May 20, 2010 | by Andrew Kameka
Android 2.2 is the ultimate smartphone experience. That became clear at today’s Google I/O conference, where Google revealed the new features of Android’s latest version. Though no date of availability was announced, Google’s Vic Gundotra confirmed many of the rumoured specifications and features set to debut to compatible devices later this year. In a keynote where Gundotra made many comical swipes at Apple and Steve Jobs, Google promised the following features:
JIT – Just in Time compiler gives apps a 2x-5x increase in speed. In a demo of Replica Island, one of Androinica’s favorite apps, Éclair and Froyo were introduced side by side to show how each handles the game on a Nexus One. Éclair often fell below 30 frames per second, but the JIT-packed Froyo never came close to falling. No red flashes at all!
Enterprise – Google announced 20 new enterprise features: New Exchange auto-discovery, security polices, and GAL lookup. Also added Device Admin API’s for things like remote wiping. This is crucial for many IT workers and critical for Android becoming a major player in the enterprise crowd.
Application Data Backup API – Allows in-app data to be saved and restored. When you switch from one phone to the next, your stored data will in apps will transfer over if the developer takes advantage of the API. Imagine not having to lose your scores when you reinstall an app or upgrade devices.
Cloud to app communication – A new feature for intents allows users to upgrade to communicate from desktop to mobile. Search for Google Maps on your computer and send it to the phone, your device will immediately go to Navigation mode. BOOM! Reading an article on the web and need to read it on the go? BOOM! It opens up in the browser (the API may allow it to open up in your RSS reader of choice?)
Tethering & Portable Hotspot – Your Android device can become a hotspot. You rooted users have been doing this for months, but the feature will now be integrated into the device as a standard feature. Froyo includes built-in tethering to allow your mobile devices (netbook, laptop) to access the web through your cell phone.