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Google’s new Android operating system

Google, dissimilar to Apple’s numerical approach with iOS, is into naming its Android mobile operating systems after desserts. The very first release was named Cupcake. 2010 saw Gingerbread, 2011 saw Honeycomb, and 2012 saw Jelly Bean. This month Google announced that its next operating system, (the 19th development) will be called KitKat. This came after months of speculation that the next development would be called Key Lime Pie.

HT Android KitKat

Additionally, reports state that the name was chosen with permission from Nestlé and Hershey. Although this suggests that the name is some kind of big PR ploy from the confectionery companies to advertise their product, most especially to techie groups, a Google spokesperson stated that no money was exchanged in the deal. Nevertheless, cross-branding will also occur on the KitKat packaging — with the Android logo present on the front and a competition to win a Nexus 7 with purchase of the well-known chocolate bar.

So what would have encouraged the name KitKat? Do Google’s employees really love the chocolate bar that much? It’s unlikely. Consider Google’s primary mobile industry competitor: Apple. Apple has a devoted following and a large number of rumour blogs that are always meticulously looking for upcoming products and software updates. In this sense, Apple software almost advertises itself, because talk about their product is present everywhere.

Hence, the desired effect from Google’s point of view is for the software to become ‘part of the furniture’ so to speak, and compete with Apple, most especially iOS 7. Google’s goal is for KitKat to become a generalised product that people know about and speak about, like iOS 7. Now Google is present in convenience stores, supermarkets and even petrol stations: wherever a KitKat is sold.

With iOS 7’s release, and KitKat’s imminent release, we will soon see how effective this approach is both competing with the giant Apple and in getting people to know of, and even pay attention, to KitKat.


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