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Android 4.4 KitKat: review of all the new features

Posted: , by Daniel P.

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Android 4.4 KitKat: review of all the new features
The ever-funny Google went crazy with the naming of the new incremental Android 4.4 update. The next letter of the alphabet after the "J" in 4.3 Jelly Bean is "K", so Key Lime Pie was long bandied about for an Android 4.4 nickname, but alas.

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. 

We can talk long and winded about the marketing synergies for both companies that will result from grabbing a KitKat bar from the counter, with a little green robot munching on the wrapper, but it's time for the new features of Android 4.4 KitKat Google just announced together with its latest Nexus 5 handset. There are a bunch of them, and we know how everyone is impatient to see what they'll be getting for free from El Goog when the 4.4 update hits their phones and tablets, so here's a quick roundup in the slideshow below.

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posted on 31 Oct 2013, 16:00 7

1. ocilfa (Posts: 333; Member since: 03 Aug 2012)


Hello Netflix, I shall now start screen capping all of your movies! Thanks 4.4!!!

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 16:52 20

12. akki20892 (Posts: 3602; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)


Android kitkat features: testy chocolate, more creamy, smooth, silky, crunchy, and when you eat, blow your mind.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 22:36 7

46. JC557 (Posts: 1149; 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.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 17:03 2

16. g2a5b0e (Posts: 2550; 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.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 17:54 5

24. ocilfa (Posts: 333; Member since: 03 Aug 2012)


Serious guy is serious. Did you miss out on getting a nexus today?

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 19:01 1

33. g2a5b0e (Posts: 2550; 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.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 19:56 11

38. ahhxd717 (Posts: 320; Member since: 08 Dec 2011)


Wow, you're being a d**k.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 20:30

39. g2a5b0e (Posts: 2550; Member since: 08 Jun 2012)


Deal with it.

posted on 09 Nov 2013, 14:24 1

84. sgtdisturbed47 (Posts: 179; Member since: 02 Feb 2012)


Internet tough guy.

posted on 03 Nov 2013, 10:12

74. Tbm2xx (Posts: 5; 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...

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 19:50 1

37. SAYED-EJAZ (Posts: 224; Member since: 10 Oct 2013)


What about 64bit support?

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 20:51 3

42. wilsong17 (Posts: 1051; Member since: 10 Mar 2013)


why would you need this omg

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 22:36 11

45. cancerous21 (Posts: 5; Member since: 09 Oct 2013)


he's an ifan

posted on 01 Nov 2013, 12:46 7

57. hypergreatthing (Posts: 33; Member since: 13 Jun 2012)


It supports all 0 apps that need 64 bit support.

Pretty simple, right?

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 14:17 1

58. grahaman27 (Posts: 347; Member since: 05 Apr 2013)


android already has support, it just doesnt take advantage of it yet.

posted on 03 Nov 2013, 05:50 4

61. yowanvista (Posts: 308; 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.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 23:27 1

48. Wiki_jaan (Posts: 703; Member since: 24 Jun 2012)


waiting for cm10.3 or cm11

posted on 03 Nov 2013, 11:41

78. TheOldOne (Posts: 98; Member since: 29 Mar 2012)


having an Galaxy Nexus myself, it seem the only way to get KitKat :(

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 16:09 23

2. Berzerk000 (Posts: 4099; 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...

posted on 03 Nov 2013, 06:08 9

62. NexusPhan (Posts: 528; 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.

posted on 03 Nov 2013, 09:04

71. sniper1087 (Posts: 405; 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.

posted on 03 Nov 2013, 10:48

75. Berzerk000 (Posts: 4099; 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.

posted on 03 Nov 2013, 09:52

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?

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 16:12 15

3. febzz (Posts: 11; Member since: 26 Oct 2012)


Screen recording without rooting required, finally!

And closed captions!

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 14:18 1

59. grahaman27 (Posts: 347; Member since: 05 Apr 2013)


using adb shell... limited to 3 minutes per recording.

posted on 03 Nov 2013, 11:50

79. Shatter (Posts: 2031; Member since: 29 May 2013)


You could of always done video out recording through a PVR.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 16:14 3

4. Kjayhawk (Posts: 291; Member since: 07 Oct 2010)


So when the hell is Android 5.0 "Licorice" coming out its been like 4 hours!!

