History of Android versions

Android 1.0

Android 1.0
1, 2
Release Date
23 September 2008 , Android 1.1 9 February 2009
Popular Devices
HTC Dream
  • Android Market allowed application downloads and updates through the Market application
  • Web browser to show, zoom and pan full HTML and XHTML web pages – multiple pages show as windows ("cards")
  • Camera support – however, this version lacked the option to change the camera's resolution, white balance, quality, etc.
  • Folders allowing the grouping of a number of application icons into a single folder icon on the Home screen
  • Access to web email servers, supporting POP3, IMAP4, and SMTP
  • Gmail synchronisation with the Gmail application
  • Google Contacts synchronisation with the People application
  • Google Calendar synchronisation with the Calendar application
  • Google Maps with Street View to view maps and satellite imagery, as well as find local business and obtain driving directions using GPS
  • Google Sync, allowing management of over-the-air synchronisation of Gmail, People, and Calendar
  • Google Search, allowing users to search the Internet and phone applications, contacts, calendar, etc.
  • Google Talk instant messaging
  • Instant messaging, text messaging, and MMS
  • Media Player, enabling management, importing, and playback of media files – however, this version lacked video and stereo Bluetooth support
  • Notifications appear in the Status bar, with options to set ringtone, LED or vibration alerts
  • Voice Dialler allows dialling and placing of phone calls without typing a name or number
  • Wallpaper allows the user to set the background image or photo behind the Home screen icons and widgets
  • YouTube video player
  • Other applications include: Alarm Clock, Calculator, Dialler (Phone), Home screen (Launcher), Pictures (Gallery), and Settings
  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth support
Android 1.1
  • Details and reviews available when a user searches for businesses on Maps
  • Longer in-call screen timeout default when using the speakerphone, plus ability to show/hide dialpad
  • Ability to save attachments in messages
  • Support added for marquee in system layouts

Android Cupcake

Android 1.5
Release Date
27 April 2009
Popular Devices
HTC Dream

  • Support for third-party virtual keyboards with text prediction and user dictionary for custom words
  • Support for Widgets – miniature application views that can be embedded in other applications (such as the Home screen) and receive periodic updates
  • Video recording and playback in MPEG-4 and 3GP formats
  • Auto-pairing and stereo support for Bluetooth (A2DP and AVRCP profiles)
  • Copy and paste features in web browser
  • User pictures shown for Favourites in Contacts
  • Specific date/time stamp shown for events in call log, and one-touch access to a contact card from call log event
  • Animated screen transitions
  • Auto-rotation option
  • New stock boot animation
  • Ability to upload videos to YouTube
  • Ability to upload photos to Picasa

Android Donut

Android 1.6
Release Date
15 September 2009
Popular Devices
HTC Dream, Sony Ericsson Xperia X10, LG GT540

  • Voice and text entry search enhanced to include bookmark history, contacts, and the web
  • Ability for developers to include their content in search results
  • Multi-lingual speech synthesis engine to allow any Android application to "speak" a string of text
  • Easier searching and ability to view app screenshots in Android Market
  • Gallery, camera and camcorder more fully integrated, with faster camera access
  • Ability for users to select multiple photos for deletion
  • Updated technology support for CDMA/EVDO, 802.1x, VPNs, and a text-to-speech engine
  • Support for WVGA screen resolutions
  • Speed improvements in searching and camera applications
  • Expanded Gesture framework and new GestureBuilder development tool

Android Eclair

Android 2.0, Android 2.0.1, Android 2.1
5, 6, 7
Release Date
26 October 2009, 3 December 2009, 12 January 2010
Popular Devices
Nexus One

