Next Generation of Android 2.3

The next generation of Google's Android, dubbed "Honeycomb", is promising to revolutionize the functionality of larger screen devices, in particular, tablets. We know that the new tablets which are set to flood the market in 2011 will run on several different operating system platforms. These include but are not limited to Android (in a few of its versions) as well as Windows 7 and Palm's Web OS. Each tablet manufacturer will be choosing what they consider to be the best platform for their particular needs and for that of the consumers they are targeting.

Since Google redesigned the most recent version of its Android operating system specifically for tablets, the majority of tablet manufacturers will be employing that version (3.3 Honeycomb). Notable exceptions will include the Dell Streak, which will use Android 2.2 and the Notion Ink Adam, which will use Android 2.3. Some of the new tablets planning on running Android 3.3 include the Motorola Xoom, the LG G-Slate, the Acer Iconia Tab A50 and the Asus Eee Pad Transformer.

Google has refined the user interface for Honeycomb to be a uniquely virtual and holographic one. The improved multi-tasking features and home screen customization should be impressive. With access to the huge and hugely popular Android Market and an entirely new 3D experience with more interactive and redesigned widgets, it will be difficult for other platforms to compete with Honeycomb. At least, this is what Google is hoping for!

Upgrades to the web browser, such as tabbed browsing and auto form-fill will offer the user increased speed capacity for browsing. The notifications bar will be much improved and will show incoming messages and completed file transfers much like that found in the windows operating systems. The user will be able to quickly facilitate certain settings such as airplane mode and Wi-fi On/off. The ability to sync with Google Chrome bookmarks as well as an incognito mode for private browsing will allow this latest version of Android to deliver an even more user-friendly experience.

Most important, especially to anyone desiring to use 3.0 Honeycomb for business purposes, is that most Android 3.0 tablets such as the Motorola Xoom and the LG G-Slate will have access to a new feature in the settings menu known as "Encrypt Tablet". When enabled, a tablet and all its software will require a password to unlock. Encryption will be utilized to protect the data as well. This is a big step forward by Google to begin competing in the business market with Research In Motion's BlackBerry devices, which have been used by the business world for years because of their security features.

Honeycomb has been optimized to run on both dual-core and single-core processors. It can support more advanced and powerful graphics and it possesses a new 3D graphics engine. This latest version will also incorporate applications developed by Google for the mobile world. These include Google Maps 5 which will feature 3D interactions and deliver offline dependability. Honeycomb will allow access to over 3 million Google eBooks as well. The Google version of Apple's "Face Time", Google Talk, will be also be available with Honeycomb. This feature will allow video and voice chat between any 2 Google Talk-enabled devices, including PCs and tablets. Shortcuts on the homescreen will make it easy for users to find contacts to make video calls.

Honeycomb will also have backward support for all apps developed for former versions. Previous Android platforms coming out of Google's " Dessert Kitchen" have included Android 1.5 (Cupcake), Android 1.6 (Donut), Android 2.0/2.1 (Eclair), Android 2.2 (Froyo short for frozen yogurt!) and Android 2.3 (Gingerbread). An even newer version (ice-cream sandwich) is expected in the summer of 2011.


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