A tech company tradition is to assign non-descript and often funny code names to future products. While comical, the true intent is to thwart competitors before formal release. A stoic type of humor in a very serious and ultra-competitive business. This post outlines the Android OS “Dessert name” history and critical elements of the forthcoming Ice Cream Sandwich release.
- Mobile Phone Oriented
- — Ver 1 releases – Cupcake / Donut
- — Ver 2 releases – Éclair / Froyo / Gingerbread
- Tablet Device Oriented
- — Ver 3 releases – Honeycomb (larger screen devices and multi-core processors)
Ice Cream Sandwich (announced 5/10/11 @ Google IO for release Q4 2011) is a combination of Gingerbread (Mobile Phone) and Honeycomb (Tablet) releases into a “cohesive whole”. What’s sweet, is that Apps developers only have to create one code-base of their software to work on many Android devices: mobile phones, tablets and even future devices with new or similar form factors.
This is critical for assuring both developers and the buying public get the best ROI on their tech investments. In early days of Microsoft Windows (mid-late 80’s) people screamed and hollered endlessly about how Windows based standards would kill and stagnant the imagination. Yet to the contrary, due to a well documented high quality UI (User Interface) and certain operational standards, arguably made Windows one of the single greatest contributors to the PC’s global success. Hundreds of millions of units could be designed, built and sold at affordable prices.
Developers must invest massive amounts of time and money to create quality Apps. They want assurance their product (software App) will run on as many brands, models and formats of computers as possible – Microsoft Windows helped achieve that result for the PC. Equally, once users get accustomed to a basic interface style (i.e. the mouse) they want assurance their new knowledge will apply to every App, again Microsoft Windows helped achieve that for the PC.
Smart mobile-phones, super-slim keyboard-less tablets and iPad style devices that are also Internet centric are shaping the new post-PC era. The devices of the new era use a touch / swipe UI and other operational standards (similar condition to the early Windows days).
Android / Ice Cream Sandwich represents one key step Google must take to assure their OS becomes prevalent for running Apps across a very wide-spectrum of new touch centric and WEB centric devices. Some key elements of this next release:
- Tech – 3D holographic UI for phones and tablets
- Tech – Virtual Camera Operator for tracking motion
- Tech – NFC chip (Near Field Communications)
- Tech – will also be the base for Google TV
- Tech – can be a foundation for the Chromebox
- Business – One Apps store can supply all devices (phones, tablets, TV etc)
- Business – Cell phone carriers can effectively manage over the air updates
Check out the recent post Defining future Web tech via Google IO – 2011 for insights on CHROME, Google’s WEB browser software and the new CHROMEBOOK. These announced devices and software are fully compatible with www.GAFYD.net, a Managed Services offering of Google Apps for Business.