  • Expanded Account sync, allowing users to add multiple accounts to a device for synchronisation of email and contacts
  • Microsoft Exchange email support, with combined inbox to browse email from multiple accounts in one page
  • Bluetooth 2.1 support
  • Ability to tap a Contacts photo and select to call, SMS, or email the person
  • Ability to search all saved SMS and MMS messages, with delete oldest messages in a conversation automatically deleted when a defined limit is reached
  • Numerous new camera features, including flash support, digital zoom, scene mode, white balance, colour effect and macro focus
  • Improved typing speed on virtual keyboard, with smarter dictionary that learns from word usage and includes contact names as suggestions
  • Refreshed browser UI with bookmark thumbnails, double-tap zoom and support for HTML5
  • Calendar agenda view enhanced, showing attending status for each invitee, and ability to invite new guests to events
  • Optimised hardware speed and revamped UI
  • Support for more screen sizes and resolutions, with better contrast ratio
  • Improved Google Maps 3.1.2
  • MotionEvent class enhanced to track multi-touch events
  • Addition of live wallpapers, allowing the animation of home-screen background images to show movement

Android Froyo

Android 2.2
Release Date
20 May 2010
Popular Devices
Nexus One, HTC Desire, Motorola Droid X

  • Speed, memory, and performance optimisations
  • Additional application speed improvements, implemented through JIT compilation
  • Integration of Chrome's V8 JavaScript engine into the Browser application
  • Support for the Android Cloud to Device Messaging(C2DM) service, enabling push notifications
  • Improved Microsoft Exchange support, including security policies, auto-discovery, GAL look-up, calendar synchronisation and remote wipe
  • Improved application launcher with shortcuts to Phone and Browser applications
  • USB tethering and Wi-Fi hotspot functionality
  • Option to disable data access over mobile network
  • Updated Market application with batch and automatic update features
  • Quick switching between multiple keyboard languages and their dictionaries
  • Support for Bluetooth-enabled car and desk docks
  • Support for numeric and alphanumeric passwords
  • Support for file upload fields in the Browser application
  • The browser now shows all frames of animated GIFs instead of just the first frame only
  • Support for installing applications to the expandable memory
  • Adobe Flash support
  • Support for high-PPI displays (up to 320 ppi), such as four-inch 720p screens
  • Gallery allows users to view picture stacks using a zoom gesture

Android Gingerbread

Android 2.3, Android 2.3.3
9, 10
Release Date
6 December 2010, 9 February 2011
Popular Devices
Samsung Galaxy S, Samsung Galaxy Y, Nexus One, Nexus S

  • Updated user interface design with increased simplicity and speed
  • Support for extra-large screen sizes and resolutions (WXGA and higher)
  • Native support for SIP VoIP internet telephony
  • Faster, more intuitive text input in virtual keyboard, with improved accuracy, better suggested text and voice input mode
  • Enhanced copy/paste functionality, allowing users to select a word by press-hold, copy, and paste
  • Support for Near Field Communication (NFC), allowing the user to read an NFC tag embedded in a poster, sticker, or advertisement
  • New audio effects such as reverb, equalisation, headphone virtualisation, and bass boost
  • New Download Manager, giving users easy access to any file downloaded from the browser, email, or another application
  • Support for multiple cameras on the device, including a front-facing camera, if available
  • Support for WebM/VP8 video playback, and AAC audio encoding

  • Improved power management with a more active role in managing applications that are keeping the device awake for too long
  • Enhanced support for native code development
  • Switched from YAFFS to ext4 on newer devices
  • Audio, graphical, and input enhancements for game developers
  • Concurrent garbage collection for increased performance
  • Native support for more sensors (such as gyroscopes and barometers)

Android 2.3.4 
  • Support for voice or video chat using Google Talk
  • Open Accessory Library support. Open Accessory was introduced in 3.1 (Honeycomb) but the Open Accessory Library grants 2.3.4 added support when connecting to a USB peripheral with compatible software and a compatible application on the device
  • Switched the default encryption for SSL from AES256-SHA to RC4-MD5.

