Today is a big day for Android, the Open Handset Alliance, and the open-source community. All of the work that we've poured into the mobile platform is now officially available, for free, as the Android Open Source Project.
You'll be hearing a lot about Android devices. We've all put a lot of effort into the first Android device, and I'm really happy with the way it turned out. But one device is just the beginning.
Android is not a single piece of hardware; it's a complete, end-to-end software platform that can be adapted to work on any number of hardware configurations. Everything is there, from the bootloader all the way up to the applications. And with an Android device already on the market, it has proven that it has what it takes to truly compete in the mobile arena.
Even if you're not planning to ship a mobile device any time soon, Android has a lot to offer. Interested in working on a speech-recognition library? Looking to do some research on virtual machines? Need an out-of-the-box embedded Linux solution? All of these pieces are available, right now, as part of the Android Open Source Project, along with graphics libraries, media codecs, and some of the best development tools I've ever worked with.
Have a great idea for a new feature? Add it! As an open source project, the best part is that anyone can contribute to Android and influence its direction. And if the platform becomes as ubiquitous as I hope it will, you may end up influencing the future of mobile devices as a whole.
This is an exciting time for Android, and we're just getting started. It takes a lot of work to keep up with the changes in the mobile industry. But we want to do more than just keep up; we want to lead the way, to try things out, to add the new features that everyone else is scrambling to keep up with. But we can't do it without your help.
What will you do with Android?
This is really, really cool. Giving the platform away for free lets anyone (a.k.a., developers) sink their chops into it and tinker away to their heart's content. I can't wait to see what the open source community does to modify, enhance, and improve the new operating system.