Many are looking forward to the release of Android 8.1 Oreo tomorrow. Today, Google just announced that they will also release Android Oreo (Go edition): an operating system aimed at low-end devices.
This is a pretty smart move, and one that is definitely needed today, if not sooner. Why? Mobile operating systems have continued to get more powerful, faster, prettier, and are getting jam-packed with features that we’re still figuring out how to use. In the same vein, phones have continued to get faster, bigger both in size and storage, and prettier. This has inadvertently created a divide between the flagship phones and the non-flagship phones, and that divide is growing faster and faster.
Enter Android Oreo (Go edition).
Side note: They are putting parenthesis in the official name of it, so I have to too. It bugs me, but what can I do?
The Go edition is optimized for devices with 1GB of memory or less, and is designed to use a smaller storage footprint than it’s non-Go counterpart. It is also accompanied with a suite of apps with the Go moniker attached: Google Go, Google Assistant Go, YouTube Go, Google Maps Go, etc. The Google Play store will also feature a section for apps recommended for the Go edition, to make it easier to find apps that will work best on your device.
The Go-specific apps are designed to be more lightweight and will run faster, allowing for better performance overall. They give an illustration of just how much space is saved by using the Go edition apps over the standard Apps. It shows that the Go suite of apps are 50% smaller than their counterparts.
Hopefully we will start to see the newer features of Android Oreo in more devices, as phones across the entire price spectrum can now come installed with the latest version of Android, despite low hardware specs.