses of android
The Android operating system is used on
- Smart phones,
- Net books,
- Tablet computers
- Google TV and other device
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