Android KitKat to go down to bite size with low-end device memory footprint
October 31, 2013 | 6:09 pm
Android KitKat, the next iteration of Google’s world-beating mobile OS, due any day now, looks like it could steal a lead as the OS that “you can eat between meals without ruining your appetite.” According to a widely aired report by Amir Efrati on technology news site-in-waiting Jessica Lessin, based on “a confidential file that Google shared with companies that make Android devices,” KitKat will be optimized to run successfully on lower-end devices, including those under the 512MB memory limit that long restricted earlier Android handsets to Froyo, Gingerbread, and the other older versions of the OS.
As quoted by Efrati, the Google source document states that KitKat “optimizes memory use in every major component” with “tools to help developers create memory-efficient applications.” The report also points out that Google is planning to include new functionality in KitKat with three sensor types that will suit the OS for use in wearable devices, including smartwatches or Google Glass.
However, for anyone who reads on their smartphone, or favors cheaper lower-end tablets and ereader devices – and who doesn’t? – the report offers promise of some really high-end capabilities at lower prices, and on older legacy devices. That won’t necessarily do anything to solve the bloat on the ereader apps themselves, like the Android version of Amazon Kindle, which in theory varies its footprint according to the device, but on my low-end smartphone currently running at 9.30 MB and a severe memory hog in the past. But it promises a real sweet treat nonetheless for the wider e-readership.