As it stands today, Android is one of the most versatile and widely used mobile platforms in existence. It runs on three different chipset architectures-ARM, Intel / x86, and MIPS- in both 32- and 64-bit variants. Minimum hardware requirements have increased in line with the availability of newer technology, such that today, Android requires 2GB of RAM at a minimum to operate at a reasonable speed; though some devices do operate with 1GB of RAM (with little overheads).
Capabilities have increased by many orders of magnitude, from basic phone functions with smart features thrown in, to a full-blown mobile computing platform with phone features kept in for good measure. Android is now featured on many devices, from smartphones to tablets, computers to watches, music players to car stereos and televisions – and the list continues to grow, with Androids foray into home entertainment and video gaming just taking off.
As at 2014 the Google Play Store had more than 1.43 million active applications as at the start of 2015, and more than 50 billion application instances have been downloaded and installed by Android users according to an article by mashable.
Its little wonder that Android is the most popular mobile operating system on the planet. But lets take you through in pictures the leaps and bounds it has covered in the nine years since its major public release on September 23, 2008.
Android 1.0 (September 23, 2008)
Android 1.1 (February 2009)
Android 1.5 (April 27, 2009)
Android 1.6 Donut (September 15, 2009)
Android 2.0 Eclair (October 26, 2009)
Android 2.2 Froyo (May 20, 2010)
Android 2.3 Gingerbread (December 6, 2010)
Android 3.0 Honeycomb (February 22, 2011)
Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich (October 18, 2011)
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean (July 9, 2012)
Android 4.4 KitKat (October 31, 2013)
Android 5.0 Lollipop (November 12, 2014)
Android 6.0 Marshmallow (October 5, 2015)
Android 7.0 Nougat (August 22, 2016)