Android devices, such as the Motorola Milestone A 854 and HTC Desire 6275, use the Android software stack which was purchased by Google, who then made it open source enabling it to be used by any developer working on software for mobile devices. Android was built on the Linux Kernel, and can be used to develop mobile applications that make full use of the true potential of a mobile handset, and enable developers to combine the various functions that a handset is capable of providing.
Using Android, your phone’s core applications can combine with third party applications to offer services not otherwise possible, such as combining internet data with that on your cell phone, which would not be possible without Android. You can design your phone to match your interests, and make full use of mobile broadband and wireless internet applications. In other words, by using Android a developer can enable you to use your phone in ways not possible without it.
Because it is open source software, anybody can use it, and it is currently installed on a number of Android devices, including smartphones marketed by Acer, Cherry, HTC, LG, Motorola, Samsung and Sony Ericsson, and also on some tablets and e-readers. Where installed, full use can be made of the Android Market, offering a number of applications such as the free Time Mobile, offer the latest from Time Magazine and Sports Tap, also free, providing the latest sports results and stats.
To make full use of Android devices you will need Wireless internet and Mobile broadband (such as in the Motorola Milestone X MB810). With Wireless internet, or Wi-Fi, you can access the internet through ‘hotspots’ allowing wireless access to a router wired to the internet. Mobile broadband, such as 3G, allows internet access from anywhere at any time, and most mobile phones these days have mobile broadband technology integrated into their software.
Mobile broadband offers wireless high-speed internet access by means of a portable modem, cell phone or any other device that can access a wireless signal. It is available to laptops via a USB ‘dongle’ that provides a connection, and other Android devices that can provide mobile broadband connections are PC cards, notebooks with built in mobile broadband modules and all leading laptops.
One of the advantages claimed for Android is that because it is open source, more developers will use it because it’s free, and the fact that it is implemented under an Apache license enables Android to be more easily used in software development. You should thus be able to connect your smartphone to car radios and many other Android devices.
A smartphone using Android always knows where you are, and one of the apps on Android Market is known as Aloqa. No matter where you are, Aloqa will make real time recommendations to your phone based on your choice of preferences in respect of restaurants, music, hotels, events and activities close to where you are at the time. This can be done because Android enables developers to interface the location of your device with other devices that can offer you this type of information.
Naturally, this also makes use of wireless internet or mobile broadband. Without either of these connections, Android would be extremely limited in application, as would other smartphones that don’t use it such as Blackberry. Blackberry has its own platform and its own version of some of the apps on Google’s Android Market.
So the obvious next question is which is better – Android devices or Blackberry or even Apple’s iPhone system. If sales matter, then the Android platform phones are selling better in the USA than iPhones, while Blackberry (RIM platform) and Window’s Phone 7 (Windows Mobile platform) dropped even more. Android phones now have 33% of the American cell phone market. It’s not a matter of how they compare technically, but how many phone manufacturers are using each platform.
Naturally, you will find the best selling platform will have most apps, and Google is expanding its range of apps on Android Market. Not all are free, but a good number are. Among them are the highly rated games Robot Defense and Spec Trek. Both are extremely popular, but why not pop over to Android Market and check out what they have. Some are free while others are not so free.
Most Android devices therefore, such as the LG Axis 740, will also offer a WiFi internet connection and likely mobile broadband to enable you to make the most of the Android platform and apps downloadable from Android market. There must be some reason for most cell phones being supplied with Android, and Google is currently tightening up the rules regarding its use so that it less fragmented with more interoperability between applications and Android devices.