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Faster search, better photo sharing in new Android

Associated Press Modified: June 27, 2012 at 5:31 pm •  Published: June 27, 2012
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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Faster ways to search content on the Internet and share photos between two phones are promised in the next version of Google's Android operating system for mobile devices.

Android 4.1 is nicknamed Jelly Bean, following Google Inc.'s tradition of likening its updates to a delectable treat. Google previewed it Wednesday at a conference in San Francisco for computer programmers.

Android is now the chief rival to the mobile software running Apple's iPhone and iPad. Google said there are a million new Android devices activated daily, up from 400,000 a year ago. The company said there's particularly fast growth in emerging markets such as Brazil and India.

Jelly Bean will be available in mid-July. Some devices — the Galaxy Nexus, Motorola Xoom and Nexus S — will get it automatically as an over-the-air update. Google's new tablet computer, the Nexus 7, will also come with Jelly Bean.

One of the new features in Android will be Google Now, which is supposed to get you the right information at the right time automatically, if you activate the feature. If you say "traffic," for example, it will look at your usual commute to work and show you alternative routes if there's a lot of traffic. It will tell you the scores of your favorite sports teams automatically, and it will keep you up to date on the status of your flights if you're traveling.

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