In case you hadn’t noticed, Google’s open-source OS is growing rapidly. In fact, Gartner predicts that it will take over 14 percent of the global smart phone market by 2012, ahead of Apple, Microsoft, and RIM. But Google’s little green robot isn’t content with infiltrating the smart phone world alone. Concurrent with the introduction of the original T-Mobile G1, Google released Android’s source code under an open source license, allowing developers to stretch the limits of what the operating system could do. Now this versatile, Linux-based OS has found its way onto a whole host of gadgets, including eReaders, mobile Internet devices (MIDs), media players, smartbooks, and tablets.
While Google has been quite aggressive in driving Android’s growth in the smart phone market and releasing updates—some even say too aggressive—the company has been conspicuously absent when it comes to backing the OS on devices that are not phones. Without its support, can Android succeed on these larger gadgets, or will it fizzle?