How hard is it to decide between Apple, Samsung, or another smartphone device? For most of America, reports show, not that difficult. The split is real. Folks love their iPhones and their Galaxies. The thing is, the operating systems running among the two- they, well, are probably more competitive than the smartphones themselves. Because Apple runs iOS, arguably one of those love or hate kind of software systems, one would think there would never be an interruption to that. iOS is what it is, and in turn, Android users know their software like the back of their hands, running the very familiar, and easy-to-use Google OS. Although it’s never been done before, perhaps for obvious reasons, someone has come up with the creativity and technology for consumers to experience Android on an iPhone, all by attaching a 3D printed case.
When I first heard this news, I thought it was an actual evolution between carriers. Although I couldn’t have been more misguided, the device at hand is innovative and intriguing. Derived from software developer, Nick Lee, who’s the CTO of mobile development firm Tendigi, here we have something pretty incredible. Rather than insistently installing Android on an iPhone, Lee has built a device that uses an external 3D printed case connected to an iPhone via Lightning cable. The case, made from a Lemaker HiKey development board, houses a Kirin 620 SoC, 2GB of RAM, and 8GB of internal storage. Thanks to 3D printing, it also fits the Apple board and battery perfectly. Instructions: Fit the case onto the iPhone, turn on Lee’s specialized app, and voila- any user can access the functions of the Android on his or her phone. Yes, the case appears as a bit of a strange and bulky figure, because it is. But all things prototyped need a while to get into better shape.
As one would imagine, it has been quite the struggle to get here, yet the grand possibility has all been thanks to Android having an open-source operating system feature- a conglomerate of sorts, dubbed the Open Handset Alliance. The Alliance includes multiple Google-led carriers, phone manufacturers, and software developers, which together make up the brains of Android’s Open Source Project (AOSP). Since the open-source software contains many Android flavors (including anything from what Motorola, HTC, to LG and beyond runs), the Open Handset Alliance gives the opportunity for a clever-enough developer to clone a version of their own Android device. Hence, an iPhone to Android baby has been born! Lee’s particular device is far from being consumer-ready, but he sure has the innovative thinking to turn this much-desired concept into a reality. It could be a creative adaptation on it’s way to being something very useful, creating a little world where iPhone users can finally utilize Android without feeling too disloyal.
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