Google, which named its operating system versions after tasty treats like Lollipop and KitKat, has announced that it will just use the version number going forward, and the latest edition is to be called ‘Android 10‘. In a blog post, Google said its engineering team always used internal code names for each version, based on desserts in alphabetical order. “This naming tradition has become a fun part of the release each year externally, too. But, we’ve heard feedback over the years that the names weren’t always understood by everyone in the global community,” it said.
The blog cited examples like ‘L’ and ‘R’ not being distinguishable when spoken in some languages.
“So, when some people heard us say Android Lollipop out loud, it wasn’t intuitively clear that it referred to the version after KitKat. It’s even harder for new Android users, who are unfamiliar with the naming convention, to understand if their phone is running the latest version,” it explained.
The blog also pointed out that ‘pies’ are not a dessert in some places, and that ‘marshmallows’ are not a popular treat in many parts of the world.
“As a global operating system, it’s important that these names are clear and relatable for everyone in the world. So, this next release of Android will simply use the version number and be called Android 10,” it said.
The versions included Cupcake (Android 1.5) that was launched in April 2009, Donut, Eclair, Froyo, Gingerbread, Honeycomb, Icecream Sandwich, Jelly Bean, KitKat, Lollipop, Marshmallow, Nougat and Oreo. Android P or Pie was released publicly in August last year.
Interestingly, a campaign was run in India before the release of Android L to name the version ‘Ladoo’ after the popular Indian sweet.
Android 10 (or Q as it was referred to previously) is the upcoming major release and is in beta testing. The final release is expected later this year.
Google said it expects the change to help make release names simpler and more intuitive for its global community.
“And, while there were many tempting ‘Q’ desserts out there, we think that at version 10 and 2.5 billion active devices, it was time to make this change,” it said.
Google has also updated the Android logo and colour to sport a “more modern, accessible look”.
“The design of the logo draws inspiration from the most recognisable non-human member of the community, the Android robot…Now, it has a special place in our logo. We also changed the logo from green to black. It’s a small change, but we found the green was hard to read, especially for people with visual impairments,” the blog said.
It further stated that Google would officially start using the updated logo in the coming weeks with the final release of Android 10.