On Monday, Google unveiled in New Delhi and Mumbai, the first smartphone platform Android One. They are positioned as a mass models available for around a hundred dollars. While smartphones are quite functional and quite powerful – these characteristics are found today and sets an average price segment.
In the background saturation of domestic markets in Europe and the United States, India is now extremely attractive to IT companies, as the entire South Asian the region has a huge potential. In recent years, large corporations fight for it ignite serious. Especially noticeable efforts of firms to attract buyers budget decisions that are in the highest demand in poorer countries.
Because of its undemanding to iron of widespread mobile OS there are different versions of the Android OS and is gaining popularity Firefox OS. In the lower price segment of iOS is not represented at all, except for the very old models of iPhone. Complicated situation with Nokia X. Microsoft first prematurely buries its platform for budget smartphones, and then hastily reanimates it and trying to make everyone forget what OS from source created it.
In this situation, Google is not too difficult strengthen its already strong position. Project Android One – it’s more affiliate than software development initiative. It is built on a well-known operating system Android 4.4 KitKat, which was originally provided the opportunity to work on low-power devices and incorporated many technologies to optimize the use of system resources.
If Apple has always tried to be a single corporation with the most complete production cycle, Google is developing towards a dynamic collaboration with the leaders of the semiconductor industry. Different versions of branded devices Nexus series produced together with Samsung, LG and Motorola, but remained for users organic continuation of each other.
Similarly, Google plans to act now. The only difference is that the future software update will take over completely. This will avoid the mistakes of the past and a repetition of the situation that has developed in the last couple of years around the world. Many smartphones are stuck on earlier versions of the Android OS because of the fact that their manufacturers have found further support inappropriate and stopped producing firmware updates. According to IDC, in the second quarter of 2014 84.7% of all smartphones in the world is running Android, with an increased proportion of very old versions (Froyo and Gingerbread) exceeded 15%.
At this time, low-end models on the platform developed for Android One of the South Asian region directly in India. One of the key features of the project was the adaptation of the firmware, taking into account the language requirements. Menu items and web content can be automatically translated into seven languages common in India, including Hindi. Google partners were local company Karbonn, Micromax and S Mobility (better known as Spice Mobile Phones). That Spice Dream UNO (internal model name – Mi-498) formally became the first smartphone platform Android One.
It is based on the proven quad-core SoC MediaTek MT6582. It is also used in the Acer Liquid E700, Lenovo A889, Zopo ZP820 and many less well-known in Russia smartphones. The board Mi-498 wired gigabyte RAM and four gigabytes of flash memory, the volume of which can be expanded at the expense of microSDHC cards up to 32 GB.
The smartphone supports two SIM-cards. It is equipped with the usual set of radios with support for advanced communication protocols (3G HSPA +, Wi-Fi 802.11 b / g / n, Bluetooth 4.0) and FM-receiver. Navigating with GPS is possible using both local and global map services.
On what manufacturers have obviously saved, so it is on the screen. When the large diagonal (4,5 “) IPS-matrix, it has a low resolution FWVGA (854 × 480 pixels), and any protective coating is absent from the screen. As a result, the display can not boast of any image detail or resistance to scratches. The battery life leaves much to be desired. When battery capacity of 6.3 Wh (1700 mAh) will have to charge it every day (and well, if only once).
Your own version of the smartphone for Android One of the project presented and Micromax. Model Canvas A1 differs from the Spice Dream UNO except that the design, and then – barely noticeable. All the basic features are the same in these two smartphones almost completely. Another clone – model Karbon Sparkle V. Initially, it was expected that it will feature at least 8 megapixel camera, but the rumors are not true: as all the above smartphones, Sparkle V is equipped with a 5 megapixel rear and 2-megapixel front-facing camera.
If Spice and Micromax prefer “naked Android”, the Karbon sure that inexperienced users need a rich set of built-in software. Certain logic in this, since the request to pick up “the phone with the Facebook” can often be heard in the salons of Russian cellular communication.
«Instant update software, fast and responsive interface, predefined set of popular applications – it was developed in accordance with the needs of users and the emerging markets of India, “- said the executive director of Karbonn.
According to the vice-president of Google Sundara Pichaya (Sundar Pichai), if successful, the company plans to expand the project to Android One by attracting Acer, Alcatal, Asus, HTC, Lenovo and other partners.
Now Mi-498 is available exclusively online Amazon.in. Other models should be available for ordering people of India in a few days for the price of $ 105 retail sales will begin in a couple of weeks. Then, the model of the project and Android One will appear in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Pakistan. It is possible that next year they will be sold around the world.