Android is the largest Smartphone operating system in the world, with the platform accounting for 80 percent of the market share. To maintain its position, Google knows that it can’t rest on its laurels though. Instead, the tech giant is looking far at new developments that go beyond the traditional portable devices. Here are some of the developments we can expect from Android in the future.
Android L is Coming
Android L is Android’s latest operating system, a platform that’s set to challenge Apple’s iOS 8 with a sleek new look, increased speed, and greater battery efficiency. The lock screen has received the most notable changes, including the ability to read notifications from the screen and automatic unlocking when it’s near your Bluetooth-connected devices. As a safety precaution, it’ll also automatically lock when it can’t detect your device. Increased voice inputs will appeal to users who love to operate their Android phone or tablet hands-free.
Nexus 5 and Nexus 7 developers are already playing with Android L ahead of its consumer release in fall.
Android Wear is On Its Way
Smart watches have been heralded as the future of technology, a wearable device that’s much less obtrusive and more functional than smartphones. It’s estimated that 91.6 million will be sold in 2018, making the industry worth an estimated $9.2 billion.
Android will make sure it claims a large sector of the market with the upcoming launch of Android Wear. The wearable operating system will soon be seen in the LG Watch and Samsung Gear Live, which are already available to pre-order in the United States, and the upcoming Moto 360, which should hit stores in summer.
With Android Wear, Google makes it easy for manufacturers to enter the smart watch market. It’s providing the operating system, which comes with a name consumers’ trust, and helping them with hardware integration. The versatile system features basic apps and supports circular and square-shaped displays.
Android Auto is Apple CarPlay Alternative
At any given time in the United States, 660,000 drivers are using their cell phones behind the wheel. Texting, sending emails, and making calls all dramatically increase the risks of having a dangerous or fatal car crash. Apple found a solution with its CarPlay, and now Android is preparing to launch its alternative, Android Auto.
Android Auto puts your Smartphone or tablet onto your car’s display screen. It works via touch as well as voice commands and the media buttons on your steering wheel to make motoring much safer. With Android Auto, you can easily navigate using Google Maps or use Google Play to create your driving soundtrack.
Google TV is Now Android TV
Google once made a foray into the smartTV market with the launch of Google TV. Sadly it flopped, but Google wasn’t giving up. Instead, it’s decided to improve the system before rebranding it as Android TV.
The new devices feature smoother navigation and new voice search capabilities. Rather than simply searching by title, you can also look for stars, and then read their bios, or find “Oscar nominated movies” to keep pace with water cooler conversation.
Sony, Sharp, and Philips have already committed to the television platform which is scheduled to hit stores in fall.
Chromecast to Mirror Android Devices
Google Chromecast is also set to become more useful to Android users with news that it will soon support screen mirroring. This means you’ll be easily able to watch the TV shows and movies you’ve downloaded onto your devices on your TV sets, and show friends your photos on your TV screen in a 21st century twist on the slideshow.
Chromecast’s new Backdrop feature also turns your TV into a picture frame, by pulling a favorite image from your device, whenever it’s not in use. New improvements also mean Android users can cast media and pair their devices without being on the same network.
Samsung, HTC, LG, and Nexus are all set to support mirroring and other new features when they’re introduced later this year.
With these improvements and innovations in the works, the future looks bright for Android.