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Did you know that Android was not actually made by Google?

Posted: , by Victor H.

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Did you know that Android was not actually made by Google?

Android, the world’s most popular operating system, is a platform that nearly everyone would associate with Google nowadays. And that’s only natural - after all, the search giant has brought it to its global success. But did you know that Android was not conceived in the Googleplex?

In fact, it was not until 2005, a whole two years after the Android operating system was born, that Google took over the company. Interestingly, Android commenced way back in October 2003 as a platform targeting digital cameras, not phones.

A brainchild of engineer and avid robot lover Andy Rubin (hence, the name Android), in its early days, the OS was developed by just a handful of fellow engineers. The small team realized swiftly that the digital camera market is not the best fit for its effort, and changed the target to mobile phones. Rubin headed the project - he already had the experience at Danger, after all, a start-up that brought us the iconic T-Mobile Sidekick with its vintage slide-out keyboard. 

The platform was already well under way until one day, a year and a half after it was started, the Android start-up ran out of money. Rubin spoke with Samsung first, but the company laughed the idea of buying nascent Android out of court, so it was a lucky day for both Android and Google when they found each other in 2005. Google took on the project, and investment in it only grew with time, so today it's easy to forget that Google did not actually start Android. Its trust in the nascent Android, however, has certainly paid off, don't you think?

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posted on 20 Apr 2014, 09:35 8

2. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 5431; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)


"Did you know that Android was not actually made by Google?"

Yes, I know.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 09:38 13

4. MR-H- (Posts: 116; Member since: 10 Apr 2014)


"Yes we might know, but majority of Apple users don't know this,,, "

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 09:40 4

7. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 5431; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)


Yes, I know that majority of them doesn't know that. :)

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:02 15

20. xperiaDROID (Posts: 5042; Member since: 08 Mar 2013)


I think majority of them don't even know that Apple is a fruit. :P

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:13 5

29. MR-H- (Posts: 116; Member since: 10 Apr 2014)


And majority of the users believe Apple is the first in inceptions....

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 09:38 1

3. QuadFace (Posts: 47; Member since: 19 Aug 2013)


Was made for Samsung!

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:22 2

38. akki20892 (Posts: 3237; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)


Sony: Wth
HTC: Wth
Motorola: Wth
LG: Wth
Other android OEM: Wth
And Google: Wth

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 09:39 1

5. NokiaFTW (Posts: 1683; Member since: 24 Oct 2012)


We already knew this PA. Still, thanks for the thorough information. :)

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 09:40 6

6. AfterShock (Posts: 2073; Member since: 02 Nov 2012)


Not everyone knows the history for sure.
A refresh is always welcome for newer folks.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 09:42 1

8. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 5431; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)


True! It doesn't hurt.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 09:45 4

9. Sauce (unregistered)


I wonder if Samsung looks back at that poor decision a lot. Heck I would.

Also reminds me of when the first iPhone 4 prototype was left at a bar and the guy called a receptionist at Apple and she literally laughed at him and hung up..

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:39 7

47. nokia12 (Posts: 261; Member since: 19 Nov 2013)


why poor decision ? it turned out to be a fantastic decision for them..
think of this had samsung bought it and used it in place of bada where would it have been ? google improved it by miles and made sure that htc , and motorola used it which made it famous .. samsung was very very tiny back then..and then nokia fked up thanks to mr.flop and all the share fell into samsung hands and now they are enjoying the profits.. without google it wouldn't have been successful at all

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 11:51 5

81. jroc74 (Posts: 4720; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


Good points...but still I think Samsung is kicking themselves...

Biggest point you made tho was we dont know how Android would have done with no Google influence and only Samsung.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 13:21 5

93. 0xFFFF (Posts: 1999; Member since: 16 Apr 2014)


Google did something Samsung probably wouldn't have done -- provide an open source mobile OS to the world under reasonable licensing terms. And in doing so, ended up pushing Wintel out of mobile.

Now Microsoft has gotten back in the mobile game, but their "One Windows" strategy is hardly inspiring. Many people with Windows desktops don't want Windows on their mobiles. It would give them illness.

And then there is the lost child, Intel, trying to make x86 chips for mobile and largely failing. Intel's strategy has been very stupid -- help Microsoft kill the PC and then what? A wise company would only kill the old golden goose after they get a new one, not before.

My guess is that without Google's strong support of Android, and making it open source, the world would likely be far worse off today. I can't imagine how expensive, dull, and stagant it would be if Apple and Wintel ruled the mobile world.

