Google’s business-focused Android operating system launched back in February
As many as 19,000 businesses have signed up to Google’s Android for Work service, and are either testing, deploying or already working with the system.
Although Google has not revealed precise numbers regarding which companies are at what stage, the news marks a major milestone for Android for Work as it pushes Google more and more into the workplace.
Android for Work first launched in February as Google looked to provide a flexible and open way for businesses to allow their employees a better way to work on the go. It will run on any device running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich or later, although at least Lollipop 5.0 is required to take advantage of all its features, such as work profiles.
Google says it is working with over 80 partners, including BlackBerry, which has just announced its first ever Android device, the BlackBerry Priv, which will support Android for Work and match Google’s Android patch schedule through monthly scheduled updates.
Google is also hoping that the number of users upgrading to Marshmallow 6.0, the newest release of Android, will help accelerate and improve enterprise mobility. The company says that Android Marshmallow will provide “an enhanced BYOD experience” including work status notifications and contacts integration, and administrators can simplify certificates, seamlessly set up new accounts, apply more granular permissions and provision new users using NFC.
Also included in Marshmallow are new work APIs that also enable easy deployment and management of devices in dedicated single-use scenarios, such as defined tasks, kiosks and ATMs.
“We launched Android for Work earlier this year to help businesses put Android’s choice and flexibility to work for them. More than a “packaged” product, Android for Work is a dynamic, expanding ecosystem of more than 80 partners with a shared vision for transforming business,” Andrew Toy, product management director, Android for Work wrote in a blog post announcing the news.
“Businesses are responding to Android’s choice and flexibility, enjoying the range of price points and form factors – from the ultra stylish to the ultra rugged.”
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