Chipset giant MediaTek on Tuesday said that the company was working with Reliance Jio and Google for an Android Go smartphone. The company did not disclose the release date of the smartphone yet.
MediaTek was one of the first players to offer Android Go compatibility. The company’s collaboration with Reliance Jio and Google would pave way for more capable entry-level 4G VoLTE smartphones.
Android Oreo Go Edition
At the event, MediaTek confirmed that it has MT6739, MT6739, and MT6580 are its latest SoCs to support the Android Go platform. The chipmaker had announced its collaboration with Google for supporting Android Oreo (Go Edition) last month and stated that the first Android Oreo (Go edition) smartphones powered by MediaTek processors will be launched in global markets by the first quarter of this year. This may be the timeline for the launch of the Reliance Jio Android Go phone as well.
Google announced Android Oreo (Go edition) in India last month. The new platform is the lightweight version of Android 8.1 and is primarily designed to make entry-level devices “fully functioning” smartphones. MediaTek at its New Delhi event showcased that its MT6739 SoC enables features such as dual camera, face unlock, and dual 4G VoLTE even on the highly optimiZed Android Oreo (Go Edition). Also, the new processing chip is touted to offer performance-efficient results even with 512MB and 1GB RAM options. We can expect the Reliance Jio Android Go smartphone to be such a basic offering, with a budget price tag.
What can we expect from Android Go?
Google notes that although Android Go will be a scaled down version of Android you find in phones like the high-end Pixel, it still wouldn’t compromise much on functionality. In fact, Google is touting almost the same level of functionality, only scaled down furthermore to fit entry-level handsets with less than 1GB of RAM.
Google has re-worked on almost its entire suit of apps, including Google Assistant, Google Maps, YouTube, Gmail, Play and more, for Android Go even as more and more developers are lending their support for the platform. Google notes that all Android Go devices will come pre-bundled with a Play Store that will house both kinds of apps: those designed/optimiZed specifically for Android Go and others that are not. Users can choose to download and install both kinds of apps but the user experience will vary from app to app, the company adds.
Google, during its India event in December, had announced that Android Oreo Go Edition devices will start shipping sometime in 2018. We have some clarity now, and in the days to come, chances are more OEMs will follow suit.