After a very long wait, Google have finally started distributing the over the air update for the Nexus One, upgrading the Android OS version to 2.3.3 – a.k.a. Gingerbread. I’m happy to say I received mine this evening, which is good because I was starting to become tempted to spend more money on a new handset just to get the latest software!
The software update was about 43Mb, some of the new features are:
- Improved keyboard
- Improved copy & paste and word selection
- Better power management – you can now see how much power each app/process is using and kill anything you don’t want with one touch
- SIP internet calling (included in contacts)
- UI improvements – experience more refined and efficient, they claim it even helps save power usage
- NFC – near field communication (not so relevant for the Nexus One!)
I might be imagining it, but it feels like the UI has sped up a little now that I have upgraded. Apps also seem to load faster.
Perhaps more importantly, the latest Android version has API support for more advanced graphics, multiple camera, more types of motion sensors, NFC, etc. etc. which the manufacturers will be putting into their latest smartphone handsets. This enables the manufacturers to continue innovating without having to wait for the software to catch up. Innovation will be the key to sustaining the success of Android versus the rivals like Apple. The question is, can Google manage such a diverse range of hardware in one standardised OS for mobile devices and not get bogged down to the point where they lose ground. Apple has a far simpler task, as do RIM.
I’m happy with the Gingerbread update, but in reality it is the future handsets using it that make it exciting.