Sunday, 23/10/2016 | 1:18 UTC+8
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Android One lands in the Philippines

Android One lands in the Philippines
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During a media event today at White Space in Makati, Google announced the arrival of the Android One program in the Philippines.

The Philippines is the sixth country–after India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Indonesia–to be included in Google’s Android One program,  a global initiative to bring high-quality smartphones to as many people as possible.

Leading these smartphones to launch are two models from Cherry Mobile and MyPhone. The Cherry Mobile One and MyPhone Uno will be sold through retail stores across the country starting in the next couple of weeks.

Direct-from-Google support

Android One smartphones will come with the Android Lollipop operating system, the latest and fastest Android OS version to date. These smartphones will also receive OTA (over-the-air) updates to newer versions of Android automatically and will continue to do so in the next two years. Android Lollipop is touted to provide up to 2x faster performance than previous Android versions regardless of the hardware you are using.

The telcos have also pledged their support to the Android One program. Smart and Sun will offer free OTA updates to Android OS and certain amounts of app downloads from Google Play for the first six months without counting toward Smart and Sun subscribers’ mobile data plan. Globe will also be working with Android One users to enable better access to the internet.

Perks of Android Lollipop

Google is working to reduce data costs for Android users in the Philippines. Android One’s Chrome app has a data compression feature that helps compress the amount of data flowing between the phone and the internet, thereby reducing data consumption.

The Philippines is also one of the few countries where YouTube users can take videos offline for later viewing. Certain videos can be played back without an internet connection for up to 48 hours via this feature.

The event was attended by Google Philippines’ Country Manager Kenneth Lingan, who addressed the media, Google’s industry partners, and VIP guests. Google’s Vice President of Product Management Caesar Sengupta flew in to give the keynote speech and answer questions from the audience.

“We are very happy to bring Android One smartphones to the Philippines. Working with great partners like Cherry Mobile and MyPhone, we have designed and brought to market these high-quality smartphones at highly affordable prices. We cannot wait to see what Filipinos do with them,” said Sengupta.

The event ended with an Android One experience via the several booths set up at the venue to provide guests with hands-on insight on the features of Android Lollipop and the new Android One smartphones.

Words Aritha Zel Zalamea

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