Google Android vs Apple iOS. The mobile OS began when Steve Jobs released the iPhone in 2007, and it is still on fire today. Google has just taken the newest swing in the fight with their release of Android 4.4, dubbed as “Android Kit-Kat”.
On October 31st, 2013, Google finally unveiled their latest operating system—Android Kit-Kat—and to match it, a new smartphone named the Nexus 5. This reference-design phone (manufactured by LG) is the first to be equipped with Android 4.4, and it’s electrified the market. Specs, display, price, there’s nothing it lacks except design. The Nexus 5 also works unlocked, so you can use it anywhere in the world.
The true highlight of the OS launch hides behind something called “Project Svelte”. This makes Kit-Kat a welcoming release in that it can now support more low-end devices than previous updates. Google set out to make the Android 4.4 more accessible to older, cheaper devices; instead of the 1 GB of RAM encouraged for the previous version, 4.4 now only requires a minimum of 512 MB of RAM to be able to be used comfortably. This way, more phones can experience the crucial benefits of Kit-Kat.
One benefit of Android 4.4 is the increased integration of Google Now. Google Now is a search assistant giving you relevant information without having to search for it. Searching Google on Android 4.4 is easier through a more accurate voice search (that listens 25% better) and a new portion of the home screen dedicated to Google Now and its cards. The message application, too, has been changed into Google Hangouts so that all messages from Google Plus and SMS can be viewed in one place.
The overall user interface is also improved. The transition across different screens is smooth (ignoring the camera app, which is somewhat jumpy) and multitasking is more efficient with fewer crashes and lags. The general aesthetics underwent a small redesign, too, with more whites and greys than the all-black predecessor. Icons are bigger and less cluttered, making for a more organized visual. However, the general looks will still stay similar to the past Android 4.1 and 4.2.
So, with all these improvements, when will you be able to get Android 4.4? That’s up to your smartphone’s manufacturer and when they release an update to your model. Good luck, all you Samsung-endorsers, as Samsung’s says that updates are “in due course”. Don’t expect it anytime soon.