3aIT Blog

The 7th major version of Google's Android operating system (codenamed "Nougat") has now been released. Android powers about 80% of the world's smartphones, as well as various other devices from tablets to TVs.

As is usually the case with Android, this release is more about evolution than revolution. The most obvious of the new features is the ability to run two apps side by side. It is also now possible to deal with notifications without actually opening the app they refer to (eg one could reply to a message from the notification rather than having to open the app).

There is also a big upgrade to security, which should make it increasingly difficult for attackers to be able to gain access to your phone.

Of course, this news will be of no consequence to the vast majority of Android users. Only a tiny fraction of phone / tablet owners will ever see this update on their device. While Google is good at keeping its own devices up to date, the other phone providers (Samsung, Motorola, LG etc) are far less so. As I write this, only 15% of users are on version 6, which was released at this time last year. 35.5% are still using version 5, while a staggering 45.5% are still stuck on version 4. We have covered the big issues with this in detail in our "The Elephant in Android's Sweetshop" blog, all of which still applies a year later.