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March 21, 2017

What is Android?

A look at the world's most popular smartphone operating system.

By Alexander Sword

Android is an open-source operating system (OS) which is used in smartphones and tablets.

Android is by far the most widely used operating system, featuring in devices by vendors such as LG, Samsung, HTC and Huawei.

It uses a gesture-based interface designed for touch screens. It features a status bar at the top of the screen which provides updates and notifications, including alerts from apps and key parameters of the phone such as battery life.

There are a wide range of applications developed for the Android OS, which can be downloaded from Google’s official Play Store.

Unlike iOS, Android has a range of third-party app stores such as Slide ME and F-Droid. Amazon also has an app store for Android. Some of these provide unvetted applications, which may contain malware.

Android has an 86.2 percent market share in operating systems, according to Gartner’s latest figures examining the market, with the closest contender as an operating system is iOS, with a market share of 12.9 percent, followed by Windows with 0.6 percent.

What is the most popular Android smartphone?

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