Google’s Android 2.2 OS (Froyo) is turning out to be a real competition for Apple’s iPhone iOS 4 platform. Barely 18 months since its public release and the Android Rocket keeps on flying to greater heights. Only a few weeks ago, it shocked Apple to learn that Android handsets have captured 28% of the US market as compared to Apple’s 21%. This rapid rise of the use of Android-powered phones is only going to get another significant boost with the release of Android 2.2 Froyo last month.
The Android Froyo update for Nexus One, for example, is another milestone for the open-source mobile operating system. It includes valuable fixes and improvements that all users should benefit from. Here is my short-list of compelling reasons why you should immediately update your handset to the version 2.2 release.
1. ADOBE FLASH 10.1 SUPPORT AND INTEGRATION WITH HTML 5
Never mind the angry diatribe of Steve Jobs, people of planet Earth still enjoy watching Flash movies on the web. Facebook became such a huge hit because of the numerous Flash games (like Mafia Wars and Farmville) on it and billions of web pages are still coded in Flash format. Like all other freethinking individuals, I still like having the prerogative to choose which format I should use to view videos online!
2. TETHERING AND PORTABLE HOT SPOT OPTION
This is another killer feature; Wireless tethering is and should be the standard for file transfers, Bluetooth has range limitation and so Wi-Fi with its much longer signal range is the perfect method for wireless tethering. With this feature enabled, it is now possible to use your Android phone as a Wi-Fi hotspot where in you can connect a laptop or desktop PC and use the phone’s internet connection. This eliminates the need for separate Wi-Fi cards.
3. SPEED INCREASE WITH NEW JIT COMPILER
Google gives Froyo a new JIT (Just In Time) compiler that makes it up to 5X times faster than the older 2.1 Éclair version. Benchmark test has proved it. A Nexus One with Android OS 2.1 managed to achieve 6–7 MFLOPS score but a 2.2 version-powered Nexus One beats it handily because it made 38-40 MFLOPS. Quite an upgrade!
4. AUTO UPDATE OF APPS AND APPS2SD
This is one of my wish list and I’m glad that Google has finally implemented it. Froyo now supports auto-update of apps installed in your phone. You can even set this option to do batch updates. It pleases me also to learn that the Apps2SD storage option has been made native to Froyo.
5. YOUTUBE HQ VIEWING NOW POSSIBLE
Most people found it very annoying that their 1 GHz-strong Android phone couldn’t play HQ versions of Youtube clips. They have my sympathy. I also felt frustrated by older Android versions which automatically downscale Youtube videos and no way to make it stop. That’s all over, Froyo’s release has addressed this issue. There is a new HQ button for viewing Youtube clips which should be used all the time if you have unlimited internet plan!