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 07:33 1

120. kylehudsons (Posts: 48; Member since: 04 Apr 2012)


Agree with everything you are saying but 1.... Samsung is not very very small back then... Samsung has been controlling south Korea for 2and a half generation already... with or without android I'm just gonna say that Samsung is practically a huge big ass company with or without mobile phones industry...

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 02:53 1

119. express77 (unregistered)


They wouldnt have been as innovative as google and android wouldnt have been a success without being open source which samsung probably haven't done.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 09:51

12. sip1995 (Posts: 638; Member since: 07 Feb 2014)


I knew it

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 09:56

15. MR-H- (Posts: 116; Member since: 10 Apr 2014)


There is a platform which has "hardly any apps and games".... which received a software update recently....?

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:30 1

42. NokiaFTW (Posts: 1683; Member since: 24 Oct 2012)


Did you know that there's a troll on PA that commented on this article who goes by the name MR-something and needs a brain?

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:46 2

53. MR-H- (Posts: 116; Member since: 10 Apr 2014)


Which I believe it's you. Another delusional user who supports the lie and BS nonsense, and does not want's to deny but still believes WP has major revolution problems. Congratulation you must love the bitter le and hate the truth. Sadly your username says NOKIAFTW, you are a fanboy which everything you say must be take as nonese and BS, as cause you are not normal but abnormal.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:51 1

57. NokiaFTW (Posts: 1683; Member since: 24 Oct 2012)


Okay kid, you win. You happy now kiddo?

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 16:22

103. sip1995 (Posts: 638; Member since: 07 Feb 2014)


What ? I just said that i knew before PA made this article.....i didn't say anything ironic.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 09:53 1

13. xfire99 (Posts: 409; Member since: 14 Mar 2012)


Did u know Google actually was called BackRub from beginning?

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 09:57 1

16. f_u_006 (Posts: 7; Member since: 19 Mar 2014)


Sometimes when i think about Android, it makes me cry how much i love it.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 09:58 4

17. chocowii (Posts: 327; Member since: 30 Jan 2014)


Phonearena has been into DYKs lately.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:07 5

25. xperiaDROID (Posts: 5042; Member since: 08 Mar 2013)


Coming up next, did you know that Windows platform was inspired by the windows?

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:14

30. MR-H- (Posts: 116; Member since: 10 Apr 2014)


And it needs apps and games.... cause it has no apps and games,no bank apps and other major apps

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:49 1

55. xperiaDROID (Posts: 5042; Member since: 08 Mar 2013)


You sir, are damn wrong. Windows Phone store has a lot of apps and games now and it's growing.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:40 2

49. NokiaFTW (Posts: 1683; Member since: 24 Oct 2012)


Was it?

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:43 2

52. xperiaDROID (Posts: 5042; Member since: 08 Mar 2013)


I think so, the Windows logo was an obvious sign. :)

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 13:20 1

123. chocowii (Posts: 327; Member since: 30 Jan 2014)


Also, did you know that PA Articles are sometimes paid advertisements? *cough* *samsung* *cough*

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:05 1

23. antifanboy14 (Posts: 66; Member since: 26 Nov 2012)


so sammy laughed the idea out the door? haha! i can't believe this.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:14 2

31. Sniggly (Posts: 6695; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


So...this article is targeted at complete noobs who've never bothered to look up Android's history, right?

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:18 1

34. androiphone20 (Posts: 1391; Member since: 10 Jul 2013)


Worse

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 10:18

35. androiphone20 (Posts: 1391; Member since: 10 Jul 2013)


Worse

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 12:02 1

85. networkdood (Posts: 6244; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)


a fluff piece...

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 14:39 1

97. Sniggly (Posts: 6695; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


Because if it isn't for the complete noobs who don't know anything about Android, then it's a flame bait article, plain and simple. Shame on Phonearena for doing this.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 11:11 3

65. joaolx (Posts: 341; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)


We're back in 2008/9 where they're telling how to sideload apps and asking if you knew this.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 11:16 1

67. PBXtech (Posts: 966; Member since: 21 Oct 2013)


Did you know Steve Jobs had the same opportunity to purchase Android but passed? Imagine the impact of that decision should it of went the other way.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 11:46 2

78. jroc74 (Posts: 4720; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


If thats true.....whew...a HUUUUGE bullet wad dodged....

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 11:29 2

75. jroc74 (Posts: 4720; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


Thanks for another article mentioning the birth date....2003.

I would like that fact to stay in users on this site minds when they wanna mention copying...

For the transition to go from buttons to all touch screen as quick as it did.....all touch screen was in the works...