Android Honeycomb

Android 3.0, Android 3.1, Android 3.2
11, 12, 13
Release Date
22 February 2011, 10 May 2011, 15 July 2011
Popular Devices
Motorola Xoom

  • Optimised tablet support with a new “holographic” user interface (removed again the following year with version 4.2)
  • New easter egg, an image of a Tron-themed bumblebee
  • Added System Bar, featuring quick access to notifications, status, and soft navigation buttons, available at the bottom of the screen
  • Added Action Bar, giving access to contextual options, navigation, widgets, or other types of content at the top of the screen
  • Simplified multitasking – tapping Recent Applications in the System Bar allows users to see snapshots of the tasks underway and quickly jump from one application to another
  • Redesigned keyboard, making typing fast, efficient and accurate on larger screen sizes
  • Simplified, more intuitive copy/paste interface
  • Multiple browser tabs replacing browser windows, plus form auto-fill and a new “incognito” mode allowing anonymous browsing
  • Quick access to camera exposure, focus, flash, zoom, front-facing camera, time-lapse, and other camera features
  • Ability to view albums and other collections in full-screen mode in Gallery, with easy access to thumbnails for other photos
  • New two-pane Contacts UI and Fast Scroll to let users easily organise and locate contacts
  • New two-pane Email UI to make viewing and organising messages more efficient, allowing users to select one or more messages
  • Hardware acceleration
  • Support for multi-core processors
  • Ability to encrypt all user data
  • HTTPS stack improved with Server Name Indication (SNI)
  • Filesystem in Userspace (FUSE; kernel module)
  • Disallows applications from having write access to secondary storage (memory cards on devices with internal primary storage) outside of designated, application-specific directories. Full access to primary internal storage is still allowed through a separate application-level permission.

Android Ice Cream Sandwich

Android 4.0, Android 4.0.3
14, 15
Release Date
18 October 2011, 16 December 2011
Popular Devices
Samsung Galaxy S 2, Nexus S 4G, Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0, HTC Sensation, Sony Xperia Ray, Motorola Droid RAZAR, Motorola Xoom, LG Optimus

  • Major refinements to the "Holo" interface with new Robotofont family
  • Soft buttons from Android 3.x are now available for use on phones
  • Separation of widgets in a new tab, listed in a similar manner to applications
  • Easier-to-create folders, with a drag-and-drop style
  • Improved visual voicemail with the ability to speed up or slow down voicemail messages
  • Pinch-to-zoom functionality in the calendar
  • Integrated screenshot capture (accomplished by holding down the Power and Volume-Down buttons)
  • Improved error correction on the keyboard
  • Ability to access applications directly from lock screen
  • Improved copy and paste functionality
  • Better voice integration and continuous, real-time speech to text dictation
  • Face Unlock, a feature that allows users to unlock handsets using facial recognition software
  • Automatic syncing of browser with users' Chrome bookmarks

  • Data Usage section in settings that lets users set warnings when they approach a certain usage limit, and disable data use when the limit is exceeded
  • Ability to shut down applications from the recent apps list with a swipe
  • Improved camera application with zero shutter lag, time lapse settings, panorama mode, and the ability to zoom while recording
  • Built-in photo editor
  • New gallery layout, organised by location and person
  • Refreshed "People" application with social network integration, status updates and hi-res images
  • Android Beam, a near-field communication feature allowing the rapid short-range exchange of web bookmarks, contact info, directions, YouTube videos and other data
  • Support for the WebP image format
  • Hardware acceleration of the UI
  • Wi-Fi Direct
  • 1080p video recording for stock Android devices
  • Android VPN Framework (AVF), and TUN (but not TAP) kernel module. Prior to 4.0, VPN software required rooted Android.

Android Jelly Bean

Android 4.1, Android 4.2, Android 4.3
16, 17, 18
Release Date
9 July 2012, 13 November 2012, 24 July 2013
Popular Devices
Nexus 7,  Nexus 4, HTC One, Samsung Galaxy S4, Samsung Galaxy Grand

  • Smoother user interface:
    • Vsync timing across all drawing and animation done by the Android framework, including application rendering, touch events, screen composition and display refresh
    • Triple buffering in the graphics pipeline
    • CPU input boost
    • Synchronising touch to vsync timing
  • Enhanced accessibility
  • Bi-directional text and other language support
  • User-installable keyboard maps

