Google is one of the most successful technology companies in the world. With the search engine is its most popular product, Google has a dozen more successful products in its kitty including email service Gmail, office suite Google Docs, social networking platform Google+, chat application Hangouts, photo editing software Picasa and web browser Google Chrome and the mobile OS Android among others.
Google has had a successful stint with its current mobile OS, the Android Marshmallow. With every new version upgrade of Marshmallow, Google has focussed on improving the overall user experience by enhancing the architecture, introducing new APIs, augmenting power management systems to reduce background activity, supporting modern features like fingerprint recognition and a by introducing a plethora of other features. With many popular smartphones like Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P and Google’s very own Pixel C tablet, Android Marshmallow has provided a satisfying user experience across devices.
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While Chrome OS has been a popular desktop OS, it really worked in very controlled environments like corporate campuses and schools. Initially launched as a thin-client OS with only a handful of native applications, Chrome OS slowly incorporated more and more applications, some of which could work offline. While Chrome OS offers better security than Android, it is the most preferred OS in the education sector as heightened security is essential when it comes to students. With Chromebooks being a popular product in schools, Chrome OS might experience success only in schools as it is inflexible and has limited functionality.
Due to the inflexibility of Chrome OS and limited usage across industries, there is an impending need for Google to modernize and improvise its Android OS to fill the interface gap that exists in the smartphone industry. The aim of every OS Company is to offer a consistent experience across various devices – be it a laptop with keyboard or a smartphone or tablet which is touch-friendly. Also, as most mobile devices aren’t hacked easily, high security offerings like that of Chrome OS are not a prerequisite.
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Additionally, since Google has improved its security features with every Android Marshmallow release, offering the required security features to safeguard user data, smartphone users don’t really care about Chrome OS’ security benefits over Android. Moreover, with Microsoft also offering a single OS across its PCs, laptops, smartphones and tablets, Google too has realized the need to have a unique OS that worked seamlessly across devices and form factors.
With the growing dominance of mobile phones, Google is facing immense competition from other rivals like Apple and Microsoft in the dynamic smartphone industry. With a new smartphone being launched almost every week, it is imperative for companies to continuously innovate and modernize their products and services in order to stay ahead in the race. Keeping this dynamics in mind, Google is all set to kill its desktop OS Chrome and replace it with its mobile OS Android.
While Google is still in the process of releasing the latest Android Marshmallow version, it already has plans to release the next OS in Google’s already successful OS line. The soon to be released Android N is expected to be a turning point in Google’s history.
Trade analysts are expecting Android N to suit all form factors, offering a consistent experience across devices of various sizes. With Android N, Google might be making a move towards supporting smartphones with bigger, laptop-type screen sizes which will be powered by an advanced Android OS loaded with bigger and better features.
There are a many contenders for the naming of Android 7.0 which will start with the letter “N”. Nectar, Nutella, Neapolitan ice cream, New York cheesecake, nougat, nut bread – but until Google decides to unravel the mystery, analysts can only play the guessing game. While there is no confirmation on the name, Android N is expected to host incorporate a multitude of features.
Features to Expect
With Android N incorporating the best of Android OS and Chrome OS, it is expected to be loaded with the latest features like multi-tasking using split screen, improved power management capability, a feature rich reboot window, user-friendly customization with respect to themes, navigation buttons and layout type, clearer and crisper colour display, and a feature-rich app manager among several others.
Android N is expected to be launched around Fall 2016. Google will offer a Google N Developer Preview which will enable users to install the latest Android OS 7.0 on their Nexus devices for early testing. Later in 2016, it is expected that the final version of Android N will be announced and will be preinstalled in all Nexus devices that are destined for a late 2016 release. Upgrades on other devices might happen somewhere in early 2017.