Google launches Android One to beat Microsoft Nokia X

Android One

Google has unveiled a new Android One hardware reference platform designed to boost uptake of the mobile operating system in emerging markets.

Google unveiled Android One at its I/O conference claiming it will let phone makers design high power $100 smartphones.

The move will see Google set a clear list of standards that all Android One smartphones must meet. Head of Android at Google, Sundar Pichai explained: “We want quality vendors so we’re providing a turnkey solution for OEMs to help them more easily build smartphones.”

Android One smartphones will be required to run a vanilla version of the mobile operating system. Picahi said this will mean Google will be able ensure any Android One device will receive future software updates automatically.

He added while it will not let phone makers adjust Android’s core code, the programme will let OEMs and operators add local apps to the devices.

Google confirmed it has already inked deals with several manufactures and that the first Android One device will be made by Micromax, with devices from Karbonn, Cromax and Spice following soon after.

Details about the handset from Micromax remain unknown past that it will feature a 4.5in display, dual-SIM slot, microSD card slot, inbuilt FM radio and cost less than $100 when it goes on sale.

The release is a clear move to combat Microsoft which has been working hard to secure control of emerging smartphone markets. Microsoft unveiled a new Nokia X2 smartphone for emerging markets earlier this week.

The Nokia X2 runs using a heavily customised version of Android that replaces the operating system’s innate Google services with Microsoft’s. The hybrid operating system in theory means users can enjoy Android’s larger application offering while being primarily embedded in Microsoft’s ecosystem.

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