  • Expandable notifications
  • Ability to turn off notifications on an application-specific basis
  • Shortcuts and widgets can automatically be re-arranged or re-sized to allow new items to fit on home screens
  • Bluetooth data transfer for Android Beam
  • Tablets with smaller screens now use an expanded version of the interface layout and home screen used by phones.
  • Improved camera application
  • Multichannel audio
  • The Fraunhofer FDK AAC codec becomes standard in Android, adding AAC 5.1 channel encoding/decoding
  • USB audio (for external sound DACs)
  • Audio chaining (also known as gapless playback)
  • Ability for other launchers to add widgets from the application drawer without requiring root access

  • Notification power controls ("Quick Settings")
  • Multiple user accounts (tablets only)
  • Rewritten Bluetooth stack, switching from Bluez to Broadcom open source BlueDroid, allowing improved support for multiple displays and wireless display (Miracast)
  • Native right-to-left, always-on VPN and application verification. A new NFC stack was added at the same time.
  • Accessibility improvements: triple-tap to magnify the entire screen, pan and zoom with two fingers. Speech output and Gesture Mode navigation for blind users
  • New clock application with built-in world clock, stop watch and timer
  • All devices now use the same interface layout, previously adapted from phones on 4.1 for smaller tablets (with centered software buttons, the system bar at the top of the screen, and a home screen with a dock and centered application menu), regardless of screen size
  • Increased number of extended notifications and Actionable Notifications for more applications, allowing users to respond to certain notifications within the notification bar and without launching the application directly
  • SELinux
  • Premium SMS confirmation
  • Group Messaging

Android KitKat

Android 4.4, Android 4.4W
19, 20
Release Date
31 October 2013 , 25June 2014
Popular Devices
Nexus 5, Motorola Moto G, Samsung Galaxy S4, Samsung Galaxy Note 3, LG G2

  • Refreshed interface with white elements instead of blue
  • Clock no longer shows bold hours; all digits are thin. The H, M, and S markings for the stopwatch and timer have been removed, leaving just the numbers.
  • Ability for applications to trigger translucency in the navigation and status bars
  • Ability for applications to use "immersive mode" to keep the navigation and status bars hidden while maintaining user interaction
  • Action overflow menu buttons are always visible, even on devices with a "Menu" key, which was officially deprecated by Android 4.0.
  • Restriction for applications when accessing external storage, except for their own directories
  • Optimisations for performance on devices with lower specifications, including zRAM support and "low RAM" device API
  • Wireless printing capability
  • NFC host card emulation, enabling a device to replace smart cards
  • WebViews now based on Chromium engine (feature parity with Chrome for Android 30)
  • Expanded functionality for notification listener services
  • Public API for developing and managing text messaging clients
  • Storage Access Framework, an API allowing apps to retrieve files in a consistent manner. As part of the framework, a new system file picker allows users to access files from various sources (including those exposed by apps, such as online storage services).
  • New framework for UI transitions
  • Sensor batching, step detector and counter APIs
  • Settings application now makes it possible to select default text messaging and home (launcher) application
  • Audio tunneling, audio monitoring and loudness enhancer
  • Built-in screen recording feature (primarily for developers, as usage of ADB is required)
  • Native infrared blaster API
  • Verified boot
  • Enforcing SELinux
  • Expanded accessibility APIs and system-level closed captioning settings
  • Android Runtime (ART) introduced as a new experimental application runtime environment, not enabled by default, as a replacement for the Dalvik virtual machine
  • Bluetooth Message Access Profile (MAP) support
  • Disabled access to battery statistics by third-party applications
  • Settings application no longer uses a multi-pane layout on devices with larger screens
  • Wi-Fi and mobile data activity (TX/RX) indicators are moved to quick settings
  • Disables text wrapping in the WebView browser component

Android Lollipop

Android 5.0, Android 5.1
21, 22
Release Date
12 November 2014
Popular Devices
Nexus 6, Moto G, Samsung Galaxy S6, Samsung Galaxy Note 5, LG G Pad 8.3, HTC Once M8

  • Android Runtime (ART) with ahead-of-time (AOT) compilation and improved garbage collection (GC), replacing Dalvik that combines byte-code interpretation with trace-based just-in-time (JIT) compilation
  • Support for 64-bit CPUs
  • OpenGL ES 3.1 and Android Extension Pack (AEP) on supported GPU configurations
  • Recent activities screen with tasks instead of applications, up to a configured maximum of tasks per application
  • Vector drawables, which scale without losing definition
  • Support for print previews