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 16:23

6. ocilfa (Posts: 333; Member since: 03 Aug 2012)


Try again next year.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 16:54 5

13. tadaa (Posts: 255; Member since: 18 Apr 2013)


5.0 lollipop sounds tastier

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 20:41 1

40. _PHug_ (Posts: 383; Member since: 11 Oct 2011)


it's clearly going to be Laffy Taffy

posted on 03 Nov 2013, 09:48 2

72. Rydsmith (Posts: 181; Member since: 20 Jun 2012)


Google presents: Android 5.0 Lollipop, ft. Lil Wayne.

posted on 01 Nov 2013, 07:56

54. xXMAKESHIFTXx (Posts: 38; Member since: 28 Jul 2012)


Maybe if you "climb to glory", you will find news on it there!

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 16:22

5. ndidaaaa (Posts: 7; Member since: 02 Aug 2012)


Picture 3: If the translucent bars doesn't come to tablets I will be pissed!

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 16:29

7. sagemda (Posts: 25; Member since: 20 Dec 2012)


thats the comparation betwen 4.4 and 4.3, look at the wallpaper on the tablet

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 17:01

15. ndidaaaa (Posts: 7; Member since: 02 Aug 2012)


You are right! Thank you very much. I didn't realize that the first time

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 16:35

8. apple4never (Posts: 969; Member since: 08 May 2013)


havent got it yet :(

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 16:46 3

9. mike2959 (Posts: 259; 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.

posted on 01 Nov 2013, 01:14 1

49. ilia1986 (unregistered)


Ever heard of custom roms?

posted on 01 Nov 2013, 04:22 2

51. XiphiasGladius (Posts: 804; Member since: 21 Aug 2011)


Future low end devices are the ones that will greatly benifit from it.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 16:49 6

10. av911 (Posts: 149; Member since: 19 Nov 2012)


How does this "incremental" update NOT blowout iOS7? Android FTMFW!!

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 16:51 1

11. DAddYE (Posts: 48; Member since: 04 Oct 2013)


This is a nice un-update, as usual for android -.-'

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 17:09 5

18. arcq12 (Posts: 733; Member since: 13 Oct 2011)


compared to iOS7? No sh*t dude.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 19:35

35. DAddYE (Posts: 48; Member since: 04 Oct 2013)


At least over there there is an unread counter that works out of the box

posted on 03 Nov 2013, 10:51 2

76. wildfiregt (Posts: 102; Member since: 10 Jun 2013)


iOS will bring those features in 2015

posted on 07 Nov 2013, 19:48

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.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 17:00 4

14. PapaSmurf (Posts: 8794; Member since: 14 May 2012)


I'm crying on how beautiful everything is.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 18:28

29. Gemmol (Posts: 541; 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

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 21:33 3

44. PapaSmurf (Posts: 8794; Member since: 14 May 2012)


Way more than what I had initially expected. Google has outdone themselves again.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 17:08

17. WHoyton1 (Posts: 1633; Member since: 21 Feb 2013)


I think i have just fallen in love!! :')

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 17:11 1

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!

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 17:13 2

20. g2a5b0e (Posts: 2550; 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.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 17:16 1

21. arcq12 (Posts: 733; Member since: 13 Oct 2011)


I agree. But hopefully S4 will get it no later than Q1 2014. (we wish)

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 22:39

47. JC557 (Posts: 1149; 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.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 17:21 11

22. livyatan (Posts: 718; 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.

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 17:26 8

23. WHoyton1 (Posts: 1633; Member since: 21 Feb 2013)


the truth has been spoken!!!

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 18:38

32. zibbyzib2000 (Posts: 196; Member since: 18 Nov 2010)


...even though iOS 7 has almost all of these features sans the IR functionality

posted on 31 Oct 2013, 19:46 13

36. av911 (Posts: 149; Member since: 19 Nov 2012)


I think you're referring to iOS 8, when they're gonna copy what Android already had.

posted on 01 Nov 2013, 05:08 3

52. o0Exia0o (Posts: 427; 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

posted on 03 Nov 2013, 06:48

64. AliNSiddiqui (Posts: 381; Member since: 19 Sep 2012)


Besides integration of messages, Emoji, and wireless printing, iOS 7 has nothing this new Android update has

posted on 03 Nov 2013, 18:40 1

81. zibbyzib2000 (Posts: 196; 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).

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