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Google challenges iPhone 4.0 with Android 2.2 Froyo

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In recent days, Google I / O was held, the most important annual Mountain View event dedicated to developers, now also the scene of the most important announcements of the great G. In addition to Google TV, Froyo, the latest version of Android, was presented.

Although it has never been directly mentioned, a presence remained in the background throughout the keynote, led by Vic Gundotra, Vice-President of Engineering: it is obviously Apple. The entire presentation did not fail to include numerous treats clearly addressed to Cupertino, which aimed to hit the most well-known gaps in the iPhone OS.

For example, by presenting the new Android APIs, capable of sending messages and commands over-the-air, Gundotra defines them "not as push notifications designed to compensate for the lack of basic options such as multitasking".

Still the speed of the new javascript engine implemented on Froyo is shown at the expense of an iPad; the availability of Flash technology on Android is announced ironically "it happens that people use Flash on the Internet", a clear reference to Apple's closure towards Adobe technology.

Finally, Gundotra says that Android was born to prevent the future of mobility from being controlled by one man (referring to Jobs) and showing an image with reference to an Orwellian dystopian future, with a clear "1984" date, next to the writing "The future we don't want", thus reversing the famous 1984 spot which for years represents the image through which Apple became popular.

Beyond words, the challenge to Apple is also played out on the concrete: the news introduced by Froyo promise to give even more battle to the next iPhone OS 4.0. Google has indeed introduced several new features, which make Froyo probably one of the most substantial updates of the Mountain View mobile operating system.

The operating system performance improves significantly, making the devices at least 2 times faster than the previous Eclair. APIs are introduced for new over-the-air notifications, through which it will be possible, for example, to send commands or messages to your mobile phone via browser.

Significant improvements also for the browser: the new V8 javascript engine is introduced (the same as in Chrome, which increases execution speed from 2 to 3 times; thanks to new APIs, the browser will be able to access cell phone technology so far off limits, such as the camera or the accelerometer. Voice recognition is also improving, an area in which Google proves that it wants to invest more and more.

The inevitable support for Adobe Flash 10.1 is announced, in addition to the compatibility developed through Adobe Air. Big news on applications: it will be easier to search for apps in the Android Market, internal search for applications will be available, you can update all the applications in one go (and select the automatic update) and finally it will be possible to choose whether to install the programs on your phone or SD card.

Perhaps the most interesting news concerns the Android Market. It will be possible for developers to report bugs automatically, to speed up their correction; but the real news concerns a completely redesigned new look of the Market, which will allow not only better navigation but also to be able to choose and install applications directly over-the-air, following a simple click on the browser.

A new music section will then be available, where users can purchase music tracks and download them (always over-the-air) on their mobile phone; finally, with the acquisition of Simplify Media, it will allow you to listen to your streaming music library.

Mockingly Simplify Media is no longer available on the App Store, a detail that combined with the latest features reported, highlights once again how tight the competition between Apple and Google is. Finally, the latest news, thetering via wi-fi will be enabled, which transforms the Android mobile phones in portable hot-spots, to be combined with devices without connectivity.

Froyo will be available within a few weeks for Google Experience mobiles (the Nexus One first of all). For other mobile phones it will be necessary to wait for the manufacturer's release times. With the launch of the new iPhone, the period will certainly be hot.