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The next version of Android will enhance battery life, speed up apps

Sarah Silbert
June 19, 2014
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Several months ago, Google added an experimental runtime option to speed up apps in Android 4.4 KitKat. A runtime, for the record, supports the apps running on your device -- without it they'd be nothing but piles of useless code. Called ART (short for Android Runtime), that same mode will become the default when Mountain View releases the next version of its operating system. Developers spotted tweaks to Android's open-source code indicating the upcoming change, and the update looks to be a positive one. Without getting bogged down in details, ART essentially makes apps run faster and more efficiently, with the downside being that they'll take up slightly more space on your phone, as well as lengthier install times.

ART will likely replace the current app-running software Dalvik as the default on Android, though the latter option could still be available. In addition to enhancing app performance, ART is said to slightly increase battery life. Even if the gains are small, that's good news for anyone using the most popular mobile OS in the world. And with Google I/O just a week away, we may hear about the next version of Android very soon.

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