Android Go has been around for a minute already. Announced last year, the light-weight Android build meant to “provide a fast and smooth experience optimized for first-time and entry-level smartphone owners” is currently based on Android 8, Oreo.
However, as we all know, Android 9 Pie is already here with us and its official release and wider availability is expected to start in a few months’ time.
Given recent announcements by the likes of HMD Global indicating that Android Go-based smartphones like the Nokia 2.1 and the Nokia 1 will also be making the jump to Android 9 Pie, it means that, obviously, we’ll be moving to a Go edition of the latest operating system version from Google.
Yesterday, Google confirmed just as much. The company even went a step further to detail some of the features that users can expect when Android 9 Pie (Go Edition) starts showing up in the over 100 smartphone models that Google says are on the way – there are already over 200 devices in the programme, according to the company.
Those features will include:
- Faster boot times,
- The operating system using less storage space, up to 500 megabytes less,
- Security features like verified boot and,
- A dashboard for tracking and monitoring data consumption
Google also says it has reworked the Go apps that come pre-installed on devices running Android Go. Google Go, for instance, “now offers the ability to read web pages aloud and highlights each word so you can follow along” while Maps Go, the less-intense version of the popular Google Maps app, now features turn-by-turn navigation to make it easier for “the next billion” to make their way wherever they are.
What is not clear, though, is whether there are any plans in place to bring Android 9 Pie (Go Edition) to the existing lineup of Android Oreo (Go Edition) smartphones, bar the HMD Global ones which are already confirmed.