The lucky confectionery connoisseurs over at the Boy Genius Report have managed to get their hands on a freshly baked copy of Android 2.0 ‘Éclair’ and have naturally exposed the updated mobile operating system’s creamy filling to the world. While the multitude of screenshots doesn’t reveal anything particularly monumental, the latest in a series of Android versions cleverly nicknamed after tasty confections might make some mouths water.
Although the build previewed is likely far from final, Android 2.0 will sport native Exchange support, a unified inbox, a fully updated maps application, an improved browser and built-in Facebook integration (including contact syncing). The unified email account will harmonize both corporate and personal email accounts, although strangely enough, Gmail will remain alone in its own application.
The maps application has been updated to include layers. The new functionality allows users to overlay information such as traffic, Google Lattitude buddies, and Wikipedia entries.
The browser boasts an updated user interface with a redone URL field that now includes favicons. Android 2.0 is still lacking multi-touch support in the browser, but double-taps will now zoom in and out on an area of the page. Reportedly, the updated browser is also impressively snappy, rivaling iPhone 3GS rendering speeds.
Screenshots alone are hard to judge from, but each subsequent Android version has seen formidable improvements over its predecessors. With the droves of Android devices poised to hit the market in the next several months – many of them armed with their own manufacturer-customized interfaces and functionality – it will be interesting to see if the prophecies look to be correct and Android appears ready to take the number 2 spot just behind Nokia’s Symbian OS.