If it’s not an iPhone, its an Android phone. Running over 88% of smartphones today, Android has turned 10, having been launched on September 23, 2008 by Google. Over the past decade, Android has grown by leaps and bounds, with a new upgrade every year. The current version is 9.0 Pie, which was released in August 2018.
Android was founded in 2004 by a tech entrepreneur Andy Rubin, along with Rich Miner, Nick Sears and Chris White. Originally, Android was developed as an operating system for digital cameras and eventually look at handsets. One year later, Google acquired the company for $50 million.
The first Android phone to be launched was T-Mobile G1 also known as HTC Dream. A small smartphone maker at the time, HTC was the first company to bet on Android. HTC Dream was released in UA and some parts of Europe.
However, unlike the first iPhone, this wasn’t a touch phone. HTC Dream had a physical sliding keyboard.
Android has been an open-source platform, which would allow manufacturers to develop their own mobile interfaces based on Android framework.
Samsung was another smartphone maker to bet on Android and released its first Android phone in 2009. This was the first Galaxy phone - the Galaxy i7500. Though this device didn’t do well, it was the beginning of what is today iPhone’s toughest competition. Building on the galaxy series it launched the Galaxy S in 2011.
Google too, launched the popular Nexus smartphones in 2010 with clean Android and instant updates.
Eventually, Android’s adoption began growing with nearly every non-Apple brand using Android as an OS, becoming the go-to alternative to iPhones and iOS.
As of 2017, more than 2 billion devices across the globe run on Android. And from Android Market, which had a handful of apps, Google Play today has millions of apps spanning across categories.
As for the OS, every year, Google has been releasing a new version named after a dessert with new upgrades and features.
So far, the versions of Android operating systems are Android 1.6 Donut, Android 2.1 Éclair, Android 2.2 Froyo, Android 2.3 Gingerbread, Android 3.0 Honeycomb, Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, Android 4.4 KitKat, Android 5.0 lollipops, Android 6.0 Marshmallow, Android 7 is also called Nougat, Android 8 Oreo and latest version of Android released in the month of August.
Android now works on platforms beyond just smartphones. Google has developed the OS for televisions, for smartwatches, smart home devices, VR Headsets and has even developed Android Auto for cars. As per reports, some variants of Android OS is also in game consoles and Digital Cameras and PCs and other Electronics.