Do You Own a Smartphone?
Most likely you do. Changes are incredibly high that you own an Android smartphone. Currently Android is on the most commonly used smartphone OS in the world. While Android cannot say that it started the smartphone revolution, perhaps Apple can claim that title, it can proudly say that it brought the idea of the what a smartphone should be to the masses.
Brought the idea to the masses? Look at the newest features of the current competitors to Android. Notifications and widgets are both big features that are being touted. This post is not written nor intended to be a bashing of one product vs. another. I wish to extol the features of the Android ecosystem most beneficial.
The number one reason I like Android is that it ties in the services that I normally use every day. GMail is the number one online email system. Google Maps is a superb tool for getting directions, planning trips, and, perhaps the coolest part, seeing street level images. Music, Google+, and of course search also are tightly integrated into the platform. Each of these tools I rely on in some way every single day. I could probably write a whole article on all the services provided by Google. Actually, I may do that!
Most people could understand a smartphone with a tight vendor integration. In a very simple manner you could say the same about Android and Google. What makes this coupling more than just a branded phone is how Google built the OS to not just be an extension of their services but to remake how we think of our phones as tools.
Google is all about getting you to the information from the internet. Widgets are all about getting you the information from your phone. Widgets live on the main screens of your phone. They can deliver information about the weather in your current location, emails received, and social media updates.
Widgets are just one way of getting information to the end user. Notifications bring instant updates to you so that you can immediately get snippets of information from almost any point in your phone.
Being able to switch from one program to another is something we’ve been doing on computers for years. We’re all busy people. Going to an OS that only allows doing one thing at a time just seems silly. I don’t even have a quip about it! If you’re reading an email and need to quickly search something on the web and then get that into a text while still being able to have that web page open when you return
Over the last year voice actions have become a big selling point of smartphones. Google with Android brought out a voice action and search feature of its own called Google Now. Google Now empowers users by giving them quick voice searching throughout the Android OS. Searches within Google Now use the searching functionality baked right into Android. Things like applications, contacts, and the web are easily searched by just opening Google Now and saying “Google”. Google Now also brings important information right into one easy screen for viewing. Weather, appointments, and many other pieces of information are shown to the user right under the search box.
Great! Who’s Phone Do I Buy?
That’s the best part of Andriod! You can buy from Google, Samsung, LG, Sony, or a handful of other phone manufacturers. Each company adds their own special flavoring to Android. This can make a great Android phone better (or in some cases worse). You can choose from whatever you’d like!