  • Material design, bringing a restyled user interface
  • Refreshed lock screen, no longer supporting widgets
  • Refreshed notification tray and quick settings pull-down
  • Project Volta, for battery life improvements
  • Searches can be performed within the system settings for quicker access to particular settings

  • Lock screen provides shortcuts to application and notification settings
  • Guest logins and multiple user accounts are available on more devices, such as phones.
  • Audio input and output through USB devices
  • Third-party applications regain the ability to read and modify data located anywhere on external storage, such as on SD cards.
  • Pinning of an application's screen for restricted user activity.
  • Recently used applications are remembered even after restarting the device.
  • WebViews receive updates independently through Google Play for security reasons, instead of relying on system-wide vendor updates
  • Addition of 15 new languages: Basque, Bengali, Burmese, Chinese (Hong Kong), Galician, Icelandic, Kannada, Kyrgyz, Macedonian, Malayalam, Marathi, Nepali, Sinhala, Tamil and Telugu
  • Tap and Go allows users to quickly migrate to a new Android device, using NFC and Bluetooth to transfer Google Account details, configuration settings, user data and installed applications
  • A flashlight-style application is included, working on supported devices with a camera flash.
  • User-customizable priorities for application notifications.
  • Smart lock feature
  • SELinux in enforcing mode for all domains
  • Updated emoji
  • Improved accessibility support 
  • Block-based over-the-air (OTA) updates for new devices

Android Marshmallow

Android 6.0
Release Date
5 October 2015
Popular Devices
Nexus 6P, Samsung Galaxy S7, Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge, Samsung Galaxy Note 7, 

  • Contextual search from keywords within apps.
  • Introduction of Doze mode, which reduces CPU speed while the screen is off in order to save battery life
  • App Standby feature
  • Alphabetically accessible vertical application drawer
  • Application search bar and favourites
  • Native fingerprint reader support
  • Direct Share feature for target-specific sharing between apps
  • Renamed "Priority" mode to "Do Not Disturb" mode
  • App Linking for faster instinctive opening of links with corresponding applications
  • Larger Application folders with multiple pages
  • Post-install/run-time permission requests
  • USB-C support
  • Demo Mode feature for screenshot-capture usage
  • Automatic full data backup and restore for apps
  • 4K display mode for apps
  • Adoptable External storage to behave like Internal Storage (However, this causes more actual problems than the hypothetical ones it was probably designed to solve.
  • MIDI support for musical instruments
  • Experimental multi-window feature
  • Support for actions by third-party apps in the text selection menu

  • App permissions now granted individually at run-time, not all-or-nothing at install time.
  • Miracast support dropped

Android Nougat

Android 7.0, Android 7.1
24, 25
Release Date
22 August 2016, 4 October 2016
Popular Devices
Samsung Galaxy Note 8, Samsung Galaxy S8/S8+, LG G6, Motorola Moto G5, HTC Desire 12, Google Pixel/Pixel XL, Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro, Xiaomi Mi Max 2, OnePlus 5 

  • Unicode 9.0 emoji and skin tone modifier support (and exposes a subset of ICU4J APIs).
  • Ability to display color calibration
  • Ability to screen zoom
  • Ability to switch apps by double tapping in overview button
  • Added Emergency information part
  • Added the "Clear All" button in Overview screen
  • Another system partition, which gets updated when not in use, allowing for seamless system updates
  • Daydream virtual reality platform (VR interface)
  • Improved Doze functionality, which aims to prolong battery life
  • Improvements to file browser
  • More Quick Settings options
  • Multi-window support, which supports floating apps on a desktop layout
  • New Data Saver mode, which can force apps to reduce bandwidth usage
  • New JIT Compiler, making for 75 percent faster app installations and a 50 percent reduction in compiled code size
  • Just in Time (JIT) compiler with code profiling to ART, which lets it constantly improve the performance of Android apps as they run
  • Picture-in-picture support for Android TV
  • Redesigned notification shade, featuring instant access to certain settings
  • Redesigned Overview screen
  • Replaced notification cards with notification sheets
  • Settings app navigation drawer
  • Vulkan 3D rendering API
  • Multiple Device Locales

