Operating Systems

Kantar Worldpanel: Life in a Two-OS World

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According to Kantar Worldpanel the days of a BlackBerry OS, Symbian or Windows Phone making "significant" impact are over, since the mobile industry is all but dominated by iOS-Android duopoly.

Kantar mobileThe biggest 5 European markets (Great Britain, Germany, France, Italy and Spain) are dominated by Android-- the Google OS accounts for 74.3% of smartphone sales in the quarter ending January 2017, a "marginal" increase over the 72.9% of the same period in the previous year. In the meantime iOS holds 22.7%, with the iPhone 7 remaining the top-selling device in Great Britain, France and Germany.

Kantar points out Nokia as a potential success story in the region, as brand owner HMD Global is focusing on quality for cost with well made mid-tier devices. Such smartphones will not rival the iPhone 7 or the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S8, but do compete with the likes of the Huawei 8 and P9 Lite, both strong sellers in the price-conscious Italian and Spanish markets.

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Android Wear Reaches 2.0

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Google releases the next version of the Android Wear smartwatch operating system-- Android Wear 2.0, an upgrade with features such as standalone apps, LTE support and improved fitness tracking.

LG Watch Android Wear 2.0 is redesigned to be easier to use through simple swipes and the voice-controlled Google Assistant (summoned through the "OK Google" command). Complicated wrist gestures are disabled by default, and watch faces are customisable through 3rd party apps, allowing one to display current weather, stock prices, nearby places or a favourite contact.

Users can also install apps directly on a smartphone through a miniature version of the Google Play Store, while health tracking promises improvements through a pre-installed Google Fit app able to automatically detect workouts and give exercise tips. Notifications also get a boost through grouping and actionable options, such as deleting an email or replying to an SMS.

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Huawei Working on Own OS?

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China's Huawei is working on two software projects , The Information reports-- a different look for the Emotion UI Android skin and, far more ambitiously, an own mobile OS.

HuaweiInterestingly, according to the news story Huawei sets to fight criticisms of hardware and software design with an appearance all too similar to that of iDevices by hiring directly from the Apple stable. The employee in question is former longtime Apple designer Abigail Brody, who should provide the Emotion UI with an "own flair" able to grab the attentions of Western customers.

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iOS 9 Sees "Fastest iOS Adoption Ever"

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iOS 9 iPhoneAccording to Apple iOS 9 is the fastest adopted iOS update ever, with over 50% of active iDevices running on the latest version of the OS as measured by the App Store on 19 September 2015.

“iOS 9 is off to an amazing start, on pace to be downloaded by more users than any other software release in Apple’s history,” Apple senior VP Philip Schiller says.

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Google Presents Brillo IoT OS

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Google presents another framework for the Internet of Things (IoT) at its I/O conference in the shape of Brillo, an Android-derived operating system promising "an end-to-end, complete solution" for device connectivity.

BrilloDescribed as an "end-to-end functioning OS," Brillo is designed to power the lightweight devices making the IoT, as well as any number of smart home devices.

Networking comes through Weave, a communications layer allowing IoT devices to talk to each other and with the cloud. Similar to offerings such as the ZigBee Cluster Library, it supports wifi and Bluetooth Low Energy, as well low-power networking protocols such as the Google-owned Nest's Thread.

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