And Google, Android OEM's still have dev phones with the old Blackberry look. Or used to as late as 2010.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 12:48 2

87. PBXtech (Posts: 966; Member since: 21 Oct 2013)


That, and capacitive screens were just starting to be available so full screen phones weren't being made previously like they are after the release of that technology.

Anyone who really thinks Android was a copy of iOS is either in denial or suffers from some insecurity problems or jealousy. Android and iOS are so far apart in features and appearances, as well as functionality that the two could not have been made from the same sources. In reality, both were influenced by previous systems that were already in use for years.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 13:03

91. TechDork (Posts: 206; Member since: 10 May 2010)


The Sidekick did NOT have a "slide out" keyboard. It had a....a....um...a um....IT DIDN'T SLIDE OUT! It like, sidekick'd. See? :P Unless you refer to the Sidekick Slide but..

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 13:25

94. robocopvn (Posts: 175; Member since: 10 Mar 2010)


Yes, I know somewhere in the universe there are also a intelligent creature that create Android also !

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 15:59

99. winter_hat (Posts: 91; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)


The genius of Android is that it's a trash heap of nothing and you add everything you need with apps or a skin in order to make it even usable.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 16:06 3

100. Sniggly (Posts: 6695; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


Says someone who clearly doesn't use Android.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 16:13

101. winter_hat (Posts: 91; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)


No, I do. It takes me hours every time I get a new one just to make it functional. Replace the launcher, replace the keyboard, find and download BASIC functionality like task lists, memo app, etc. Replace the worthless dialer. Every dialer is worse than the last. I wish they would STOP with the 'improvements' of the dialer. It can be great, but it really starts out horrid.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 16:21 3

102. Sniggly (Posts: 6695; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


"every time I get a new one."

Riiiiiggggghhhhhttttt. So you hate Android but you keep getting Android devices?

And I love these objective declarations. The dialer is fine for me. I actually like the new one. The search functionality is way better.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 16:28

104. winter_hat (Posts: 91; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)


I'm not a hater. Have at least one of every major mobile OS. I have about 5 Androids, 2 are not too old (Moto X, S3.) I am objective though. Since I've moved beyond my little Android world, I've seen a lot of it's flaws. It's a strength that it's so modifiable, but it's a weakness that you HAVE to modify it just to make it usable.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 16:41

106. NokiaFTW (Posts: 1683; Member since: 24 Oct 2012)


5 Androids? Isn't that too much?

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 17:00 2

109. Sniggly (Posts: 6695; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


You might have to, but I've never had to modify my phones just to make them usable. I've really messed around with them purely because I could.

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 17:42

124. elitewolverine (Posts: 1139; Member since: 28 Oct 2013)


Actually I don't like android myself, yet I have 7 in total since the G1, my most recent purchase is a Note 3.

Just cause you think it can be done better and imo has, doesn't mean you don't buy one. The note 3 has its usage, but it wasn't enough to become my daily driver.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 17:05 4

110. jroc74 (Posts: 4720; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


"No, I do. It takes me hours every time I get a new one just to make it functional."

I stopped reading right there.....hyperbole much?

What you meant was...functional...for you...cuz I can go all stock or customize alot...and be fine either way.

As of now...the ONLY things I change alot is launchers and keyboard....and keyboard is Swype only... I dont even mess with the lock screen that much anymore.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 18:46

112. winter_hat (Posts: 91; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)


In 2014, on a smart phone, you don't need a note taking app? Or a to-do list? One that is integrated into the OS and syncs with your devices? Good for you.

And the keyboard is the worst on any device. And the dialer on KitKat is ridiculous. Lots of flaws. But, as long as the masses of sheep keep swallowing everything Google shovels their way, there's no reason for them to change.

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 09:58 1

121. jroc74 (Posts: 4720; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


Yea...because obviously my use and your use are different..

Like I said...functional...for you.

posted on 23 Apr 2014, 01:59

126. winter_hat (Posts: 91; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)


Google nut snugglers, lol

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 01:54 2

118. Whateverman (Posts: 3187; Member since: 17 May 2009)


"I stopped reading right there..."

Hilarious! Exact same spot where I experienced uncontrollable eye rolling. +1

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 19:17 1

114. sonisoe (Posts: 320; Member since: 06 May 2009)


i knew that...but just glad coz i doubt samsung would ve made android open and its be samsung vs ios...

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 10:03 1

122. kabhijeet.16 (Posts: 626; Member since: 05 Dec 2012)


Yes We know..

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 19:25

125. roscuthiii (Posts: 1785; Member since: 18 Jul 2010)


PhoneArena... I... I just- You know these recent articles you've been posting?

*insert ASCII Picard facepalm here*

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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