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Android Go, The Successor to Android One?

by Rajeev Nair | 5月 18, 2017

Google, in the official key note address at Google I/O 2017,  announced Android Go. It’s a tweaked down version of the next iterate of its Android operating system, the Android O. This light weight version is targeted at emerging markets like India that are expected to have a significant user base for basic smartphones. Android Go is set to be launched in 2018.

Feature phones segment constituted more than 50% of the overall handset shipments in India, per our latest report available here, from the Handset Country Share Tracker (HCST) Service. A significant section of this feature phone user base would be transitioning to smartphones in the Ultra-low and Entry price tiers. Android Go is optimised for such devices with 1GB or Less RAM and would be backed by Google apps that take up lesser storage space, memory and data. Play store would further facilitate this by highlighting apps that would be compatible for these basic smartphones. Devices on the platform would also get better data management features.

Google also announced YouTube Go , an app compatible with Android Go and specifically built for the Indian market. Key features of the app include downloading content for offline viewing, video quality selection before it gets played out and a preview mode. All of the features aiding the users in better data management.

As with Android One initiative, the challenges would lie as Google partners with vendors to launch devices on Android Go. Android One failed to take off due to the Non-involvement of OEMs in device development, channel disconnect with the target audience (entry level smartphone customers typically prefer the retail route compared to online), lack of product differentiation and lower profits. We at Strategy Analytics see this new initiative having a similar fate as its predecessor, the Android One, unless Google is willing to address the above listed challenges. On the positive though, Google would be now engaging a set of local vendors, who have been off lately  been very focussed on the low end smartphone segment, due to the heightened competition in the mid and higher price tiers and hence are likely to be more open to this successor in Android Go.

  Android go

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