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Sprint Product Ambassadors: The Android era and the HTC One M8

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Wizard

It's been said over and over again that HTC really knows how to deliver on a fantastic solid device with an absolutely beautiful design and the HTC M8 is no exception. With all that great hardware it really needs some great software to go with it as well and Android KitKat really

enhances the M8 feel and overall use of the device. Match made in heaven!

As I was hunting around on the web and reading some articles I found this article from CNET that gives you a history of Android going all the back to the G1 (in the full article you can see all the Android versions back to 2008 I only included the version 4.x).

Enjoy:

androidevolutionv3.jpg

In truth, Google's first Android phone, the HTC-made G1, wasn't much to look at when it debuted in October 2008, with its trough for a keyboard and its bizarrely jutting chin. HTC was hardly a known brand, and we weren't even sure if we were getting a single Google Phone or an entire operating system. Still the humble G1, with its ugly design and few apps, kicked off an Android avalanche just the same.

Now in 2014, Android and iOS both command the smartphone market. Yet for all the platform's success, too many versions of the operating system are available at the same time across handsets and carriers. Whether you call that fragmentation or not, Google is actively trying to change it. When the company released version 4.4 KitKat in 2013, it made a big push to make its operating system smaller, so that it could run on budget devices with small amounts of internal storage and just 512MB of RAM (most flagship Android phones have 1GB or more). And yet, while some Android device manufacturers are starting to build KitKat phones, we still see plenty of brand-new low-end devices released with Jelly Bean 4.3 and 4.2. At least for the foreseeable future, the fragmentation problem is here to stay.

4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich)October 2011
  • Support for virtual buttons in addition to touch-sensitive buttons
  • Create folders by dragging apps on top of each other
  • A new app tray tab for thumbing through widgets
  • Calendar app now supports pinch-to-zoom
  • Gmail gets offline search, swiping between conversations
  • Revamped Gmail user interface
  • New Chrome browser syncs with your bookmarks, saves pages offline, supports 16 browser tabs
  • More keyboard error correction, inline spell check
  • Customizable lock screen, launcher
  • Recent applications icon
  • Roboto typeface
  • New swipe/delete behavior
  • Improved voice integration and copy and paste
  • Face Unlock security feature
  • Data Usage tracking
  • Hide unwanted app icons
  • Shut down apps that are using background data
  • Native camera features include zero shutter lag, continuous focus, zoom while recording, taking a still photo while recording, panorama photos, time lapse settings 1080p recording
  • Face detection in the camera
  • Integrated photo editor
  • New gallery layout, organized by location and person
  • Phone app lets you swipe between favorite friends with integrated visual voice mail
  • Speed up and slow down voice mails
  • Quick message sends canned response text message when you decline a call
  • Android Beam, an NFC feature for exchanging information between two phones by tapping them
  • Wi-Fi Direct support



4.1 (Jelly Bean)July 2012
  • Faster, smoother performance with "Project Butter"
  • Expandable notifications with greater interaction
  • Voice search access by swiping up from bottom of the screen
  • Voice actions engine replies to some queries
  • Google Now
  • Offline dictation
  • Default Chrome browser
  • Resizable app widgets (for some)
  • Android Beam support for transferring larger files, like photo and video
  • New filmstrip view of recent shots in the camera app
  • Applications update in Google Play with just the changed code
  • Sound search widget for music ID
  • Higher-resolution contact photos
  • Greater accessibility options
  • Expanded language support, especially for Arabic and Hebrew
  • Interface tweaks



4.2-4.3 (Jelly Bean)November 2012-October 2013
  • Lock screen widgets, and the ability to open the camera from the lock screen.
  • Quick Settings in the notification menu to toggle Wi-Fi or Bluetooth and more.
  • "Daydream" screensavers, which show time and other information when the screen is locked or device is docked.
  • Multiple user accounts on tablets only.
  • Support for wireless display (such as Miracast)
  • Accessibility features, including triple-tap to magnify the entire screen, pan and zoom with two fingers. Speech output for blind users.
  • Unified interface layout for all devices, with system bar at the top of the screen, and a home screen dock
  • More Actionable Notifications, which let you respond to the notification without opening the app.
  • Bluetooth Low Energy support.
  • Location tracking with Wi-Fi -- your device can track your location without turning on Wi-Fi.
  • Support for 4K resolution phones.



4.4 (KitKat)October 2013
  • Major design interface update, especially for new Nexus devices.
  • Translucent status bar in the OS and in apps.
  • New "immersive mode" where apps can hide navigation and status bars.
  • The size of the operating system shrunk so it can run on lower-end devices with small amounts of RAM and internal storage.
  • Wireless printing using Google Cloud Print

Disclaimer: The Product Ambassadors (PA) are Sprint employees from many different parts of the company that love technology. They volunteer to test out all sorts of Sprint devices and offer opinions freely to the Community. Each Product Ambassador shares their own opinions of these devices, therefore the information in this post does not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sprint. The PA's do not represent the company in an official way, and should not be expected to respond to Community members in an official capacity. sprintemployee.

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