Android One takes new shape as Google adds program to its broader hardware strategy

Android One takes new shape as Google adds program to its broader hardware strategy

Two years back, Google announced the Android One program to give manufacturers an easy way to produce phones based off a standardized hardware design, and receive quick software updates through the deployment of a near-stock Android experience. But then last fall, it sounded like the basic tenets of Android One were already falling apart, as Google started easing those hardware restrictions, while dialing-back those promises of speedy software updates a little. Was Android One as we knew it essentially over? In a new interview, Google exec Mike Hayes explains that's anything but true, and that Android One “has become a part of [Google's] broader hardware strategy.”

That comment there is particularly interesting, as it may suggest that Android One is finding itself wrapped up in the new Rick Osterloh-helmed Google hardware division. We already knew to expect programs like Nexus devices and whatever comes of Google Glass to be swept up under the umbrella of the new division, but Android One's name hadn't appeared in earlier reports.

Despite the changing shape of Android One, Hayes is clear that Google's relationships with early Android One hardware manufacturers are still in place, even as the roles shift a little. Google's no longer providing the same degree of “yardsticks” for OEMs to hit specific hardware targets, and everything from component choice to the schedules upon which Android One devices are released is much more in the hands of these hardware partners.

Google's also expanding its Android One-related efforts to work not just with phone-makers but also carriers. One benefit there is being able to do Google Play billing through the carriers; this program has always been about reaching out to smartphone users on a budget, and the ability to make small payments directly through mobile providers can be a very attractive one to such users.

Finally, Hayes confirms that “it's safe to say” we'll be seeing new Android One devices released in the future. He doesn't elaborate on what or when, but perhaps we'll be learning more soon with Google I/O 2016 just around the corner later this month.

source: Economic Times via Phandroid

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9 Comments

1. GreenMan

Posts: 2697; Member since: Nov 09, 2015

The world loves bloat... Nexus lineup is struggling as Nexus 5X is going for just $250... End of story!

2. Ruturaj

Posts: 1484; Member since: Oct 16, 2014

Non expandable 16gb killed 5X.

3. siddharthayadav202

Posts: 286; Member since: Apr 23, 2016

It is a great phone.. But its priced higher at about $330 (Rs. 20-21k) And a few days ago in a offer, Note 4 and S6 were priced at about $440-450 And nexus does not has a very good resale value here. Though I got it as a gift to my cousin when S6 and Note 4 were $510 and I was really impressed with everything except display (it was awesome, but I just cannot live without Amoled anymore), Limited Storage and design (looked a bit awkward to me).

4. UglyFrank

Posts: 2191; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

All valid points and yes AMOLED is a necessity

5. Cyberchum

Posts: 1024; Member since: Oct 24, 2012

You are on every article spewing 'End of story' BS. Makes one wonder if this ol' man has a real life; you know, outside the Internet.

6. roscuthiii

Posts: 2383; Member since: Jul 18, 2010

Nexus phones never see large sales. They're hardly even promoted as carriers tend push the big name models with their own bloatware pre-loaded. In the US, most consumers don't even buy unlocked phones. Other than that, the 6P completely overshadowed the 5X. Why mention the 5X and not the 6P? I guess the story didn't end there after all.

8. GreenMan

Posts: 2697; Member since: Nov 09, 2015

6P is a bloody phablet hence this old man's story ends on Nexus 5X... 5.2 Inch is at the fringe of my wielding capacity... Anything bigger and I lose interest... Lets ends the story with a... G'Day!

9. kiko007

Posts: 7493; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

I can understand that. I'm experimenting with a Nexus 6 now, and I gotta say that this phablet s**t is getting pretty ridiculous!!!! This damn thing is basically a super small tablet. Personally I want my devices between 4.7 to 5.0, but everyone is so obsessed with huge phones it can be hard to find nice small ones. Apple and Sony make mini devices, but a mini Nexus would be nice too. 720p is fine under 5 inches and the phone would be ultra fast!!!

7. kabiluddin

Posts: 274; Member since: Feb 28, 2015

Excellent News.

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