5 Reasons Why Android Go Is The Most Important Thing Announced At Google I/O 2017 For Africa

The last few days were really busy for me so I only got round to watching the full recording of Google I/O 2017 keynote which happened a few days ago. As always, everything that Google announced was mind boggling and you can really see the future of computing coming to life. Indeed, the emphasis on Artificial Intelligence or AI and machine learning seemed be at the very core of everything that Google is working on. The fact that there are now over 2 billion monthly active Android devices globally implies that Google is leading the smartphone mobile market by massive margin in terms of total users.

However, as always, I like to contextualize how the next and greatest technologies of the world are relevant to the African continent and more specifically Kenya where I live. For me, the most exciting announcement from Google I/O 2017 revolved around Android Go — a new Android variant for low-cost and underpowered mobile devices that are commonplace in emerging markets. Android Go will become widely available with the launch of Android O which is the next iteration of Android, currently in beta.

Below are the 5 things that made the Android Go announcement so significant for me in terms of how millions of consumers in Africa will benefit from the Android user experience on entry-level mobile devices:

  1. Memory Requirements — The memory required on a mobile device to run the fully fledged high end Android operating system is extreme. In most cases, the modern smartphone these days is coming with between 2GB to 4GB of memory and all sorts of other hardware-based enhancements to create a rich user experience, with all the bells and whistles. What is amazing about Android Go is that it will run on mobile devices with as little as 512MB of RAM. This is massive since it means that users can effectively do more, with much less. However, its inevitable that there will be compromises made but this means that a low-cost mobile device can still run the latest version of Android.

So, in a nutshell, these are 5 things that I thought make Android Go a really big deal for the Android user experience going forward for the next billions who will connect to the Internet in markets like Kenya and Africa.

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Moses Kemibaro

20+ years driving businesses in Kenya & Africa as pure digital passion. A family man & curious by nature :)