Android 4.4 KitKat: review of all the new features
Seemingly at the last minute, the folks at Mountain View went and partnered with an actual confectionery producer, and a giant one like Nestlé at that, to name the latest version of Android after one of their most famous deserts, and that's how Android 4.4 KitKat was born.
Android 4.4 KitKat - review of all the new features Fullscreen
More popular slideshows
This Samsung Galaxy F (S5 Premium) concept looks almost real
07 Mar 2014, 23:59
iOS 7 release date and time are today (Sep 18), get ready to update!
18 Sep 2013, 04:00
Spring chickens: Samsung Galaxy S5 vs Sony Xperia Z2 comparison preview
26 Feb 2014, 09:37
Samsung Galaxy S5 rumor round-up: release date, price and specs
12 Feb 2014, 08:58
Samsung Galaxy S5: all you need to know
24 Feb 2014, 17:06
Android 4.4 KitKat - review of all the new features
1. New dialer and smart Caller ID
2. Running on low
There's another hidden agenda here, too - optimizing Android further to run on lowly hardware is prepping it for the assault of wearable devices like smart watches we are expecting from everyone now, including Google.
3. New icons, lock screen, boot animation and color scheme
4. Say "OK, Google"
These will evoke the personal assistant, which Google says is now 25% more accurate, and talks back. Moreover, new cards for local shopping and attractions, as well as buying movie tickets via Fandango on the spot are on their way.
5. Hangouts and messaging integration
6. Immersion mode
7. Stock keyboard gets Emoji
8. New built-in photo editor
9. Storage access framework
10. Wireless printing
11. Easy launcher swap and full screen wallpapers
12. Screen Recording
14. Step detector, step counter and sensor batching
16. Tunneled audio for 50% longer playback
17. New Bluetooth profiles support and IR blaster APIs
Android 4.4 also introduces platform support for built-in IR blasters, along with a new API and system service that let you create apps to take advantage them.Using the new API, you can build apps that let users remotely control nearby TVs, tuners, switches, and other electronic devices. The API lets your app check whether the phone or tablet has an infrared emitter, query it's carrier frequencies, and then send infrared signals.
Because the API is standard across Android devices running Android 4.4 or higher, your app can support the broadest possible range of vendors without writing custom integration code.
18. On-device app optimization profiles with Process Stats
Analyzing these in Process Stats allows for identifying the memory hogs easily, isolating gaps, and optimizing for the next generation of affordable low-RAM Android phones and tablets which should run KitKat without a hitch.
19. Translucent interface styling
1. ocilfa (Posts: 283; Member since: 03 Aug 2012)
Hello Netflix, I shall now start screen capping all of your movies! Thanks 4.4!!!
12. akki20892 (Posts: 2290; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)
Android kitkat features: testy chocolate, more creamy, smooth, silky, crunchy, and when you eat, blow your mind.
46. JC557 (Posts: 677; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)
I really want a Android shaped KitKat bar. Too bad it's only limited edition and only comes as a prize. I really love the novelty of the Android KitKat.
Since the robot is green they should make a Limited Edition mint flavor Android KitKat for the holidays.
16. g2a5b0e (Posts: 1803; Member since: 08 Jun 2012)
Wow, you're not very smart, are you? Try reading the entire article before posting such silly comments. It will prevent you from having to wipe the egg off your face.
24. ocilfa (Posts: 283; Member since: 03 Aug 2012)
Serious guy is serious. Did you miss out on getting a nexus today?
33. g2a5b0e (Posts: 1803; Member since: 08 Jun 2012)
Can't say I did. My Note 3 is all I need. Have fun TRYING to record those Netflix movies. Let me know how that works out for ya.
74. Tbm2xx (Posts: 4; Member since: 15 Aug 2013)
I actually think it is possible, if you make a backup of the netflix apk today, (read: before they Update) Then you can install the old version of netflix on your nexus 5 and then it will be possible to record netflix...
57. hypergreatthing (Posts: 33; Member since: 13 Jun 2012)
It supports all 0 apps that need 64 bit support.
Pretty simple, right?
58. grahaman27 (Posts: 160; Member since: 05 Apr 2013)
android already has support, it just doesnt take advantage of it yet.
61. yowanvista (Posts: 273; Member since: 20 Sep 2011)
The Linux kernel used by Android already supports AArch64 (aka ARMv8) but it's just not enabled because there is not need to. Just a few core runtimes will require recompiling but Apps would work as usual since Dalvik core (bytecode) is independent of word length.
78. TheOldOne (Posts: 51; Member since: 29 Mar 2012)
having an Galaxy Nexus myself, it seem the only way to get KitKat :(
2. Berzerk000 (Posts: 3515; Member since: 26 Jun 2011)
Wow. This was a bigger update than I initially expected. This is starting to sway me from getting a Retina iPad mini. Maybe I'll go check out a Nexus 7 in store again in a couple weeks when it gets the 4.4 update...
62. NexusPhan (Posts: 318; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)
You were actually considered that $399 ipad mini? Seriously? I laughed so hard when I first heard that price.
Good for you for willing try the Nexus 7 but you can have two of them for the price of 1 iPad mini. And it's a better tablet anyway (in my opinion). It's no contest.
71. sniper1087 (Posts: 292; Member since: 31 Dec 2011)
The problem is 16:9 tablets are awkward to hold vertically, while the 4:3 ratio isnt optimal I think is the best form factor for a tablet and I had a nexus tablet, and still getting the nexus 5, but prefer the ipad form factor.
