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Android Oreo Go Edition Release Date and Features

(Update) Indian OEMs are expecting to be launching Android Oreo Go Edition smartphones in the near future.

(Update 04 Jan 2018): Google has now released its latest app in the Go series of applications - Gmail Go. Like other Go applications, the app is designed for smartphones with 1GB of RAM or less. The app functions in a similar way to the original Gmail app, but has replaced the focused Inbox with Smart inbox - a simplified version of the feature which prioritises emails from friends and family.

(Update 04 Jan 2018): Google's new Android Oreo Go Edition looks to be off to a good start, with Indian OEMs looking to begin releasing smartphones featuring the Go Edition OS soon. Companies such as Micromax, Intex and Karbonn are set to be releasing the budget smartphones later this year.

Google has released the Go Edition of Android Oreo alongside the new version for Android 8, Android 8.1 Oreo. The Go Edition is intended for less powerful devices - typically with RAM allowances between 512MB and 1GB - produced by smaller manufacturers or for developing markets. In many ways, the Go Edition of Android Oreo is identical to its 8.1 big brother and Google promises to support it with a similar update schedule to that of the full version too.

This sudden production of an entirely new branded OS comes from the massive adoption of Android devices in developing markets such as India. Surprisingly, more Android devices are used in India than the US despite the vastly more developed mobile market that the US offers, meaning Google has had to adapt to its less developed markets in order to support manufacturers accordingly. As a matter of fact, Android is so popular in India that it is set to be the country that receives the first Android Oreo Go Edition devices as well.

But what exactly does Android Oreo Go Edition offer? Manufacturers using the Go Edition should find their devices experience a 30% faster loading time upon booting and significantly better optimised storage. On top of this comes a number of optimised Google Apps that seemingly "strip down" the original Oreo Google Apps to much less performance impacting versions - this includes the Google Play Store which has been tailored to feature Go Edition applications.

The changes on a whole then are fairly minimal but given Android Oreo doesn't really require much power to run anyway, that was to be expected with this release. However, it is good to see that developing markets are starting to be supported more by Google, with a push for low-end devices running the latest software to become a standard. This in combination with the Android One program that was started a while back should hopefully encourage manufacturers and retailers to start investing in developing markets and could possibly make regular updates for low-end Android devices easier through one simple Android Oreo Go Edition update.

More recently, SoC makers Qualcomm and MediaTek have announced support for the new Android Oreo Go Edition. The manufacturers say they will work with Google to help support devices with RAM as little as the range between 512MB and 1GB. While this partnership is sure to make the core OS perform more smoothly, neither company has commented on performance within third party apps. Regardless, this move will help bring a new era of ultra-affordable smartphones for a variety of new markets.


Impact Rating: 3