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24 June 2010, 10:41

Google release Android 2.2 "Froyo" source code

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Android Froyo Logo The Google Android development team have announced the release of the source code for version 2.2 of their open source Android mobile operating system, code named "Froyo". Originally announced at this year's Google I/O developer conference, Froyo is the seventh platform release since 1.0 and the next major update for Google's mobile OS. Compared to the previous 2.1 update, code named "Eclair", from early January of this year, the latest release includes a number of changes, improvements and new features.

Android 2.2 features the addition of several new APIs and services, such as a new data back up APIs that can be used to, for example, back up and restore applications and a new Dalvik JIT compiler that improves overall CPU-bound code performance by two to five times compared to version 2.1. Support for enterprise capabilities such as Exchange account auto-discovery and calendar sync, remote wipe and global address lists look-up have also been added. Other changes include a "faster, more powerful" web browser that includes the V8 JavaScript engine, resulting in a 3 times improvement in JavaScript performance, and the ability to send Android Application Error reports via the Android Market that developers will be able to access.

There are already reports of over-the-air updates being sent out to current Nexus One smartphone owners with previous development builds of Android 2.2. Users running the original stock 2.1 release that shipped with the Nexus One, however, don't, at the moment, seem to be receiving the updates. Once updated to Froyo, Nexus One owners gain several new features, such as, for example, the ability to turn their phones into a portable Wi-Fi hotspot (USB tethering is also supported) that can be shared with up to 8 devices and easy switching between multiple keyboard languages.

Speaking yesterday at the Droid X launch event, Google Engineering VP Andy Rubin confirmed that approximately 160,000 Android devices are being activated every day. Last month, at its I/O developer conference, that number was only 100,000.

More details about the code release can be found in a post by Google Software Engineer Jean-Baptiste Queru on the Android Developers blog and on the Android 2.2. Platform SDK components page. The source code for version 2.2 of Android is available from the Android Open Source portal.

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