Android Go, which is essentially a “lite” version of the standard Android Oreo, is finally here with us. Announced earlier this year at Google I/O, it targets devices that are being made for sale in emerging markets where a number of issues stand between users and a desirable Android experience, something that Google is keen to change.
1. It (supposedly) delivers the best Android experience on devices with the lowest memory configurations (512MB – 1GB RAM)
The Nokia 2 went on sale in Kenya the other day. It’s an insanely good device. The price is right and Kenya being a market where the pricing, more than anything else, can make or break a device, HMD Global is pretty spot on on that one. Save for one thing: the Nokia 2’s memory clocks in at 1GB. I have a thing for 1GB RAM phones. It’s not a good thing.
Don't. Buy. A. 1GB. RAM. Phone. DON'T
— The Unsullied (@echenze) November 15, 2017
Think I am exaggerating? Go grab a 1GB device, use it for a day. I pray that you don’t have long hair on your head because by the time the sun sets, you might be left with none.
Here’s to hoping Android Go is able to change the negative perception I have for 1GB RAM Android smartphones.
2. There are just 9 pre-installed apps
3. They take up 50% less space
Yeah, that’s right. Just the basics, a browser, emails, maps, a keyboard etc. Since there’s no overload of the other pre-installed stuff (like Google Play Newsstand, what the hell? Google News & Weather, Google Photos..), it’s only fair that there’s more space left for the user to do with their device as they please. It is so annoying buying an 8 GB smartphone only to have under half of that available for storing images, songs, apps and other stuff.
Also, according to Google, apps are “15% faster”.
4. Google’s data-saving feature is turned on by default
So that those apps won’t gobble up your meagre data all at once.
Data Saver in Chrome is mostly useless (and users will be best served by something like Opera mini) but hey, let’s see what’s different this time around. We could be wrong.
5. A new section on the Play Store is dedicated to fronting to Go users apps tuned for running on basic hardware and Go-like software
This is great and well thought out.