Android

All the New Stuff in Android 4.4 KitKat

Melanie Pinola, Gawker Media

All the New Stuff in Android 4.4 KitKat

Have a KitKat-Google's latest update to Android, that is, which is rolling out today, along with the new Nexus 5. Here's what you need to know about the mobile OS update.

KitKat will bring even smarter and easier search to Android, according to the Official Google Blog, and, perhaps more importantly, it's going to be backwards compatible with older devices, so everyone can get in on the fun. A few of the prominent enhancements in KitKat include:

"OK Google" commands and better Google Now integration: How cool will it be when you can wake up your phone, start a search, take a photo and so on just by saying "OK Google"? Google Now will also find a place on your homescreen if you like.

Universal, integrated search: Now you'll be able to lookup a number for a business or person directly from the phone dialer-searching across not just your contacts, but also Google Apps and nearby places.

SMS support, location sharing, and animated GIFs in Hangouts: Google announced this yesterday, and it means that Hangouts can be your go-to app for all of your instant messages, video calls, and text messages.

Less memory usage: "KitKat streamlines every major component to reduce memory use" the Android Developer site states. So even old phones running KitKat should be faster and more responsive.

Added support for more capabilities including NFC, print management, and easier file browsing: These are things Android app developers can make use of to enhance their apps.

The official Google blog announcement doesn't say much, but you can expect more details soon at the consumer KitKat site (when it comes up, that is).

KitKat is out today on the Nexus 5, and is coming to the Nexus 4, 7, and 10, as well as the Samsung Galaxy S4 and HTC One Google Play edition in the next few weeks.

Android for all and the new Nexus 5 | Official Google Blog

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