Google has announced that it will merge the smartphone and Tablet editions of its Android operating system, combining the best features of both into a single OS.
This will happen in the next version of the smartphone operating system. Currently, the smartphone OS is Android 2.3 (Gingerbread), while Tablets will run Android 3.0 (Honeycomb).
Strictly speaking, there will also be one more edition of the smartphone-only OS, Android 2.4. This will let applications designed for dual-core Tablets run on single-core smartphones.
Android 2.4 will retain the Gingerbread codename. It may come as no surprise that the combined smartphone and Tablet version of Android will be called Ice-cream Sandwich.
As well as combining the two operating systems, Google announced that there will be a new version of Android every six months. We can only hope that as well as pushing out such frequent updates, Google can persuade handset manufacturers to match the pace. Currently, many smartphones lag far behind the latest release.