Ten years ago on September 23, 2008, Android was born. The day marked the first commercial release of Android, the debut of the Android operating system with the release of the HTC Dream, also known as the T-Mobile G1, which is now a successful and advanced smartphone, along with a slide-out physical keyboard.
When Android 1.0 was in its initial stages, it lacked many features that we cannot imagine our life without at present. The initial commercial release of an Android operating system came out as pretty strong with the basics of a smartphone. Just the basics, not any highly advanced 2018-gadget. If we go back in time and look at the Android devices in 2008, we’d see that it didn’t even have a native video or a stereo Bluetooth.
As we celebrate Android’s 10th anniversary and we cheer to its massive success over the last 10 years in becoming the world’s largest and most popular mobile operating system, we have listed here 5 best features of Android 1.0 that we still bring in to our daily use. The features have undergone a stage of advancing, along with a change in their names, but you’d see that these features are still the same and it’s time to get little nostalgia as these features are 10 years old now. Have a look here-
Android Market (now Google Play Store)
Can we ever imagine our smartphone without the Google Play Store? Though we have a number of pre-installed apps on our device, not everything comes pre-installed. Some apps need to be installed from our very own Android Market that we now address as the Google Play Store.
Android 1.0 came pre-loaded with many apps, but some apps weren’t there. Since HTC Dream was the first Android Smartphone, Android Market was the first thing you’d need if you wanted to install an app. Initially, the Android Market had only about 13 apps.
It was when Google opened the gateway of the Android Market to indie developers as they would list their own apps, there was a vast difference seen in the number of apps. There were about 200 apps by the end of 2008.
Back in 2012, a merge happened- Android Market with the Google Music and the Google eBookstore. Combined together, it was named the Google Play. This was the end of the Android Market era, though the system still runs in the same way.
Back when there were no facilities for cloud solutions, we had to save out contacts in our SIM card. Whenever we changed our phone, we had to swap our SIM card into our new phone, load all our saved contacts, and then save them again. It was pretty messy.
But the times have changed. Though we can still save our contacts in our SIM card, now people choose to save their contacts into Google Contacts, hassle-free.
Android 1.0 had the synchronization apps along with Gmail, Google, Calendar, and more. For instance, if you added your friend’s birthday as an event in Google Calendar on your smartphone, your friend’s birthday will be automatically synchronized with your web-based Google Calendar. And now even if you change your smartphone, your Google Calendar will notify you of your upcoming event.
The feature of synchronizing might seem to be a petty one, but we cannot deny that it is indeed the base of an advanced smartphone that we use today. It makes it easy to use our important data by synchronizing it to a cloud servers only to be re-synchronized later while we upgrade our device time-to-time.
Also, you could sync your data with the third-party applications taking the abilities of synchronization of Android to the whole new next level.
One cannot deny that Android provides its users with a vast number of controls when organizing applications are in question. This makes the Android operating system different from its competitors. Speaking of competitors, we have iOS which is completely different from Android.
In Android 1.0, when you had to install a new app, it would straight go into the app drawer which is a fresh and a neat way of keeping our home screen clear. Some of us do like it this way. The app drawer lets you organize your apps either in a grid or in a column so that you would find it easily whenever you want it. That is your choice to make.
However, you decide to place your apps on your home screen, which would be an easy conduct, simply place them in an order that would suit you. Your home screen also allows you to place your apps into a group by using the home screen folders.
Some apps had companion widgets that would help you to get an access to your app functions really fast and you even didn’t have to let your app add into a group on your home screen.
These common features are now found in every other Android smartphone with just a little modification. But we can’t argue that Android sat on the throne from the day one of its existence.
SMS and MMS
Even before we knew about the Android Operating System 1.0, we were familiar with SMS and MMS. Phones like the famous Motorola Razr V3 which came out in 2004, was able to send and receive SMS and MMS. Since we had already enjoyed these amazing features, it would clearly be absurd for Android 1.0 to not to include these features.
Like we know Apple doesn’t have MMS or Bluetooth. The first iPhone was unable to hold up the technology until 2009 when Apple released its iPhone 3GS and iPhone OS 3.0 that included the feature of texting anyone. Apple might have later got into the world of MMS, but Android had it years ago, right from the start.
But the present day scenario is completely different. Now that we know features like SMS and MMS are out of date, Google is now mixing up these features to introduce a universal messaging protocol that would compete with Apple’s iMessage.
This sounds strange, isn’t it? Almost every other phone has the feature of notifications pre-loaded. Yes, even Apple does have it. But why have we included ‘Notifications’ in this list?
Apparently, notification systems come in all smartphones. But our dear Android 1.0 initiated two app alerts- the notification pull-down drawer and the status bar. This indeed makes Android ahead of its rivals. We can’t argue with that.
We can always find the status bar. It is a small, easily seen section that is located right at the top of the display screen followed by a line of icons (notifications) to let you know that these apps have got some notifications and you are yet to look at them. You don’t have to go through each and every app to find if you have any notifications. Just pull down from the top of your home screen and you can see your notification drawer. We are thankful to Android for bringing in this feature to us from the beginning.
A decade from today
We are pretty sure we’d still have Android in the future, probably more advanced. We’d talk about some more exciting features and apps but we can guarantee that the five apps listed here will be forever. The future is Android and we’d keep exploring it for a very long time from now.