Today Google released Android 2.0 platform for mobile devices, it bundled with many new features for user and developers and also there are few changes in the Android framework API. It can be deployable to Android-powered handsets by November 2009.
Android 2.0 Platform Highlights
- Now user can add multiple accounts to device for email and contact synchronization, including Exchange accounts (Depends upon the Handset manufacturers). Combined inbox to browse email from multiple accounts in one page.
- Developers can create sync adapters that provide two way synchronization with any backend.
- Quick contact API provides instant support for communication with contacts. For eg. selecting the contact photo and you will get the list of all the available way of communication. This feature is also available in SMS, Email and Calendar.
- Search functionality for all saved SMS and MMS messages and also support auto delete features for oldest messages when a defined limit is reached.
- Camera API also include some new features like color effect, scene mode, flash mode, focus mode, white balance, rotation.
- Improved virtual keyboard support which include better keyboard layout to hit the correct character and improved typing speed with featured multi touch support. Better support for dictionary which includes contact names as suggestions.
- Better UI support for browser to provide instant search. Facilitate user to bookmark the web page with thumbnail. Also include support for HTML5 features and double tap zoom.
- Provide additional features for end users like infinite scrolling for event's agenda, event indicates the status for each invitee and also provide support for send invitation for new guests to events.
- Improved Media framework API for better performance and better hardware support. ASAP user put images in the media store, Thumbnail API will generate the thumbnail and also provide support for on demand retrieve.
- Improved Bluetooth API (2.1), which include support for Object Push Profile (OPP) and Phone Book Access Profile (PBAP) also developer can easily turn on and off bluetooth with in the application.
- KeyEvent has new key dispatching APIs, to help implement action-on-up and long press behavior, as well a new mechanism to cancel key presses (for virtual keys).
- Provide good support for different screen sizes and one binary/executable can run on different screen sizes.
If you are the developer then you can download Android 2.0 platform as component for the Android SDK. The downloadable platform includes a fully compliant Android library and system image, as well as a set of emulator skins, sample applications, and more. The downloadable platform is fully compliant and includes no external libraries.
Adding and updating the platform is very easy. I assume that you are using Eclipse with Android 1.6 SDK which include the AVD Manager and also helps you to install new SDK components. Before updating the platform It's mandatory to update the ADT(Android Development Tool) plugin for Eclipse. After that you launch AVD manager (Window >Android SDK and AVD Manager) and search for available packages and download all the required platform; which include the APIs, documentation and SDK tools for particular Android platform. Now while creating the AVD(Android Virtual Device) you can select the particular platform(1.1, 1.5, 1.6, & 2.0). That's it now you are ready to create the application for any platform.
I hope this post will give you some understanding of Android 2.0 platform. For detail information you can directly visit Android Developer Site.