Android Oreo

Android 8.0, Android 8.1
26, 27
Release Date
21 August 2017, 5 December 2017
Popular Devices
Samsung Galaxy S9/S9+, Samsung Galaxy Note9, LG G7, LG V40, HTC U12 life, Motorola Moto G6, Motorola MotoZ3, Google Pixel 2/2XL, Xiaomi Poco F1, Xiaomi Mi 8, Xiaomi Mi A2, Xiaomi Note 6 Pro, OnePlus 6, Asus Zenfone Max (M1)

  • Project Treble, the biggest change to the foundations of Android to date: a modular architecture that makes it easier and faster for hardware makers to deliver Android updates
  • Picture-in-picture support
  • Support for Unicode 10.0 emoji (5.0) and replacement of all blob-shaped emojis by round ones with gradient and outline
  • Redesigned Quick Settings and Settings with white background and respectively black and Accent font colour
  • Restructured Settings by regrouping in sections similar entries
  • Adaptive icons
  • Notification improvements
    • Notification channels
    • Notification dots (badges)
    • Notification snoozing
    • Notification shade multi-colors (for music album art, messengers etc)
  • System-wide Autofill framework
  • Sony LDAC codec support
  • App-specific unknown sources
  • Multi-display support
  • 2 times faster boot time
  • Apps background execution and location limits
  • Google Play Protect
  • Downloadable fonts
  • Integrated printing support
  • Color management (deep color and wide color gamut)
  • Wi-Fi Assistant

Android 8.1

  • Neural networks API
  • Shared memory API
  • Wallpaper Colors API
  • Bluetooth battery level for connected devices, accessible in Quick Settings
  • Android Oreo Go Edition, an optional lightweight distribution of Android for low-end devices with less than 1 GB of RAM
  • Autofill framework updates
  • Programmatic Safe Browsing actions
  • Navigation buttons dim when not in use
  • Visual changes to 'Power Off' and 'Restart' including a new screen and floating toolbar
  • Toast messages are now white in color with same existing transparency
  • Automatic light and dark themes
  • New Easter Egg in the form of an official Oreo cookie-picture
  • Hamburger emoji amended to move position of the cheese slice

Android Pie

Version Android 9.0
API 28
Release Date 6 August 2018
Popular Devices Google Pixel 2/2XL

  • An adaptive battery feature that maximises battery power by prioritizing the apps you're most likely to use next.
  • New user interface for the quick settings menu.
  • The clock has moved to the left of the notification bar.
  • Battery saver no longer displays an orange overlay on the notification and status bars.
  • A "Screenshot" button has been added to the power options.
  • Rounded corners across the graphical user interface.
  • New transitions for switching between apps, or activities within apps.
  • Richer messaging notifications, where a full conversation can be heard within a notification, full scale images, and smart replies akin to Google's new app, Reply.
  • Support for display cutouts.
  • Redesigned volume slider, which is now located next to the device's physical volume button.
  • Battery percentage now shown in Always-On Display.
  • Improved dark mode.
  • Experimental features (which are currently hidden within a menu called Feature Flags) such as a redesigned About Phone page in settings, and automatic Bluetooth enabling while driving.
  • HEIF support.
  • A new gesture-based system interface, similar to the one found on the iPhone X and other devices.
  • Redesigned, horizontal multitask app switcher with Google search bar and app drawer built in.
  • A "Digital Wellbeing" feature which discourages excessive usage of your phone which will launch officially on Pixel phones on the fourth quarter of 2018.
  • A "Shush" feature launches Do Not Disturb mode when the phone is placed face down, only allowing notifications from Starred Contacts.
  • Improved adaptive brightness feature which modifies screen brightness based on personal preferences.
  • New back button icon in navigation bar if gesture navigation is enabled.
  • Manual theme selection.
  • Rotation Lock button indicates in navigation bar if the device is in locked rotation mode.
  • Adds controller mapping for the Xbox One S wireless controller.