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Android Operating System : Download and Installation

Android is an open source and Linux-based Operating System for mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet computers. Android was developed by the Open Handset Alliance, led by Google, and other companies.

Android offers a unified approach to application development for mobile devices which means developers need only develop for Android, and their applications should be able to run on different devices powered by Android.

The first beta version of the Android Software Development Kit (SDK) was released by Google in 2007 where as the first commercial version, Android 1.0, was released in September 2008.

On June 27, 2012, at the Google I/O conference, Google announced the next Android version, 4.1 Jelly Bean. Jelly Bean is an incremental update, with the primary aim of improving the user interface, both in terms of functionality and performance.

The source code for Android is available under free and open source software licenses. Google publishes most of the code under the Apache License version 2.0 and the rest, Linux kernel changes, under the GNU General Public License version 2.


Android Inc. was founded in Palo Alto, California, in October 2003 by Andy Rubin, Rich Miner, Nick Sears, and Chris White. Rubin described the Android project as having "tremendous potential in developing smarter mobile devices that are more aware of its owner's location and preferences". The early intentions of the company were to develop an advanced operating system for digital cameras, and this was the basis of its pitch to investors in April 2004. The company then decided that the market for cameras was not large enough for its goals, and five months later it had diverted its efforts and was pitching Android as a handset operating system that would rival Symbian and Microsoft Windows Mobile.

Rubin had difficulty attracting investors early on, and Android was facing eviction from its office space. Steve Perlman, a close friend of Rubin, brought him $10,000 in cash in an envelope, and shortly thereafter wired an undisclosed amount as seed funding. Perlman refused a stake in the company, and has stated "I did it because I believed in the thing, and I wanted to help Andy."

In July 2005, Google acquired Android Inc. for at least $50 million. Its key employees, including Rubin, Miner, Sears, and White, joined Google as part of the acquisition. Not much was known about the secretive Android Inc. at the time, with the company having provided few details other than that it was making software for mobile phones. At Google, the team led by Rubin developed a mobile device platform powered by the Linux kernel. Google marketed the platform to handset makers and carriers on the promise of providing a flexible, upgradeable system. Google had "lined up a series of hardware components and software partners and signaled to carriers that it was open to various degrees of cooperation


If your business has an interest in using or developing Android software, download the source code or a pre-compiled version of the operating system. The code is available to the public under an open-source license. The Android software stack runs on embedded systems, such as mobile phones and tablets, which ship to customers with Android already installed. Because Android devices vary in size and processing power, device manufacturers configure Android for a specific device. Updates and upgrades are available as a direct download from the manufacture

Virtual Machine

1 . Visit the Android Developers site to download and install the Android System Development Kit, or SDK (see Resources). To install the SDK, double-click the downloaded archive to extract the contents. Double-click the “Android SDK” folder to enter the directory.

2 . Double-click “Android SDK Manager” to launch the Google downloading tool. Check the box next to each version of Android you would like to download. Click “Download Packages” at the bottom of the window. Close the SDK Manager when the download finishes.

3 . Double-click “Android AVD Manager,” which allows you to create a new Android virtual device. Click “New” and click the “Android Version” menu to choose an Android OS for your virtual device. Click the “Memory” field and enter an amount of virtual SD memory, such as 200MB. Click “Finish” to create the device, and click “Launch” when you're ready to use the device.

Source Code

1 . Click the Windows "Start" button and click “Computer.” Double-click your “C:” drive to enter the root folder of your hard drive. Right-click inside the folder and create a new folder. Name the folder “bin" (without quotes and all lowercase).

2 . Download the Repo code from the Android Developers website (see Resources). Extract the archive to the “C:\bin” directory. Right-click “Computer” and click “Properties.” Click “Advanced” and choose “Environment Variables.” Click “Path” and select “Edit.”

3 . Press the "right arrow" key to move the cursor to the end of your path variable. Add the following directory to the end of your path: :C:\bin\repo Click “OK” to confirm the changes.

4 . Visit to download and install the version-control software (see Resources). Double-click the downloaded file to extract and configure the software for your system.

5 . Click the Windows "Start" button and type “cmd” in the Search field. Enter the following command in the window to configure Repo: repo init -u

6 . Enter the following command to download Android from the Google developers: repo sync Downloading the Android repository will take about an hour.


1. Beautiful UI - Android OS basic screen provides a beautiful and intuitive user interface.

2. Connectivity - GSM/EDGE, IDEN, CDMA, EV-DO, UMTS, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, LTE, NFC and WiMAX.

3. Storage - SQLite, a lightweight relational database, is used for data storage purposes.

4. Media support - H.263, H.264, MPEG-4 SP, AMR, AMR-WB, AAC, HE-AAC, AAC 5.1, MP3, MIDI, Ogg Vorbis, WAV, JPEG, PNG, GIF, and BMP.

5. Messaging - SMS and MMS

6. Web browser - Based on the open-source WebKit layout engine, coupled with Chrome's V8 JavaScript engine supporting HTML5 and CSS3.

7. Multi-touch - Android has native support for multi-touch which was initially made available in handsets such as the HTC Hero.

8. Multi-tasking - User can jump from one task to another and same time various application can run simultaneously.

9. Resizable widgets - Widgets are resizable, so users can expand them to show more content or shrink them to save space.

