Google recently confirmed the next-generation Android version called 4.4 KitKat after the announcement of Apple on iPhones 5S and 5C. Android 4.4 will replace Android 4.3 Jelly Bean as the current Android version which rumoured to lift old Android devices. Know the devices, features, predictions and specifications of the KitKat-bearing Android.
Nexus Line and Other Android Devices
Google will primarily push Android 4.4 KitKat on its Nexus line which is expected to be seen first on Nexus 5 and the rumoured Nexus 11 tablet. After that, LG Nexus 4, Nexus 7 2013, Nexus 7 2012 and Nexus 10 will also receive the update push eventually. Hopefully by 2014, other Nexus gadgets such as Galaxy Nexus and Nexus S may become eligible to receive the new firmware.
Samsung Galaxy S4, Galaxy Note 3, HTC One family, Sony Xperia Z devices and LG G2 are probably among the first set of devices which will receive the update after Google releases the source code. Third-party ROM developers are also expected to release custom-made firmware once they get their hands on Android 4.4.
Update Linux Kernel
Google's aim to minimise fragmentation of Android devices is by unifying the OS version running on all of them. Unfortunately, Android Jelly Bean didn't solve the problem effectively due to hardware requirements, especially to old models with 512 MB RAM and single-core processor. According to the report of AndroidCentral, 4.4 KitKat version may bring a new Linux kernel to support lower RAM.
- Support on NVIDIA Tegra and Samsung Exynos chipsets
- Flash-Friendly File-System now supported
- Lower memory requirements
Android 4.4 KitKat Features
Android 4.4 features are not clear. Google isn't confirming anything so far, but they have hinted what Android fans may expect on the next major version.
1. Updated sensors with low energy requirements
2. Better CPU core support
3. Improved portrait and landscape screen orientation
4. Exclusive Android cloud-based storage
5. Increased network coverage
6. More compatibility improvement on accessories
7. Refined software and system
8. Light weight on the memory
9. Support edge-to-edge screen display
10. Universal network compatibility
11. Greatly improved battery life
12. Support on older Android devices
Android Jelly Bean Goodies
Android 4.4 KitKat may include several features found in Android 4.1, 4.2 and 4.3 Jelly Bean such as Google Now, Project Butter, Quick Settings, Actionable Notifications, Extended Quick Settings, Daydream and Lock Screen Widgets. Other system features include:
- DRM APIs
- OpenGL ES 3.0 for 3D rendering and improved graphics
- Restricted profiles on multi-user account
- Surround Sound for audio
- Improved dial pad and keyboard input
- Better accessibility
- More languages supported
- Bluetooth Smart aka Low Energy
- Low energy consuming sensors
- Wi-Fi location
In addition to better core support via improved Linux kernel, Android 4.4 KitKat may add more on upcoming Nexus devices. The next-generation Android version could feature better dimension which is thin and sleek, comfortable and lightweight feeling;edge-to-edge display for thinner bezel and maximum screen usage; improved network coverage and compatibility across the globe; and enhanced battery life and standby.
October 2013 is the expected launch date of the Android 4.4 KitKat together with the upcoming Nexus 5 which will demonstrate the next-generation Android OS. Based on the tradition followed by Google on the Nexus line, Galaxy Nexus landed in the market on the fourth quarter of 2011, while the LG Nexus 4 will arrive in stores on November after the October 2012 launching.
Google will not further delay Android 4.4 KitKat, as they have already confirmed and proudly presented its status in their headquarters. Android fans can expect its launching and arrival in the last quarter of 2013 - either in October or November.
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