75. Berzerk000 (Posts: 3515; Member since: 26 Jun 2011)
I really just wanted to try iOS 7 personally, something new to me. I didn't feel like getting an iPhone 5S because I wanted a slightly larger screen and I felt like I couldn't part with some of Android's features, but I was willing to try the iPad mini, once it got a Retina display and A7 of course. As long as I had Android as my smartphone OS, I didn't feel the need to get the Nexus 7, but now that I see KitKat, I'm starting to have second thoughts.
73. MrsPotatoHead (banned) (Posts: 48; Member since: 18 Aug 2013)
You and me two. I don't know what have those things do but I know I can't do them now. I aspecially like the little emotion thingys on the keyboard, I know I can't do that now but that sound like a useful feature. My only problem with the other stuff is I'm still not sure how that messaging intergration gonna work. Also, anybody know if I can get the keyboard on my phone now until I buy a new phone?
3. febzz (Posts: 11; Member since: 26 Oct 2012)
Screen recording without rooting required, finally!
And closed captions!
59. grahaman27 (Posts: 160; Member since: 05 Apr 2013)
using adb shell... limited to 3 minutes per recording.
79. Shatter (Posts: 1747; Member since: 29 May 2013)
You could of always done video out recording through a PVR.
4. Kjayhawk (Posts: 271; Member since: 07 Oct 2010)
So when the hell is Android 5.0 "Licorice" coming out its been like 4 hours!!
72. Rydsmith (Posts: 88; Member since: 20 Jun 2012)
Google presents: Android 5.0 Lollipop, ft. Lil Wayne.
54. xXMAKESHIFTXx (Posts: 38; Member since: 28 Jul 2012)
Maybe if you "climb to glory", you will find news on it there!
5. ndidaaaa (Posts: 7; Member since: 02 Aug 2012)
Picture 3: If the translucent bars doesn't come to tablets I will be pissed!
7. sagemda (Posts: 17; Member since: 20 Dec 2012)
thats the comparation betwen 4.4 and 4.3, look at the wallpaper on the tablet
15. ndidaaaa (Posts: 7; Member since: 02 Aug 2012)
You are right! Thank you very much. I didn't realize that the first time
9. mike2959 (Posts: 137; Member since: 08 Oct 2011)
Low power Ram for millions of devices that are out now?
Absolutely none of these will get updated by the manufacturer/carrier. I don't understand this statement.
49. ilia1986 (unregistered)
Ever heard of custom roms?
51. XiphiasGladius (Posts: 799; Member since: 21 Aug 2011)
Future low end devices are the ones that will greatly benifit from it.
10. av911 (Posts: 96; Member since: 19 Nov 2012)
How does this "incremental" update NOT blowout iOS7? Android FTMFW!!
11. DAddYE (Posts: 48; Member since: 04 Oct 2013)
This is a nice un-update, as usual for android -.-'
35. DAddYE (Posts: 48; Member since: 04 Oct 2013)
At least over there there is an unread counter that works out of the box
83. 4.1.2 (Posts: 11; Member since: 30 Oct 2013)
Do. You forget the glories of gingerbread I love how my key board stays on the screen even when I leave SMS.
14. PapaSmurf (Posts: 5926; Member since: 14 May 2012)
I'm crying on how beautiful everything is.
29. Gemmol (Posts: 403; Member since: 09 Nov 2011)
its alright, I like the music feature to play in low power this will make it last longer, i like the phone dialer too and hangout integration, the other parts are meh
44. PapaSmurf (Posts: 5926; Member since: 14 May 2012)
Way more than what I had initially expected. Google has outdone themselves again.
17. WHoyton1 (Posts: 1616; Member since: 21 Feb 2013)
I think i have just fallen in love!! :')
19. arcq12 (Posts: 733; Member since: 13 Oct 2011)
The question is, when will Samsung roll it out on S4? They said they sold 20million S4's globally so meaning 20million people are waiting. Come on Samsung!
20. g2a5b0e (Posts: 1803; Member since: 08 Jun 2012)
Pretty good chance that the S5 will be the first Samsung device with Touchwiz that gets it. The Note 3, S4, Note 2, & S3 will follow later.
21. arcq12 (Posts: 733; Member since: 13 Oct 2011)
I agree. But hopefully S4 will get it no later than Q1 2014. (we wish)
47. JC557 (Posts: 677; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)
There's no doubt it will be coming to the GS 4 and Notes 2 & 3. Otherwise Samsung risks alienating a large chunk of smartphone users.
22. livyatan (Posts: 505; Member since: 19 Jun 2013)
One thing seems evident - Android is now head and shoulders above iOS, and should absolutely trump it even in the performance /stability.
We're looking at thoroughly improved kernel here.
iOS 7, otoh, is having tons of issues and is simply a second grade OS in comparison.
32. zibbyzib2000 (Posts: 153; Member since: 18 Nov 2010)
...even though iOS 7 has almost all of these features sans the IR functionality
36. av911 (Posts: 96; Member since: 19 Nov 2012)
I think you're referring to iOS 8, when they're gonna copy what Android already had.
52. o0Exia0o (Posts: 255; Member since: 01 Feb 2013)
I'm sorry, I did not realize that IOS 7 also had support for NFC also. Hum.... I must have missed that some where. Ill go back and reread everything about IOS 7 again thanks for letting me know. LAMFO
64. AliNSiddiqui (Posts: 256; Member since: 19 Sep 2012)
Besides integration of messages, Emoji, and wireless printing, iOS 7 has nothing this new Android update has
81. zibbyzib2000 (Posts: 153; Member since: 18 Nov 2010)
Don't forget the translucent interface, built-in device management (Find My iPhone), closed captioning, music seek from lock screen, and Immersion mode (in iBooks).