Android is an open-platform operating system purchased by Google in 2005. Phones running on the Android operating system are extremely competitive in the smart phone market. The goal of Android's open-platform is to allow developers and manufacturers worldwide to collaborate without worrying about proprietary information, positioning them to innovate faster and more cheaply than ever before. As of January 2011, the latest release of Android is version 2.3, also called Gingerbread.
While developers spent months trying to convince Android users that they didn't need the ability to end specific ongoing tasks or processes associated with recently opened applications, they have put a power management system into release 2.3. The Gingerbread release lets you see what programs are running in the background using up memory and processor speed and close the ones you want in order to free up the phone's processor.
In order to stay competitive with other smart phones on the market, Gingerbread supports the use of gyroscope, gravity, barometric sensors, linear acceleration and rotation vector which, in layman's terms, means that game developers can give users games with highly sensitive and responsive controls.
The keyboard updates in Android 2.3 have optimized the on-screen keyboard for faster text messaging and greater accuracy. The keys have been repositioned and shaped so they are easier to see. The keyboard offers suggestions for spelling corrections as well as options for completing words you have started typing. There is even a voice-input mode. Copy and Paste have been improved, as well, allowing you to highlight text and reposition your cursor with the touch-screen without the use of the trackball.
Voice Over IP Support
If users have a third-party Internet calling account, they can set up their Android phone to use that account to call other people on SIP phone numbers (Internet phone numbers). Each cell phone network carrier can choose to allow the feature or not, but Android's 2.3 release supports the use of VoIP calling, meaning you can use your cell phone to call people for lower or free rates worldwide.
Refined User Interface
Android 2.3 has simplified the user interface and color scheme to provide greater screen contrast and vividness to the notification bar. Menus have been made easier to navigate and settings easier to locate and change, with hopes that it will be easy for new users to learn quickly.
Android phones can now use either a front or rear-facing camera, allowing developers to create applications involving video calling, a feature only available on iPhones as of January 2011. Cell phone manufacturers can start developing phones with two cameras knowing that application developers can create applications that are intelligent enough to choose the correct camera for their purposes.
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