Latest Android OS designed to bridge the gap between smartphones and tablet devices; Nexus phone features dual core 1.2GHz processor, 4G LTE
Search engine company Google has released the latest version of its Android OS, the Ice Cream Sandwich, on Samsung’s newest Galaxy Nexus smartphone.
The Galaxy Nexus will be the first smartphone to use the latest version of Google’s Android operating system.
Till now, Google has used one version of Android on smartphones and the newer version 3.0 Honeycomb on tablet devices. The latest OS aims to bridge the gap between smartphones and tablet devices. The Ice Cream Sandwich has been designed as a universal OS for all platforms. The OS is claimed to be more user-friendly interface and more compatible with mice, keyboards and game controllers.
Google executive Andy Rubin said the latest OS "works on phones and tablets and everything in between."
The Ice Cream Sandwich, which is the company’s Android OS 4, will compete with Apple’s latest iOS. The original date of the launch of the OS was 11 October, six days after the death of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs.
Unveiling the new OS on Samsung’s smartphone is also seen as a strategic decision to assuage fears that Google will abandon its OS partners after it announced plans to acquire phone maker Motorola earlier this year. South Korean Samsung and Taiwanese HTC are the biggest users of the Android platform. Samsung is also embroiled in a patent battle with Apple in several countries, facing sales ban in Australia and Germany just before the shopping season begins.
Google Mobile senior vice-president Andy Rubin wrote on the company blog that Galaxy Nexus features "the latest in software: Ice Cream Sandwich makes Android simple and beautiful, and takes the smartphone to beyond smart."
Rubin wrote about Samsung’s Galaxy Nexus, "With a super slim profile, Galaxy Nexus features a 4.65" Contour Display with true high definition (720p) resolution and a lightning-fast dual core 1.2GHz processor combined with 4G LTE or HSPA+ technology."
Rubin said that one of the main aims of the new OS was to offer an OS that works on a wide array of platforms.
Rubin wrote, "With Ice Cream Sandwich, our mission was to build a mobile OS that works on both phones and tablets, and to make the power of Android enticing and intuitive. We created a new font that’s optimised for HD displays and eliminated all hardware buttons in favour of adaptable software buttons. We also dramatically improved the keyboard, made notifications more interactive and created resizable widgets."
"The desktop-class browser is significantly faster, featuring a refined tab manager and the ability to sync your bookmarks with Google Chrome. Ice Cream Sandwich also features the best mobile Gmail experience to date, with a new design that lets you quickly swipe through your inbox and search messages even when you’re offline. Calendar boasts a clean new look and you can zoom into your schedule with a pinch."
"Galaxy Nexus sports a high-end camera with zero shutter lag, automatic focus, top notch low-light performance and a simple way to capture panoramic pictures. Shoot amazing photos or 1080p video, and then edit and share them directly from your phone," Rubin added.
Google has also introduced Android Beam, which uses near field communication (NFC) to share webpages, YouTube videos, maps, directions and apps by "simply tapping two phones together."
Another new feature ‘Face Unlock’ uses facial recognition technology to unlock your phone with nothing more than a smile, said the company.
Galaxy Nexus is expected to be available in the US, Canada, Europe and Asia in November.