Android 4.4 KitKat available on Nexus 5, other devices “in the coming weeks”

Niamh Lynch

Niamh Lynch

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Finally, after all the rumors, speculation, and supposed release dates, we have an official release window for Android 4.4, codenamed KitKat. Google is launching KitKat with the new Nexus 5 phone but the update will be available to the Nexus 4, 7, 10, Samsung Galaxy S4 and HTC One Google Play Editions “in the coming weeks.”

The update is a minor upgrade to Android Jelly Bean, but it’s still worth installing if only to stay up to date. Among the improvements you’ll see with Android KitKat:

Android 4.4 KitKat available on Nexus 5, other devices “in the coming weeks”
  1. Improvements for Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) and 4.1 to 4.3 (Jelly Bean) – Wider support for different devices and lower system requirements mean there’s a good chance you’ll get KitKat on your older phone. One of the goals for Google this time is to prepare their OS to work with older phones, even with those with 512MB of RAM. Looks like KitKat update might hit some older devices, so fingers crossed!
  2. Slight redesign – KitKat will boast transparent notification and control bars and white icons. Developers will be able to use fullscreen view for their apps and we’ll see new camera, file, and phone icons
  3. Hardware optimization – Android will work better, with lower battery consumption
  4. SMS integrated with Hangouts – This will make communication easier, especially if your friends are using Google services as well.
  5. Updates for up to 17 Google apps – The list includes Google Play Services, Gmail, Drive, Calendar, Earth, Translate, Chrome, Hangouts, Goggles, Play Magazines, Keep, Wallet, Blogger, Google+, Analytics, Fiber and Snapseed.

Android 4.4 focuses much more on updating Google’s core Android applications to provide a unified experience for all Android users. This means Android’s infamous “fragmentation” will be eliminated by focusing on updates using Google Play Services.

From now on, Google Play Services will take care of updating Android automatically and behind the scenes. This little “app” currently runs on 98.7% of Android devices, has full administrator permissions, updates itself automatically without Google Play and, basically, runs and updates Android. If your device receives the Android KitKat update, don’t forget to back up your data!


[Source: Google Official Blog]

Niamh Lynch

Niamh Lynch

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