Google CEO Eric Schmidt is predicting that use of the company’s Android phone OS is about to explode. That’s exactly the sort of thing you’d expect the CEO of Google to predict, but in this case the self-serving prediction looks like it might be accurate.
Recently we have started to see Android-based phones arrive in significant quantities, and while none of them appears to be a landmark device, they add up to a platform that’s likely to be the iPhone’s most formidable rival.
So far, I respect Android as an OS, it gets the job done, and in my opinion rivals the Apple’s iPhone OS in innovation, efficiency, elegance, and ingenuity. I’m looking forward to and intrigued by the release Android 2.0, aka “Eclair.” The Boy Genius Report’s gallery of screenshots don’t reveal anything awe-inspiring, but there look to be lots of little refinements, plus a faster browser, Exchange support, a unified inbox and built-in Facebook integration.
It’s impossible to judge an operating system from screen images alone, many Android phones will sport customized interfaces and functionality. If Android’s going to be everywhere (I bet it is), it would be nice if it’s fully competitive with the most polished and functional mobile OSes in existence. Eclair looks like a step in the right direction.