Happy 14th birthday, Android! Look how far you’ve come

T Mobile G1 with Android 1

Credit: Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

Fourteen years since its launch, Android has democratized the smartphone world. It would be fair to say that it has lived up to its initial promise of enabling app-based, internet-connected experiences for everyone. Compared to Apple’s walled garden approach, Google designed Android to be a powerful computer in your pocket and to scale the same experience to the best budget phones and flagships alike.

Even in its first iteration, Android was chock-full of essential features for a productivity-focused user experience. Multitasking was a key part of the experience right from day one. Similarly, Android nailed the notification system in its first iteration. The drop-down hub continues to be the primary way to handle all your notifications until this very day, and even Apple had to eventually concede and add it in. Android also had a leg up over the competition with basics like an app drawer, the ability to move desktop icons, and quick access to settings and wallpaper changing, none of which were available on the first iPhones.

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