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Google's Android 4.1 aka Jelly Bean will allow faster search, better photo sharing

Nicknamed Jelly Bean, the next version of Google's Android OS for mobile phones promises faster Internet search and photo sharing.

BT Online Bureau | June 28, 2012 | Updated 15:34 IST

Android 4.1, nicknamed Jelly Bean, has promised faster ways to search content on the Internet and share photos between two phones. The next version of Google's Android operating system for mobile devices was previewed at Google's conference in San Francisco on June 26.

Jelly Bean will be available in mid-July. Some devices - the Galaxy Nexus, Motorola Xoom and Nexus S - will get it automatically as an over-the-air update. Google's new tablet computer, the Nexus 7, will also come with Jelly Bean.

Google Inc is keeping its tradition of likening its updates to a delectable treat. Android is now the chief rival to the mobile software running Apple's iPhone and iPad.

Google said there are a million new Android devices activated daily, up from 400,000 a year ago. The company said there's particularly fast growth in emerging markets such as Brazil and India.

One of the new features in Android will be Google Now, which is supposed to get you the right information at the right time automatically, if you activate the feature.

If you say "traffic," for example, it will look at your usual commute to work and show you alternative routes if there's a lot of traffic. It will tell you the scores of your favorite sports teams automatically, and it will keep you up to date on the status of your flights if you're travelling.

The company said Google Now feature will get smarter as you use it more. It represents Google's response to Siri, the popular virtual assistant on Apple's iPhone.

Jelly Bean will also come with the ability to share photos by tapping two phones together, using an emerging wireless technology called near-field communications.

The current version of Android, Ice Cream Sandwich, has limited ability to share data through NFC. Samsung's new Galaxy S3 phone has a feature for sharing photos and video by tapping, but it works only with other S3 phones.

The new Android also promises a smarter keyboard, with a feature for predicting your next word before you type.

With inputs from Associated Press

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