10. Multi-Language - Supports single direction and bi-directional text.

11. GCM - Google Cloud Messaging (GCM) is a service that lets developers send short message data to their users on Android devices, without needing a proprietary sync solution.

12. Wi-Fi Direct - A technology that lets apps discover and pair directly, over a high-bandwidth peer-to-peer connection.

13. Android Beam - A popular NFC-based technology that lets users instantly share, just by touching two NFC-enabled phones together.


Millions of apps:-

Users have a vast choice to choose which apps they need. Apps are categorized into topics and every topic has large amount of apps to download.

Third-party apps also supported:-

You can also install third-party apps. These apps can be downloaded from different websites. Users are flexible in choosing which apps they want to download either from google play store or any other website. You just need to authorize the app to be downloaded.

Notifications are nicely displayed:-

All the notifications of apps, messages, emails, low battery are displayed nicely. Users can access the notification by just sliding from top to bottom. You can also see the notifications in lock mode.

Sharing of internet among devices:-

With a mobile hotspot, you can share your device internet with other devices or with PC. This can help saving money also. If you living in a house then you can share your internet with your family members and they don’t need to buy separate internet packages.

Variety of mobile models to choose from:-

Android OS can run on a wide range of devices i.e. HTC, Samsung, OPPO, Huawei, Motorola, Sony Ericson and many others. You can choose any low-cost mobile or middle range mobile easily. Some android mobiles are costly too but it all depends upon your budget.

Expandable memory:-

Apple smartphones and tablets don’t support expandable memory but android devices come with expandable memory option. If you have a lot of data to store then you can attach an external memory card to expand your phone memory. You can store lot of books, movies and songs in the extended memory card.

Support large screens at an affordable price:-

If you compare large screens Apple devices then android is giving you large screen devices at good prices. Android is also giving updates to all resolution screens and is adaptive.

Run many apps at the same time:-

If you have a good specification phone then you can smoothly run multiple apps at the same time. You can listen to music while using Instagram or Facebook.

Multiple widgets on screen:-

You can choose native widgets or 3rd party widgets to appear on the screen. For example, displaying temperature and clock widgets gives you information all the time when you switch on your phone.

Foldable devices:-

Now new android 10 version support foldable devices. With the passage of time, technology is changing and android is also adapting with the changes in the mobile world.

Large community support:-

There are a huge community of developers and users of android. So if you have any issue in the code or want to check authenticity of app then you can easily do this. You can check if the app is real by checking its reviews on google play store.

Addition and removal of unwanted features:-

Android is adding new features in every release and removing old features that are not favourable to the users. You can check list of android versions with details also.

Android is Open source:-

Android is licensed under apache. Mobile companies change the code of android to make UI change a little bit. Developers have also access to the core code and can make changes to it.

Cloud storage:-

Gmail and other google products use cloud storage that means you can sync many devices with same google account. 15 GB of cloud storage comes free with every account that is enough for normal users.

Android developers have high job demands:-

As there are millions of apps and to maintain and develop new apps, developers are needed. Android developers have high demand and there are a lot of resources on internet to get help in the code.

Restoring and backup of apps:-

With the new OS, apps can restore and make backup of their data. This feature help apps to recover from any bad update or user behaviour.


Apps run in the background:-

In the older version of Android, most apps always run in the background and come to foreground as they wish. But in new version of android apps cannot automatically come to foreground. As some apps run in the background then it consumes mobile battery and your device battery vanishes quickly.

Developers have a tough time:-

Learning and developing android apps is hard because there are a variety of screen sizes and to make app adaptive to all screen sizes is challenging for the developers. Developers have to write more code and is difficult to troubleshoot the app for final delivery. It is also difficult to make complex apps and doing advanced animation is hard.

Low specification mobiles run slow:-

As android is a very large operating system that consumes lot of storage and some default apps also comes with operating system so low specification devices run slow. If you install many apps in these devices then your mobile will become unresponsive or heat up quickly.

Virus protection:-

Android is not good at virus protection. Users have rights to download and install apps from other external websites and these apps may contain a virus and stole your data and information. It is also noticed that some apps in google play store contain a virus.

Many ads in apps:-

Most of the android apps are free to use but they come with lot of ads that display on app screen or ads display when you perform any action in the app. This is irritating for users and users have to buy license for the app to remove ads or uninstall the app.

Not friendly with old people:-

Old people have a difficult time using android devices because of advanced touch screens. They may have an eyesight problem or have not used android mobile before.

Google account needed:-

For installing apps from google play store you need Gmail account. You also need a google account to use other Google products. If you forget Gmail id then your device can be locked and for unlocking you need to get your Gmail account.

Bad quality for apps:-

Majority of apps in the app store have poor quality and some apps only want to earn money by displaying ads and they have no use for the users. Some apps are not updated for many years and this will affect users which update their operating system.

The new app idea is difficult:-

For developers, there are fewer chances that they make app which is not already present. As all types of apps are already published in the app store so new companies and developers have difficult time entering the android market.

Google is strict to app developers:-

If Google finds any issue in your app then it will behave very strictly and also terminate your developer account.

Source: Wikipedia, itrelease, Tutorial Point

Sofia Singh

The Tech Platform



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