Android is not just for smartphones or tablets, here are 10 gadgets it runs on
Android has grown pretty popular over the past years, hasn't it? Currently, there are over 500 million Android smartphones in use, and 1.3 million new devices are activated each day. In other words, about three quarters of the smartphone market share belongs to Google and its operating system.
But did you know that Android doesn't run only on smartphones and tablets? Yup! There are many kinds of gadgets that rely on Google's platform to operate, and here we've put together ten of them. Which one do you think is the coolest among the bunch? Let us know down in the comments!
The APC by VIA Technologies is a tiny $50 computer that runs Android 2.3 with added keyboard and mouse support. Its hardware specs are pretty modest - an 800MHz ARM11-based SoC is its brains paired with 512MB of RAM, but at this price, you can't really ask for more. You get four USB 2.0 ports, a 10/100Mbps Ethernet port, 2GB of storage (expandable via microSD) and HDTV support.
But if you need something more powerful (and a lot less user-friendly), check out the ODROID-X2 ($135), which comes with a Samsung Exynos 4412 running at 1.7GHz. That is the same chip powering the Samsung Galaxy S III and Galaxy Note II, by the way. Of course, with this tiny computer you get necesities like 6 USB ports, 100Mbps Ethernet, HDMI output, and a slot for SD cards. Android 4.0 can be loaded onto the device, alongside Ubuntu Linux.
The Favi SmartStick is one of those Android gadgets that you stick into an HDTV to make it smarter. The gizmo can connect to the internet, stream movies and TV shows, even run applicatons and play games, all the while using your television set as a display. You can have one of these for as little as $50.
But the Lenovo K91 needs no dongles as it has Android 4.0 built-in. It is a 55-inch smart TV powered by a dual-core processor and equipped with a 5-megapixel camera for video conferencing.
The Parrot Asteroid Smart (we aren't making the name up) is a car entertainment system running a customized version of Android 2.3. The interface has been heavily tweaked to allow easier operation while driving. It has a 6.2-inch capacitive touchscreen, 4 USB ports, and RCA video input/output.
As long as you don't mind charging it on a regular basis, the Sony Smartwatch can be a pretty handy gadget. It is an Android watch that connects to your smartphone and displays text messages, emails, and other notifications. And yes, it tells the time too!
Think of Instacube as a next-gen digital photo frame. Powered by Android, it is made to work seemlessly with Instagram, applying retro filters to your photographs and displaying them on its 6.5-inch screen. The device is expected to go on pre-order in the near future.
You've probably heard of the OUYA, right? After raising a ton of money on Kickstarter, the Android-powered video game console is now on pre-order for $99. It promises free-to-play games, access to Android applications, and all the benefits of the Android ecosystem. And by the way, the console is as big as a Rubik's cube.
The Samsung Galaxy Player is like an Android smartphone that isn't a phone. Still, you get access to Google Play, meaning that you can download music, play games, even surf the internet over Wi-Fi. Samsung's portable players come in several different sizes, the biggest one of them being a 5-incher with a WVGA LCD panel, but a 4-inch model is also available for people in need of something more portable.
The Samsung Galaxy Camera has been getting a lot of attention recently, but Nikon has an Android powered camera as well. The Coolpix S800c might be technically inferior, but at $350, it is definitely the more affordable among the two. Furthermore, Nikon's smart camera comes with a 16 megapixel sensor, 10x optical zoom, 3.5-inch screen, and can run popular apps available on Google Play.