Android (operating system)

open-source operating system for mobile devices created by Google

Android is an operating system for mobile devices. It is mostly used for smartphones, like Google's own Google Pixel, as well as by other phone manufacturers like HTC and Samsung. It has also been used for tablets such as the Motorola Xoom and Amazon Kindle. A modified Linux kernel is used as Android's kernel.[5]

Android new logo 2019.svg
Pixel 4a Android 11 Launcher.png
Android 11 home screen with Pixel Launcher
Open Handset Alliance
Written inJava (UI), C (core), C++ and more[1]
OS familyUnix-like
Working stateCurrent
Source modelOpen source (most devices include proprietary components, such as Google Play)
Initial releaseSeptember 23, 2008; 13 years ago (2008-09-23)[2]
Latest releaseAndroid 12 / October 4, 2021; 18 days ago (2021-10-04)
Latest previewN/A
Marketing targetSmartphones, tablet computers, smart TVs (Android TV), Android Auto and smartwatches (Wear OS)
Available in100+ languages[3]
Package managerAPK (primarily through Google Play; installation of APKs also possible locally or from alternative sources such as F-Droid)
Platforms32- and 64-bit ARM, x86 and x86-64
Kernel typeMonolithic (modified Linux kernel)
Default user interfaceGraphical (multi-touch)
LicenseApache License 2.0
GNU GPL v2 for the Linux kernel modifications[4]

Google says that over 1.3 million Android smartphones are sold every day.[6] Most mobile phones run Android, making it the most popular mobile operating system. It is also the most popular operating system in general.

It supports multitasking and two-dimensional and three-dimensional graphics.

Security updates are not provided on versions older than Android 8.0. Newer versions receive security updates if the phone manufacturer supports them. Phones which have Android 10 and above receive security updates (like app updates) directly from Google Play.

The current stable version is Android 12, released on October 4, 2021. As of June 2021, Android 10 is the most used version.

Android programsEdit

Programs for Android, also called "apps" (short for applications), usually come from the Google Play Store. The Android programs have a file extension of .APK. On May 7, 2019, Kotlin replaced Java as Google’s preferred language for Android app development. Java is still supported, as is C++. Google states that[7] "Android apps can be written using Kotlin, Java, and C++ languages". Other languages may also be used; such as Python and Go, and those languages and even C++ may have restrictions. Large portions of the operating system itself are also written in Java. Over 2.6 million apps are available for Android in the Google Play Store.[8] Some apps are distributed elsewhere.

Android version numbers and namesEdit

Easter eggs in different Android versions

Versions of Android have a number and have had a name based on confectioneries, up to and including Android 9 Pie, but since then it has only been a number. The version numbers and names are:

  • 1.1: (No codename)
  • 1.1: Petit Four
  • 1.5: Cupcake
  • 1.6: Donut
  • 2.0 and 2.1: Eclair
  • 2.2: Froyo (Frozen Yogurt)
  • 2.3: Gingerbread
  • 3.x: Honeycomb (a tablet-only version)
  • 4.0: Ice Cream Sandwich
  • 4.1, 4.2 and 4.3: Jelly Bean
  • 4.4: KitKat
  • 5.0 and 5.1: Lollipop
  • 6.0 and 6.0.1: Marshmallow[9]
  • 7.0 and 7.1: Nougat
  • 8.0: Oreo
  • 9.0: Pie[10]
  • 10: (No codename)
  • 11: (No codename)
  • 12: (No codename)

Related pagesEdit


  1. "Android Language Breakdown". Open Hub. October 25, 2017. Archived from the original on December 14, 2017. Retrieved December 15, 2017.
  2. Morrill, Dan (September 23, 2008). "Announcing the Android 1.0 SDK, release 1". Android Developers Blog. Google. Archived from the original on March 5, 2017. Retrieved March 11, 2017.
  3. "Android 7.0 Nougat". Archived from the original on August 22, 2016. Retrieved September 5, 2016. Internationalization
    Multi-locale support [..]
    New languages supported: Coupled with allowing you to select multiple languages preferences, Android Nougat allows you to select from 100 new languages and 25 locales for commonly used languages such as English, Spanish, French, and Arabic. This enables Apps to better support and understanding your language preferences even if your devices lacks official support for it.
    Unknown parameter |deadurl= ignored (help)
  4. "Licenses". Android Source. Google. Archived from the original on December 15, 2016. Retrieved March 11, 2017.
  5. Android Project Home
  6. "There Are Now 1.3 Million Android Device Activations Per Day". TechCrunch. September 5, 2012.
  7. Android Developers Application Fundamentals
  8. "Number of apps on Android Devices". statista. Retrieved November 17, 2018.
  9. "Introducing new Android OS Marshmallow 6.0". Android Official. Retrieved June 1, 2018.
  10. "Android 9 Pie". Android. Retrieved August 6, 2018.

Other websitesEdit