Android 4.4 KitKat focus has been more on a new 'Android TV' interface, rather than phones
We aren't hearing about any major new features or interface design changes with 4.4 KitKat, it turns out, as there might not be much of them in there for phones to begin with. Korean media is citing its own sources who claim that a major add-on in KitKat is actually its ability to interact well with large displays, and the focus hasn't really been on smartphones with this one, but on TV.
Google TV was plagued by lousy interface and deficient application programming interfaces for Android's interaction with smart TVs, and the redesign of both is said to have been the major focus with 4.4 KitKat. “I heard Google say ‘the next OS has greatly improved its utilization in TV. In particular, there will be many changes in the interface between smart devices and the TV,’” claim the insiders.
Apparently, Google has also sent out guidelines to major TV makers like LG (from where the leak probably originates), which retitle their television set efforts that run Google's mobile OS to "Android TV", instead of the Google TV association.
This move is hardly surprising, as the battle is now moving to larger screens. Apple is rumored to issue two own TV sets next year, one 50" and one 65", for $1500 and $2000, respectively, with frameless design and Gorilla Glass 3 protection. Google already gauged the TV market with the Chromecast dongle on the cheap, and is now toying with the idea of its own sets as well, taking advantage of Motorola's set-top box business, Chromecast and Android TV somehow.
Not that all of this has convinced Samsung to make an Android-powered TV set, note the insiders, as the Koreans are actively developing Tizen for their own smart TV sets as an insurance against Google doing more hardware down the road. We have to also remember that Google started a big push for tablet apps among developers in the Play Store, so the focus might indeed be shifting to larger displays, after Android cornered the smartphone market.