“With Android One, we not only want to help people get online, we want to make sure that when they get there, they can tap into the wealth of information and knowledge the web holds for everyone,” said Sundar Pichai, Google’s senior vice president of Android, Chrome, and apps.
On September 15, Google introduced the Android One Initiative in New Delhi, India. The program is designed to reduce the price of Android smartphones, making them more affordable for customers in developing countries, as well as provide a more consistent Android experience to ensure consumers are using Google. Android One addresses the issues of pricey hardware components and out-of-date software in countries where smartphones are not as prevalent. The initiative will kick off in India, and move to Indonesia, the Philippines and South Asia by the end of next year. The initiative has created three smartphones priced at $100. Users will be able to download Android updates free of charge for the first six months as well as 200MB worth of apps, which will not count against their monthly data usage. These Androids will run a basic, unmodified Android Operating System.
Google has also invested in bringing wireless internet access to unwired, rural populations through Project Loon. Google’s long term strategy with the Android One Initiative and Project Loon is to connect with as many users as possible.
From a development standpoint at Hardin, this will add more international users for our clients that open their apps to users outside of the U.S. Android One also eliminates “extra” software that comes with other Android phones that are manufactured by Samsung, HTC, and etc. Google is attempting to standardize the Android OS by keeping it simple and unbloated. By making Android One more accessible to developing countries, this will open up more options for outsourcing quality assurance testing.
CNet provides the specifics on Android One here: