Android is a mobile operating system that powers the world’s most popular smartphones. It is also used on tablets and watches. The OS offers users a highly customizable user experience, thanks to a variety of features.
Developed by Google and the Open Handset Alliance, Android is free and open source. This means that anyone can build, use, or distribute applications that run on the OS. However, some aspects of the system are not open source.
The Android Platform is built to support a range of messaging services (MMS and GSM), as well as storage and web browsers. Applications that are written for the platform can be sold in the Google Play Store and the Amazon Appstore.
There are many different versions of the Android Platform. Each version of the system is designed to run on different hardware and with different user interfaces. As a result, this creates a lot of challenges for developers.
While the core code of the platform is open source, manufacturers may “skin” the OS to add their own user interfaces. Because of this, it’s important to remember that each upgrade needs to be customized for the specific hardware and user interface that will be used.
A number of phones and tablets running on Android are capable of using touch screens. The software supports bi-directional text and multi-touch gestures. Users can also customize the home screen with widgets. These widgets are informational displays that automatically update with new content.