Android 2.2 Froyo - On the Way Up

The release of the latest version of Android may still leave room for improvement, but hey, this OS has only been around since 2009! With that important point in mind, Android 2.2 Froyo is an impressive benchmark for Google. It solves a lot of the previous issues, and presents a system that feels complete and very practical.

Full Speed Ahead One of the main complaints about phones that use Android is how frustratingly slow they can be. Google set about solving this problem by creating a new compiler for its Dalvik system. If that was robot-speak to you, then let’s just say that this under-the-hood restructuring means that users will enjoy an increase in processing speed of 2 to 5 times what they were used to in previous versions.

Flash at Last It’s not quite clear why any mobile internet device would ever be created without being able to support Flash in the first place. Anyway, Froyo does support the software although its rendering capability still needs some work. For this reason, Froyo allows you to decide whether you want to load Flash features on a page-by-page basis.

Interfacial Relations Another age-old (at least 18 months) Android phone problem is the user interface. That’s why Android based phones have always been the kinds of phone embraced by tech-heads as opposed to the general public. With Froyo, the interface has definitely taken a step closer to that approachability, but I wouldn’t go so far as to say a giant one. The home screen has the three main functions you’re likely to reach for – the browser, the applications menu, and the dialer (yes you can also make phone calls with this one!)

This format, as well as other tweaks in the design and organization of the system, definitely makes general interaction with Froyo much friendlier. Still, it’s likely that users will find themselves searching through too many menus, and becoming frustrated with certain basic tasks, even cut-and-paste.

My general impression is that although Froyo 2.2 doesn’t seem quite there, Google is definitely on the right track to making Android an even stronger mobile device OS in the future.

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