In brief: Over a billion Android users have entry-level smartphones for which Google provides a customized lightweight experience in the form of Android Go. A new faster and secure version of the OS called Android 10 Go edition is now available.
For devices with 1.5GB RAM or less, Android 10 Go edition means to improve the speed and security of the lightweight OS which Google says can be found on 80 percent of low-end Android phones in the wild today.
Android 10 Go promises faster app switching with more efficient memory management as well as 10 percent faster app launch times compared to the previous version of the OS. Google has also added Adiantum encryption support, which was developed in consideration of performance constraints found on entry-level mobile hardware.
"Adiantum is built to run efficiently without specialized hardware, meaning all Go edition users will have the same level of data security as any Android device, without compromising performance. This will make the next generation of devices more secure than their predecessors, and allow the next billion people coming online for the first time to do so safely."
For first-time smartphone users, a new "read-out-loud" feature on the Google Go app uses AI to convert long-form text into easy listening. Similarly, the 'Lens' feature of the app works by reading out and translating things captured by the phone's camera.
Google Photos' Gallery Go is another lightweight (10MB) app that uses on-device machine learning to search and organize photos, while other popular apps like Uber, Facebook Messenger, Twitter and Spotify have been redesigned for the platform.
Google says device manufacturer support for the platform is stronger than ever. Since the Google Go's inception a year and a half ago, over 1,600 Android Go devices have been made by 500+ manufacturers, released in over 180 countries.
With starting prices as low as $27 for Go devices in some countries, Google is making sure it has a device for everyone and anyone looking to come online without having to pay a premium in the process.