Google revealed a new name for its new OS: Marshmallow. It became clear not from a press release, but from a statue outside Google’s office in California. Marshmallow is the 13th official version of the Linux-based OS used in many smartphones and tablets.
Previous names for Android software were also kept with the dessert theme: Cupcake, Donut, Éclair, Froyo, Gingerbread, Honeycomb, Ice Cream Sandwich, Jelly Bean, KitKat and Lollipop. There are reports that more features are coming in the software development kit, including native fingerprint support and a power-saving mode dubbed Doze. As for in-house support for KitKat, it was removed at the beginning of 2015 and will probably not return.
The tech giant has emphasized security to Android developers, trying to compete more seriously with Apple’s iOS. Indeed, the company does need a security win with the Marshmallow, as the previous version of the OS contained a vulnerability called Stagefright, which allowed users to take control of a portable device by sending a text message. While Apple’s most recent version of iOS also contained a texting bug, it just crashed the system. Google announced that its incomplete fix for Stagefright would not be amended until September, which means that the fix will be released either alongside or in Marshmallow.
Talking about the new features, Marshmallow will police background battery access by applications more closely than before by using Doze. Google engineers explained that in this state, Android would exponentially back off background activity, thus “trading off a little bit of app freshness” for longer battery life. Users could get acquainted with the developer preview of the new OS version, previously codenamed Android M.