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Happy Fourth Birthday, Android

Happy Fourth Birthday, Android
It is hard to believe, but today is Android's fourth birthday. It was on this date in 2008 when the Android Developers Blog announced that Android 1.0 SDK release 1 was available. At the time, there was also excitement about the upcoming release of  the T-Mobile G1. The Apple iPhone 3G was just a little more than 2 months old and most of its competition was coming from featurephones like the LG Dare and the Samsung Instinct. A month after the release of Android 1.0 SDK, the T-Mobile G1 was launched. Android co-founder Andy Rubin later would say that Android 1.0 was more like .8 and that it had been rushed out for the Christmas season.

The launch of the T-Mobile G1 wasn't perfect. There was no virtual QWERTY or video player and the camera could not capture video. Android 1.5, aka Cupcake, was delayed but eventually enhanced the functionality of the phone. As we're often fond of saying, it was the release of Android 2.0 that really started the Android phenomena. That build of the open source OS was originally found on the Motorola DROID which was the first smartphone that could compete with the Apple iPhone.

We are now up to Android 4.1.1 Jelly Bean and Android phones controlled 68% of the global smartphone market in the second quarter of the year, according to IDC. One model, the Samsung Galaxy S IIIsold more than 20 million units in 100 days. Four years ago today, that would be all in the future. Ironically, back in 2010 when Symbian was the top Global smartphone OS, IDC predicted that Android could be on 68 million smartphones by 2013, good enough for second place to Symbian. The latest figures show 480 million Android handsets in use with 1.3 million Android devices getting activated daily.

Happy Birthday, Android!

source: AndroidDeveloperBlog (from 9/23/08), YouTube, RegHardware via Engadget

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