Android Kitkat – Know All Its Main Features

By | January 30, 2014
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Since its release late last year on the Google Nexus 5, Android Kitkat has managed to garner a pretty respectable device distribution figure. The following discourse is focused to familiarize you with some salient features of the latest mobile OS version of Android.

 

Google Android has this strange tradition of naming all its versions of mobile OS after delicious food items. Last September, KitKat (Android 4.4) was launched – a worthy follow-up to Cupcake, Ice Cream Sandwich, Gingerbread and Jelly Bean, which are its predecessors. Since its release, Android Kitkat has got mostly positive reviews from users worldwide. If you are new on the Android 4.4 mobile interface, a brief rundown of its major features would come in handy:

  1. Better calling features – Android Jelly Bean (particularly the latest version of it) had high-clarity voice calling options, and Kitkat builds further on it. Apart from your phonebook, you can now directly browse your phone apps, and even nearby locations, for making a call. The video calling options have also been significantly improved.

  2. Onscreen app-recording – Probably the feature of Android Kitkat that has won the most praise from professionals of mobile application development companies all over. The settings in the built-in Android SDK can be managed, to create MP4 videos of mobile apps, directly from the screen. Seamless video-sharing options (to PCs or other devices) are available too. A cool feature for users, and a delight for app developers!

  3. Excellent QuickOffice support – QuickOffice on Android was already free – but on a Kitkat-powered device, it is pre-installed too. Apart from enabling users to easily read, create and modify Word, Excel and Powerpoint files, Android QuickOffice lets them access documents stored on Google Drive without any hassles too. A sophisticated Android handset is now an excellent document manager.

  4. Presence of Google Hangouts – The constant efforts to promote Google Plus are evident in the Android Kitkat platform too – which has Hangouts in place of the earlier Google Talk app. Users are not likely to find any reason for complaint though, for the Hangout feature comes with top-notch animation (in GIF format) sharing facilities. High-definition video calls can also be placed within a Hangout. Chances of call drops are minimal.

  5. Animated screens and full-screen app displays – In a bid to keep up with the pace of iPhone app development in India and other countries, Android Kitkat has been provided with an integrated transition framework. It allows users to view interesting animation themes between the pages of the mobile apps they are using. What’s more, Android applications can be launched on it in full-screen (immersive) mode. If you wish to view the controls, all that is required is a horizontal screen swipe.

  6. Better integration with Google Now – On an Android 4.4 handset, launching the Google Now service is easier than ever. You only have to utter the words ‘Ok Google’, to launch the service. Your location and preference information would be accessed, to provide just the search results you are looking for. There are provisions for displaying related results as well.

  7. More user-friendly caller ID – High-end integration of the new mobile OS with locational features also enables you to avoid picking up calls from unknown numbers as much as possible. Even if you get a call from a number not stored in the phonebook, the device would try to match it with the contact numbers of companies and businesses in your city. In case you wish to get the details on any particular corporate house, simply use the search features of the built-in Google Maps app.

  8. Managing the phone memory is easier – If you are fed up with your old phone freezing whenever 3-4 apps are launched simultaneously, the superior memory-management features of Android Kitkat would come as a pleasant surprise. With better, more efficient allocation of internal memory, Kitkat makes sure that the speed and performance of high-end apps are never compromised. Toggling between different applications is also easier. Of course, installing lots of unnecessary, high-bandwidth apps is still a ‘no-no’ (after all you have 512 MB to work with).

  9. Print API functions – Hardly any iPhone application development company in India has managed to come up with a top-class cloud printing app for iPhones – and Kitkat cashes in on this opening. The pre-installed Google Cloud Print can be resorted to, for printing practically all types of mobile documents. Print tasks can also be done with the help of the wi-fi coverage of the phone. New APIs are available, for greater printer-compatibility.

  10. Change in the text font color – Remember the blue fonts in Android 3.0 devices, which made the overall handsets look decidedly boring? Google has been trying to move away from that font color in its later mobile operating systems – and on the Kitkat, it has given way to a much more user-friendly white text. Apple fanboys/girls often go ga-ga over the elegance of the text in their handsets, but the settings on Android Kitkat are not far off the mark either.

 

 

The presence of two alternative Bluetooth profiles is yet another high-point of the KitKat OS from Android. The hitherto mediocre camera features of Android handsets are also all set to improve, after the Android 4.4.1 upgrade is rolled out. Initially, the new mobile interface was available only on Google Nexus 5, but it has since been released for Nexus 4 and 7 as well. Most of the Android updates have been as savory as the food items they were named after, and the Kitkat can also emerge as a major success for Google over time.

Hussain Fakhruddin
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Hussain Fakhruddin

Hussain Fakhruddin is the founder/CEO of Teknowledge mobile apps company. He heads a large team of app developers, and has overseen the creation of nearly 600 applications. Apart from app development, his interests include reading, traveling and online blogging.
Hussain Fakhruddin
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